Sikinos island is a secluded paradise only known to the few. You will find it situated between Ios and Folegandros – just a short ferry ride from Ios port. This makes it perfect for island hopping and a quick getaway from the mass tourism on Ios. Spend a day or two in tranquility on Sikinos which has kept its traditional charm and laid-back atmosphere.
Where is Sikinos island?
Sikinos is in the southern Aegean Sea, located between the islands of Folegandros and Ios and within 14 and 10 miles, respectively. In this position, next to some of the most beautiful Cyclades islands makes Sikinos perfect for island hopping, a tiny getaway to relax before heading for the next great adventure.
Sikinos – Island of Wine
It was known as Oinoe (Island of Wine) in the ancient years. It contrasts with nearby islands, like Ios, in being quiet and relatively less developed. There are two villages, one being a harbour, and the other, Chora, higher up in the hills.
Sikinos on a map
How to reach Sikinos?
Sikinos has no airport. The nearest is Santorini National Airport (JTR), also known as Thira Airport. It is serving domestic flights from Athens to Santorini all year round. It is also receiving flights from several international airports around Europe, like from UK, Switzerland, Italy, Germany, The Netherlands, and Latvia.
Ferries to Sikinos
There are regular ferry routes between Sikinos and Piraeus port approx. 3 times per week. You can reach Sikinos from other Cyclades islands too, like Santorini, Folegandros, and Ios. The trip from Santorini lasts 2-3 hours, while the trip from Ios is carried out daily and lasts approx. 25 minutes.
Sikinos – Where to stay?
Chora, the capital of Sikinos, is built on the slopes of a hill. The village is set in a beautiful landscape with a stunning view over the Aegean Sea. The architecture is traditional Cycladic with whitewashed houses, narrow alleys, and blue-domed churches. Most hotels and rooms are to be found around Alopronoia, the port of Sikinos. Here 4 km southeast of Chora you will find most shops, restaurants, and taverns too. The port of Sikinos is the main center of activities.
Sikinos Beach Guide
Sikinos port is where you will find the most popular organized beach of the island, Port beach, while the rest of the beaches on the island are quite secluded. They can be reached on foot or by bus.
- Port beach – Sandy, family friendly, partly organized beach at the harbour, located 4 km south of Chora. It is a long beach with sun beds, umbrellas, and beach bars.
- Agios Georgios beach – Sandy, secluded and small in a totally secluded landscape, located 5 km southeast of Chora. It is non-organized.
- Dialiskari beach – Sandy, partly organized beach in a small cove. You can reach it on foot or by boat. Non-organized with some rooms to rent.
- Malta beach – Pebbled, secluded, nudism friendly in a small cove on the northern coast of Sikinos, located 8 km east of Chora. It is non-organized, perfect for relaxing in total privacy.
Sikinos – What to do?
The best activities in Sikinos are hiking and swimming – the facilities are few, but the landscape and the sea are perfect for hiking, snorkeling, swimming, and scuba diving. You can also visit the traditional winery near Chora and learn everything the wine production in Sikinos which has its roots in the ancient years.
But really, Sikinos is one the best destinations in Greece for doing nothing but to relax!
TICKETS & THINGS TO DO:
Sightseeing in Sikinos
As for sightseeing, the old Monastery of Episkopi and the Folklore Museum are must-sees.
- Monastery of Episkopi – is an old Byzantine monastery built over a Roman mausoleum. It is located 4 km southwest of Chora. It has some nice frescoes.
- Monastery of Zoodochos Pigi – is located on a hill above Chora with an amazing view to the sea, especially at sunset. Surrounded by walls, it used to protect the islanders from attacks.
- Folklore Museum of Sikinos – is in Chora. It is featuring artifacts and exhibits telling the story of the island in the past. The museum is in fact an olive oil press and the family home of an American expatriate.
- Church of Panagia Pantanassa – is the church of Kastro village (Chora). It was built in 1787 and it has a beautiful katholikon and great late-Byzantine icons.
- Byzantine Collection – is featuring exhibits of the most important icons in Sikinos. It is in Chora central square, but only on display during the summer months.
Sikinos – An island of terraces
Several ancient ruins are to be found on the island, although some are remote. There are only 2 paved roads, a third being built to connect the nascent heliport and eventually a new resort on the other sandy beach, and there are several well-maintained dirt roads. Much of the island is quite difficult to access due to the terrain. Nearly all the island is covered by terraces once used for extensive agriculture. Now only a handful are used across the island. In 2011 Sikinos had a population of almost 300, the community includes the uninhabited island of Kardiotissa and other uninhabited islets.
Sikinos’ 15th century castle
The castle, built on a cliff 280 meters above sea level, is an old, fortified village of the 15th century. Therein lies the square, town hall, clinic, shops, and cafes. In the church of Pantanassa there is a gold plated iconostasio carved in wood. The picture (in the middle above) shows the church of Episkopi which is to be found about 4 km from the center of the island. It was used as a Christian church in the early Christian era of Sikinos. One of the main features of Sikinos are the chapels, of which the number is 61. There are six Byzantine churches (belonging to the type of single-aisle, vaulted basilica) with frescoes from the 13th and 14th century.
Sikinos – Weather and climate
Like in most of the Cyclades islands the weather in Sikinos is very warm during summer and mild in winter. In general, the pleasantly warm weather starts in April and lasts until late September. In July and August, the temperatures rise high, but the northern winds (Meltemia) make the atmosphere comfortable.