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Last updated : Nov 2009
Salamis, Aegina, Poros, Hydra and Spetses
Salamis, Aegina, Poros, Hydra and Spetses  - TravelPuppy.com
Salamis

(Perama, 1 nautical mile.) Closest to the mainland, Salamis (Salamina) can be reached from Piraeus and Perama. There are reasonable sandy beaches at Kanakia, Iliakti, Moulki and Peristeria, though the island’s natural beauty is rather spoilt by the proximity of heavy industry. The island has good quality roads and a network of bus and taxi services.

Aegina

(Piraeus, 17.5 nautical miles.) Well known for pistachios and ceramics, Aegina (Egina) makes a perfect daytrip from Athens, thanks to its excellent beaches, clear seas and proximity to Piraeus. Boats arrive at the main port, Aegina Town. East from here, on top of a wooded hill offering panoramic scene, stands the Temple of Aphaia made up of 22 Doric columns erected in the 5th century BC. On the coast, below the temple, Agia Marina is the island’s very popular resort, thanks to its long sandy beach. South of Aegina Town lies Perdika, a striking fishing village with a good sandy beach and boat trips running to the small wooded islands of Angistri and Moni. Aegina is comparatively flat. Bicycles are available for rent, and it is possible to take a ride in a horsedrawn carriage. The island is also served by taxis and buses.

Poros

(Piraeus, 35 nautical miles.) Poros is a thickly wooded island separated from the Peloponnese by a narrow channel. Regular boats cross over the channel from Galatas, on the Peloponnese mainland. Service is also available from Piraeus. The island was formed through the union of two smaller islands, Sphaeria and Kalavria. The main settlement, Poros Town, is known for its white buildings with blue woodwork, typical of Greek island architecture. Nearby lie the remains of the Sanctuary of Poseidon, built in the sixth century BC. The best sand beaches lie at Neorio and Askeli

Hydra

(Piraeus, 42 nautical miles.) A barren, rocky, car-free island, Hydra (Idra) is well-liked by artists and jet-setters, primarily for the beauty of its chief settlement and port, Hydra Town. Built into the hill overlooking the harbour, Hydra Town is a labyrinth of steep cobbled streets, filled with fashionable bars, restaurants and art galleries. 500m above town stands a monastery, offering fantastic views out over the sea. There are numerous small hotels and private rooms to rent, though visitors should make reservations well in advance as Hydra is extremely busy through high season. Being so rocky, there are not many good beaches, but it is possible to swim south of town at Kaminia, Molos and Vlichos, and north of town at Mandraki.

Spetses

(Piraeus, 35 nautical miles.) Situated at the southern extremity of the Saronic Gulf, Spetses has long been a well liked holiday retreat for wealthy Athenians, who are attracted here by good beaches, beautiful pine woods and fresh air. Cars are prohibited, except to residents. Bicycles are available for hire, and the island is served by buses and taxis. There are many good hotels and entertainment facilities in the chief settlement, Spetses Town. The best beaches lie at Agia Pasaskevi and Agia Anangiri.

Situated off the west coast of mainland Greece, the seven Ionian Islands (Cephalonia, Corfu, Ithaki, Kythira, Lefkada, Paxi and Zakinthos) are comparatively isolated from one another. As a result, through the centuries each one has developed its own identity. The most popular islands are Corfu, Cephalonia and Kythira. Ferry connections to every destination are given within their relative section.