Greece is known for its beautiful islands with endless coastlines and emerald crystal-clear waters. The beautiful Cyclades, the Dodecanese, and the Ionian Islands are among the few island complexes with distinct beauty, characteristic architecture, and a different character.
However, did you know that there are around 6000 islands and smaller islets in Greece, only 227 of which are actually inhabited?
The rest of these are smaller islets amidst the endless sea, small pieces of paradise where you can head for a daily trip and enjoy pristine nature.
Here’s a list of the most noteworthy uninhabited islands in Greece:
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The historical island of Delos is known as the birthplace of god Apollo, and a sacred island, where religious and spiritual ceremonies took place back in the 1st millennium B.C.
Nowadays, you can find breathtaking ancient sites such as the Ancient Theatre of Delos, which is one of the few marble-built theatres of Greece dating as back as 314 B.C. Discover the rich history of the island in its Archaeological Museum or simply enjoy its raw nature by visiting mountain Cynthus and hiking around.
How to get to Delos:
You can reach Delos islands via daily boat trips offered in many islands, including Mykonos, Paros, and Naxos. The trip from Mykonos can take up to 30-45 minutes, 2h and 45 minutes from Paros, and about 2 hours from Naxos.
Poliegos, also known as Polivos is an Aegean Island east of Milos and Kimolos. It is a hidden gem that not many know about, although its waters are breathtakingly beautiful. It is the ideal place for a day trip, for swimming, cruising, or enjoying a carefree sailing experience around the virgin island.
You can visit the island’s Lighthouse in Cape Maskoula and the abandoned remains of the Church of the Virgin Mary.
How to get to Polyegos:
You can get to Polyaigos from Milos and Kimolos, the closest islands around. Polyaigos is a top sailing destination because of the proximity to the other islands and the number of natural anchorages and mooring spots.
You can get there via daily excursion boats, as it’s only 2.5 nautical miles away from Kimolos. You can also rend a private luxury cruise around the islands and enjoy hidden gems anytime.
Recommended boat trip to Poliegos island:
From Adamas, Milos: Full-Day Tour of Milos and Poliegos Islands
In the small Cyclades of the Aegean Sea, you will also find another paradise on earth by the name of Despotiko – anciently known as Prepesinthus. It is thought of as Apollo’s second home. It is full of archaeological findings of immense value, and its archeological site, the Apollo Temple, is surely worth the visit! You can find ruins dating back to the Archaic era, such as walls, altars, and facades.
How to get to Despotiko:
You can reach Despotiko from Antiparos– it is located only 700 meters southwest. Rent a boat for a daily trip to the site or look for guided tours of the islands or other special events.
Found in the Northern Euboean Gulf, there is a small archipelago of uninhabited islands of great beauty called Lihadonisia. It is an archipelago of turquoise shallow waters, sandy shores, and pristine greenery around.
It is a complex of about 7 islets and reefs, very intricately shaped, creating amazing peninsulas, coves, and hidden gems. Perfect for swimming, snorkeling, sunbathing, and enjoying unspoiled nature.
How to get to Lihadonisia:
You can reach Lihadonisia by boat. It’s actually less than a nautical mile from the harbor or Kavos. You can find excursion boats that depart daily during the summer months.
Rhenia is another historic ancient island just opposite Delos, and only a breath away from cosmopolitan Mykonos, a top destination. This island is also said to be dedicated to Apollo and used to be a cemetery in the ancient era.
Nowadays, it is full of amazing beaches with golden sand, and some remains that remind you of the glorious past. You can hike around and see abandoned farms and stables as well as dwellings from old age. It is now uninhabited, but it used to be full of life.
You can swim at its lovely beaches including Ligia, Skinos, Nataliotis, Stena, Glifada, and Ampelia.
How to get to Rhenia island:
Rinia is accessible by boat. You can find daily cruises or rent a private boat to access the beaches and see the island.
Recommended boat tour to Rhenia island:
From Mykonos: Delos & Rhenia Islands Boat Trip with BBQ
Armathia is yet another wonderful island on the list, offering amazing beaches and awe-inspiring views of the sea. It is located near Kasos island, in the Dodecanese region of Greece in the Aegean.
It used to be inhabited by shepherds, but now only the Chapel of Ypapanti remains to tell this story. You can explore its sandy beaches and the turquoise waters (thanks to the white plaster of the seabed). It is also protected by Natura 2000 because of its bird species biodiversity.
