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Kythnos Travel Guide
Kythnos Island Name

Also known as Thermia in ancient times because of the thermal springs found in the village of Loutra, the island of Kythnos owes its name to its first settler, leader of the Dryopes (people that migrated from Evia) and later king of the island, Kythnos. It is also said that the name derives from the ancient Greek word Kefthemon, meaning a dim place to hide, since Kythnos was chosen by many as a hiding place from intruders and pirates of nearby settlements.

Kythnos Inhabitants and Domination

Based on findings at the excavations in the Maroulas region it has been proved that the island was inhabited since the Mesolithic period, around 9000 B.C., thus the region is known to be the most ancient settlement of the Cyclades. The first settlers according to Herodotus were the Dryopes around the 13th century B.C. and the next settlers were the Iones. 
Kythnos participated in the Persian wars and later on became part of the Athenian Alliance. Soon after it became part of the Roman State and it was included in the Subject of the Aegean. In 1207 it moved under Venetian domination and then it was ruled by the Castelli and Gozadini families till it was occupied by the Russians during the Turkish-Russian war. 
In 1827 Kythnos took part in the war against the Turks and eventually became a place of exile for political prisoners. In 1962 rebels from Syros attacked the island in order to free the prisoners and three locals, including a student, were brutally assassinated during that battle that took place in the village of Agia Irini.

Kythnos Mythology

According to the Greek mythology Zeus observed the birth of his son Apollo from the island of Kythnos since its advantaged location, in the heart of the Cyclades group of islands, gave him a vantage point to view his very own miracle. Thus the island is also known as the island of Apollo.


Also known as Messaria, amphitheatrically build on a hill, Chora is the capital of Kythnos. Alike all islands of the Cyclades the capital of Kythnos is a very picturesque village with white washed houses, scenic churches and narrow paved alleys. The beautiful little squares offer some nice restaurants and cafes blending tradition with modernity.


The picturesque village of Driopida, also known as Syllaka, used to be the ancient capital and administrative center of the island. The unique tiled roofs, the winding narrow streets and the numerous fig trees dotted on the mountains create a scenic setting and a sense of serenity.


Renowned for the thermal springs with the therapeutic properties the small village of Loutra has become a popular resort on the island of Kythnos. Besides Merihas, Loutra is the only other part of the island that counts for a relatively lively nightlife with numerous cafes, restaurants and bars attracting mostly the eldest crowds.

Byzantine Museum

Situated in the village of Driopida and housed in the old church of Agios Georgios the Byzantine museum hosts a collection of a large number of Byzantine and post Byzantine icons, manuscripts and other ecclesiastical relics and rare books from Mount Athos.

Folklore Museum

Located in the picturesque village of Driopida the Folklore museum celebrates the lives of locals through history with exhibits of traditional uniforms, tools used in everyday life and exquisite folklore objects and artifacts.

Katafiki Cave

A popular tourist attraction, Katafiki Cave near the village of Driopida is known for its unique rock formations and spectacular stalagmites. This cave used to be an old mine as well as a shelter for the locals during the Second World War. Nowadays locals gather into the cave to celebrate the Resurrection of Christ.

The Church of Panagia Kanala

Overlooking the emerald waters of the sea, Panagia Kanala, the protector of the island is distinguished for its unique architecture. Surrounded by a gorgeous garden, this church is known for the icon of Virgin Mary known to work miracles. Panagia Kanala is the patron saint of the island celebrated on August 15th.

The island of Saint Loucas

Situated on the northwest of Merihas, the island of Saint Loucas is connected to the rest of the island with a long stretch of sand: the beach of Kolona. The island of Saint Loucas is worth visiting since it still retains some ancient remnants, caves and ruins from antiquity.

The Church of Panagia Flampouriani

Situated on the South of Merichas this is a beautiful church that one must see while on the island. According to tradition there are tracks from the beach to the church that were left from Panagia Flampouriani and, thus, every August white fragrant lilies grow in the area.

Oria Castle

Near Kefalos cape, on the north side of the island, in Oria Castle one can see the remains of two churches as well as of some ancient murals. Other than its remains, Oria Castle is a site worth visiting for its breathtaking views.

