Greece’s Island Paradise: 9 Greek Treasures Among Europe’s Top Islands

Secluded Beach in Serifos

The leading travel magazine Conde Nast Traveller has published its shortlists for its Readers’ Choice Awards, which highlight the best travel choices for 2023, as voted by its readers. Travelers cast their votes to determine their favorite islands in Europe, considering factors such as activities, attractions, natural beauty, beaches, food and the hospitality of the locals, among other things.

Greece stands out in this year’s awards, securing the highest representation with the most islands featured in “The best islands in Europe: Readers’ Choice Awards 2023”. Let’s explore the nine Greek islands that were honored.

19. Paros, Greece

This particular island has earned a reputation as one of the most welcoming destinations in the Greek Cyclades. Its secluded beaches and unspoiled fishing villages set it apart from more bustling neighbors like Santorini and Mykonos. Despite its tranquility, Paros has seen the emergence of several upscale hotels along its coastline, and its dining scene, in particular, is noteworthy.

18. Corfu, Greece

Lush and verdant, Corfu is a Greek island paradise adorned with pine trees, mountains, and olive groves. Some areas of the island are under UNESCO protection, and its beaches are among the most beautiful in the country. Corfu is also a gastronomic island, with the best restaurants serving traditional dishes that have been passed down through generations. A must-try is Octopus Pastitsada, a slow-cooked octopus dish served with pasta.

17. Rhodes, Greece

Despite being Scarred by wildfires in the summer of 2023, the island boasts stunning beaches, but there’s more to it than meets the eye. Venture inland to discover ancient towns and quaint Byzantine mountain chapels nestled amidst the picturesque landscapes.

13. Kos, Greece

Nestled among Greece’s Dodecanese islands Kos is renowned for its stunning beaches, considered among the finest in this region of the Greek archipelago. The island takes pride in the preservation of its ancient architecture, including 14th-century castles and the Plane Tree of Hippocrates, where the philosopher, believed to be born on the island, is said to have once taught.

12. Skiathos, Greece

Skiathos, the smallest of the Sporades islands, stands as the most popular among them. Beaches like Koukounaries enchant with their turquoise waters, while those on the west coast, like Elia Beach, offer a tranquil retreat. The harbor bustles with lively restaurants, some of which extend onto the sandy shores.

11. Sifnos, Greece

Renowned for its culinary delights, Sifnos has captivated the hearts of many. Sifnos boasts inland villages with intricate, flower-adorned mazes perched along the island’s spine. The island is filled with whitewashed cubic houses, gorgeous churches, dovecotes, and small ceramic stores.

7. Santorini, Greece

Among the Greek Islands, Santorini stands out as perhaps the most renowned, featuring a romantic and dramatic landscape seemingly crafted for honeymoons. Whitewashed villages cling precariously to the volcanic caldera’s edge, beaches of black sand stretch along the coastline, and sunsets paint the sky with vibrant hues of orange, pink, and red. However, the island is susceptible to over-tourism. Opting to visit Santorini between April to May and in October offers a unique opportunity to enjoy the island with minimal crowds.

4. Crete, Greece

Crete, the largest of the Greek islands, boasts a captivating contrast between its rugged, sparsely populated interior and its cosmopolitan coastal cities. Chania, one of the two main cities, stands out as a charming oasis nestled along the picturesque harbor.

2. Mykonos, Greece

Vibrant Mykonos is the Greek island of choice for those seeking to see and be seen. Glitzy beach clubs set the stage for long, leisurely lunches that seamlessly transition into boisterous afternoon parties, while the town pulsates with fashion-conscious individuals perusing the endless array of boutiques.