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Chios Travel Guide
Chios Island Name

According to tradition the island’s name derives from Hiona, the daughter of Oenopion who was the first settler on the island, grandchild of Minoas, the king of Crete and son of Ariadne and Dionysus (god of the grapevine) who taught the locals how to cultivate vines. Another version of the story says that Chios was named after Hios, son of Poseidon who was given the name Hios because it was snowing (the Greek word for snowing is “hionizei”) when he was born.

Chios Inhabitants

Archeological findings on the island of Chios show that the island was inhabited since the Neolithic and Bronze Ages. Some of its ancient inhabitants include the Karians, the Pelasgians and the Leleges as well as the Ionians later on who migrated to Chios from Asia Minor.

Chios Domination

During the naval battle of Salamina Chios was conquered by the Persians and became a member of the first Athenian Confederacy in 179 B.C. The island remained under the control of the Athenians until 356 B.C. and eventually came under the rule of Spartans, the Macedonians and finally the Romans.

Chios Pirate Attacks, the Massacre & Rebirth

After the fall of Constantinople the island of Chios was targeted by many pirate raids. It was firstly captured by the Franks then by the Genoese, the Catalans and finally by Turkish Pirates. After the Greek war of independence in 1821, the Turks invaded the island and killed 30.000 inhabitants and imprisoned another 40.000. This slaughter is known as the Massacre of Chios. On March 22nd 1881 a catastrophic earthquake completely destroyed the island of Chios that was again reborn in 1912.


One of the most renowned mythological figures of Chios is Orion. Orion, the giant son of Poseidon and Evriali, Minoa's daughter, was a hunter. Orion fell in love with the daughter of Oenopion, Meropi. Oenopion asked Orion to destroy all the wild beasts of Chios in order for him to give him his daughter. After Orion killed all the beasts, Oenopion didn't keep his promise and wouldn't give him his daughter thus Orion kidnapped her and Oenopion blinded him for showing such disrespect.

Towns & Villages

Pyrgi is one of the most enchanting villages of the island, on the southwest of Chora, worldly renowned for its decorative uniqueness. All houses are painted in grey and white geometrical shapes creating a stunning symphony of shapes and shades. Named after the medieval tower still standing in the heart of the village, this mastic village comprises of stone paved streets filled with colourful flowers and tomatoes that have been hanged to dry, creating a picture-perfect setting for relaxing escapes. The Folklore museum of Pyrgi houses a collection of agricultural tools and handicraft artefacts.

Olympoi village in the southwest of Chios town is distinguished for its spectacular architecture with the conjoined outer walls of the houses forming a fortress when seen from outside. The imposing archways and narrow cobbled streets, the central tower and picturesque churches, as well as the Olympoi Cave with the spectacular stalactites and stalagmites make this village a must see destination when visiting the island of Chios.

Mesta is the castle village of Chios; a fortified medieval village with a giant iron gate that once shut secures the entire village. This quixotic village is a marvel to be seen with its cobbled ring road, the magnificent church of Taxiarxis, the imposing tower and the village square called "Livadi" by the locals. Mesta hosts the island's second port which operates on a regular basis. The village of Mesta gives you the feeling that history and modernity can co-exist creating a mystical ambience of timeless charm.

Chios town or Chora is the island's capital and main port as well as its administrative centre hosting all administrative buildings, the University, a number of neoclassical buildings, structures of Arabic influence and mosques along with the enchanting Genoese villas in Kampos set amidst the fragrant citrus trees. The lively town of Chios is dotted with many cafes, restaurants and bars set along the seaside or at the town's central square. The Archeological, Byzantine & Naval Museum as well as the famous Koraes Library are found in Chora as well. Other sites one should not miss while visiting the town of Chios are the old city remains, the Genoese castle, the public garden, the ancient theatre, the bronze monuments of the unknown soldiers and the statue of Kanaris.

Volissos village in the northwest of Chios town is a picturesque amphitheatrically build village where one can enjoy the serene ambience and visit the ruins of the medieval castle on top of the mountain as well as the enchanting windmills and Byzantine churches found in the surrounding areas.

Anavatos village on the north side of the island is a unique village built on a conical cliff of 450m. above sea level. It is a natural fortress created by the conjunction of the outer walls of the houses built in grey stones. Anavatos village is now deserted but the stunning scenery and grandeur of this ghost village make it a must see attraction.

