It’s no secret that Greece is a summer pin-up. But, despite its popularity, there are still tonnes of hidden spots that have managed to slink off the tourist trail. We’ve rounded them up here – just don’t tell anyone we told you…
You don’t have to be a celebrity to go on a low-key holiday. Pocket-sized Gerakini is totally off the radar, and it’s squirreled away among pine-covered hills and olive groves. Speaking of which, the region’s olive oil is pretty hard to beat. Just pop into one of the local tavernas and see why – we recommend a generous drizzle over the top of a fresh Greek salad. Gerakini’s beach is a bit of a star, too. Its golden sands look like someone’s spilled a pot of honey over them, and there are loads of watersports on offer. But, if you’re more of a history buff than a water baby, the ancient city of Olynthos is just 15 minutes away in a cab.
Marmari isn’t that well known among tourists, but it’s famous among locals. It’s no surprise, then, that they’ve kept it quiet. The white sand beach is immaculate, and the sea has waves made for windsurfing. There’s even a windsurfing school on the beach, if you fancy giving it a go yourself. If you want to pair beach with city, Kos Town is just a 15-minute drive away, too. The birthplace of Hippocrates, Kos is filled with history – there’s a great Medieval castle, plenty of tavernas to grab a bite in, and an indoor market that runs every Saturday. If you fancy a rummage around the stalls, don’t miss out on the handmade soap and locally produced honey.
Samos is also decorated with coastal paths, so, if you want to walk off all those Souvlakis, you won’t be disappointed. Pick a path that snakes between the beach and mountains, or challenge yourself to Mount Kerkis. The views from the top definitely won’t disappoint. Interestingly, Samos is also the birthplace of Pythagoras, the mathematician. There’s even a village named after him called, Pythagorion. Don’t worry, though – it doesn’t take a genius to work out why the island’s a great choice for a getaway.
If there’s one thing that reels you in to Skala, it’s likely to be the beach. It’s a three-kilometre-long swathe that flies a Blue Flag for cleanliness. Bag the best spot and start sizzling, or take a glass-bottom boat ride and keep your eyes peeled for dolphins. If you’re around in July and August, you might be lucky enough to spot rare loggerhead turtles scuttling towards the sea. Kefalonia’s star attraction, Drogarati Cave, is pretty close, as well. We won’t drop too many spoilers (100-million-year-old stalagmites), but it’s pretty impressive. If you’re heading in that direction, don’t miss Antisamos Beach on the way, either. It’s where the film Captain Corelli’s Mandolin was shot, so you can stand in the footsteps of Hollywood’s elite – literally.