Archeological site of Maroula

During the excavations at the village of Maroula, architectural remains and human skeletons that were brought to light show that the island was inhabited since the Neolithic period proving that it was the oldest settlement in all of Greece. 

Eat & Drink
TYPE: Restaurant,   STYLE: Traditional Greek Cuisine
Location: Kanala

TYPE: Restaurant,   STYLE: Gourmet & Gastronomic Restaurant
Location: Kanala

TYPE: Restaurant,   STYLE: Modern Meze & Local Delicacies
Location: Driopida

TYPE: Restaurant,   STYLE: Traditional Greek Cuisine
Location: Chora

TYPE: Taverna,   STYLE: Traditional Greek Cuisine
Location: Merichas

TYPE: Taverna,   STYLE: Traditional Greek Cuisine
Location: Loutra

TYPE: Café & Bar,   STYLE: Mainstream
Location: Merichas

TYPE: Café & Bar,   STYLE: Waffles & Ice cream
Location: Merichas

TYPE: Café & Bar,   STYLE: Cocktails Bar
Location: Merichas

TYPE: Café & Bar,   STYLE: Mainstream
Location: Chora

Practical info
General Info

The climate of Kythnos is generally mild and its terrain is mostly hilly with no significant altitude while the land is rocky and barren.

The national prefix for Greece is +30 if you are calling from abroad.  All numbers in the capital Athens start with the prefix 210 and are followed by 8 digits (e.g. 210-3227400). 
The Area Code for Kythnos is: +30 22810. If you wish to call abroad, you have to start by dialing the other country’s national prefix (i.e. 0049 for Germany, 0044 for England etc.) and continue with the area code and the number where you wish to call.
Euro €
Euro Coins: 1 and 2 euro coins (gold and silver color), 10, 20 and 50 cents (gold color) 1, 2 and 5 cents (copper color)
1 euro = 100 cents / centimes.
Euro Bank Notes: Are available in 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 200 and 500. It is not always easy to receive change for 200 and 500 Euro Notes.

Getting There

The island of Kythnos can be reached by ferry either from the port of Piraeus or the port of Lavrio. The journey from Piraeus lasts approximately 3 hours with the slow ferry and approximately one hour with the high speed while it takes almost 2 hours to reach Kythnos from the port of Lavrio. Kythnos is also connected by sea with the islands of Serifos, Sifnos, Milos, Santorini, Sikinos, Folegandros and Kea.
Blue Star Ferries
For accurate timetables and ticket costs please visit: www.bluestarferries.gr
Tel.: +30 210 8919800
NEL Lines
For accurate timetables and ticket costs please visit: www.nel.gr 
Tel.: +30 210 4115015, +30 210 4127544

Hellenic Seaways
For accurate timetables and ticket costs please visit: www.hellenicseaways.gr
Tel.: +30 210 4199000, +30 210 4199100

G.A. Ferries
Tel.: +30 210 4511720, +30 210 4582655
Alpha Ferries
Tel.: +30 210 4284001-2

Local Transportation

Distances on the island of Kythnos are not too large and the roads even though narrow are easily accessible therefore visitors can get around with a bus, a taxi, a car or a motorbike.
There are two bus routes on the island of Kythnos, one that runs between Merihas-Hora-Loutra and one that runs between Merihas-Driopida-Kanala. Buses run two or three times a day so it is advised to check the schedules a day in advance in order to arrange your schedule on time.
There is a taxi station at the island’s port as well as radio taxis you can call to arrange for your transportation as seen below.
Larentakis George +30 69458-00278 +30 69442-71609
Tziotis Michalis +30 69442-76656
Filipaios George +30 69458-95347 +30 69406-69645
Filipaios Michalis +30 69447-43791

Water taxis are also available on the island of Kythnos which are worth booking in order to visit some of the remotely secluded coves and stunningly beautiful beaches of the island.
Water Taxi Tel.: +30 22810 32104

