Luxury holidays in Ios

The middle child of the Cyclades, the island is often overlooked in favour of its crowd-pleasing siblings Santorini and Mykonos, but for those in search of more desolate draws Ios could be the answer. Having shook off its reputation for dionysian discos, Ios has matured like a fine wine; its unspoilt beaches, literary legacy and hearty local cuisine make it fertile ground for grown-up getaways.

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When to go

Though Ios is not the party polestar it once was, you’ll still find a hedonistic haunt or two open from mid June through August. Introverts and peace-seekers may prefer the more humble offerings of spring and autumn when the island reclines into more relaxed rhythms.

Getting there

  • Planes

    The nearest hub is in neighbouring Santorini. Flights arrive at the island’s Thira International Airport from all over Europe as well as the Middle East and UAE. From here, the ferry to Ios takes around an hour. For those travelling from the USA or further afield, fly to Athens International then take the ferry from Piraeus port direct to Ios. Avoid the nine-hour voyage by booking on a SeaJets service, which gets you there in four. With limited daily services, advance booking is highly recommended.
  • Automobiles

    Driving is the best way to discover the island’s many hidden beaches. The roads of hilly Ios can be steep, so go for a sturdy vehicle with plenty of horsepower.