The Cycladic island of captains
Andros is an elegant, cosmopolitan island on the northern edge of the Cyclades.
The capital of the island, Chora, is one of the most majestic maritime villages of the Aegean with century-long nautical tradition. The beautiful village unfolds a tempting fusion of island minimalism and aristocracy and at the same time medieval beauty. Imposing neoclassical mansions and buildings with amazing details in decoration show the maritime heritage of the island.
Andros discrete personality is further enriched by sceneries of unparalleled natural beauty that will arrest the attention of nature enthusiasts. Due to the mountainous areas and the rocky coastline, a significant part of the island has been left untouched and boasts of beautiful verdant valleys, waterfalls, gorgeous beaches with crystal clear sky-blue waters, walnuts, chestnuts, fragrant lemon groves and large plane trees.
The beautiful mountains of Andros host the inland villages that are connected with continuous exciting paths extending from north to south, passing by the most beautiful natural landscapes and important monuments. One can hike along these paths and discover the timeless beauty of Andros passing through beautiful rivers and streams, archaeological monuments, old windmills, charming dovecotes, stone walls and country chapels.
Andros is a place with distinctive gastronomy and traditional flavors. The local delicacies are served in most of the local taverns and restaurants so you cannot miss any of these exceptionally unique dishes.
Andros is blessed with mysterious beauties that unless you visit it you cannot discover them.
Tower of Agios Petros
The Tower of Agios Petros was built in the Hellenistic Era (4th – 3th Century B.C.). It has a cylindrical shape and the part that remains today is almost 20m high. Around the building facilities for copper extraction are found which were in service until the beginning of the 20th century. The tower is built in a strategic position overlooking the valley of Gavrio and the sea.
It was one of the most important castles of the Aegean built on a small peninsula of Chora. The castle is connected to Chora through an arched stone bridge and it is used to offer natural protection over the surrounding areas. Kato Kastro was built from Venetian Marino Dandolo and it was destroyed from the bombardments from the Germans in 1943.
This castle was the largest and strongest settlement on the island, built by the Venetians on a plateau north form Korthi. Almost impregnable due to its fortification wall and difficult access, it fed a lot of rumors about its true story, as there is not enough information about its history. According to one theory, the Turks sent an old lady with her pregnant daughter to ask for help and to enter the castle. During the night she opened the gates and therefore the town was conquered. The old lady deeply regretted for her action and she committed suicide by dropping herself from a high rock into the sea. The castle took the name “castle of the old lady” (tis grias to kastro) and the beach “jump of the old lady” (tis grias to pidima).
Monastery of Zoodohos Pigi
The monastery of Zoodohos Pigi is the largest on Andros and, according to a tradition, it used to be a School during the Byzantine Era before becoming a monastery in 842 A.D. by Empress Theodora. It was renovated in the 16th century and again in the 20th century. In 1928 it changed into a nunnery. Hosted in the monastery is a library, an exhibition with utensils and vestments and a collection of prehistoric tools.
The archaeological Site of Ipsili
The archaeological site of Ipsili is located in the village of Aprovatou. Archaeological excavations have brought to light remains of a geometric settlement along with its fortified acropolis and a sanctuary dedicated to Demeter and Persephone.
The Archaeological Site of Zagora
The Archaeological Site of Zagora is an ancient settlement located on a steep plateau close to the area of Stavropeda. Archaeological excavations have brought to light the remnants of old houses and a sanctuary surrounded from the remains of the defensive city walls. Findings of the site are displayed in the Archaeological Museum of Andros. The site is accessible through a beautiful sign posted path starting from the area of Stavropeda.
The archaeological Site of Paleopolis
The archaeological Site of Paleopolis is the ancient capital of Andros located in the village of Paleopoli. Excavations have brought to light the remnants of the market and the theatre of the ancient city along with a series of temples. Findings from the excavations are exhibited in the Archaeological Museum of Paleopolis. Remains of the sunken agora are found at the bottom of the sea located near the harbor of Batsi. Today the verdant village is located on the foothills of mountain petalo. The archaeological site of Paleopolis is located at the haven of the village and it is accessible from a signed posted path.
