Emerald sea, white shores and a verdant nature form the backdrop of the of the beaches small island of Ithaca, or as the locals call it – the “Ionian gem”.
With pebbles and deep, calm waters, the beaches of Ithaca are ideal for swimming and for endless hours in nature, all within short distance from Vathi, the capital of the island and the other villages in the northern part of Ithaca.
The most popular beaches of Ithaca are always quite busy – without of course ever being overcrowded, since the island’s peaceful nature is characteristic!
It is the busiest and most “cosmopolitan” beach of Ithaca. Filiatro is located in the south, about 10 minutes drive from Vathi. This is a sheltered bay with a turquoise sea that looks like a swimming pool. From here you can swim to two other beaches in the same bay: a very small one to the right and a much larger one to the left. The beach is organized and the local bar often has beach parties.
The beach is also known as “Ai Giannis” as it is located in the homonymous village in northern Ithaca. The road will take you all the way to the beach and you can take it from the village Lefki. A short paved path leads to the white beach, from where you can see Kefalonia, and where you will find sun beds and umbrellas (not many), but no canteen.
Many choose this beach, especially those living in the villages of northern Ithaca, but if you are looking for more isolation, you can find it among the rocks that form many small, “private” beaches.
Many consider Gidaki as the most beautiful beach of Ithaca – probably for its impressive turquoise sea. You can get there either by boat which starts from the square in Vathi, or by a path which takes 40 minutes to cross. This way is of course much more tiring, but the view of the beach from above is worth it!
A wild landscape surrounds the beach in Afales Bay, in northern Ithaca, with rocks and trees that reach the shore. The road (asphalted) reaches all the way down to the sea and from there you can choose one of the 4-5 beaches, depending on how much you want to walk.
The name Kourvoulia refers to three consecutive bays encountered on the road from Frikes to Kioni. You will have to leave your car up above, descend the steps and you can then dive straight into the cool blue waters of the Ionian Sea. Trees and rocks offers shade to those who come early, while on the First and the Second (mainly) and the Third Kourvoulia as the locals call them, counting from Frikes to Kioni, you will always find a lot of people – so, hurry!
Located in the Bay of Skinos near Vathi, it is the first beach you will encounter, when coming from the capital of Ithaca. There is a paved road to the beach, the distance is not more than ten minutes, while the tall trees, mainly eucalypti, will offer you ample shade, during most hours of the day. For all the reasons mentioned above and because the water here is shallow and safe, it is mostly preferred by families with young children.
Poli is located in the bay Stavros, with its impressive turquoise sea which you can admire from above. You can take your car all the way to the edge of the shore, where you will see a small canteen that offers everything from fresh water to fried calamari, as well as umbrellas and sun beds for everyone. The pier on the left with the boats and fishing boats is the ideal place for endless dives and the calm sea is ideal for swimming for hours.
The beach is situated very close to Vathi, to the “right” of the capital, as its name states (“dexia” means “right” in Greek), and here you will find many children enjoying the sun and sea, while their parents and companions enjoy the cool shade of the olive trees growing around the beach. Opposite of the shore, the small island Skartsoumponisi poses a challenge to the daring swimmers. On the beach there is also a coffee – bar, where you can grab a snack by the sea.
As you go from Vathi to the villages of northern Ithaca, you will find Mprosta Aetos beach just below the road. You can park above, on the road, descend the steps – just ten of them – and choose where to set up your towel and stuff in order to enjoy the calm sea with its turquoise waters.
Loutsa is the beach located in the bay of Vathi. It is preferred by those who want to go for a quick swim, students who come here on their bikes and families that can let their children play carefree in the shallow waters.