Nenita (meaning newly built) is one of the biggest mastic villages in the south of Chios boasting the most enchanting panoramic view of Asia Minor. From the monastery of Panmegiston Taxiarhon and the Botanic Garden to the town's lively central square and the picturesque beach of Vokaria this village has everything to offer to its visitors.

Thymiana is amongst the largest villages of the island with approximately 1600 inhabitants situated 7 km south of Chora. It is a village renowned for its many quarries from which the "Thymiana" stone was extracted in many shades of brown and red. The church of Agios Efstrations is a must see site due to its exquisite architectural style, also built by Thymiana stones.

Places & Attractions

The picturesque Windmills are situated near Chios town and are a photographic landmark of the island.
Kampos is an Eden made by human hands 4 km from the town of Chios. Filled with citrus orchards this fragrant valley is one of the most fertile areas on the island. The enchanting mansions and narrow winding paths that are set within Kampos, the well, colourful gardens and cisterns are engulfed by pinkish towering walls made by local Thymiana stones.

Religious Sites

The Monastery of Nea Moni in the heart of Chios island is one of the oldest monasteries in Greece dating back to the 11th century. It is an Unesco World Heritage Monument renowned for the frescoes on its walls and it houses the ecclesiastical museum.

The Monastery of Agia Markella features one of the most important temples in all of the Aegean hosting the holy icon of Agia Markella, patron saint of the island, which is thought to be miraculous.

The Monastery of Agios Minas is situated on top of a mountain near Neochori. It is a place of Martyr where 3000 Chians were slaughtered and burned by the Turks during Chios Massacre in 1822. There are still stains of blood on the floor and sculls & bones from the victims have been preserved within the church.

Nearby Islands

Oinousses Island
This is the island of ship owners with families owning more than 500 ships and it is considered the richest island in the world. Consisting of several islets most privately owned Oinousses group of islets is a heaven of tranquillity and peacefulness with crystalline emerald green waters and verdant hillsides. Some of the beaches worth visiting include Zepaga, Bilali and Kastro.

Psara Island
Psara is situated near the north-western part of Chios, birthplace of Kanaris who accounts as a major contributor to the war of independence during which some of the inhabitants managed to escape while others chose to blow up their land and themselves rather than surrender. But even after recent revitalization projects, Psara never really recovered from the holocaust.

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

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

TYPE: Bar,   STYLE: Cocktails Bar
Location: Aplotaria

TYPE: Café & Bar,   STYLE: Mainstream
Location: Palioi Naftones

TYPE: Café & Bar,   STYLE: Mainstream
Location: Kokkinos Brahos

TYPE: Club,   STYLE: International
Location: Pyrgi

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

TYPE: Taverna,   STYLE: Fresh Fish & Seafood
Location: Chora

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

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

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

TYPE: Sweets House,   STYLE: Traditional Greek Cuisine
Location: Chora

TYPE: Sweets House,   STYLE: Waffles & Ice cream
Location: Chora

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

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

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

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

TYPE: Taverna,   STYLE: Modern Meze & Local Delicacies
Location: Volissos

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

TYPE: Café & Bar,   STYLE: Cafeteria
Location: Daskalopetra

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

Practical info
General Info

Chios has a typical temperate Mediterranean climate with rainy and misty winters and warm summers. During the summer months one will encounter very rare rainfalls and plentiful sunshine.

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 Chios is: +30 22710. If you wish to call abroad, you have to start by dialling 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 colour)
10, 20 and 50 cents (gold colour) 1, 2 and 5 cents (copper colour)
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

Chios Island is directly connected by air with the airport of Athens Eleftherios Venizelos as well as the airports of Thessaloniki, Lemnos, Lesvos, Samos, and Rhodes. The airport of Chios is situated near the town and port and the flight lasts approximately 45 minutes from Athens.

Olympic Air
For accurate timetables and ticket costs please visit: www.olympicair.com
Athens Office Tel: +30 210 9616161, +30 210 9892313
Thessaloniki Office Tel: +30 2310 408408-10
Chios Office Tel: +30 22710 24515, 23988

Aegean Airlines
For accurate timetables and ticket costs please visit: www.aegeanair.com
Athens Office Tel: +30 210 9988350
Thessaloniki Office Tel: +30 2310 239225
Chios Office Tel: +30 22710 81051 -2

Athens Airways
For accurate timetables and ticket costs please visit: www.athensairways.com
Email: [email protected]
Athens Office Tel: +30 210 6696 600, +30 6971 496 600, +30 210 6696400-1
Chios Office Tel: +30 2271025896

The port of Chios, situated in Chios Chora, is connected by ferry with the ports of Piraeus (Athens), Oinousses, Corfu, Kavala, Lesvos, Limnos, Psara, Rhodes, Samos, Thessaloniki and Tsesme in Turkey. The trip by boat from Piraeus to Chios lasts approximately 9 hours but the duration of the voyage may vary depending on the route line that changes almost twice a year and many port connections may be cancelled or added as well, so make sure you check all schedules prior to departure.