Archaeological Museum of Paleopolis
Its collection contains sculptures, statues, coins and signs found in the excavations in Paleopolis. The most important exhibits are the marble lion, the marble statuette of Artemis and a marble plate with a hymn to Goddess Isis.
Museum of Modern Art
The Museum was inaugurated in 1979 with its old wing exhibits sculptures of famous Greek artists. In 1986 the new building right opposite the old one was inaugurated, which is composed of a library, a projection room, a shop and an exhibition hall. Every summer since 1986, an exhibition is being organized here hosting important and famous artists’ works. Till nowadays there have been presented works of Greek and foreign artists such as Picasso, Matisse, Kadinsky, Giacometti, Chagall, Κlee, De Chirico, Rodin, Miro, Karagatsi, Paniaras, etc.
Archeological Museum of Andros
The Museum is operating since 1981 and its collection contains findings from the excavations in the ancient Zagora, as well as models and aero photographs. Sculptures from the Archaic and Roman era are also exhibited here, mainly coming from Paleopolis, together with inscribed plates, parts from Byzantine churches, the headless Kouroi, Hermes of Andros and the body of Goddess Artemis.
The library was founded in 1987 and is housed since then in a neo-classical building in Andros Hora. It contains almost 60.000 volumes of scripts and manuscripts, a large archive about shipping tradition in Andros and other various works of art (pictures, paintings, ancient vases, statuettes and figures, etc). There is a department from which books can be lent and a fully equipped, modern workshop for bookbinding, book preservation and seminars.
The village of Stenies
The village of Stenies is one of the most beautiful villages of the Cyclades located on the east side of the island. The mountainous settlement has an authentic character, as it is a true specimen of traditional architecture with impressive stone houses and cobblestone alleys. The village is divided into the district of Ano Stenies, a charming area with impressive captain mansions, wall fountains and the charming square and the district of Kato Stenies home to the imposing tower house of Bisti and the deserted pasta factory of the family of Embirikos. One can also visit the beautiful beaches of Gialia and Piso Gialia.
Enjoy the outdoors
Andros is beyond any doubt the perfect island for nature lovers, walkers, hikers or trekkers! If you’re looking for an outdoor adventure, Andros has plenty of activities on offer to suit everyone and provide you a real activity holiday.
Andros has a perfect environment for thousands of native and migratory birds. The beach of Ahla is a wildlife refuge of a rich variety of migratory birds.
The variety of coastline of Andros offers numerous exciting explorations for diving enthusiasts. Interesting shipwrecks and colorful reefs are some of the most interesting diving posts. Also, the beach of Paleopoli is an ideal diving site where you can discover the ancient submerged breakwater. One will find a diving center at the bay of Kypri in Gavrio.
Andros hosts numerous paths ideal for lovers of hiking. The island has an exceptional network of old cobblestone trails and run through the entire island. The trails connect villages, cross water springs and ravines and lead to monasteries and churches.
One of the most beautiful routes is the trail starting from the region of Stavropeda leading to the ancient settlement of Zagora. Another beautiful route is the route starting from the region of Revmata between the villages of Vourkoti and Arni, a natural beauty paradise surrounded from verdant vegetion. One can also follow the paths in the natural springs of Pithara, an ideal route for nature lovers. It is also worth following the route starting from the village of Kohilou that leads to the Castle of Pano kastro that offers panoramic views of the Aegean.
The rich natural diversity of Andros is highly suitable for mountain and road biking. Exciting trails from rural roads to specially designed cycling routes are available in various paths of the island. The northern part of Andros boasts numerous paths of extreme wild beauty for mountain biking. One of the most beautiful routes starts from the village of Chora that leads to the beach of Vori.
Lovers of off road driving can follow the dirt roads leading to the mountains of Andros in order to explore the mysterious beauties of the island. The northern part of Andros boasts numerous paths of extreme wild beauty for off road driving.
Andros is known for its ideal conditions for lovers of windsurfing, as the island gets really windy especially in the summer. The beach of Ormos Korthi offers windsurfing facilities and it is ideal for practicing windsurfing.
