10 Day Greece Itinerary: Exploring The Islands of Koufonisia, Sifnos and Milos
Greece is one of our favorite countries and if you scroll through our Instagram page, you’ll see why. The incredible waters, exotic beaches, and picturesque whitewashed villages provide the perfect backdrop for any photo.
So, keep reading as we give all the details of our epic 10 day Greece itinerary.
Which islands to include in your Greece itinerary?
Most travelers flock to the popular islands of Santorini, Mykonos, and Corfu which attract thousands of tourists during the summer season. However, with this comes crowded beaches, long queues at tourist hotspots, and expensive accommodation options.
In an effort to escape the crowds, we opted to visit the lesser known islands in Greece which are often overlooked by travelers. Koufonisia, Sifnos, and Milos seemed to be the perfect combination of remoteness and natural beauty and we were completely blown away by what they had to offer.
If you follow our 10 day Greece itinerary, you’ll explore deserted cobblestone streets, venture to hidden caves and swim in the bluest waters, leaving you feeling refreshed and rejuvenated.
Day 1 Greece itinerary: Athens (1 night)
Athens is the capital city of Greece and home to the Acropolis, which holds the remains of many ancient buildings. Most international flights arrive in Athens and it’s best to take advantage of this opportunity and spend the night here.
The Acropolis is open from 08:00 daily. It closes at 16:00 on Mondays and at 20:00 from Tuesday to Sundays. If you need to get to the Acropolis, the easiest and safest way is with Beat, a local taxi app which connects you to nearby drivers.
We spent our night in Athens at Urban Stripes, a minimalist hotel situated just a stone's throw away from the Acropolis. The hotel is located in a friendly neighborhood with plenty of plant-based food options nearby. Definitely check out a small vegan, raw cafe called 'Peas' (the best food we had in Greece)
Day 2 - 4 Greece Itinerary: Koufonisia (3 nights)
Koufonisia was the first island of our 10 day Greece itinerary. It’s a tiny island located in the heart of the Aegean Sea and the smallest of the 3 we visited. Koufonisia is a tranquil island and if you’re looking for undiscovered island life we’d highly recommend you include it in your Greece itinerary.
How to get to Koufonisia from Athens
There is no airport on Koufonisia and the only way to access the island is via ferry. The ferry departs from Piraeus Port in Athens and takes about 5 hours to reach Koufonisia. You can contact Hellenic Seaways to inquire about ticket options.
If you’d prefer a shorter ferry trip, you can also fly to nearby Naxos. You then need to catch a ferry from Naxos to Koufonisia which takes 2.5 hours.
Things to do in Koufonisia
Koufonisia is a remote island with very few luxuries compared to what you would find on more popular islands. If you’re big on the nightlife scene, then Koufonisaia is not for you. However, if you have an adventurous spirit and a desire to explore caves and beautiful beaches, then this is a must see.
1) Explore the best beaches in Koufonisia: Pori Beach and Platia Punda
Pori Beach: Pori Beach is absolutely incredible! This beach has crystal clear water and is located next to a large cove.
Platia Punda (Italida) Beach: Platia Punda Beach is the most popular beach in Koufonisia
2) Take a boat tour around Koufonisia
We love the sea and can think of no better way to spend our day than on a boat, at the heart of the Aegean Sea, surrounded by crystal clear waters.
Koufonisia is actually made up of 3 little islands. Ano Koufonisia, the island we stayed on, has permanent residents, but Kato Koufonisi and Keros islet are both uninhabited. We stopped off at Kato Koufonisi and explored this sleepy island on foot before heading back to our hotel.
If you’re looking to do a boat tour around Koufonisia, we highly recommend booking through Prasinos Tours.
3) Enjoy yoga
Our health and well-being are so important to us, and despite our hectic schedules, we love taking some time out to do yoga. Our instructor came to our hotel and we had a couple’s yoga session which was absolutely incredible.
4) Find picturesque spots around Koufonisia
The cobblestone walkways in Koufonisia are lined with quaint white buildings dressed with blue windows and gorgeous bright flowers. These provide the perfect setting for any photo, and you won’t have to fight the crowds to get that snap.
Freedive and shoot underwater at Ksylompatis Caves. One of the coolest places we’ve ever had the pleasure of seeing. You can find the location here.
5) Explore Koufonisia on bike
More adventure awaits! Koufonisia is such a small island and the best way to explore is on a bike. You can rent these from Bicycles Moscha (firstname.lastname@example.org).
We stayed at My Island Home in Koufonisia and absolutely loved our time here. The cottages are beautifully decorated with an incredible open plan kitchen. My Island Home is ideally located nearby Pori Beach and the owners are so kind and helpful. We will definitely be revisiting one day!!
Koufonisia Restaurants that offer plant-based meals
If you’re looking to save money, why not make your own food. You can buy fresh produce on the island and prepare your own healthy meals at My Island Home.
Day 5 - 7 Greece Itinerary: Sifnos (3 nights)
Sifnos, the second stop of our 10 day Greece itinerary, is a bigger and busier island than Koufonisia. This island is home to quaint villages and beautiful beaches and is known to be the culinary and cultural destination of Greece.
How to get to Sifnos from Koufonisia
If you’re following our 10 day Greece itinerary, you’ll arrive in Sifnos via a ferry from Koufonisia. Seajets offer frequent trips from Koufonisia to Sifnos and the travel time is just over 4 hours.