NEL Lines
For accurate timetables and ticket costs please visit: www.nellines.com
Piraeus Office Tel: +30 210 4115015, +30 210 4223185
Thessaloniki Office Tel: +30 2310 522716, +30 2310 522736
Chios Office Tel: +30 22710 43981, +30 22710 25848, Fax: +30 2710 41319

Hellenic Seaways
For accurate timetables and ticket costs please visit: www.hellenicseaways.gr
Email: [email protected]
Chios Office Tel: +30 22710 41047, 22034
Piraeus Office Tel: +30 210 4131111

GA Ferries
For accurate timetables and ticket costs please contact:
Chios Office Tel: +30 22710-22160, 81500

Pireaus Port Authority Tel: +30 210 4226001-3
Thessaloniki Port Authority Tel: 2310 531504-6
Chios Port Authority Tel: 22710 44434

Local Transportation

Chios is a beautiful island with an advanced transportation infrastructure therefore it is easy to get around with all kinds of transportation means including buses, taxis or rented cars and motorbikes.

The long-distance bus station of Chios is located in Chios town and connects the centre of the island with the villages of Pyrgi, Mesta and Kardamyla as well as the beaches of Kampia, Nagos and Lithi. Twice a week there are buses to Volissos.
Website: www.ktelchios.gr

There is also a bus from the local bus station (intercity) of Chios, south of the public gardens to the beach of Karfas.
Bus Station (intercity) Tel: +30 22710 22079, 22710 23086
Bus Station (coaches/long distance) Tel: +30 22710 24257, 22710 27507

There is a taxi rank at Vounakiou Sq. in Chios town.
Tel: +30 22710 41111

Cars and motorbikes for rent are available in many parts of the island for those wishing to discover the island on their own pace and convenience.
Local Services

There are many banks and ATMs scattered around Chora as well as in most major villages of the island.
Bank branches operate on a daily basis except for weekends from Monday to Thursday: 8.00-14.30 and Friday: 8.00-14.00

Currency can be exchanged in many places throughout the island including most of the banks, post office, travel agents as well as all major hotels.

The Greek post office is called ELTA and you can find the post office of Chios at 2, OMIROU STR, 82100 Chios Chora. The post office performs money transactions and cash currency exchange. 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. REGISTERED mail is always handled and given a receipt for at the POST OFFICE. +3
The Post Office on Chios is found in Chios Chora.0
Tel: +30 2710 044350

Chios police headquarters are situated in Chora and there are more police stations at the villages of Agios Georgios, Kalamoti, Nenita, Neochori, Oinousses, Pyrgi, Thymiana and Vrondados.

Police Authority
35, Neorion Street, Chora
Tel.: +30 22710 44425, 44428, 44427
Fax: +30 22710 44429

Chios Municipality is located in the town of Chios.
2, Demokratias Str., Chora
Tel.: +30 22713 50860
Fax: +30 22713 50865
E-mail: [email protected]
Website: www.chioscity.gr

Useful numbers
• Radio Taxi: +30 22710 41111
• Tourist Police: +30 22710 23211
• Port Authority: +30 22710 44432-3
• Hellenic National Meteorological Service: +30 210 9699101-3
• Elpa ( Car breakdown tourist information service): 174

In Chios there are many libraries and convenient stores were travellers can find all kinds of international press, newspapers, books and magazines. Some international newspapers are also available at the island's major hotels.

• Police: 100
• Fire Department: 199
• Ambulance: 166

The public hospital of Chios (Skylitsio) is situated in Chora and there is also a health centre at Pyrgi and twelve resident doctors in various villages of the island.