Close to Andros Town, heading south, Syneti beach is found. The beach is pebbled with crystal clear, clean waters and it also features some naturally carved caves under water. It is pretty tranquil and due to its special morphology it is ideal for snorkeling, while it provides natural shade after noon as it is nestled within high cliffs. Syneti is also the mouth of Dipotamata, a very scenic gorge with traditional watermills within.
Ormos is located on the south eastern part of Andros, almost 37km from the port of Gavrio. The beach is sandy and pretty organized with showers and various other amenities. Swimming and windsurfing lessons can be attended here, so Mylos is a water sports’ friendly beach. The name of the beach comes from an old windmill which stands right in the middle of its coast (Mylos means windmill in Greek). You will also find nearby various taverns and shops.
Plaka beach is located on the southwest coast of the island at Korthi area, almost 31km south from the port of Gavrio. After Zaganiaris village you should take a right turn and follow the dirt road. The beach is sandy, not very crowded and it also offers trees for natural, refreshing shade. Excavations have brought to light findings that testify that here existed a prehistoric settlement. Also ideal for fishing activities.
Almost 24 km south from Gavrio on the west coast of the island Chalkolimionas beach is found. The beach is at places sandy and at places pebbled with crystal clear and calm waters, as it is naturally protected from strong northern winds. Its name, meaning the port of brass in Greek, comes from the mines that operated there in the ancient years.
After arriving at the settlement of Paleopolis located on the west coast of the island, you follow the path with the steps descending the hillside to this pebbly beach. The entire area is full of scattered antiquities, such as a great part of the ancient port and the ancient market (agora). An amazing experience swimming by the archeological remnants, into an ancient port!
TIS GRIAS TO PIDIMA
Tis Grias to Pidima beach, meaning the place where the old lady jumped in Greek, is located on the southeast coast of Andros, north from Ormos Kotrhiou, after the port of Vitzi. There is a path leading to this beautiful sandy beach with the characteristic rock which gave the name to the spot. It is believed that during Turk domination the Castle of Kohilos was given to the enemy by an old lady that asked shelter from its inhabitants but when she entered the castle, she opened the doors deliberately and the Turks dominated it. The old lady was so shameful that she jumped from the cliff and it is believed that she has been petrified ever since. Despite this “unpleasant” legend, the beach is a very beautiful cove and pretty popular among visitors and locals.
Agia Marina is located on the west coast of Andros, 8.5km south from Gavrio, next to Stivari beach. It is a sandy, long and narrow beach whose coast is well hidden under trees, so natural shade and a refreshing ambience is guaranteed. You will also find taverns nearby.
Stivari is located on the west coast of the island, 9.5 km south from Gavrio, right after Batsi. It is in reality a very small and narrow sandy bay with shallow waters, also ideal for fishing. Stivari is not organized and due to its size it is never crowded and, so, ideal for a tranquil swim.
Agios Petros beach is located on the road to Stavropeda from Gavrio. The beach is very beautiful, with golden sand and warm shallow waters, that makes it ideal for families with young children. Some taverns can also be found here for a great meal with local delicacies and fresh fish. Right above the beach, on a cliff, you will also admire the cylindrical tower of St. Petros from which the beach was named after.
BATSI, CHRYSSI AKTI
Almost 7km south from Gavrio on the northwest coast Chryssi Akti, the most crowded beach on the island, is located. Chryssi Akti is in reality the beach of Batsi, one of the most popular settlements of the island. A large, organized sandy beach, with water sports, taverns, cafes and shops nearby. Definitely not to be missed!
This beach is located 5 km north from Gavrio on the northwest coast of Andros. It is a charming sandy beach with trees providing natural shade and clean waters. The place is ideal for fishing lovers and you will also find there some taverns for delicious meals and a short rest from a day under the sun!
Zorkos is a non-organized large sandy beach nestled in a beautiful bay on the north part of the island, almost 17km from Gavrio following the road to Palaistou and then a dirt road towards Kato Varidi settlement. It is an untouched coast for a quiet and tranquil swim while, in summer time, a tavern on the coast offers delicious dishes and fish.
