Hydra is one of the most picturesque and atmospheric islands of Argosaronic, ideal for romance. The Saronic Gulf is the sea that washes the coast of Athens and Piraeus. Hydra captivates you from your first steps on the island and exudes every corner of it, while it travels you in time in a unique way. Despite the cosmopolitan atmosphere that dominates, the famous Hydra will win you with its simple and its romantic mood.
Leonard Cohen’s favorite island
The tiny Greek island that so enchanted Leonard Cohen in the 1960s still captivates today.
Come December, well after the end of the tourist season for the Greek islands, the atmosphere in Hydra changes. From cosmopolitan and festive during the summer, the mood turns contemplative as winter arrives and the blue skies become a rare occurrence.
The tiny island in the Argosaronikos has been defined by the great singer-songwriter’s time here.
By the port, Rolo Cafe, once known as the kafenion O Katsikas, is where Cohen and a generation of artists and bohemians hung out. It is also where his first concert took place – just Cohen with his guitar and only a few friends in the audience, round the back of the shop.
A 10-minute walk from the sea, up several flights of steps and through winding alleys, the three-storey whitewashed home is now used by his children. Cohen hadn’t visited for 15-odd years but his son, Adam Cohen, recently recorded his own album here.
Greece is a good place
to look at the moon, isn’t it?
You can read by moonlight
You can read on the terrace
You can see a face
As you saw it when you were young
Cohen wrote the poem Days of Kindness about his girlfriend and muse Marianne Ihlen, and their years spent here.
A new era
From the 1980s onwards, the atmosphere changed as Hydra turned from a bohemian paradise into a more exclusive resort.
The simple and strict style of the island’s Mansions, churches, windmills and bare rocks, will welcome you. Transportation is on foot as any type of motorized vehicle is prohibited.
The architectural shell of the evergreen and historic naval state of the early 19th century has been preserved intact, and the high-rise mansions are impressive. The harbor is the heart of the island and, in fact, the only settlement. Around it and in the back alleys you will find fine cafes and restaurants as well as arty boutiques.
The View of the City
The traditional settlement slips from the surrounding hills to the harbor. The captain’s mansions, the countless churches and the impressive stone-built public buildings will be your first photos on the instagram! While the neatly populated houses with colorful windows, embrace the rocks, hang on the cliffs tightly and steeply to reach the sea.
Perhaps more colorful and stylish residential set you have not seen again. So take some of the paths that will bring you to the highest neighborhoods of Ag. Konstantinos at Hydra, Agia Fotini, Kala Pigadia and view the naval state as she will pose under your feet. This spectacle will be forever to your memory.
Walks along the harbor
In the cosmopolitan harbor, which is the heart of the island, seems never to sleep! Although there are no motorized vehicles on the island, visitors come and go in overnight.
From Chora you can make many nice walks. The two most classic choices are either to the Historical Archive and the Port Authority or to Kiafa with the mansions of Kountouriotes and from there to the Spilia, the Mills and the Kamini.
Swim in the paradise
Hydra has several beaches with sand and pebbles or rocks. Access to these is possible on foot or by sea means. A common feature in all beaches is the crystal clear waters.
On the rocks outside the harbor is Spilia (cave). It is a rocky beach with intense traffic, which is ideal for sailing in the very deep and clear waters.
In Kaminia there are traditional, picturesque taverns with delicious traditional cuisine.
Final destination is Vlychos, a beautiful, seaside settlement located on one of the most picturesque areas of Hydra with magnificent views and magnificent sunsets.
Whitewashed cottages with large blooming courtyards stretch to the foot of the hill above the beach. The organized picturesque beach of Vlychos with gray pebbles and crystal clear waters is one of the most beautiful and popular beaches of the island.
Canoni the most spectacular sunset of the Saronic Gulf
In the evenings you will see couples fleeing from the harbor and walking down to the “Kanoni”; the point where the derelict cannons dominate and the splendid view of Saronikos spreads out. From there you will enjoy the epic-sized sunset.
The spectacle is beyond all expectations as the sun is tilted and hidden in the clouds and light bulges bathe the island of Dokos and the sea.