Cyclades Islands are widely known for their white-washed buildings, turquoise-water beaches, historical landmarks and, of course, mouth-drooling cuisine, that make it too difficult for anyone to neglect visiting them. There is a small island, however, which, even if it's a part of the Cyclades, it's often neglected by the travel community.
And, of course, we are referring to Kea Island. Kea is ideally located 1 hour away from Athens, but, even though it's very close to the country's capital, it has managed to remain a hidden gem that very few have discovered. In Kea, you will not find the white-washed buildings that you would encounter on a typical Cycladic Island, but you will find picturesque towns located on top of rocks, beautiful and organised beaches for sunbathing and swimming, great taverns serving freshly caught seafood and cozy bars where you can enjoy a cocktail while watching the Sunset.
So, if you are visitting Athens in Summer and want a nearby island to cool-off, Kea will become your perfect host. It's very easy and cheap to visit the Island by taking the ferry boat from Lavrio. Since this article will most probably convince you to visit Kea in the end, we have also hand-picked a stunning resort in Ioulida, that will surely pick your interest!
Luxury blends with Tradition in Kea Village Suites & Villas!
There are many marvelous resorts in Kea, but very few properties that enjoy the superb views of Kea Village Suites & Villa. Of course, the hotel does not suffice only on its great views. Its location has many more conveniences and privileges that will surely enhance your experience.
The property (Kea Village Hotel) is located in Ioulida, the island's capital (chora) and one of the most significant and best preserved settlements on the island. In the meantime, it can also become the reference point of your sightseeing tour in Kea, offering easy access to most of the sights — culture lovers will absolutely love it.
All of the suites offer panoramic views over Ioulida, while they stand out for their great design and aesthetics which remind of a Cycladic Island. There are suites for all kinds of travelers, from couples to families, as well as the unique villa Lefkothea, which is was founded in 1800 A.D. on the highest of Kea's famous chora, Ioulida.
The villa was renovated with modern facilities, but it has preserved its traditional feeling. It can accommodate up to 10 people on its private and luxurious premises, so it's naturally a great option for families and friends.
Now that you have found the perfect accommodation for you, it's high time you discovered the 3 must-do activities in Kea:
1. Discover the History of Kea!
Have you ever heard the story of Hydrossa? Hydrossa used to be the island-home of the Nymphs. Nymphs were beautiful fairy-like creatures who used to live on the island's springs and fountains, keeping it lush and alive. That was until one day, when a fearful lion chased off the Nymphs and the island became infertile and dry as a dessert and infertile.
The inhabitants, unable to produce any more corps, approached the semi-god Aristaios, son of Apollo and the nymph Kyrini, who rescued the island. The island's name changed to Keos in the 12th century BC, when it was colonized by the Ionians.
The Archaeological Museum is one of the most popular sightseeing attractions in Kea, and a great place to discover the island's ancient history. It is only 600m away from the hotel, so you can easily get there on foot. The headless statue of Niki and the Kouros of Kea will surely pick your interest.
Moreover, you can visit Kea's superb Ancient Settlements and discover their hidden historic treasures. There are 4 note-worthy settlements on the island, which are the Karthaia (See directions from the hotel), Korissia (See directions from the hotel), Piiessa (See directions from the hotel) and, of course, Ancient Ioulida (the village where Kea Village Suites & Villas is located).
2. Try one of the numerous outdoor activities!
Kea is not different than any Greek Island on that part, offering a wide diversity of activities to do on the beach — and not only. From unique pathways where you can go hiking, to crystal-blue beaches where you can go swimming and sunbathing, and thrilling water sports activities that will get your nerves on the edge.
Visit one of Kea's beautiful beaches!
Kea is the home of a wide diversity of beautiful beaches with crystal-clear tranquil waters sheltered from the winds. Choosing to stay in a centrally located hotel, like Kea Village Suites & Villas, will give you easy access to many of the beaches. If you want to discover the more secluded ones, you will need a car, or better, a jeep. The are also some beaches around the island, which are not accessible neither by car nor foot, but only by the sea.
Of course, the best way to discover Kea's beaches is through the special boat tour arrange by Kea Village Hotel, through which you will discover some of the most idyllic beaches around the island.
Korissia Beach is Korissia Village's main beach and it is at a walking distance for Kea's port. The beach is organised with sunbeds, umbrellas and various great beach bars (Directions from the hotel). Koundouros Beach is among the most popular beaches on the island, with plenty of tourist facilities (Directions from the hotel). Gialiskari is another popular beach in Kea, known for its clean waters and marvelous tourist facilities (Directions from the hotel). All of the referred beaches are from 20-30 minutes driving from the hotel!
Try Trekking and Sailing in Kea!
Kea is packed with many outdoor activities to do that will surely surprise you! Most of the activities take place in water, but there are many on-land activities as well. The best way to discover Kea is by... walking.
There are actually 12 routes on the island, through which you can discover Kea's natural beauty and exciting history. 5 of the routes ideally meet in Ioulida, so you will be given plenty of route options while staying in Kea Village Suites & Villas.
Sailing is the most popular water sport activity on the island, and it's considered a local tradition. Other than sailing, you can try water skiing, surfing, windsurfing, kitesurfing, jetskiing and more.
Of course, Kea's underwater natural environment is very beautiful as well. The island has a great biodiversity while it is the home of a great number of shipwrecks, creating and idyllic environment that amateur and experienced divers will equally admire.
3. Enjoy Kea's delicious cuisine!
Being part of the Cyclades, Kea offers the authentic Cycladic cuisine that you would find in any island of the same caliber. The locals grow up their animals naturally - and not massively -, so the meat is more tasty in many ways. There are also many taverns selling "catch-of-the-day", as well as fast food eateries selling souvlaki and gyros.
To Spiti sti Hora is Kea Village's restaurant, serving traditional flavors with a unique culinary twist that you will find nowhere else on the island. The menu is based on local organically grown products and it is adjusted on a daily basis, thus every dish is like a new experience. The breathtaking views and the beautiful tunes of jazz and ethnic music set up the perfect setting to enjoy your meal!
Your island-break dream came true...
These must-dos in Kea will be busy, either you visit for a weekend or even a week. So, don't waste any more time and start planning your trip from your accommodation, check prices directly from the hotel by clicking here!