How to get there to Armathia island:
You can get to Armathia island from Kasos in less than 25 minutes via daily boat trips. There are small boats that ferry from Karpathos and Kasos to Armathia for a swim.
Another hidden gem in Greece is Chrissi Island in the South Cretan Sea. It takes its name from the word “golden”, possibly thanks to its thick golden sand. It features amazing, long, sandy beaches for sunbathing, swimming, and snorkeling, and a lush juniper tree forest that provides shade and protection.
However, keep in mind that Chrissi is protected for environmental reasons, so you can’t touch the trees or collect sand, shells, and other sea life.
How to get there Chrissi:
You can easily reach Chrissi Island via a day trip from Ierapetra. You can find various small boats or “kaikia” to take you there to enjoy a lovely day at the isolated beaches. You can find it just 8 miles south of Ierapetra.
Gramvousa is a small uninhabited island opposite the coast of Balos in Chania, Crete. It is like a peninsula, almost connected with Crete via a dune. The exotic waters are perfect for swimming, and the landscape is unparalleled with thick white sand and pink sand in some places. The place is protected by Natura 2000 thanks to its biodiversity.
The island is a paradise for nature enthusiasts. You can stop at Imeri Gramvousa islet for a swim and to see the fortress and the shipwreck. If you’re lucky, you might even find dolphins en route there! You may even find Caretta-caretta turtles on its shores.
How to get to Gramvousa:
To get there by car, you will have to drive all the way from Kaliviani, where you are asked to pay a symbolic fee to protect the nature of Gramvousa. The most popular way is to go on a Balos cruise. Take the ferry from Kaliviani, which will cost between 25 to 30 Euros. Conveniently, it has daily trips which depart daily and let you enjoy unparalleled views of the Gramvousa peninsula by the sea.
Recommended tours to Balos Lagoon and Gramvousa island:
From Kissamos port: Boat Cruise to Balos Lagoon & Gramvousa From Kissamos Port.
From Chania: Gramvousa Island and Balos Bay Full-Day Tour (the boat ticket is not included in the price).
From Rethymno: Full-Day Trip to Gramvousa Island & Balos Bay (the boat ticket is not included in the price).
From Heraklion: Full-Day Gramvousa and Balos Tour (the boat ticket is not included in the price).
Koutsomitis and Kounoupes
Near the beautiful and isolated island of Astypalea, there are two uninhabited islands worth exploring, by the name Koutsomitis and Kounoupes. Both islands are very exotic, with Caribbean-looking waters, where you can get the feeling of swimming in a natural pool.
How to get there:
You can get to Koutsomitis via daily boat trips from Pera Gialos harbor in Astypalaia, and you can get to Kounoupes either from Pera Gialos or Maltezana. If you wish to go privately by renting your own boat, rent one from Livadia beach.
Recommended boat trip to Koutsomitis and Kounoupes:
From Astypalea: Day Cruise to Koutsomitis & Kounoupes with Lunch
Kyra Panagia island
Kyra Panagia is another uninhabited island, located in the Sporades region, near Alonissos island. It is also called Pelagonisi. You can find an ancient site that religious civilization dates as back as the Neolithic times. You will also find a beautiful monastery, from where the island takes its name and the remains of a basilica. There are various beaches to explore.
How to get there:
You can get there by renting a private boat. In this case, it is safer to moor your vessel in the bay of Planitis. It is located just 3,6 nautical miles northeast of Alonissos. During the summer months, you might find small boats for daily trips.
Diaporos Island is last but not least on the list of uninhabited islands in Greece. It is situated in the wider region of Chalkidiki, Sithonia, just opposite Vourvourou coastal town. It has got turquoise, calm waters, a lush green landscape with lots of natural shade, and endless room for exploration. Visit the Blue lagoon, start snorkeling or head to stunning Myrsini beach.
How to get there:
You can find various travel agencies that offer organized tours departing daily from Chalkidiki to Diaporos. You can find a daily cruise of about 10 to 18 hours with 70 Euros per person. Alternatively, you can always rent your own boat, including smaller boats with no driving license requirements.
Recommended tour to Diaporos island:
From Vourvourou: Guided Half-Day Kayak Tour in Diaporos Island