Chios Hospital Tel: +30 22710 44302-3
Pyrgi Health Centre Tel: +30 22710 72465

Resident Doctors (indicative list)
Kalamoti, Tel: +30 22710 71277
Nenita, Tel: +30 2271 0 61277
Kalimasia, Tel: +30 2271 0 51455
Chalkios, Tel: +30 2271 0 77265
Lagada, Tel: +30 2271 0 74201
Kardamyla, Tel: +30 2272 0 22354, 23060
Kampia, Tel: +30 2272 0 41400
Kourounia, Tel: +30 2274 0 71203
Parparia, Tel: +30 2274 0 21444
Volissos, Tel: +30 2274 0 21223
Psara, Tel: +30 2274 0 61277
Inousses, Tel: +30 2271 0 55300

There are many pharmacies in the town of Chios which are open from 8:00-14:00 on Tuesday and Wednesday and from 08:00-14:00 and 16:45-20:00 on Monday, Thursday and Friday. Some of the pharmacies in town are listed below:

Kalouta Pharmacy: 21 Kalaboka St., +30 22710 21072
Nikolaedis Pharmacy: 13 K. Trehaki St., +30 22710 26808
Sodis Pharmacy: 22 Aplotarias St., +30 22710 23042

There are also pharmacies available in some of the major villages of the island (Pyrgi, Nenita, Kardamyla, Thymiana, Vrodados)

A mystique beach haven

Enclosed by rocky hills and spectacular cliffs this one-of-a-kind beach attracts travellers from all over the world due to its distinctive formation and black pebbled shore that was the result of the upheaval of the now extinct volcano. Formed by two consecutive beaches, Emporios, also known as Mavra Volia (meaning black pebbles), is usually uncrowded but it is not the best choice for families with children since the crystal clear azure water is very deep and chilly and there are no tourist facilities available other than a canteen on the side of the road.

A popular beach resort

Idyllically situated near the town of Chios, Karfas is the most popular tourist resort on the island featuring all kinds of facilities, including water sports equipment for rental, umbrellas and sunbeds as well as many cafes, bars, restaurants, taverns and a wide array of accommodation options. The fine sand and indigo crystalline waters make this beach ideal for family excursions and fun moments under the sun kissed sky.

A quintessential island retreat

Encircled by the verdant landscape dotted with fragrant pine trees Vrontados beach is a well sheltered beach with thick sand and pebbles for moments of complete peacefulness. Visitors can dive into the tranquil emerald waters and bask in the sun as they lay on the sunbeds lined by the shore. After swimming in the crystalline shimmering waters swimmers can quench their thirst with an ice cold drink from the canteen nearby and enjoy their day in the sun.

The hotspot beach!
Location:Agia Fotini

Nuzzled by the verdant hills in an utterly picturesque setting where the indigo waters of the sea gently lap against the sandy shore Agia Fotini (or Agia Fotia beach) is a popular tourist resort featuring all kinds of facilities, sunbeds and umbrellas as well as coffee shops, accommodation rentals and traditional taverns serving freshly caught fish and seafood.  With everything to offer to its visitors, Agia Fotia is the perfect choice for water sports enthusiasts as well as families who wish to spend some quality time together while on vacation.

A secluded heavenly retreat
Location:Agia Irini

Enveloped by the purity of nature in the arms of a secluded bay Agia Irini is a gorgeous beach ideal for swimming and fishing adventures. The small white pebbles against the cerulean shimmering waters of the sea create a picture perfect setting for relaxing moments of respite. Agia Irini offers the ideal choice for travellers seeking a heavenly beach retreat for their summer holidays combined with amazing natural beauty and total tranquility.

A peaceful beach sanctuary

Utterly unspoiled the gorgeous bay of Apothika is beautifully nuzzled amidst the rocky landscape and the verdurous hills. Well protected from the winds this small beach sanctuary offers the perfect spot to enjoy the serenity of nature and dive into the emerald waters of the sea. The beach of Apothyka is a beautiful option for couples who wish to get away from the crowds and spend some time in privacy.

Heavenly respite

The shimmering golden sand and emerald crystal clear waters make this beach a favourable destination on the island. It is an ideal choice for families with young children because of the shallow crystalline waters and the soft shimmering sand. Organized with sunbeds and umbrellas Lithi is a heavenly respite for the entire family with many lined up taverns serving delicious traditional dishes and freshly caught fish.

Azure Tranquility
Location:Megas Limnionas

Megas Limnionas has been evolving into a great tourist resort, lined with hotels, studios and traditional fish taverns. The shallow cerulean waters and thick sand make this beautiful beach a favourable choice for families with young children who wish to spend a comfortable day of family fun at the beach. Visitors can sunbathe on the shimmering shore while their children splash around the water.