Local Services

BANKS & ATMs       
There are only two banks available on Kythnos Island both situated in Merihas village.
National Bank +30 22810 32979
Commercial  Bank & ATM +30 22810 32345
Currency can be exchanged in one of the banks of the island, at the central post office and at some travel agencies.
The Greek post office is called ELTA and you can find the main post offices of the island in Chora were there is also a branch of the Hellenic Post Bank. Post Boxes in Greece are YELLOW for normal post, usually with 2 slots for INTERNAL POST (meaning inside Greece) and post for ABROAD. RED Post Boxes are rarer and they are used for URGENT mail. You shouldn’t expect to find such boxes in the island. REGISTERED mail is always handled and given a receipt for at the POST OFFICE.
Kythnos Post Office Tel.: +30 22810 31239
The island’s police station is situated at Chora. 
Tel.: +30 22810 31201                                                                   
The Municipality of Kythnos is located in Chora Tel.No.: 22810 31277

Useful Numbers

International press can be found in some bookstores and convenience stores throughout the island of Kythnos.

There are two medical centers on the island of Kythnos.
Driopida Medical Center Tel.: +30 22810 32234
Chora Rural Medical Center Tel.: +30 22810 31202

There is one single pharmacy in the island of Kythnos situated at Merichas village.
Tel.: +30 22810 32240

Where golden and sapphire colours blend together

This stunningly beautiful beach connects the island of Agios Loukas with the rest of Kythnos while forming a golden stretch of sand with crystalline sapphire waters on both sides. This unique characteristic creates a romantic & tranquil vibe attracting travelers seeking for a paradisiacal heaven of serenity. The tavern nearby offers eclectic dishes of mouthwatering specialties inviting swimmers for a scrumptious break. Kolona beach is one of the most impressive beaches of the island that can be reached either by sea or with a 4x4.

A haven of tranquil peacefullness

Encircled by pristine tufts this enchanting golden beach offers a haven of serenity and peacefulness. Embrace the sun as you lie amidst the gorgeous scenery and dive into crystalline cyan waters ideal for swimming adventures.  Fykiada beach is situated right by the beach of Kolona and nearby the church of Virgin Mary and offers a relaxing escape for travelers and locals alike.

Unique beach oasis

Nuzzled in a secluded bay Apokrousi is one of the largest beaches on the island with fine golden sand and tamarisk trees offering abundant shade to the swimmers. Embraced by a rough setting of barren hills this stunningly beautiful beach offers a tranquil beach oasis of relaxation and peacefulness with cerulean clean waters as well as a wonderful view to the neighboring beach of Kolona.

Popular beach retreat

Right by the port of Merihas this sandy golden beach is a popular destination for swimmers due to its convenient location and easy access. Travelers can swim into the crystal clear indigo waters and catch some shade under one of the many tamarisk trees.  The pristine waters and fine golden sand make this beach ideal for sunbathing and swimming adventures. 

A charming small pebbled beach

Embraced by the pristine nature Kanala beach is a picturesque beach retreat right in front of the charming village of Kanala. This small pebbled beach offers a serene escape inviting swimmers to dive in the indigo clear waters and bask in the sun or enjoy some shade under the tamarisk trees. There are a few taverns close by offering mouthwatering specialties for visitors to enjoy.

A blue flag sandy coast

Dotted with tamarisk trees this blue flag beach offers a calm haven of relaxation. The 500 meters of fine sand and crystalline cerulean waters make this beach ideal for swimming and sunbathing. Utterly protected from the winds throughout the summer months Episkopi beach is the perfect choice for families with young children that wish to swim, play around the beach and enjoy some fresh local dishes at the nearby tavern.

A pair of charming sandy coasts

Surrounded by the pristine arid hills Flambouria offers a peaceful beach hideaway for serene escapes. This large beach is laid with sand and pebbles and it forms two smaller beaches, the Little Flambouria and the Large Flambouria, both with tamarisk trees offering natural shade to swimmers. Travelers are welcome to dive into the emerald waters and enjoy the serenity of their surroundings.

Easily accessed and utterly calm
Location:Agios Dimitrios

Named after the seaside chapel of Agios Dimitrios, near the homonymous village, this quiet beach invites travelers to succumb into the crystalline sapphire waters and sunbathe while laying on the thick sand under the sun kissed sky or enjoy the natural shade under a tamarisk tree. Even though the beach offers easy access it is not considered a popular beach destination and is usually uncrowded. 

