Satelite Map
press for larger image FISHING BOATS press for larger image CAVES press for larger image FISHING NETS press for larger image SKOPELITIS BOAT press for larger image AMMOS BEACH press for larger image WINDMILL press for larger image CHURCH press for larger image WINDMILL press for larger image SEAGULL

The Koufonisia, two small islands separated by a 200-meter straight, lie southeast of Naxos and west of Amorgos. Pano Koufonisi, more widely known simply as Koufonisi, is the smallest of the Cyclades, with an area of 3.5 square kilometers. But with 284 inhabitants, it's also the most densely-populated. Uniquely for a Greek island, Koufonisia's population has a large proportion of youths-110, including 70 in primary or secondary school.  

Fishing is the island's main economic activity. Limited farming and livestock-keeping is only sufficient to meet locals' needs. Fishing is so widespread that locals joke that there are more fishing boats than families on the island. The local fishing fleet numbers 35 large boats, plus a number of smaller octopus boats and other fishing craft; per capita, it is the largest fishing fleet in Greece.

Koufonisia has only recently been discovered by tourists so the island remains virtually unspoiled. Although it's now become more difficult to find a totally secluded beach, the islands' golden sand and shimmering seas amply reward visitors. Arriving, a white-washed windmill rising on the harbor's left welcomes visitors, beckoning them to explore Hora perched on the hill above.

Locals are so welcoming that visitors to the island usually feel like guests. Many will offer transport on their pickup to one or more remote beaches, while the cost of chartering a fishing boat for a trip to Kato Koufonisi, Glaronisi, or a secluded beach is quite reasonable. Food and accommodations are also reasonably priced. Amenities and services on the island include a post office, a number of restaurants and tavernas, hotels, and rental rooms (in Hora and Harokopou).

There's regular boat service linking Koufonisia to Piraeus and Rafina and daily service to nearby islands-Ios, Santorini, Amorgos, Naxos, Paros, Mykonos, and Syros. In winter, sailings are limited to a local network-Amorgos, Donousa, Koufonisi, Schoinoussa, Irakleia, Naxos-served by the boat Skopelitis.