An emerald slice of heaven

Emanating a feeling of serenity and peacefulness this exotic beach offers a paradisiacal haven for relaxing summer escapes. The picture perfect emerald waters and sandy shore of this beautiful little bay create an enchanting setting for serene summer escapes, idyllic moments of repose and carefree hours under the everlasting sun. Vroulidia is completely unorganized with no tourist facilities available other than a small canteen situated nearby offering thirsty swimmers some snacks and ice-cold refreshments.

Stretches of Serenity
Location:Agia Markella

In front of the monastery of Agia Markella, the patron saint of the island, stretches the homonymous endless sandy & pebbled beach offering a serene summer sanctuary for travellers seeking peace and tranquillity. Known for the crystal clear, deep cold waters this beach is usually uncrowded and completely unorganized but still worth visiting since it leads to a narrow path which is actually the martyrdom of Agia Markella where the water wells out from the earth on the day of her celebration on July 22.

One of the most vibrant hotspots on Chios

Komi is rightfully considered one of the most beautiful and popular beaches on the island of Chios. This marvellous sandy beach is fully organized with sunbeds and umbrellas and filled with cafes, bars, restaurants and fish taverns serving local specialties, freshly caught fish and seafood. The crystal clean cerulean waters, the sandy sea bed and golden sandy shore make this beach a perfect choice for water sports activities and family beach excursions.

Swim within the aromas of mastic trees!

Nuzzled amidst the fragrant mastic trees near the picturesque village of Nenita, the scenic beach of Vokaria offers a calm sanctuary right by a quaint little port where locals dock their boats. Completely unorganized, this beach remains unspoiled preserving its natural magnificence. Visitors can enjoy a relaxing swim in the crystal clear indigo waters and bask in the sun at the pebbly shore. There is a café bar serving ice cold drinks, delicious meat and fish assortments as well as freshly caught mussels by the owner himself and a traditional tavern with all kinds of delicious choices including the shrimp spaghetti specialty.

Emerald Peacefullness
Location:Agia Dynami

Engulfed by the greatness of nature Agia Dynami is a gorgeous isolated beach with fine white sand near the village of Mesta. Travellers can enjoy their swim in the crystal sapphire waters and unwind on the sandy sun kissed shore. There are no facilities available so those visiting should arrange to bring along all necessities so as to simply relax and enjoy the peaceful scenery.

Scenic beach relaxation

Named after the rock where the teacher Homer used to sit, Daskalo-petra beach (meaning "the teacher's rock" in Greek) is a quaint pebbled beach with cerulean waters lined with palm trees creating a calm exotic feeling of serenity. It is a very popular tourist spot surrounded by taverns, cafes, gift shops and various accommodation lodgings where swimmers can unwind after a day in the sun.

A verdant beach oasis

Nuzzled in the sheltered golf of Elinta this beautiful sandy beach with the sapphire waters offers a verdant beach oasis for travellers seeking to enjoy some quiet and peacefulness. Fully protected from the winds it is an excellent choice for the summer months when the fierce northern winds are blowing. Visitors can swim and sunbathe while gazing at the shimmering waters of the sea and admiring the striking scenery.

Picturesque tranquility

Nestled in an enchanting landscape filled with gorgeous plane trees and natural springs this beautiful beach provides a peaceful summer escape for travellers who wish to experience the ultimate beach tranquillity. Nagos features a strikingly beautiful pebbly coast, completely unorganized with cerulean crystalline waters ideal for swimming and sunbathing. The taverns and restaurants found nearby serve delicious local specialties and freshly caught seafood and fish.

The longest coast of the island!

Distinguished for being the largest beach on the island of Chios, measuring 1,5 km in length and 40,000 sq.m. in width, Managros beach attracts visitors who wish to escape from the crowds. The tranquil surroundings and serene atmosphere make this beach ideal for camping adventures. Visitors can sunbathe on the thick sand or dive into the cold crystalline cerulean waters as they enjoy the divine peacefulness of their surroundings.

Unique morphology, absolute tranquillity

Encircled by rocky hills the enchanting sapphire beach of Salagona is a paradisiacal beach retreat for summer escapes. Beautifully isolated it offers peace and quiet for those seeking a serene respite where they can unwind and enjoy a refreshing swim under the sizzling sun. Right behind the beach, the lake like formation caused by the sea waters gives a distinctive touch to this majestically beautiful coast. With no facilities available it is essential that swimmers bring along all necessities in order to fully enjoy a fun filled day on the beach.

