The Saronic islands are very popular Greek islands for summer holidays and weekend breaks. This is because there are the closest Greek islands from Athens. Aegina, Poros, Hydra, and Spetses have developed a lot in tourism over the last years, while Agistri is not that famous but remains a true gem to explore. The crystal water, the relaxing atmosphere, and the long history are the most distinctive characteristics of Saronic Greece, which have a different character each. Poros is great for sailing, Hydra has amazing architecture, Spetses stands out for the elegant mansions and Aegina is ideal for family vacations.
Belonging to the Saronic group of islands, Aegina Greece has many archaeological monuments, picturesque villages, and beautiful beaches!
The center of the island is Aegina Town, the picturesque capital of Aegina. Boasting elegant Neoclassical buildings, narrow alleys and a bustling seafront promenade, Aegina Town is perfect for summer strolls!
Aegina is also an island with a glorious historical past, as it used to be one of the most important islands of ancient Greece, so it’s not a surprise that sightseeing is one of the best things to do in Aegina! The most impressive archaeological site of the island is the Ancient Temple of Athena Aphaia, dating back to the 6th century BC. Most beaches in Aegina Greece are small but organized with tourist facilities. Souvala and Agia Marina are the most popular Aegina beaches, lined up with hotels, taverns and watersports centers. Along the coastline, there are other nice secluded coves and unorganized Aegina beaches to relax.
Agistri island is one of the popular Greek islands for weekend getaways from the country’s capital. Agistri Greece belongs to the Saronic group of islands, along with Poros, Aegina, Spetses, and Hydra. Its relatively close distance to these islands makes it a perfect base for island hopping between the Saronic islands.
Thanks to its extraordinary natural setting and the mesmerizing Agistri beaches, Agistri island Greece is a popular destination for Athenians. You can find Agistri hotels to restaurants, taverns, and organized beaches. Moving from Skala, where one of the island’s port is also located, you’ll come across the best Agistri beaches, Aponissos and Dragonera. Backed by lush nature, they offer the perfect ambiance for relaxing days at the beach! As the island is small and quiet, things to do in Agistri are limited. There are no organized things to do in Agistri. The island is ideal for total relaxation at the beach or in the countryside. Swimming in the wonderfully secluded beaches of Agistri is a delight. Enjoy a day under the hot sun and in the afternoon have lunch in the seaside taverns. In the evenings, have a drink in a lounge cafe-bar under the stars.
Another enjoyable activity in Agistri island is hiking. Many old footpaths cross the island and lead to tiny chapels, small settlements, secluded beaches and hilltops with breathtaking view to the sea. Hiking is best in autumn and spring when the weather is not so hot. In summer, long hiking can be quietly uncomfortable.
Hydra, one of the most cosmopolitan Greek islands, is located in the heart of the Argo Saronic Gulf. One of the main reasons why Hydra is a popular destination is its proximity to Athens, as a ferry from Athens to Hydra, will get you to the beautiful island in just 2 hours. It’s the perfect option for a quick getaway!
Having been a filming location of “A girl in black” and “Boy on a dolphin” movies, as well as a holiday destination for Leonard Cohen, Hydra stands out for its classy beauty!
On Hydra island, you won’t see any cars! Everyone uses their foot, boats or donkeys to get around the island. The cars ban, along with the elegant stone mansions of the island, create a charming atmosphere and make the island one of the most serene destinations near Athens. Organized things to do in Hydra are limited. Apart from swimming and walking, there is little else to do on the island. Actually, hiking is very popular in Hydra as there are no motor vehicles and old footpaths cross the island, leading to old monasteries, secluded beaches, and hilltops with breathtaking view to the Saronic Sea.
An activity that is gradually developing in Hydra island over the last years is diving. The sea bottom around Hydra has many interesting reefs and underwater caves, ideal for scuba divers
Poros is a little island in the heart of the Saronic Gulf, close to Aegina and Agistri. Thanks to its proximity to Athens -just 1-hour ferry ride from Piraeus port- it is one of the popular Greek islands, especially for weekend getaways from the capital.
Perched on the slopes a hill, overlooking the vast Aegean sea and the opposite Galatas, Poros Town is the center of the island’s activity. What’s more, in the picturesque Poros Town, you’ll find a great selection of Poros hotels, shops, cafes, restaurants, and taverns!
Its proximity to the rest of the Saronic islands also makes Poros island Greece the perfect base for island hopping in Greece! So, your best bet is to combine your Poros holidays with getaways to Aegina, Agistri, and Hydra, for the ultimate Saronic experience! Things to do in Poros are many. As most beaches in Poros are organized, there are many water sports centers with fun games for all ages. These games range from banana slides to water skiing. Such water sports centers are found in Askeli, Neorio, and other less organized beaches.
Most of all, Poros island is famous as a popular sailing destination in Greece.
Spetses island is one of the popular Greek islands not only for the Greeks who crave a weekend getaway but also for international travelers! Spetses has an arguably elegant atmosphere, mainly thanks to the Venetian mansions of its Town, which emit a vintage aura.
Spetses Town, the picturesque capital of the island is perfect for endless strolls, while there’s luscious swimming to be had at the secluded Spetses beaches. A selection of yacht marinas, boutique hotels, and sophisticated restaurants complete the unique atmosphere of Spetses.
Overall, Spetses Greece is an ideal destination for those who want to unwind and relax close -yet so far- from the Greek capital. As the island is small and quiet, things to do in Spetses are limited. There are no organized things to do in Spetses. The island is ideal for total relaxation at the beach or in the countryside. Swimming in the wonderfully secluded beaches of Spetses is a delight. Enjoy a day under the hot sun and in the afternoon have lunch in the seaside taverns. In the evenings, have a drink in a lounge cafe-bar under the stars.
Another enjoyable activity in Spetses island is hiking. Many old footpaths cross the island and lead to tiny chapels, small settlements, secluded beaches and hilltops with breathtaking view to the sea. Hiking is best in autumn and spring when the weather is not so hot. In summer, long hiking can be quietly uncomfortable.