Koufonesia is Mykonos 40 years ago.
Koufonesia is a very peaceful and quaint island. Unlike Mykonos, there is no Fendi store here, no big parties, €100 cabanas, papparazzis or €400/person dinners. Unlike Santorini, the cruise ships does not stop here, and there are no tourist buses. There arent even rental car companies on the island. Instead, there are bike rental shops and water taxis that can take you from one beach to another. People also walk from one beach to another.
I travelled with my Greek friend Vasilis from neighboring island Paros. The ferry took an hour and 45 minutes and cost €45 each way (around $52 USD). The ferry boats in Greece are fairly big and comfortable. You can buy your ferry tickets at ferryscanner.com.
If you go to a restaurant here, you can see Grand ma in the kitchen and the grand children serving dishes. The fish of the day was caught by their close friends or cousins who are fishermen. This is how I remember Mykonos when I first visited 14 years ago.
This was kinda how Boracay was when I first went there in 1998- before Jollibee, Mcdonalds and Starbucks opened.
I didn’t bring my DSLR 😭😭😭 Yes, I regret it. The place is insane stunning. I have not seen acqua blue waters like what I see here.
Because the island is quaint, you don’t have a lot of hotel choices. I was unusually picky this time because I wanted to splurge on this trip and check off all the boxes- proximity to the beach, pool, access to the town and port, and nicely updated bathrooms. We found Paradise Hotel after a long search. And the hotel did not disappoint. The minute we got to the property, my jaw dropped! It definitely has the island vibe I was looking for.
The staff picked us up at the port for free, and our room was incredibly gorgeous. The rooms are updated and immaculately clean. The staff were also beyond friendly and helpful. We appreciate their kindness and flexibility with our requests. Great hotel and I highly recommend it!
If you visit- make sure you have cocktails at Milos Koufonesia and eat at Capt Nico.
I hope that the island keeps its charm. The only way to do this is to keep is a secret. So promise me not to tell anyone. Okay?