Poros, the Casual Island Escape

It's green, it's calm, it's picturesque – and as close to Athens as it gets.
Five reasons to add Poros to your Greek Islands bucket list.

1. Friendly and unpretentious

Poros is a welcoming island in any season – whether you’re staying in the town with the neoclassical mood and the Clock Tower at the top, or venturing further afield. It’s easy to get to know – a tour of the island takes about an hour by car. You can visit the monastery of Zoodohou Pigis, or walk around the archaeological site with the remains of the Temple of Poseidon, or just rest in the shadow of the pine trees and let your gaze travel over the sea. Eventually, you will always find yourself back in the impossibly narrow, friendly and unassuming lanes of Chora, the main town.

2. Beaches and sunsets

Love Bay is a small, perfectly round cove ringed with pine trees, while the area around the former Russian naval base features a larger organized beach with a magical, heart-shaped islet named Daskalio just opposite. Nearby, you can watch the sun set over the main town from the beautiful terrace of the renovated Xenia Poros Image Hotel. Askeli offers watersports, comfortable sun loungers and tavernas where you can take a break from the beach. Otherwise, continue through the forest to Monastiri Beach or quieter Vagionia. Upon returning to Chora, it is worth walking up to the Clock Tower for another breathtaking sunset.

3. Conquering the waves on water skis

In Poros, you can start with lessons for beginners, or compete against water-skiing champions. Passage Water-Ski School (Tel. +30 22980.425.40, www.passage.gr) is owned by world champion Sotiris Kyprios. He also owns Drepani Water Ski Resort, an internationally known watersports center located in a sheltered lagoon called Drepani, opposite Poros. Alternatively, you can try out sea kayaking under the guidance of the staff of the Poros Sailing Club, have some fun in water tubes or go parasailing over Askeli beach.

4. Hunt for the hidden key

The “Shells and Sea” exhibit is on display at the Municipal Library, but to visit it you first have to drop by City Hall on Karamanou Square and ask someone to open it for you. Nearby, at the Women’s Association, you might be able to find the keeper of the key to the Folk Art Museum. The Citronne Gallery (no key for this one) adapts its opening hours to the changing demands of summer. A notable exception to all this erratic scheduling is the Archaeological Museum of Poros, which is open from 8:00-15:00, except Mondays.

5. Time for reading

As Henry Miller wrote, “Coming into Poros gives the illusion of the deep dream.” In fact, Poros is ideal for dreaming, reading, lazing around or perhaps enjoying a movie at the open-air cinema. Poet Giorgos Seferis frequently vacationed at the beautiful Villa Galini, where he wrote his six-part opus “The Thrush” in 1946.

As Henry Miller wrote, “Coming into Poros gives the illusion of the deep dream.”

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