Choosing Which Greek Island To Visit Could Make Or Break Your Trip

Ahh, Greece! White-sand beaches, traditional cuisine, and romantic sunsets. Well, maybe. Visitors to Santorini, one of Greece's most famous islands, might be surprised to find black volcanic beaches and rocky coves. Meanwhile, honeymooners who end up in the party center of Ios may not find the vibes they were hoping for.

According to Reader's Digest, Greece has 227 inhabited islands, and choosing the right one for your vacation can mean the difference between your dream trip and a bit of a disappointment. The right island depends on what you want, of course. Many visitors go to Greece looking for incredible nightlife. If that's you, Greeking favors heading to one of the Cyclades islands of Mykonos or Ios, where you'll have a wealth of choice in terms of beach bars and clubs to party till morning. Find Us Lost also recommends Mykonos for its sandy beaches, though notes that the restaurants seemed to cater mostly to tourists, so it may not be the right choice for foodies.

The best island for couples and families

Also in the Cyclades, Santorini is a bucket list island for many visitors to Greece. Greeka writes of the whitewashed houses with blue rooves and dramatic scenery, illuminated by stunning sunsets. Santorini makes a wonderful honeymoon destination, but it's not exactly an unknown place, and it can get crowded. You could consider combining a trip to Santorini with the nearby island of Folegandros, which Greeking praises for its authenticity, pristine beaches, and bohemian atmosphere.

Families should look at the Dodecanese Islands, where, according to Greeking, you can find long, sandy beaches as well as traditional Greek culture. The two best-known islands in the group are Kos and Patmos, but even here, you can find peace and tranquility outside of the main towns. If you're traveling with teenagers, check out the island of Paros. The Travel proposes Paros for its plethora of watersports and outdoor activities like windsurfing, snorkeling, and horseback riding.

The best islands for foodies and history-lovers

Greece Is and Greeking both endorse Sifnos for its fantastic food culture. Dishes like revitháda (chickpea soup) are slow-cooked in locally made earthenware casseroles, and there are a number of desserts made here, including Turkish delight. Many people, including The Travel, also advise foodies to go to Crete, where cheese, honey, olive oil, and wine are made locally and fresh produce is used in many of its healthy dishes.

Crete also comes highly recommended by Greeking for those who want to discover some of Greece's long and fascinating history. It's the birthplace of Zeus and home to Knossos Palace, with its mythical connection to the Minotaur. Reader's Digest picks the popular island of Rhodes for Byzantine monasteries and Venetian architecture and points to the tiny island of Delos, which you can visit on a day trip from Mykonos. Here, you'll find a fifth-century temple, mosaic-covered ancient buildings, and large theatres.