Andros is one of our favourite places in Greece. We’ve been half a dozen times since we first came in May 2004, and seem to gravitate back here about every other year.
Andros town suits us really well. There is a big enough town for it never to feel over dominated by tourists, and to get a real flavour of Greek life. As well as the lively and beautiful town, there are fantastic walks, good beaches, nice tavernas and pretty villages.
It’s got some of the best walking we’ve discovered, with a network of reasonably signposted paths going through beautiful valleys and hills. Unusually, there is a lot of water on Andros, and everywhere you’ll find springs and wells. There are even rivers and a dramatic waterfall, particularly impressive in the spring.
The walks section has lots more information on some of the wonderful walks you can do on Andros.
Chora, where we stay, is a beautiful old town stretched out over a peninsular, with picturesque houses clinging to the cliffs over the sea. We think it’s definitely the best place to stay on the island, but may be partisan about this.
It is a working town and is big enough to have a health centre, town hall, post office, cinema, several museums and a lively main shopping street. Cars aren’t allowed in the old town, which makes the majority of the town blissfully car-free.
The main street is a centre of activity, with people shopping, sitting in cafes, and taking a stroll.
This is a proper high street, with lots of everyday shops – bakers, butchers, greengrocers, a small general store, clothes shops, banks, shoe shops and a small bookshop. Generally, the tourist and souvenir shops are in the minority although they are gradually increasing over time.
The main street opens out in to an elongated square, with the archaeological museum on one side, flanked by our favourite café, the Ermis.
An archway leads into the older, mainly residential part of the town (although there are an assortment of arty tourist shops in the first stretch of this). The street leads down to a square right at the tip of the peninsular, where there is a large soviet style statue of a sailor.
There is plenty to explore in the little alleys and pathways, leading off from the main street, and some beautiful old houses.
If you stand in the square you look out at sea on both sides. Two sets of steps lead out of the square, one going down to Nimborio beach, and the other to Paraporti beach.
On the steps down to Nimborio you’ll find the Museum of Modern Art, a philanthropic venture of the Goulandris, one of the island’s most well known wealthy families (they have also funded the Cycladic Museum in Athens).