Sikinos Greek Island

Sikinos Greece - Holiday, Beaches, Walks and Photos Guide.

View of Kastro on Sikinos Island Greece Alopronia seen from the surround hillside - Sikinos Greece Sikinos Greece - Kastro and Chora

If you want real peace and quiet, lovely beaches and nice walks then a holiday on Sikinos Island Greece is just the thing.

Sikinos (Oinoe in Ancient Greece) is part of the Greek Cyclades Island Group and is located between the Greek Islands of Folegandros and Ios - the island has an area of around 42 kilometres and a permanent population of around 340 people. Sikinos is a very quiet and undeveloped Greek Island - it has just two villages - Chora/Kastro up in the hills and the other is located in the small harbour (Alopronia) where there are several tavernas and limited accommodation for visitors. There are only two metal roads plus a few well-maintained dirt roads on the island. However at the time of our Sikinos Holiday they were building another road through to one of the beaches and another road was planned going the other way from the port both of which we understand will be tarmac - and are probably finished construction by now. One of the island's two quite large sandy beaches (Alopronia) is located by the harbour and has sun shades, beach chairs and also a nice line of shady trees growing along the edge by the road - the other beach is Aghios Georgios and is located a little way further up the coast.
Porto Sikinos, Greece The small harbour at Porto Sikinos

How to get too the Greek Island of Sikinos - plus about Sikinos Tavernas and Accommodation.

The Cyclades Islands are ideal for sailors to meander around on their yachts and even this early in the season several were visiting the island - Sikinos is also ideal if you are Greek Island Hopping. Although there is a heliport on the island the way most visitors will travel to Sikinos is by ferry - there are several ferry companies serving the island including Nell and GA - we were told that ferries visit up to around a peak of 90 times a month during the summer period but obviously far less frequently in Winter. Sikinos is only a 45 minute ferry ride from neighbouring Ios and there are also frequent day tripper boats arriving from that island as well as Folegandros and of course Santorini (the latter takes around 2 hours by normal ferry).
wide steps leading into Chora on Sikinos A shady Sikinos cafe in KastroTavernas - Food. During our holiday which was early in the season (May) there were apparently only 10 of us non-islanders staying on the island. There were actually no tavernas open in Porto Sikinos/Alopronia - and just two available for providing meals up in Chora and these had an extremely limited menu choice. There is a small supermarket at Porto Sikinos where you can buy bread and depending when the ferry from Naxos arrives also fruit and tomatoes etc are on sale. (note if you want bread then you have to wait for the supermarket owner to get this from the bakery up in Chora - generally this should be available to purchase by around 10 a.m. but does depend on who he meets and spends time talking too up in the town.).
Episkopi - Sikinos Greece Sikinos's Zoodhochos Pighi Monastery Sikinos - Kastro Derelict windmill on Sikinos
Sikinos Rooms + Accommodation. Again this early in Sikinos's holiday season there were only a few obvious places where you could stay down in the Port (porto Sikinos) and possibly a few more rooms up in Chora - however when we arrived on our ferry there were a couple of local islanders around who met the ferry and offered accommodation/rooms if you had not already arranged such. Sikinos's holiday season starts off with a bang in late June and then continues through July, August (when we are told the island gets really busy) and continues on into the middle of September.

Getting around and about on Sikinos Island.

There are no taxis on the island - there is a bus which generally connects with the ferries - this bus also makes a scheduled but not too frequent run between the Port and Chora.
We did notice there was a bus stop out at Episkopi so presumably at some time more into the holiday season they run a bus service out there too. Once the roads mentioned above are established we were told that the bus may also make trips out to Sikinos's beach at Aghios Georgios. Another way to see the island could be by hiring a small motor-cycle which you can do from the island's garage which is located just on the outside of Porto Sikinos.
However the nicest way to get around the island is of course by walking and using the several mule / donkey tracks which exist.
Sikinos Bus and some goats and sheep - Kastro-Chora saddle Patient Sikinos Donkey out in the hills a moni-pati - one of many on Sikinos in Greece Sikinos path with the upright large rock-slabs visible
You can easily walk from the Port up into Chora and this is mostly on a really nice mule track - there are also several loops of varying distances that you can enjoy by walking out of Chora - generally the paths are in quite good condition and do not suffer from thorn and thistle (the paths are still used by the locals and their donkeys which helps keep undergrowth under control). However it's worth noting that the paths are often very rocky / rubbly and uneven underfoot and are best walked in proper walking boots or at the very least good trainers - also because you are often walking up and down rocky "steps" we found that having a walking stick was really helpful to keep too much banging off our knees.

