The most famous island group in the Aegean Sea comprises some of the most beautiful islands in the world! The name “Cyclades” refers to the islands forming a circle (the name in English means: “circular islands”) around the sacred island of Delos. According to the Greek mythology, Poseidon, God of the sea, furious at the Cyclades nymphs turned them into islands.
Naxos is the biggest and the greenest island in the Cyclades. It has high mountains, fertile valleys, lush green gorges, stunning seascapes and traditional villages perched high on mountain tops, where the inhabitants still wear their traditional dress and live off the fruits of the land. Naxos is also home to beautiful old churches, monasteries and Venetian castles coexisting harmoniously with the Cycladic architecture.
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Andros is the northernmost island of the group with a great naval tradition and no landscape like the postcards from the Cyclades: apart from the sandy beaches, there are rocky coastlines, mountain ranges alternating with fertile plains, lush vegetation and abundantly flowing streams.
Andros, Photo: GNTO-E.Fili
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Mykonos , Greece's most famous cosmopolitan island, a whitewashed paradise in the heart of the Cyclades. According to mythology, the island was formed from the petrified bodies of giants killed by Hercules. And did you know that the island took its name from the grandson of Apollo, “Mykonos”?
Mykonos, Hora, Photo:GNTO/Y.Skoulas
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Santorini is considered to be the most sought after place for a romantic getaway in Greece, since there are not many places in the world where you can enjoy exquisitely clear waters while perched on the rim of a massive active volcano in the middle of the sea! The island has a growing reputation as a “wedding destination” for couples not only from Greece but from all over the world.
Santorini, Oia, Photo/Y.Skoulas
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Koufonisia is a small group of two islets, E of Naxos and W of Amorgos; these are Pano Koufonisi and Kato Koufonisi, and they are separated by a narrow 200 m. wide strait. They were named Koufonisia [meaning Hollow islands] because of the existing huge caves which gave the impression to pirates who viewed them from a distance that the islands were hollow!
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Syros is well-known for its gastronomic peculiarities. Halva pie (a pie made of thyme honey and roasted almonds), loukoúmi (a delight made of water, starch and sugar), “loosa” ham, fennel sausages and the San Mihalis spicy cheese (appellation d'origine contrôlée/”protected designation of origin") will no doubt satisfy even the most demanding taste buds.
Syros, Ermoupoli Photo:GNTO/ P.Dimitrakopoulos
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Milos: The volcanic activity in ancient years has endowed this island with an exciting variety of gorgeous landscapes, consequently offering the visitor a wide range of activities. The funny shapes of the rocks and their wonderful colours at the beautiful white sandy beaches are one expression of the volcanic features of Milos.
Milos, Apollonia Photo:GNTO/K.Kouzouni
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Ios has 87 km of coastline, of which 32 kilometers is sandy beach. One of the best is Manganari, a beach with a spectacular sequence of five bays - golden sandy beaches and above all crystal clear water. This magic place is worth visiting, so you can relive scenes from the "The Big Blue" movie, where it was shot. The island is also suitable for fishing, submarine, as well as fishing from the shore with fishing rod or ”vertical”. The fish vary according to season and region and includes the typical fish fauna of the Cyclades.
Ios, Mylopotas Photo:GNTO/M.Chatzi