Greek Guide

Chios Beaches Greece Chios

Chios Beaches Greece Emborios, Karfas Agia Fotini

Chios offers a good range of beaches from long stretches of sand served by all the usual tourist facilities to small pebble coves far from the madding crowds. Buses from Chios Town run to and from all the most popular beaches but if you hire a car or scooter you'll be able to uncover many lovely, unspoilt spots around the island's coastline.

The busiest and most tourist orientated beach resort is Karfas, seven kilometres south of the town. The 500 metre sandy beach is lined with hotels, bars and tavernas and there are plenty of watersports to occupy the locals and visitors who flock here in July and August. This is where you'll find the majority of the island's large package holiday hotels and the beach tends to get over crowded in high season so steer clear if you're seeking a quiet, tranquil corner.

Megas Limnionas, a short distance south of Karfas, has a smaller but more picturesque beach which attracts less foreign visitors but is popular with the locals. Neighbouring Agia Fotini is one of the island's most beautiful beaches a 700 metre stretch of white pebbles lapped by extraordinarily clear water. The beach is well served by bars, restaurants and holiday accommodation, much of which is block booked by Scandinavian tour groups.

One of the island's most unusual beaches is Mavra Volia, near Emborios six kilometres south east of the mastic village of Pyrgi. The beach consists of glittering black volcanic pebbles backed by cliffs and shelving into water darkened by the black pebbled seabed. Perhaps here lay the inspiration for the "wine dark sea" referred to by the blind poet Homer who was born on Chios. An even more dramatic beach of purple grey volcanic stones lies over the headland from Mavra Volia.

A small road leading south west from Pyrgi takes you to unspoilt Kato Fana beach where there's a natural spring but no tourist facilities. The remains of a temple dedicated to Apollo surround a medieval chapel 400 metres above the small, sheltered beach.

The west coast is peppered with many sand and pebble beaches which are generally less crowded and developed than the more popular east coast resorts. Windswept Lithi beach tends to get crowded with weekenders from Chios Town in the summer months. Some of the best west coast beaches are clustered near Volissos including lovely Limnos with its combination of sand and shiny black pebbles. Just north of Limnos lies Ayia Markella which is a stunning beach featured on many island postcards.

At the northern end of the island you'll find beautiful Nagos where the lush greenery is fed by springs flowing from an oasis above the beach. It's a delightful beach of tiny coloured pebbles and crystal clear waters overlooked by a pretty hill top chapel.

In the north west corner of the island you can take the curative waters of Ayiasmata where the hot healing springs are rich in iron and sulphur.

Excursion boats run regularly from Chios Town to the islet of Inousses, off the north east corner of the island, where you'll find several unspoilt beaches along the southern coastline. Don't expect any tourist facilities but the water is calm and exceptionally clear.