Ikaria a narrow, windswept landmass between Samos and Mykonos, is comparatively little visited and invariably underestimated as it is the most magical of the northeastern Aegean Islands. Ikaria’s dramatic and varied terrain comprises deep, forested gorges, rocky moonscapes and hidden beaches with aquamarine waters.
The name supposedly derives from Icarus, son of Daedalus, the legendary architect of King Minos’ Cretan labyrinth. When the two tried to escape from Minos’ prison on wings of wax, Icarus ignored his father’s warning, flew too close to the sun and crashed into the sea, creating Ikaria – a rocky reminder of the dangers of overweening ambition. Greek myth also honours Ikaria as the birthplace of Dionysos, god of wine, indeed, Homer attested that the Ikarians were the world’s first winemakers. Today travellers can enjoy the signature local red here, along with fresh and authentic local dishes in a serene environment far from the crowds. Hiking, swimming and cycling are all excellent, while Ikaria’s light-hearted summertime festivals (in Greek called panigyria), annual celebrations of saints’ days involve much food, drink, traditional dance and song – combining Orthodox Christianity with Ikaria’s deeper Dionysian roots.
A few hot springs on the southeast coast were the reason of attraction to the small substantial tourism for years. However from the 1990s until now tourist facilities of some quantity and quality have evolved, especially in and around Armenistis. Armenistis is the most popular site of Ikaria . Tourism is very attractive to this destination of the island and the wonderful combination of rural and sea lanscape, with endless blue confirms that choice. Livadi and Messakti are the two beaches in Armenistis and the combination of the small picturesque bay, the pedestrian, plenty of lodgings, a tourist marketplace make the seaside village, a stunning holiday resort .
The total population of Ikaria island is about 2000 inhabitants and the capital and port of Agios Kirikos is located 2 kilometres southwest of the main thermal resort. Note that overseas flights still don’t land in Ikaria, as the airport at the northeast tip can’t accommodate jets.
There are enough nearby beaches but lets refer to Xylosyrtis beach wich is the best of the pebble beaches in the island. In Xylosirtis there are the renowned radioactive hot springs which attracts aching bodies from around the region.
Another noticable beach is located at Faros on the south coast of Ikaria and it is the longest one. In Faros there are a colony of summer cottages shelters under tamarisks along the standard gravel strand with a reefly zone to cross before deep water.
Ikaria is an island in Greece located in Aegean Sea and the exact geographic coordinates are 36°15’00.0″N 23°00’00.0″E. Nearby Ikaria in the southeastern side of the island about 8 miles far stands Thymena island and Fournoi island.
[wunderground location=”zmw:00000.93.16723″ /]