Vitali beach is located almost 15 km northeast from Gavrio, following the road to Agios Petros and then to Vitali. Half of the road is a narrow dirt road which leads to a pebbly beach with big rocks providing natural shade and a tavern working in summer. A beach with crystal clear waters and quite tranquil, ideal also for fishing and for families.
This beach is located on the northeast coast of Andros island in Achla region. Following the road from town to Arni, after Vourkoti there is a dirt road descending to this secluded beach. There is also the option of getting there by boat. The beach has fine pebbles and trees providing natural shade. The waters are ideal for snorkeling and fishing and the bay is protected from strong winds.
There are two beaches at the area of Stenies on the east coast of Andros, called Ebros Gialia and Piso Gialia (meaning front and back coast respectively in Greek) which are only a few minutes’ walk one from another. From Andros town you will follow the road to Niborio and take a left towards Stenies. Ebros Gialia is a pebbly beach and there is also a tavern on it. Piso Gialia is a sandy beach. Both beaches are popular and, as such, crowded in summer.
Close to the town of Andros, to the north, is located an organized sandy beach, ideal for families, with taverns, cafes and shops. The bay here used to be the old port of the island and it still serves as a harbor for fishermen boats and yachts. Niborio is partly organized with few sunbeds and umbrellas while the small taverns nearby maintain a discrete but really helpful presence with local delicacies and fresh fish.
Unique gastronomic experiences
Andros Island, part of the Cyclades Islands in Greece, is a place with distinctive gastronomy and traditional flavors. The local delicacies are served in most of the local taverns and restaurants so you cannot miss any of these exceptionally unique dishes.
The best places to eat in Andros, where you will also find local products to take home with you, are mostly encountered in Andros town, Batsi and Gavrio, but the smaller villages and settlements also offer plenty of choices for dining in some of the best restaurants and taverns of the island.
Andros town, Batsi and Gavrio not only constitute the best places to eat in Andros but they are also the hotspots where some of the best bars and clubs on Andros Island are gathered.
THE LUXURIANS offers an exclusive booking service to the best restaurants and bars on the island, based on its fully supported recommendations. The comprehensive ‘little black book’ that we have compiled and update every year, lists restaurants and bars in every tiny place on the island.
Just lay back and let your personal concierge with first-hand experience make all arrangements on your behalf.
Potatoes are fried in a pan with sausage and pork meat. A mixture of eggs, salt, pepper, grinded cheese, oregano, spearmint is added in the pan and cooked till the mixture thickens. Then, it is turned upside down in the pan and cooked a little more, like the omelet.
Labriatis is an Easter traditional dish of Andros. A marinated goat is stuffed with a mixture of cheese, eggs, onions, butter, rice, spearmint, parsley and its own inwards which is first fried in a pan with olive oil. Then the goat is covered with rosemary branches and baked in the oven. The stuffing and the meat are served separately.
A mixture of crushed walnuts, breadcrumbs, peeled almonds, honey, nutmeg, clove pins, rose water and caster sugar is given the shape of little balls. The mixture is put in very thin dough which is then folded in an oblong shape and baked. When ready, caster sugar is added on top.
It is a marzipan type sweet
It is a sweet of roasted almonds
When to go
Andros is most enjoyable in late spring – when the landscape is still green, the sea has warmed up to feasible swimming temperatures, but the crowds have yet to descend – and early autumn, when the summer hordes have departed and the sea is at its warmest. In both spring and autumn, you can expect attractive prices for villa accommodation compared to summer.
Andros is the northernmost island of the Cyclades and the second biggest one following Naxos. It has a Mediterranean climate with mild winters and cool summers because of the August northern winds.
The national prefix for Greece is +30 if you are calling from abroad. All numbers in the capital Athens start with the prefix 210 and are followed by 7 digits (e.g. 210-3227400).
The Area Code for Andros is: +30 22820.
If you wish to call abroad, you have to start by dialing the other country’s national prefix (i.e. 0049 for Germany, 0044 for England etc.) and continue with the area code and the number where you wish to call.
