In the western part of the Cyclades archipelargos sits Kythnos, a beautiful mountainous island surrounded more than 70 stunning beaches, many of which are only reachable by boat.
No doubt about it. The wild natural landscape, the traditional architecture, and gorgeous beaches make Kythnos one of the most beautiful Greek islands. With its short distance to Athens, Kythnos is popular among Athenians for weekend getaways from the busy capital. And with its proximity to the islands of Serifos, Sifnos, and Kea Kythnos is perfect for island hopping, as well.
Kythnos has a coastline full of stunning beaches totally suitable for swimming and snorkeling, while the villages have a relaxed atmosphere and a traditional charm.
Where is Kythnos Greece?
Kythnos is one of the western Cyclades Islands situated between Kea and Serifos. It is 104 km from the harbour of Piraeus.
Map of Kythnos
Kythnos Beach Guide
Kythnos has about 70 beaches in total all the around its beautiful coastline, many of which are accessible only by boat. The beaches of Kythnos are known for their natural beauty whether they are pebbled or sandy. They are all relaxing and ideal for swimming. The most famous of them is Kolona Kythnos which is a “double beach” – a long strip of sand with a bay at both sides.
Kythnos Best Beaches
Here you can get a quick overview of some of the most outstanding beaches in Kythnos:
- Loutra beach – Sandy, family friendly, located 6 km north of Chora
- Episkopi beach – Pebbled, located 5 km southwest of Chora
- Agia Irini beach – Sandy, family friendly, located 6 km north of Chora
- Kolona beach – Sandy, secluded, located 6 km west of Chora
- Apokrousi beach – Pebbled, located 4 km west of Chora
- Gaidouromantra beach – Pebbled, secluded, located 22 km south of Chora
- Kanala beach – Pebbled, located 17 km south of Chora
- Agios Dimitrios beach – Pebbled, secluded, located 24 km south of Chora
- Kalo Livadi beach – Pebbled, located 18 km southeast of Chora
Kythnos – where to stay?
Chora Kythnos (capital of the island) and the village of Driopida are charming with their traditional houses and narrow streets and alleys, but Loutra Kythnos and Merihas are the two villages with most hotels and tourist facilities. Strolling around the quaint villages of Kythnos you will enjoy the view of the whitewashed houses covered in flowers, the traditional taverns, and old windmills.
Kythnos – what to do?
Kythnos is perfect for swimming, scuba diving, and hiking, but Loutra Kythnos is popular for its thermal springs, rich in iron ans sulfur. Kythnos thermal springs have several healing properties, so why not go for a free spa treatment.
Thermal springs in Kythnos
In modern times Kythnos took its second name, “Thermia”, from the hot springs, located in the picturesque cove of Loutra, on the northeast coast. The Baths which accommodate the unique thermal springs of the Cyclades have in recent years been developed for tourism, as well. There are two hot springs.Read more
The one, the Saints Anargyri is saline and located inside the spa. It has been operating for many years and attracting many visitors. The second, called the spring of Kakavou, located 50 meters from the first, is containing iodide, bromide and chloride and the temperature reaches 52ºC. It seems that the springs are beneficial for the treatment of rheumatism, arthritis, and gynecological diseases. Read more about thermal springs in Greece
No matter which activities you prefer, Kythnos Greece is perfect for chilling out, just 3 hours ferry ride from Lavrio.
The two settlements of greatest significance in Kythnos island are the village of Messaria or Kythnos, known locally as Chora, and the village of Dryopida, also known as Chorio. Both have winding and often stepped streets, too narrow for any vehicles. They are quite picturesque but each in its own architectural style. Chora has the more-typical flat roofs of the Cyclades, while Driopida’s rooftops are slanted and tiled.Read more
The village Kanala on the east side of the island is growing steadily because of tourism, and many of the larger beaches are settled by a handful of residents. Agios Dimitrios, at the southern tip of the island, is a modern village, with small vacation houses on the hillside above a wide beach. On the northeast end of the island lies Loutra, the tiny village which is famous for its thermal springs with curative benefits, so it says. The bathhouse is still functioning, and visitors may soak in its marble tubs for a modest fee.
The port is called Merichas. Many residents of the port speak at least some English, which is the most popular second language. Merichas is connected to Piraeus and to Lavrio by ferry boat, and the ride takes one to four hours, depending on the speed of the ship and the weather. Construction of a new mole to accommodate larger ferryboats was completed in 2008.
Kythnos – what to see?
Besides its many beaches and picturesque villages, Kythnos is also home to one of the largest caves in Greece, the Katafiki Cave in Dryopida. In the 1830s the cave was visited by the geologist Fiedler who described it as containing unique rock formations and speleothems. It was the site of the previous mentioned iron mine until 1939 which today has been developed into a tourist attraction.
Ancient history of Kythnos island
One of the oldest known habitations in the Cycladic islands, a Neolithic settlement (10000 BCE – 8000 BCE), has been found in Kythnos.Read more
You will find it at Maroulas on the northeast coast quite close to the village of Loutra. It is situated on the shore and a large part of it has been eroded into the sea. During excavating in 1996 intact human skeletons were found, along with stone artifacts and part of a floor pavement, which indicates a long-term settlement, probably of hunter-gatherers.
Traditionally the islanders of Kythnos mainly earned their living as they had always done as shepherds or fishermen. The island had only few natural resources and, lacking a deep-water mooring for boats, it was rather inaccessible.Read more
Then, in the beginning of the 20th century, an iron ore was discovered and the islanders of Kythnos were able to raise their incomes by working in the mines. This went on until World War II, after which once again, the islanders were left without occupation and the young people left to find employment and a better life in Athens or abroad.
Sustainability in Kythnos
The Greek tourism boom beginning in the mid-20th century did not affect Kythnos at all since its harbor lacked a deep-water dock for ferryboats. Today, the island is a modern, prosperous place, with growing tourism.Read more
It is in the forefront of alternative energy experiments, with the establishment in 1983 of Greece’s first windmill park. With the addition of a photovoltaic system and storage batteries, the amount of diesel fuel required to supply the island’s electricity has been reduced by 11%. Numerous individual houses on remote coves are equipped with photovoltaic systems, and nearly all houses employ solar water heaters.
Kythnos – How to get there?
You will find a regular ferry connection between Kytnos and Athens, where ferries are departing from Piraeus as well as Lavrion, and the trip lasts around 3 hours. Kythnos and some of the other Cyclades islands are interconnected by ferry, for example nearby Kea, Serifos, Sifnos, and Milos.
Airports near Kythnos
Kythnos island has no airport. The easiest way to reach Kythnos is by flying to Athens International Airport “Eleftherios Venizelos”, which receives domestic as well as international flights all year round. Arriving in the airport of Athens it is easy to reach Lavrion port and embark on a ferry to Kythnos island.
Weather and climate in Kythnos
Like most of the islands in the Aegean Sea Kythnos has a pleasantly warm and sunny weather for most of the year. Due to the sometimes slightly strong winds during the summer months the temperatures are also quite bearably (meaning cooler). The most pleasant temperatures you will find during late spring/early summer in May and June or in autumn during September and October.