Charming pebbled coast

An emerald summer hideaway awaits travellers to immerse in the crystalline cerulean waters and relax on the pebbly sandy beach while enjoying the beauty of isolation. Encircled by the rocky hills this beautiful beach is completely unorganized offering visitors a pure heavenly respite for moments of absolute relaxation far away from the crowds. With no facilities nearby swimmers should arrange to bring their own supplies so as to relax and unwind while gazing at the fascinating scenery.


Local Specialties & Recipes
Local Specialties

The Fragrant Island of Chios is blessed with sprawling fields of mastic, orange, mandarin and sycamore trees and botanic herbs bringing the finest taste and aromas to the exuberant local cuisine. All of the island's local dishes and specialties can be found in most of the regional restaurants and taverns and are very worth trying. Some of the most exquisite dishes are listed below:


Sfougato is a type of omelette with chopped onions, salt, mint, pepper, breadcrumbs & shredded cheese. A great delight for all times of day although quite fatty!


Koutsounades are local wild greens. After being boiled and drained they are served with olive oil and salt and usually combined with octopus or cuttlefish. A healthy and tasteful dish.


Tabourokeftedes are made from tabouras which is another name for pumpkin. After peeling and cutting the pumpkin into cubes, it is boiled and drained. As soon as it boils, it is mashed and shredded cheese and onion, salt, pepper and flour are added for the meatballs to be fried. A salty and sweet flavour that is definitely one of our favourites!

Stewed Goat

Slow cooked goat in a pot with bay leaves, carrots, dry and fresh onions, anise, celery, milk, shredded cheese, eggs, lemon juice, oil, salt and pepper. It is a light tasteful dish usually served with white rice.

Fried wild green balls (Hortokeftedes)

Fried wild green balls made from a mixture of wild greens and herbs that are firstly boiled, drained and then mixed with chopped onion, salt, pepper, feta cheese and flour. Finally they are shaped into balls and are ready to be fried in olive oil.


Mpegoto is a seafood pancake made with flour, chopped onions and smelt fish. Naturally, it is a dish served as a meze for ouzo.

Steamed mussels

Steamed mussels are a must-try on the island of Chios since they are usually daily fresh and caught by the local fishermen. They are also considered a great meze for ouzo.

Gavros Kolympitos

Gavros Kolympitos is another popular meze for ouzo. It is a dish made with anchovy dipped in olive oil, vinegar and garlic.


Liokafto is another excellent meze for ouzo. It is a sundried fish marinated with vinegar, salt and herbs.


Avgokalamara are a very tasty dish of fried rice meatballs with flour and egg crust. It is a dish of a truly unique flavour one must definitely try.


Kopanistopitakia are small cheese pies with a pie crust made with flour, olive oil and ouzo stuffed with kopanisti dip (a local cheese dip).


Melitzanopilafo is an eggplant pilaf made with eggplants, rice, garlic, bay leaf, tomatoes, salt, pepper, parsley and peppermint. It is served with lemon juice especially in the southern parts of Chios.

Omelette with courgettes

It is a typical omelette made with eggs, grated cheese, courgettes and parsley and when fried is usually folded in half. A quick and tasteful dish for a snack between the main meals!

Lobster or shrimp spaghetti

Spaghetti cooked in tomato shrimp broth or lobster broth made from fresh tomatoes, tomato paste, white wine, salt, pepper and oregano. If you wish to try the lobster spaghetti it is advisable to order it a day in advance just to make sure you will eventually eat it!

Local Products
Local Products

Due to the mild climate and fertile land the enchanting island of Chios produces many delicious products such as the world renowned mastic all embracing the island's history and tradition.

Sweets & Sweet Preserves

Mastic gum, mastic sweet preserve, submarine spoon sweet (sweet preserve served in a spoon in ice-cold water), mastic loukoumi (sugar dusted gelatine cubes), mastic taffy sweets, mastic candy, mastic cookies, traditional mastic waffle pies, mastic nougat bars, mastic chocolate, sesame seed bar with honey and mastic...all so delicious and uniquely flavoured by the authentic mastic aroma!

Local Ice Cream
Local Kronos ice-cream is a premium ice cream made with local milk that comes in various flavours

The island of Chios produces an excellent variety of honey, from pine honey to thyme and citrus blossom honey from flowers. A local product one must definitely try.

Various Sweet Preserves & Spoon Sweets
Due to its very fertile land Chios is renowned for its exquisite fruit and vegetable crops thus some of its sweet preserves such as eggplant, pistachio, cherry, almonds and rose all made from fresh locally grown ingredients are extremely popular.