Enjoy the sea and sun with your young ones!

Embraced by the unspoiled natural environment Gaidouromandra is a large long sandy beach, usually uncrowded. Ideal for families with young children this charming beach offers a pristine heaven for relaxing breaks and family fun in the sun. Peace and tranquility go hand in hand exuding an air of blissful serenity. Swimmers can dive in the crystalline cerulean waters and enjoy a swim in a truly peaceful environment.

One of the most popular beaches on Kythnos
Location:Megali Ammos

Enclosed within a natural bay Megali Ammos is a large beach with crystalline emerald waters. Featuring both sand and pebbles it provides an enchanting beach retreat for travelers seeking a picturesque setting to enjoy a refreshing swim. Ideally situated in the village of Kanala Megali Ammos offers easy access to the church of Panagia Kanala which is the island’s protector and it is renowned for working miracles.

A peacefull haven of relaxation
Location:Kalo Livadi

Nearby the village of Panagia Kanala, Kalo Livadi is a quiet beach encircled by pristine hills. The rocky seashore and sandy floor make it ideal for swimming and sunbathing. Swimmers are welcome to enjoy the serenity of the environment and dive into the crystalline sapphire waters while the sound of the waves will most likely be the only sound that disturbs the divine peacefulness.

Graphic and wind protected coast

Secluded in a natural bay protected from the summer winds Naousa is a picturesque beach inviting swimmers for refreshing breaks in its emerald clear waters. This charming beach with the little church standing on a rock is a quiet retreat for swimming adventures and family fun.  Idyllically situated amidst the beaches of Agios Stefanos and Kouri it offers a heavenly summer escape for true moments of relaxation.

Upcoming summer resort

Loutra is a newly established summer resort attracting visitors and locals alike due to the thermal springs that give the water a distinct therapeutic value.

Well sheltered from the winds this enchanting sandy and pebbled beach offers a popular beach retreat where swimmers can dive in the warm emerald waters, relish local specialties at the nearby taverns or drink an iced called coffee while enjoying the serenity of their surroundings at a local café. Loutra also offers a lively nightlife and it is considered a hot night spot.

Isolated summer dream
Location:Agios Sostis

Next to the homonymous church of Agios Sostis this enchanting beach is completely secluded as it is nestled within the natural bay of Loutra and offers a serene summer escape for relaxing swims and peaceful moments of relaxation. The emerald waters and the golden sandy coast invite swimmers for tranquil breaks in the cerulean Aegean where they can enjoy the divine serenity under the shimmering everlasting sun.


Local Specialties & Recipes
Local Specialities & Recipes of Kythnos

Kythnos is well-known for its local specialties and genuine recipes all created with local products of fine quality cultivated by the people of the island reflecting the island’s history and Mediterranean tradition. Some of the local specialties one must try while on the island include:

Local Products
Local Products of Kythnos

With years of tradition in cooking with seasonal and fresh locally produced ingredients as well as years of developing the technique of clay pottery Kythnos is an island with much to offer to its visitors. Some of the products worth mentioning are the following:

Events in Kythnos

Cycladia Tips
Useful Tips for a Pleasant Stay

The island of Kythnos is renowned for its 70 plus beaches, secluded coves and crystalline emerald waters ideal for snorkeling adventures. Kythnos is an island characterized by its serene atmosphere so travelers should not expect to find an intense nightlife or any big clubs. 
As for the beaches, most beaches are totally unorganized so make sure to bring all necessities for an enjoyable day in the sun. 
The roads of the island are fairly good but narrow as in most Greek islands so if you choose to drive, be cautious.
Moreover, the rugged interior of the island is ideal for those who enjoy hiking.

Shops & Galleries
Shopping on Kythnos

Tratamento is a traditional shop in Chora selling local and organic food, liquors, olive oil, cakes and cheese pies.
Tel: +30 22810 31638

Pottery Workshop
Selling Pottery artifacts and sea shell creations.

Merichas village, Tel: +30 6973 397206
Dryopida village, Tel: +30 22810 32360

Gonia is a store offering women and men clothes and accessories in Chora.
Tel: +30 22810 31328