Despite the recent problems, Greece remains one of the most popular locations for a European vacation. The many islands and the mainland offer a range of locations that all have that magic Mediterranean climate as well as plenty of history and amazing landscape. Sifnos is one of the islands in the Cyclades Island group and offers plenty for visitors looking for a luxury vacation in Greece.
History of the island
Sifnos has been inhabited since the Bronze Age and was part of the Cycladic Civilization known for its wealth in gold, lead and silver. Later, people from other parts of Greece moved to the island and it fell under the control of Athens. It was famous for being one of the first places in Greece to mint coins, around 600BC.
As well as precious metals, the island is known for its rich clay veins that mean the creation of pottery has always been important. Unique jars and pots spread around the region that were made on the island and there are still some of the original potteries to be seen in central regions of the island.
Main places to stay
The biggest town on the island is the capital Apollonia and the second biggest is the town of Artemonas. Other popular locations to stay include Kamares, Platis Yialos and Faros. The island doesn’t have an airport so most travelers arrive at Athens and then take the daily ferry from Piraeus or from nearby Milos, where there is a regional airport.
Top places to visit
Vathi Beach is a popular place to visit and also the location of a number of luxury Greek holiday villas so is an ideal base for a vacation in Sifnos. There is also a small village of the same name close to the beach. The beach is known for having very clear seas and lovely sands that make it a great place to relax and enjoy the sun. There are also several tavernas along the beach and the traditional desserts from the island are available in the cafes, definitely not to be missed.
The Chrysopigi Monastery is south of Chania city and is still an active monastery where worshippers honor the icon of the Virgin Mary. It has several different chapels dedicated to different saints and there is also a folklore museum containing works both religious and secular from the history of the island.
Things to do
Sifnos Diving Centre
If you want to try diving or advance your existing skills, then the Sifnos Diving Centre is a certified school to learn a variety of diving techniques. They have courses for all ages including their Bubblemaker to introduce kids to scuba diving right through to open water and adventure diver courses for experienced divers.
The island has a varied landscape that makes hiking a great activity. You can explore the ancient castles and monasteries, see the small, remote villages and enjoy the beautiful landscape as well as the views across the beaches and the blue seas. There are companies that offer guided hikes or you can grab a map and create your own.