Greek Guide

Aegina Island Greece Guide Aegina

Aegina Island Greece things to see and do on your holiday

Package holidaymakers are arriving here in increasing numbers and make Agia Marina the sole base of their two week sea, sun and sand holiday. Independent travellers spend a day or two on Aegina as part of an island hopping tour while the Greeks arrive in droves at the weekends to escape the traffic congestion, pollution and searing summer heat of Athens.

During the summer months there are at least 10 ferries a day to Aegina Town from Piraeus. The trip takes an hour and a half but you can cut your journey time to 35 minutes with a Flying Dolphin which will only cost you about 10% more. Ferries and Flying Dolphins also go directly to Agia Marina as well as Souvlava in the north of the island (a popular weekend retreat for Greeks but generally ignored by foreigners).

The island's star attraction is the 5th century BC Temple of Aphaia and if this is your main purpose of visiting Aegina your best bet is to arrive by boat at Agia Marina. From here you can walk to the temple which is perched on a pine clad hilltop overlooking the busy resort. The impressive temple pre dates the Parthenon but is one of the best preserved ancient temples in the whole of Greece.

The island's interior is a paradise for hikers with its wooded valleys, olive groves and pistachio orchards nestling amid low mountains. Pistachios are Aegina's biggest export so don't forget to buy some to take home because they're supposed to be the best in Greece.

Foodies will find some wonderful waterside tavernas cooking up the freshest imaginable fish dishes and mouth watering mezedes served with a metal jug of the local retsina.

The kids will undoubtedly prefer the Water Park at Faros, down the coast from Aegina Town, and the Hellenic Wildlife Hospital which cares for wounded birds and mammals including eagles, flamingoes, foxes, hedgehogs and chameleons.

The tiny island of Moni off the south west coast of Aegina is a wildlife sanctuary inhabited only by birds and wild "Kri Kri" goats, relocated from their native Crete. The islet is a 10 minute ride by water taxi from Perdika.