Spirits & Wines

Mastic Spirits
Mastic liqueur, mastic beverage: a liqueur and beverage made from natural mastic distinguished for its exceptional aroma.

Soumada is a strong alcoholic beverage made from sycamore trees (figs & almonds)

Rose Water
Made from local roses and used to sprinkle sweets and for cosmetic purposes

Flower Water
Made from some of the most fragrant flowers in the region. It is used to sprinkle sweets and for cosmetic purposes

Mandarin Juice, liqueur and sweet preserve
Mandarin is one of the many fruits that come from the island of Chios. With many mandarin trees in the island all mandarin products are of exquisite taste and aromas.

Ouzo is a world renowned alcoholic beverage coming from various parts of Greece. The ouzo of Chios offers a distinctive taste and aroma.

Chios Wine
The "Arioussion" wine has a deep production history on the island of Chios. Blessed by God Dionysus since the ancient times, Chios wine is dark coloured and with distinctive aromas that have made it famous worldwide throughout times. Nowadays, it is cultivated from "Ariousios SA" mostly on the north western part of the island and sparkles a flame for the island's economy and productivity.

Local grown crops & vegetables

Olive oil & Edible Olives
With olive trees covering the 45% of the island's cropland, the extra virgin olive oil as well as edible olives are two of the islands main products.

Sun dried tomatoes
Sun dried tomatoes are a very popular delicacy on the island of Chios and they are definitely worth trying. In most villages residents hang their tomatoes outside the windows to dry in order to have their own production of this local delicacy.

Chios Sausages
Local sausages made either by pork or veal meat and seasoned with local spices and herbs. A great "meze" for wine, beer or ouzo for meat lovers!

Handmade Spaghetti
It is a must try specialty, hand rolled spaghetti made with flour, olive oil and salt.


Soft salty cheese dip with solid texture and tangy flavour.

Mastelo cheese
A soft, white and slightly salty cheese that it can be baked, added in salads and various dishes or either consumed on its own.

Handmade Artifacts

In the village of Armolia along with many other villages on Chios you will find many locally made ceramic artifacts and utensils of distinct style.

Handmade embroideries by the locals can be found at most gifts shops through the island of Chios.

Mastic based cosmetics
Mastic soaps, made by extra virgin olive oil and mastic and various other mastic cosmetics (oils, hair products, body lotions and face creams) can be found on Chios, as the birthplace of the mastic tree!

Chios Events

Find below a list of the most important and not-to-be-missed events and festivals that take place on Chios each year and unveil this magical island's rich tradition and culture to Greeks and foreign travellers too!

Anniversary of Independence

The Anniversary of Independence is celebrated on November 11th in the Chora of Chios with a feast of local food and alcohol, festivities and traditional dances.

New Year's Eve

New Year's Eve is celebrated the night before the New Year at the central square of Chora where locals exchange miniature ship gifts and give wishes to each other. This custom derives from the tradition of Chians decorating boats instead of trees in their own homes honoring in such way their shipping heritage. On the last day of the year children from around the island construct model ships and compete for the bigger and better boat with penemeta (written verses each competitor writes for its boat), presentations and local music.

Karies Cultural Festival

The Cultural Festival of Karies takes place during the summertime when the Cultural Society of Chios organizes a series of events that take place in the village of Karies featuring feasts and local dance performances at the village's central square.

The Carnival of Chios or “The feast of Mostra”

Originating from the medieval times, on the last Friday of Triodio the young men of the village masquerade and on Sunday they gather at the central square to dance the “talimi”: the war, man to man, dance. Finally they head to the church of Agios Efstratios and sing a war song on their way to the church where they hang flags of the island. In some of the villages the Agas custom has been revived, the villagers assign an Aga who judges and condemns most of the attendants who are obligated to buy off their freedom. The last Sunday of the Carnival on the central square of Volissos many people gather around to sing and dance the Diplo, a traditional Volissian dance and a series of festivities begin.

Easter on Chios & the Rocket Festival

Easter is fairly celebrated throughout the island but the most exciting event that takes place during the night of the Resurrection is the Rocket war of the two parishes in Vrondados, the parish of Panagia Erithiani and Saint Mark's which attracts visitors from all over the world. The burning of Judas is also very common in many of the villages.

