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Greek Island Syros, part of the Cyclades, is one of the smallest in this chain of islands, although it’s certainly not short on charm. With a rich maritime history and a neoclassical port town, Syros has a cosmopolitan style of its own. You’ll also find secluded, sandy beaches, mostly on the west coast, to complete the Greek idyll picture.
Found on the western coast of Syros and just five km from capital Ermoupolis, Galissas is an exquisitely pretty horseshoe cove, lapped by tranquil tickles of turquoise Aegean Sea. Gently shelving, Galissas is an ideal spot for families as kids can play in the calm, Blue Flag-awarded water and adults can kick back on a lounger with umbrella for shade. There’s a few thatched traditional beach tavernas serving up Syros home cooking for lunchtimes. If you fancy a hike, walk over the rocky hill to Armeos Beach, no clothes needed here – it’s a nudist beach.
The small scenic village of Kini is found on Syros’ west coast. A diminutive port, there is also a stretch of sandy beach that almost seems to sit right in front of the seaside village. Fishing boats dot the Aegean, meaning Kini’s tavernas have some of the freshest fish around and is home to some of the island’ top seafood restaurants. Kini is also the location for some of Syros’ most dramatic sunsets, watching the orange sun as it shimmers down into the sun is an archetypal Greek island pleasure. Whilst you’re here, top up your culture with a visit to the Catholic Church Metastasis of the Virgin and the Monastery of Santa Barbara. Nearby are two more pretty beaches to enjoy - Dolphin and Lotos.
A great position for sunset, Posidonia beach on Syros’ southwestern coast is not far from Finikas beach which is one of the more popular seaside spots. Posidonia, by contrast feels a little more exclusive, helped by the aristocratic sea mansions that line this stretch of the coast. Find a comfy sun lounger and take in the view: azure-blue Aegean, a horizon dotted with islands Stroggylo and Schinonissi and the promise of an authentic meal at a fish tavern as the sun goes down.
Wild, remote and inaccessible means the deserted coves of Varvaroussa are often exactly that – completely deserted and devoid of people. With no roads, the only way to get here is by boat which you may hire for the day or ask a taxi boat to drop you from Kini. A rocky pathway will also guide you to Varvaroussa from southern Dolphin beach. Once you’re here, your utterly secluded surroundings will characterise your day. Clothes are optional and make sure you bring enough food and refreshments as Varvaroussa is not the kind of place with a beach bar dishing out cocktails. Quite the opposite – relish your peaceful off-radar place in the sun.
Although most of Syros’ best beaches are on the west coast, Azolimnos is the exception. South of the capital Ermoulpoli, the turquoise-tinged colour of the sea may well lure you to Azolimnos on Syros’ east coast. Do as the locals do and have coffee at one of the thatched beachside cafes before jumping off the pier for a swim, then relaxing in the shade of the tamarisk trees, on a bean bag or sun lounger. Lunch is taken care of via a taverna with Syros specialities such as cuttlefish. If your curiosity is piqued by this small town, wander around to explore the attractive church of Analipsi.