Chios Island is a unique and authentic Greek destination that attracts thousands of travellers every year. But few people know that it is also a great base for day trips around the Aegean! We have compiled a list of nearby destinations that you can add to your Chios itinerary.
Oinousses is a barren cluster of 1 larger and 8 smaller islands 2 km off the north-east coast Chios. The largest of them and the only inhabited one has also the name Oinousses, which is said to be derived because of the good wine (oinos means wine in Greek). Oinousses have always been a place with a long and rich maritime culture and many Greek ship owners come from this tiny place. The island boasts traditional architecture with red-tiled houses, paved paths and a picturesque square, with a sculpture dedicated to the Unknown Sailorman. There is also a Maritime Museum that you can visit.
The ferry schedule from Chios to Oinousses changes seasonally but is generally available daily.
Samos is another beautiful island of the North Aegean. It is located about 100 km southeast of Chios, close to the Turkish coast. Green landscapes, crystal-clear waters, sandy beaches and the rich history make Samos a worthwhile destination.
The ferry from Chios to Samos takes 2.5-3 hours. The schedule changes depending on the season. The ferry hours are not always super convenient, sometimes they can be very early in the morning but we say it is definitely worth the effort, and you can always catch some sleep on the ferry!
Chios is situated much closer to Turkey than any other major Greek Island. The Turkish port of Cesme that is across from Chios is only 12 km away from the Island. With a 20-minute ferry ride, this makes it the perfect opportunity to get a glimpse of another country and culture during your Chios trip.
Although the ferry schedule changes seasonally, in the summer high season there are usually 2 ferries per day each way, in the mornings and evenings. The summer ferry schedule is perfect for spending a whole day in the Cesme area, nearby Urla and Izmir, and returning to Chios with the evening ferry. Urla is home to many vineyards and wineries that offer excellent wine tastings, which make for perfect day trip activities.
If you are willing to extend your trip and stay overnight, you can plan a trip to Ephesus or Pamukkale. Ephesus is located around 80km south of Izmir and is one of the best-preserved classical Greek cities on the Mediterranean. Pamukkale, around 200 km East of Izmir, is home to world-famous warm mineral springs as well as the ruins of the antique Hierapolis city.
*Please note that citizens of some countries may need a visa to enter Turkey. Visas, however, are easy to obtain online and cost 15$. Check out this link for up-to-date information on visas to Turkey.
Lesvos – the third largest island of Greece is located around 80 km north of Chios. There are early morning ferries from Chios to Lesvos and return ferries in the evening. The ferry takes around 2 h 45 minutes, so it is possible to do both a day trip in Lesvos or stay overnight and return to Chios next day. The ferry service connects Chios to Mytilene – the capital and port town of Lesvos. Mytilene offers the charm of an ancient Greek island town together with a nice buzz, tavernas, restaurants and nightlife.
Psara is a cluster of seven small islands in the Aegean Sea, 20 km northwest of Chios. The largest and only inhabited one of them is also called Psara. It is a calm, serene island with a population of only 400 people. It is ideal for those who are looking for a secluded, almost private Greek island. Psara is also perfect for activities such as hiking and mountain biking.
Psara is served by ferries from Chios town and Volissos.