Porto Sikinos/Alopronia to Kastro/Chora short walk on Sikinos Island.

This short walk of around 4kms takes you from the Port up to the bus stop at Chora - generally speaking it is therefore a steady climb most of the way and apart from the first half kilometre is on a nice rocky path and just a shortish bit on an old dirt track. From the Port follow the main road out heading towards Chora - just after reaching the island's petrol station take a concrete road leaving on the right. When this steep road forks go left and head for the clearly visible large grey concrete sterna. Climb up to the sterna and you find on it's right hand side that the path leaves and heads up into the hillside following a rock wall.
Sikinos - Alopronia beach Excellent Sikinos path - the Port to Kastro Basically follow this rock strewn path almost always with the wall on the left and soon get nice views of the Port below and Kastro and Chora above and even higher up Zoodhochos Pighi Monastery perched on the hill above Kastro. The main Chora road is almost always in view below - eventually the path drops down to the road, turn right and follow the road a short distance round the bend and then take a track on the left. This heads down for a little while to reach a small church - then from the church starts to easily climb up now on a moni-pati. As you are very close to reaching the saddle the path swings hard right following the wall round (there appears to be an old path going ahead but this is blocked).
Aghios Vlasios church on Sikinos, Greece wide rock steps leading up to Chora and Kastro on Sikinos Small streets in Kastro, Sikinos view from the steps heading down to Alopronia, Sikinos
The final part of the walk into Chora is via very wide rock steps. If you do not fancy the effort of walking up - perhaps if the weather is particularly hot - you can easily take the bus up to Chora and saunter back down of course. Or as we did you can walk up - get a cold drink at the top and walk back down which is the best of both worlds.
Alopronia Beach - Sikinos in Greece The small Sikinos beach at Dhialiskari

Sikinos Island Greece and a little about the Beaches there.

We did not particularly visit the island for it's beaches - the beach at Alopronia Bay looked nice enough and is sandy - the only other Sikinos beach we actually visited was the small pebbly beach at Dhialiskari - you can reach this beach by taking a 50 minute or so walk from the Port up and over the hill on a track. Certainly in May, should you visit this beach and want a bit of naturist sunbathing / swimming there is unlikely to be anybody else around to object.
We did not go to the larger beach at Aghios Georgios - the only way available was by walking there (we believe local boats will take you during the main season). We could not go by foot because the island's authorities were busy blowing up bits of the hillside to make way for the new road.

Walking from Alopronia to Dhialiskari beach and back.

This nice little leg stretch is ideally suited if you don't have too much time and just want a walk, quick swim, eat your picnic and be back perhaps to catch the late afternoon ferry to somewhere else.
From the Port follow the main road out just past the petrol station, take the concrete road on the right, then fork left up to reach the large grey concrete sterna. Continue along always staying on the main dirt track and following the signs for Dhialiskari beach. This is now just a case of following the main track as it wanders up across the hillside and over the saddle and then drifts down towards the beach. When you are nearly at the beach there is a path leaving on the left (just after you pass a house) - this fairly narrow path is in pretty good condition and takes you the last bit of the way to the beach going by a small church on the way. You can of course just follow the track to reach the beach as well. The beach is quite small and mostly pebble but has a little bit of sand here and there, plus a few trees to use to hide from the fierce sun for a while. There are also several "fabric-less" beach umbrellas - whether these are sorted out later in the season and perhaps sunbeds and cold drinks are made available is unknown to us.
Alopronia - Sikinos - Greece Aghios Nikolaos Church - Sikinos The small cove at Dhialiskari Beach on Sikinos Dhialiskari Beach - Sikinos
Sikinos - Wildlife: As you wander around there are lots of small lizards to be seen - as far as any snakes on the island we did not see one (and we did get right out into the hills and countryside which would be the most likely place to find a sunbathing Sikinos snake). There were quite a few birds such as swallows, sparrows etc around and it was not unusual to see birds of prey wheeling around high up in the sky but too far away to identify.
Other. The local ferry office is situated in Kastro - as far as we are aware you cannot buy ferry tickets on the actual boats anymore. There is an ATM available on Sikinos which is situated up at Kastro (in fact it's the only ATM on Sikinos Island).
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