Euro Bank Notes: Are available in 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 200 and 500. It is not always easy to receive change for 200 and 500 Euro Notes.
The port of Rafina in eastern Attica is connected with the port of Gavrio in Andros and the trip lasts about 2 hours. The island is also connected with the island of Tinos and from there with other Cycladic Islands like Syros, Mykonos, Paros and Naxos.
Blue star Ferries
For accurate timetables and ticket costs please visit: www.bluestarferries.gr
Tel.: +30 210 3249 997, +30 210 3319 079, +30 211 2215502
For accurate timetables and ticket costs please visit: www.agoudimos-lines.com
For accurate timetables and ticket costs please visit: www.fastferries.com.gr
Tel.: +30 210 4182005, 4182163
Golden Star Ferries
For accurate timetables and ticket costs please visit: www.goldenstarferries.gr
Tel.: +30 212 222 4000
Andros Port Authority: +30 22820 22250
Rafina Port Authority Tel.: +030 22940 28888, 22940 22481, 22940 22487, 22940 22300
Tel.: +30 22940 23561, 22940 22112, 22940 22700, 22940 24398
Tel.: +30 22820 71222, 22820 72363, 22820 29220, 22820 71489, 22820 41198, 22820 41771
Local buses connect the port of Gavrio with the towns of Andros, Batsi and Korthi and with the other villages of the island.
Tel.: +30 22820 22316
Gavrio Tel.: +30 22820 71561
Batsi Tel.: +30 22820 41081
Korthi Tel.: +30 22820 62171
Rent a Car / Motorbike
The best way to discover the beauties the island of Andros has to offer is by renting a car or a motorbike. The roads though, are usually narrow, winding and not well maintained, so attention is always required.
Banks and ATMs
In the city of Andros, you can find branches of many Greek banks. Bank branches or ATMs are also found in some villages.
Banks exchange all major currencies, traveler’s cheques or Eurocheques. Post offices exchange cash, but not traveler’s cheques, and usually charge lower commissions than banks. Travel agencies and larger hotels exchange cash and traveler’s cheques but usually charge a higher commission. Credit cards are accepted in shops and restaurants, however, in local cafes, especially in villages you will probably have to pay in cash.
Andros Post Office Tel.: +30 22820 22260
Gavrio Post Office Tel.: +30 22820 71254
Batsi Post Office Tel.: +30 22820 41423
Korthi Post Office Tel.: +30 22820 61286
The Greek post office is called ELTA. Post Boxes in Greece are YELLOW for normal post, usually with 2 slots for INTERNAL POST (meaning inside Greece) and post for ABROAD. RED Post Boxes are rarer and they are used for URGENT mail. REGISTERED mail is always handled and given a receipt for at the POST OFFICE.
Andros Police Station Hora, Tel.: +30 22820 22300
Gavrio Police Station Gavrio, Tel.: +30 22820 71220
Gavrio Police Station Gavrio, Tel.: +30 22820 41204
Korthi Police Station Korthi, Tel.: +30 22820 61211
Municipality of Andros
Tel.: +30 22820 22275
Municipality of Korthi
Tel.: +30 22820.61360, 22820.61219
Municipality of Ydrousa
Gavrio Tel.: +30 22820 71250
Batsi Tel.: +30 22820 41343
Tourist Police: 171, +30 26950 24483-4
Hellenic National Meteorological service: +30 210 9699101-3
Elpa (Car breakdown tourist information service): 174
Andros Port Authority: +30 22820 22250
Rafina Port Authority: +30 22940 22300
International Press can be found mainly in the big settlements of the island.
Fire Department: 199
Andros Health Centre
Andros Town, Tel.: +30 22820 22222, 22820 33333, 22820 23703
Gavrio Tel.: +30 22820 71329
Batsi Tel.: +30 22820 41541
Korthi Tel.: +30 22820 62058
Andros town Tel.: +30 22820 23203
You can find a pharmacy in every big village on the island. Pharmacists are well-qualified to deal with the majority of minor medical complaints or to prepare prescriptions. The opening hours are listed at the front doors or in the windows of each Pharmacy. For your convenience find below an indicative list with pharmacies: