windmills near the sea in Chios

Chios

North Aegean, Greece

Chios is one of the largest islands of Greece and it’s located in Northeast Aegean. It is famous for its “mastiha” (mastic), medieval villages, beautiful beaches and fertile plains. Find information about the holidays in Chios, the beaches, the sights, the villages and food. Compare ferry routes and book tickets to Chios at the best prices on Ferryhopper!

Village with traditional architecture in Chios

The beautiful mastic village Pyrgi in Chios

Vacation in Chios 

Chios is a destination that combines the modern with the traditional way of life. An island with wild, unexplored beauty and impressive landscapes, Chios surely will enchant you. Its wide variety of activities and places is ideal for all travelers. Most younger visitors prefer Chios for its nightlife and adventurous landscapes, while families choose it for its laid-back character, beautiful beaches and tasty food.

How to get to Chios

If you want to get from Athens to Chios, you can take the ferry from the port of Piraeus. You can find frequent ferry routes from Piraeus to Chios all year long. In case you are in Northern Greece, you can travel by ferry to Chios from Kavala. In the section below, there are more details on how to reach Chios by ferry.

What to do in Chios

Holidays in Chios mean exploration, dives in deep blue waters, unique flavors and Aegean tradition. The island is an ideal destination for the whole year, especially if you visit it at Easter, since you will experience the unique event of rocket war in Vrontado. As Chios is world famous for the production of mastic, we suggest you visit the beautiful Mastic Villages and try the mastic products. In Kampos of Chios, you will also have the opportunity to admire the endless orchards with citrus, but also some of the most beautiful traditional houses of the island.

Beaches in Chios

There are over 90 magnificent beaches in Chios that mainly have cool, deep waters, fine sand or pebbles and lush vegetation. Many of them have amenities like umbrellas and cafés or tavernas nearby. However, there are also others that are ideal for seclusion and relaxation without big crowds. 

We suggest that you explore the long coastline and visit the following beaches in Chios:

  • Mavra Volia (“black pebbles”): It’s considered the best known and most beautiful beach of Chios. The crystal waters, the huge rocks and the distinctive volcanic black pebbles constitute an amazing scenery. There is a canteen near the beach with snacks and drinks.
  • Agia Dinami: Another beautiful beach of the island. It is calm and quiet, with turquoise waters and white fine pebbles. There are no amenities on this beach, so be sure to bring the necessary equipment with you.
  • Agia Markella: It is a large, impressive beach with dark sand, cool waters and a beautiful view of Psara island. Its name derives from the monastery that is located near the coast.
  • Agia Fotia: This is a popular beach next to the village of the same name. It has pebbles, deep waters and amenities such as umbrellas, sunbeds and water sports infrastructure. There are also tavernas and a beach bar in the area. 
  • Vroulidia: This idyllic beach also has deep waters and fine pebbles where you can relax under the sun. In the area, you can find a canteen for snacks and refreshments. 
  • Yiosonos: Large and calm beach with crystal sea and lush vegetation. There, you can get a drink at the beach bar and rent umbrellas and sunbeds. 
  • Nagos: The landscape in the area of Nagos is enchanting, with plane trees and streams. The beach has small pebbles and crystal-clear cool waters thanks to the springs that reach the sea. On the coast, you will find tavernas, and in a close distance, there are hotels and rooms for accommodation.
  • Komi: Cosmopolitan large beach with sand and crystal-clear waters. It has amenities like showers, tavernas, a beach bar, rooms and hotels.

black pebbles near the sea in Chios

The distinctive black pebbles in Mavra Volia beach

Sightseeing and activities in Chios

Chios is an island with a rich history, rare natural beauty and many cultural and natural attractions that are surely worth visiting. For instance, Nea Moni (“new monastery”) is a famous landmark of Chios, known for its masterpiece mosaics, that has been declared as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. 

Some of the most famous sights of Chios are:

  • Nea Moni (“New Monastery) of Chios
  • Archaeological site of Emporio
  • Daskalopetra
  • Rimokastro
  • Castle of Chios
  • Temple of Fanaios Apollo
  • Anavatos
  • Cave of Olympi
  • Chios Mastic Museum
  • Chios Archaeological Museum
  • Chios Byzantine Museum
  • Agios Isidoros Church
  • Panagia Krina Church
  • Chios Maritime Museum

Nightlife in Chios

Chios is a vivid island with many options for nightlife. Near the port of Chora you will find many restaurants and tavernas where you can enjoy your food and drink traditional souma. Dance and music are not absent in Chios. There are many bars and clubs on the island where you can have your drink or cocktail and party until the morning!  

You can also choose one of the graphic tavernas in the villages of the island to taste traditional, old-school recipes. Keep in mind, that many “panigiria” take place at these villages, throughout the summer! 

sunset over Chios

Idyllic orange and blue sky at Chios

Food in Chios

While in Chios, you will taste delicious food and try local products of exceptional quality. The fertile soil and the Mediterranean climate of the island favor the cultivation of many products, with the most famous, of course, the mastic. Mastic is used to make liqueur, ouzo, tsoureki, ice cream, candies, perfumes and cosmetics. 

Ferryhopper’s recommendations regarding food in Chios are:

  • kopanisti (spicy cheese dip)
  • mastelo (local cheese)
  • malathropita (savory pie with fennel)
  • sfougato (traditional omelette with cheese and herbs)
  • zucchini pie
  • risotto with eggplant
  • local mushrooms
  • local olives
  • mamoulia (local sweets) 

Villages in Chios

Most locals stay in the capital and the main port of Chios, Chora. The rest of the island residents stay in Mesta, the second largest settlement, and in the other 64 villages. Along with your vacation in Chios, you should explore and visit some medieval villages, the mastic villages and Kampos of Chios

There are too many beautiful and graphic villages, and we suggest:

  • Mesta
  • Pyrgi
  • Anavatos
  • Kalamoti
  • Kardamyla
  • Lagkada
  • Volissos
  • Chalkio
  • Karies
  • Vrontados
  • Avgonima

traditional wall painting and wooden shutters

A traditional architectural example in Chios

Useful information for Chios

Chios is an island with modern infrastructure and offers everything you need for your vacation. In the 2 largest settlements, Chora and Mesta, you will find amenities like supermarkets, ATMs, pharmacies and gas stations. There is also a hospital in Chora, while there are smaller shops and services throughout the island. Moreover, finding accommodation in Chios can be easy, especially if you make your reservation well in advance. There are numerous hotels, rooms and studios for all tastes and budgets.

Important phone numbers for your stay in Chios

Some useful contacts for your trip in Chios are:

  • Port Authority of Chios: +302271044433
  • Chios intercity bus station (KTEL): +302271022079 
  • Chios General Hospital “Skylitsio”: +302271350100
  • Chios Airport “Omiros”: +302271081400
  • Chios Police: +302271081537
  • Chios Municipality: +302271350860
  • Tourist office: +302271044344

Transportation in Chios

Chios has a good road network so if you want to explore the beauties of Chios, we suggest you bring your car or motorcycle or rent there. The easiest way to get around if you do not have a vehicle, is by taxi or by KTEL buses, which serve several daily routes throughout the island. Just 4 km outside the port of Chios, in Neorio, is the airport of the island, which is easily connected to Chora by city buses.

Ports in Chios

Chios has 2 ports: that near Chora and that near Mesta. Both ports operate ferry routes to mainland Greece and other destinations of the Aegean. The port of Chore is located on the east coast, near the city center. There, you can find car rentals, numerous shops and stores, as well as restaurants, bars and cafés. Mesta is in the southeast part of the island and the port is 4km away.

Island hopping from Chios

The location of Chios between the islands of the Northeast Aegean and the Dodecanese makes it an ideal destination for island hopping! The island is also close to the Turkish coast. The ports of Chios are connected by direct ferry routes to the following destinations:

  • Oinousses
  • Psara
  • Lesbos
  • Samos
  • Ikaria
  • Fournoi
  • Lemnos
  • Patmos
  • Lipsi
  • Cesme (Turkey)

On the interactive Map of Ferries, you can find all ferry connections from the ports of Chios, to choose the next destination for your summer vacation in Greece!

blue fishing boat in chios

Old fishing boat near the beach in Chios

Chios ferry: schedules and tickets

Chios is well connected to mainland Greece, via the ports of Piraeus in Athens and Kavala in northern Greece.

  • Piraeus to Chios: Ferry crossings from the port of Piraeus to Chios are regular and run throughout the whole year. In winter you can find 2 weekly sailings, while in summer the frequency increases. The duration of the trip ranges between 7.5 to 10.5 hours depending on the intermediate stops and the arrival port.
  • Kavala to Chios: The ferry route Kavala - Chios connects Northern Greece with the Aegean islands and is served all year round. The crossing Kavala - Chios lasts from 10 to 15 hours, depending on the itinerary you choose. 

Note: Most ferries to Chios from the mainland have garages for transporting vehicles. We suggest you take a car or motorcycle with you to further explore the island during your vacations.

Where to book ferry tickets online to Chios

Do you want to get to know the island of mastic? Book cheap ferry tickets to Chios online on Ferryhopper. Compare schedules, ferry companies, prices and ticket types and book your trip at no extra cost! In case you have any questions regarding your trip or port of arrival, don’t hesitate to contact our customer support team.


Chios has direct ferry connections with 31 ports:

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