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The Isle Of The Blest

Samos, the birthplace of Hera, was famous for its wine, its women and its ships – Byron called for his bowl of Samian wine to be filled high even in the 19th century. The countryside is green, fertile, gentle, with two great mountain masses and a coastline with many sandy bays and pebbly coves. The mountain scenery is wonderful, and the views are spectacular, while the coast offers a rich crop of sandy and pebbly beaches. The land is so rich that Menander wrote in the 4th century that here “even the hens give milk”.

The island is spared the worst of the Northern summer winds or Meltemi, though it is not as calm as the Ionian islands.

Best for

International airport, large sandy beaches, plenty of interesting archaeological sites, churches and variety of sporting and cultural activities.

Worst for

High volume of tourists, not all up-market.

Would Suit

Groups of mixed tastes where some want to lie on beaches, and others want to explore, or indulge in sightseeing or watersports. Those wanting culture and history, those interested in Byzantine churches and keen nature lovers.

Would not suit

Island snobs and those looking for a hip Cycladic vibe with chic boutiques and cool bars and clubs.

Don't miss

The Archaeology Museum in Vathi (Samos), the bird sanctuariy of Alyki lagoon, the Efplinion Tunnel built around 400 BC, the cave and lovely church of Panaghia Spilliani. The cyclopean walls and sole remaining column of the Temple of Hera, the tavern of Koutsi in a cool ravine on the pine clad slopes around Pirgos. The nearby Moni Megalis Panaghia - one of the island's finest churches. Drive up the mountains to visit the lovely little mountain villages near Karlovassi and the lovely river canyon near the church of the Panaghia tou Potamou in the western part of the island. The west coast landscape with lovely sandy beaches and the beautiful coves of Mikro Seitani and Megalo Setiani. The Logothetis castle in Pythagoria and the church of Aghia Triada on its little hilltop.


Walking and hiking in the mountains, swimming in river pools and cataracts, a day trip to Ephesus (Kusadasi) on the Turkish coast from Samos, a stunning temple complex not to be missed.

High Season

The island fills up and there are a lot of bus and coach parties.

Low Season

There is still plenty of local life and this is a very good island to visit out of season.