Summer Festival & Fairs

During the summer months there is always a reason for celebration on the island. Chios Island, along with all other Greek regions, celebrates its saints and the saints to whom the churches of each village are dedicated to. Every village performs a celebration on its central square that consists of a feast, traditional music and dancing. The major three festivals are listed below:
• The Feast of Agia Paraskevi is celebrated on July 26th at the village of Kalamoti.
• The Feast of Agia Markella is celebrated on the 22nd of July at Kardamyla and Volissos with a 3-day celebration. Saint Markella tried to escape from her father's lust while he chased her along the sea and wounded her with an arrow. While standing in front of some rocks by the sea, Agia Markella prayed to God to open for her a passage through the rocks from which she could escape. The rock opened and Agia Markella was able to hide her body but not her head so her father decapitated her and threw her head into the sea. It is said that holy water springs from the rock on the day of her celebration.
• The Feast of the Virgin Mary is celebrated on August 15th in most of the island's villages but the most famous feast is that of Pyrgi were locals gather around the square and dance the Pyrgousikos dance.

Cycladia Tips
Useful Tips for a Pleasant Stay

The fragrant island of Chios, or "Myrovolos Chios" in Greek, is the well-kept secret of the North Aegean. It is an island treasure still hidden through the centuries. The island has a very good transportation infrastructure therefore it is easy to move around and it is well worth touring the entire island.
Water supply in most villages is cut off for a few hours daily especially during the peak summer season so visitors should have arranged for such occasion.

All year destination

Chios is an all year destination with a large number of permanent residents due to the University in the heart of Chora hosting many students every year. The island offers anything you desire, from serenity and seclusion to vibrant nightlife.

The ideal time to visit the island is during spring, when the scent of citrus fruits lures visitors to a realm of the senses, and the summer season, when the sweet summer breeze and the everlasting sun welcome you to immerse in their serene tranquillity. Autumn (September) is also a very good time for Chios as the island is big and it thrives with life while the weather is milder in terms of winds and heat.

Attractions, Fairs & Beach life

Museums and other historical attractions are not open all day long or all days of the week so you should make sure to check the daily timetables before visiting.

Additionally, a must when you visit the island of Chios is to attend one of the local festivals especially the ones during the summer or Vrondados rocket festival during Easter.

Apart from those very interesting and fascinating events, other attractions not-to-be-missed include the unique beach of Emporios, the castle village of Mesta and the exquisite village of Pyrgi. Also, the seafront of Chora’s port is dotted with cafés, restaurants, taverns, bars and clubs and it is one of the best places of the island to socialize. The street of Aplotaria in the heart of the town, besides the central square, is the shopping centre of Chios with all kinds of stores as well as shops with local products.

Finally, the beaches of Komi and Lithi are two of the best beaches on the island for families with children.

And do not forget to visit the monastery of Agios Minas and the Martyrdom of St. Markella….unique sites of imposing beauty and historical importance!

Shops & Galleries
Shops and Galleries

Mastiha Shop
The worldwide renowned Mastiha Shop offers a great variety of Mastiha food products and local goods. It is situated in Chora right by the main port of Chios.
36 Aegaiou Av. Chora, Chios
Tel: 22710-81600

Mastic Spa
Also famous, the Mastic Spa offers a fine selection of cosmetics and hygiene products all made with natural ingredients and mastic. It is located in Chora right by the main port of Chios and there is a second store at Chios Aplotaria, the main commercial street by the central square of Chora.
12 Aegaiou Av. & Aplotarias 25, Chora
Tel: +30 22710 40223
Tel: +30 2271022977

Korakis Traditional Products
Korakis is a traditional shop offering a great variety of local goods including, mastic products, traditional sweet preserves, local liquors and other traditional specialties.
4 Venizelou Str., Chora, Chios
Τel: +30 22710 78577
FAX: +30 22710 77066
Website: www.korakis-marinos.gr

Sarantis: The Souvenir Shop of Chios
Situated right by the main port of Chios the store of Sarantis sells all kinds of locally produced and locally crafted products as well as a large range of souvenir gifts.
Aigaiou & Roidou Avenue, Chora, Chios
Tel: +30 2271024224, +30 2271043111
Fax: +30 2271081225

Touri Gallery
Situated in the town of Chios the Touri Gallery offers an impressive collection of paintings, sculptures, woodworks, ceramics, engravings and posters made by Touri Helland, the owner himself, a very talented Norwegian artist, or by other gifted local artists.
40 Mich. Livanou Str., Chora, Chios
Tel: +30 2271042994

Hand Art
This beautiful shop in Armolia features a spectacular collection of handmade gifts and ceramics.
Armolia, Chios
Tel: +3022710 72606, 72693
Email: [email protected]