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Things to Know
The picturesque island of Hydra lies just a short ferry ride from Piraeus. Its cosmopolitan flair and noble tradition are imprinted in Hydra Town’s preserved architecture and traditional mansions, as well in its various cultural and artistic monuments, schools and museums. Hydra may be a small island, but it boasts an illustrious maritime history and is the birthplace of significant figures in Greece’s naval tradition – the most distinguished being Andreas Miaoulis, whose memory is celebrated every year in “Miaoulia”, the island’s greatest festival. While in Hydra, you will find its famous marzipan sweets (made of rosewater, lemon zest and honey) in almost every corner of the island, as well as a great selection of fresh fish and sea food, most probably fished just few hours ago!
If all vacation destinations could be divided into the ones offering exotic excitement and the ones offering indigenous pleasures, Spetses would be described as the latter. This small island, just off the Greek mainland, has long attracted Athenians as well as foreigners who seek a relaxing holiday; it is a place where history, architecture, and activities evoke a different time. Perhaps this is best exemplified by the fact that most parts of the island have been closed off to cars, and instead the preferred modes of transportation are horse-drawn carriage and bicycle (an ever growing trend in Greece). Hence, rightly so, Spetses is often referred to as ‘the aristocrat of Greek islands.’
Things to See
The Historical Archives Museum of Hydra
Founded in 1918 and housed in an elegant stone-built mansion, the museum hosts historical archives that date all the way back to the Greek Revolution as well as artefacts from the Balkan Wars and the two world wars. It also hosts a collection of traditional costumes, carvings, naval instruments, and paintings.
Location: Hydra
Lazaros Koundouriotis Historical Mansion
An excellent example of late 18th century traditional architecture, this handsome ochre-colored mansion houses relics of the Koundouriotis family including original furnishings, traditional clothes, woodcarvings, weaponry, and a painting exhibition.
Location: Hydra
The Ecclesiastical Museum
Housed in the Church of the Assumption of the Virgin Mary, this museum hosts ecclesiastical items, priests’ clothing, and a collection of holy artefacts that date back to the 18th and 19th century.
Location: Hydra
Statue of Andreas Miaoulis
Located on the left side of the port’s entrance, this statue was erected in honor of admiral Andreas Miaoulis, an important figure of the Greek uprising against the Ottomans.
Location: Hydra
Located at the entrance of the harbor, the bastions equipped with cannons formed an extra line of defense in the event of an invading Turkish fleet making it past the Greek fleet blockade during the Greek War for Independence.
Location: Hydra
Church of Agios Nikolaos
Easily distinguished from afar thanks to its tall marble bell tower that was built in 1805, this church played a vital historic role as the locations where the captains, priests and lords of Spetses met to decide whether to participate in the Greek War for Independence of 1821.
Location: Spetses
Church of Agii Pantes
An all-female church first established between 1830 – 1833 that has operated ceaselessly up to the present day. At the nearby cemetery you can find the graves of several historic figures of the island.
Location: Spetses
Museum of Spetses
Housed in a manor that dates back to the 18th century, this museum’s collection includes objects from different periods of Spetses’ history. Among the museum’s most notable exhibits are the bones of Laskarina Bouboulina (heroine of the Greek War for Independence), thee flag of the Revolution, as well as guns used during the war.
Location: Spetses
Museum of Bouboulina
Built in honor of Laskarina Bouboulina - one of the most influential personalities during the Greek Revolution against the Ottomans – this museum tells the story of Bouboulina’s life through an immersive audio tour.
Location: Spetses
Things to Do
Explore Hydra Town
The Old Town of Hydra is full of mansions that once hosted the most significant political, naval and artistic figures of the island. All of them perfectly preserved and highlighting the island’s traditional architecture trends, they have been donated and are nowadays being used as public services’ facilities. An additional distinctive element are the numerous churches, chapels and monasteries spread around the Old Town, especially the one of St. Constantine, who is also worshiped as the island’s patron saint. An interesting discovery while wandering around the Old Town’s narrow alleys, would be the Cinema Club, hosting theme nights to major European auteurs at Cine Gardenia.
Location: Hydra
Explore Spetses Town
The waterfront of Spetses Town is full of beautiful neoclassical mansions, courtesy of the enormous wealth that the island’s inhabitants accumulated from shipbuilding and sea transport over its history. A walk along the waterfront and its impressive mansions will convince you of the glorious past of Spetses. Start by visiting Dapia, the central meeting point of the island and make your way to the nearby Orologiou Square whose surrounding streets constitute the commercial center of Spetses. At the inner town, you will also have the chance to experience the rare charm of Spetses as you walk through streets lined with beautiful traditional houses and courtyards filled with flowers and scents.
Location: Hydra
Hit the Beach in Hydra
Spilia / Ydroneta / Avlaki Beaches
Small coves laying next to each other, ideal for a hop-on/off excursion on foot! All of them are accessible by stairs and offer deep crystal-blue waters to their visitors. Spilia takes its name from a small underwater cave that lies underneath the flat rocks where you can dive from. Ydroneta takes its name from the famous bar-resto lying on top of the rock, offering sunbeds and other amenities to visitors – an amazing sunset view as well. Avlaki is a bit more separate than the others for those who wish to enjoy some privacy.

Type: Off-the-beaten-path
Location: Located 5’ walk away from Hydra port
Vlychos Beach
The most well-organized beach on the island offers an ideal option for family excursion, providing various amenities and great options on fish taverns.

Type: Organized
Location: Located close to Kastello area
Limnioniza Beach
Considered by many as the most beautiful beach of the island, Limnioniza is a small pebble-washed cove, only accessible by boat or donkey ride –the most popular means of transport on the island, offering a great view to the open sea.

Type: Organized / Off-the-beaten-path
Location: Located on the northeastern part of the island, close to the Seacalf Cave (Spilia tis Fokias)
Hit the Beach in Spetses
Agia Marina Beach
Located south of Spetses Town, Agia Marina is one of the most popular beaches on the island. It has golden sands and beautiful clear waters.

Type: Organized
Location: South of Spetses Town
Agii Anargyroi Beach
On the west side of the island, this is another one of Spetses’ most well-known and frequented beaches with trees that stretch to the sea front.

Type: Organized
Location: West of Spetses Town
Agios Mamas Beach
This beach is located in the settlement of Spetses Town. It’s a mixture of pebbles and sand and it offers the chance to enjoy swimming with a view of the picturesque houses of the island.

Type: Partly Organized (cafeterias and restaurants within walking distance)
Location: Spetses Town
Zogeria Beach
Located in the northern end of Spetses, this off-the-beaten track beach boasts clear waters, soft sand, and natural shade provided by trees.

Type: Off-the-beaten-path
Location: Northern part of Spetses