NEW YORK – Travel and Leisure magazine (T+L) released its list of top islands of Europe and once again, Greece and its beautiful islands dominated the list, taking the top two spots with Milos at #1 and Folegandros #2 and another six spots- Santorini (5), Paros (10), Mykonos (13), Crete (14), Corfu and the Ionian islands (15), and Rhodes and the Dodecanese (17).
For those of us who have traveled to the Greek islands, we know that grouping all the Ionian islands with Corfu and all the Dodecanese with Rhodes is obviously cheating, but, of course, it would be unfair of T+L to only include Greek islands on the list of top islands of Europe.
Sarakiniko Beach, Milos. Photo by Eleni Sakellis
Every year for its World's Best Awards survey, “T+L asks readers to weigh in on travel experiences around the globe — to share their opinions on the top cities, islands, cruise ships, spas, airlines, and more,” T+L reported, noting that "readers rated islands according to their activities and sights, natural attractions and beaches, food, friendliness, and overall value.”
Milos was also voted T+L’s #1 island in the world, and is not just where the Venus de Milo was found. “Visitors can explore the family-run, award-winning Kostantakis winery, sun on the volcanic rocks at Sarakiniko Beach, and snorkel through the island's caves — all before dinner at one of the island's exceptional restaurants,” T+L reported, adding that “accommodations on the island tend to be small but stylish spots like Skinopi Lodge, which consists of three modern one-bedroom accommodations on a cliff overlooking the Aegean.” One voter summed up the island as “drop-dead gorgeous,” T+L reported.
In this Tuesday, June 9, 2020 photo, visitors sit in bars in an area known as Little Venice on the Greek island of Mykonos. (AP Photo/Derek Gatopoulos)
Folegandros, another of the Cycladic islands, was voted #2 in Europe and in the world for its “whitewashed architecture and aquamarine waters,” that the crowds have yet to discover, T+L reported, noting that “barely more than 12 square miles in size, the Cycladic paradise is only a ferry ride away from the bustling Santorini (No. 5) and Mykonos (No. 13).” T+L also recommends the Anemomilos Boutique Hotel, “an easy walk from the main village of Hora, it has 17 rooms and suites, with verandas overlooking the Aegean, perfect for basking in sunset views.”
A view from the Bluegr Minos Beach Art Hotel in Agios Nikolaos, Crete. Photo by Eleni Sakellis
The full list is available online: https://www.travelandleisure.com/worlds-best/islands-in-europe.