When you think of holidays in Greece, you probably think islands – there are loads of them! Sparkling seas, ancient ruins and lush scenery can be found on them all, so how do you go about picking the right one for you?
Kos is small enough to offer an intimate island experience, but large enough to guarantee variety. If you’re struggling to decide where to stay during a grand Aegean adventure, take a look at these 10 reasons why Kos is an ideal holiday destination:
1. It’s one of the best Greek islands for cycling
Unlike many other islands, Kos is relatively flat, and this makes it a beautiful place for a cycling trip. Bike rentals are easy to come by, and there are also plenty of cycling paths around Kos Town and the main beaches. Alternatively, you could take to the mountains and try out the forest trails!
2. You can bathe in thermal spring waters
If you’ve never bathed in a hot thermal spring – or even if you have – you should definitely visit Therma (some spell it Therme) Beach, not far from Kos Town. The volcanic water is said to have a healing effect, and this combined with the gorgeous rock and sea surroundings creates the perfect relaxing experience.
3. The beaches are superb
You’ll be spoilt for choice when it comes to picking a beach in Kos. For an idyllic stretch of sand, try Paradise Beach on the south of the island. There are also lots of watersports to partake in here, as well as restaurants to grab a bite to eat before you leave.
4. The port is a great base for exploration
From the port in Kos Town, you’ll be able to get a ferry to a huge number of other islands – you’re definitely not limiting yourself by staying here. The neighboring island Nisyros is home to a dormant volcano, and it’s a beautiful place for a day trip.
5. You can make the most of Greek nightlife
If you’re in the mood for a party, head for Kardamena. This small town is packed with lively bars and clubs to keep you entertained all night long. Kos Town also boasts an excellent selection of bars.
6. You’ll be visiting the home of Hippocrates
Hippocrates is considered the father of medicine, and Kos is where he was born. The plane tree in the city center marks the spot where he is said to have taught his students, so make sure you pay it a visit.
7. Kos Town is a gorgeous historic center
The monuments you’ll pass as you stroll through the streets of Kos date from many periods — ancient Greek, Byzantine, Ottoman. While you’re there, sit back and enjoy a coffee in the history-steeped backdrop of Eleftherias Square.
8. You can visit ancient villages
Step outside Kos Town to explore rural Greece in one of the island’s many villages. Nestled on a mountainside just south of Kos Town, Asfendiou is one of the prettiest villages you’ll find.
9. You can step back in time at the ancient ruins
The remains of the Asklepieion, an ancient Greek healing center, are one of the island’s most remarkable sites. Although it dates from the 3rd century BC, many of the rooms have remarkably been preserved.
10. It’s great for wine tasting
Winemaking is an age old tradition on Kos, and although the vineyards were neglected for years, the island is now rapidly climbing the ladder of wine destinations. Wine lovers will want to visit the Triantafyllopoulos vineyards, where many of the whites and reds on offer are impossible to find outside Greece.
Which Greek island is your dream holiday destination? Tell me which it is and why you love it so much in the comments below.
Author bio: Marissa Melvin is a traveller and a graduate in classical Greek and Latin. She is passionate about Greek culture and is even trying to teach herself to play the lavouto!