Say the word Greece and it conjures up images of feta cheese, plump and juicy olives, ancient sites, white-washed homes and blue-domed churches of Santorini, and perhaps a bit over-ripped Greek gods.
But there’s much more to this country (and its islands) than that. So, let me introduce you to Kos island, a hidden gem of the Greek islands where the water is crystal-clear, and the living is easy.
Here we go.
A is for Architecture
Despite what a travel guide might tell you, Kos island is not all about dazzling blue seas and golden beaches! It boasts some of the finest examples of Italian and the Ottoman architecture, so be prepared to capture the beauty and enjoy the glimpse of some of the most spectacular buildings in the history of the world.
B is for Buggy Car Adventures
In Kos, you can easily take a break from city strolling and go on a short (or long) adrenaline filled buggy adventure around the island!
My boyfriend and I rented a buggy car for the day (cost approximately 40 euros for the entire day, including insurance) and we managed to go to the Paradise Beach, which is located on the other side of the island.
We both had never done anything like that on a holiday before so we thought we would just go for it. (I’m super glad we did!). And with the roads of Kos being empty we never felt unsafe.
C is for Cycling
Guess, what? Kos is an ideal island for those who enjoy a good wheelie adventure! It’s all flat, has the spectacular scenery, and you can rent a bike for a few euros a day from a dozen of bike hire places.
D is for Day Trips to Turkey
While in Kos, you can jump on a boat and take a day trip over to Bodrum, Turkey, which is 40 minutes from Kos.
Turkey is such a different world. With its magnificent atmosphere, Bodrum is a live example of the Middle East. Narrow streets, traditional houses, bazaars and friendly locals willing to bargain with you. Don’t miss this chance to enter the East with its distinct smells and tastes!
E is for Eleftherias Square
Eleftherias Square is a lovely Greek square that tells the history of the island of Kos through its architecture (Roman and the Ottoman).
The square and surrounding streets are like two different places during the day and the night – peaceful and relaxing during the day and vibrant at night. My boyfriend and I sat in the square, drank coffee and watched the Greeks enjoy the day. It was lovely.
Also, for those who love wandering around the food markets (hello, it’s me!), there is a small market on the square where you can find fresh food to try, souvenirs, and large cinnamon sticks.
F is for Feta
Yup, I got my Greek salad in Greece with Feta cheese! The salad was great, and I was excited to fulfil my dream. One thing I have to say is that Feta cheese in Greece is entirely different from what we have here in Lithuania or what I’ve tried in the UK. It’s super soft and creamy!
G is for Gyros
A Gyro (or Gyros) is a Greek dish (which almost looks like a Turkish kebab) made with meat (usually chicken) cut off a big cylinder and then placed in a pita with onions, tomatoes, cucumbers, lettuce and often French fries.
Gyros are cheap (2-3 euros per one sandwich) and you can get them everywhere around Kos island.
H is for the Hippocrates Tree
Did you know that Hippocrates (the Father of Medicine) was born in Kos island? According to an old legend, Hippocrates taught his students under the special tree about two and a half thousand years ago in Kos!
Nowadays, the tree has become a symbol of Kos town and medicine. (The Hippocrates Tree is timeworn and due to the sun I couldn’t take a proper picture, so please enjoy this pic instead).
I is for Interesting Corners of Kos Town
… like this one!
J is for Jaw-Dropping Sea Views
What a view to wake up to! I think no one could ever be mad about anything if they wake up to this every day…
K is for Kaliméra
You will here “Kalimera” all over Kos (and Greece) from the staff at your hotel to people you see on the street. “Kalimera” means “Good day!” or “Good morning!” in Greek.
L is for Lambi Beach
Lambi beach often has a much-needed breeze making it the ideal beach for sunbathing.
Also, you can easily see Turkey from it. (Yup, I’m “squeezing” Turkey between my fingers!)
M is for (Even More) Market Adventures
Who else is obsessed with fresh fruits and vegetables?! I could spend days exploring food markets and trying every possible fruit! Just look at these watermelons!!!
N is for Nature
Kos is blooming! Expect to encounter pink, purple, orange blossoming trees everywhere while wandering around. It’s a truly magical place. For a minute I felt like I was Alice lost in my own little Wonderland…
O is for Orange Trees
P is for Port of Kos Town
For those who have a thing for ferry boats.
Q is for Quiet Early Mornings
I’m one of those morning people. There is something about the first light, the stillness, and the solitude.
An early morning walk (especially if it happens to be on the beach) is everything.
R is for Reading Books at the Beach
Kos is (again) perfect for reading books (and drinking coffee) at the beach until your sunscreen totally wears off!
S is for Swimming at a Paradise Beach
Another beautiful place in Kos. If crystal-clear water and little fish around your feet is your thing, definitely visit this beach!
T is for Therma Beach
Therma Beach is exceptional, due to the hot water coming from the mountain. Water is at times really unusually hot, so be careful.
Also, if possible try to visit it in the early morning as it gets busy (and crowded) around the lunch time.
U is for Unbelievable Sky and Tall Palm Trees
I can never get tired of seeing palm trees. Can you?
V is for Vacationing
And enjoying simple pleasures of life; watching the sunset, sitting under the sun, watching palm trees swinging.
W is for Watching Sunsets
They say that no two sunsets are ever the same. Whether it’s the colours, the clouds, or the scenery, each one has something unique about it.
Here’s one of the most beautiful sunsets I’ve ever seen in Kos.
X is for Xenia
Xenia is the ancient Greek concept of hospitality, the generosity and courtesy shown to those who are far from home. I think this concept is still being used in the contemporary Greek culture and we, as travellers, felt very welcomed by local people of Kos.
Y is for Yacht and Catamaran Cruises
Did you know that the island of Kos is known as a top yacht charter destination in Greece?
You can start your sailing experience from Kos and follow any possible route to other magnificent islands such as Kalymnos or Nysiros.
The marina of Kos is located at the old harbour and is known worldwide since it has been available to skippers and yachting enthusiasts for over a decade. It has been described as one of the hottest cruising areas in Europe!
Z is for Zia Village
While visiting Kos, we also went to Zia, which is a beautiful small village located on the top of the mountain. The views from it are amazing (especially sunsets). Highly recommend!