There is no airport on the island so taking a ferry is the only way to reach Sifnos.
Things to do in Sifnos
1) Visit the most beautiful chapels on Sifnos Island
Sifnos is home to over 200 churches and monasteries. We visited one situated at the top of a hill, overlooking the Aegean Sea. It was absolutely gorgeous!
2) Go back in time at Kastro Village
Kastro village is an iconic spot in Sifnos and one of the most picturesque villages on the island. Narrow walkways lined with traditional Cycladic architecture make up the medieval village of Kastro.
3) Rent a car in Sifnos and explore the island
The best way to see all the attractions in Sifnos is to rent a car from Sun Trial Car Rental for the duration of your stay. You can contact them at email@example.com. The island is quite big and it’s impossible to see everything on foot.
4) Check out these 3 villages in Sifnos
Sifnos is made up of 14 villages, but the villages of Kastro, Artemonas and Apollonia are the most popular. Apollonia is the capital town located in the middle of Sifnos Island whilst Artemonas is a traditional settlement and the largest village on the island.
5) Take a swim at one of the best beaches in Sifnos
Vathi Beach: Vathi Beach is a gorgeous, quiet beach located west of Sifnos. The shallow waters are crystal clear and the beach is lined with cute restaurants.
Platis Gialos: This is one of the longest beaches in the Cyclades with clear turquoise waters. There are restaurants nearby and sunbeds and umbrellas are available.
7) Take part in a cooking class
Sifnos is an island known for its extraordinary cuisine. We would have loved to do a vegan cooking class but unfortunately, Narlis Farm was fully booked at the time of our visit. This is another way to meet the locals and experience the Greek culture with some good food and dancing.
We stayed at Selena Suites on Sifnos Island and absolutely loved it.
Milos is the very reason we wanted to return to Greece. We traveled to this island 2 years ago and were completely blown away by the color of the water and incredible free diving.
Words cannot describe the beauty that lies on Milos Island. It’s actually a volcanic island with beautiful caves tucked below the bright blue waters. Milos is fast becoming a tourist hotspot. It was the most popular island on our Greece itinerary, yet it still has that unique charm that we love so much.
How to get to Milos from Sifnos or Athens
Milos is just over 60km away from Sifnos and the easiest way to get between the two is via ferry. Bookings can be made through Sea Jets and the trip takes approximately 40 minutes.
There is an airport on Milos Island with daily flights to and from Athens. If you’d prefer to follow our 10 day Greece itinerary in reverse, you can fly into Milos before moving to the islands of Sifnos and Koufonisia.
Things to do in Milos
1) Explore Milos on a boat tour with Excellent Yachting
This was one of our favorite days in Milos. Whilst most areas can be accessed from the shore, there are a few incredible spots that can only be seen by boat.
We discovered hidden caves and went freediving alongside a shipwreck near Milos. A great spot we found was just off the coast of the uninhabited island of Polyaigos. The waters here were incredibly blue and we were both completely blown away by the beauty.
You can find out more information on their boat trips here.
2) Rent a car in Milos and go on an adventure
Milos is a much bigger island than the other two on our Greece itinerary. The best way to explore is by car from Milos Rent and find those attractions which are off the beaten track.
3) Explore the beaches in Milos
Sarakiniko Beach: Sarakiniko Beach is located to the northeast of Milos and is one of the most picturesque beaches on the island. We loved the cliff jumping here and the water was clearer than we remembered it to be from our first visit. Yoga Journeys also offer yoga on Sarakiniko Beach.
Tsigrado Beach: Tsigrado beach is a white sandy beach enclosed by massive boulders. To access the beach, you’ll need to make your way there on a dirt road and climb down a step ladder, but the effort will be well worth it.
Fyriplaka: Fyriplaka Beach is one of the most popular beaches on Milos Island. Volcanic cliffs surround the beach and it’s the perfect place to spend your afternoon.
4) Go on a wine tour
Unfortunately, this is one activity we did not get around to doing. However, Kostantakis offer a wine tour that’s a great alternative if you have more time in Milos or if the weather isn’t playing its part.
We stayed at Skinopi Lodge whilst in Milos.
O! Hamos restaurant (possible the best plant based we had in Greece
Best time to visit Koufonisia, Sifnos, and Milos
The best time to visit Greece is during the summer months from June to August.
We explored the islands of Koufonisia, Sifnos, and Milos at the beginning of June and the weather was perfect but the water was still chilly. The islands were a lot quieter as peak season continues from mid-July to August.
How to get to Greece
We flew to Greece with Aegean Airlines, the multi-awarded Greek Airline. You can check out their prices here.
Overall thoughts on our Greece holiday
Greece is just one of those places that make you smile at every corner. As photographers and content creators our job couldn’t have been easier. Just by looking around the landscapes, colours, flowers and architecture our minds were filled with inspiration and wonder.
We have been amazed by the lesser known sights we were able to discover and we know that Greece has thousands more to be uncovered. It won’t be long before we are back in the crystal clear waters of Greece with the sun on our backs living life to the fullest.
Disclosure: This post was created in partnership with Discover Greece in order to explore islands that you probably haven’t heard of. As always, all the reviews and opinions expressed are based on our personal view.