If you’re looking for a picturesque Greek island that’s still untouched by mass tourism, Syros might be the right place for you! This small Cycladic island is less than 4 hours away from Athens and it offers crystal-clear water, sandy beaches, some lovely countryside, excellent food and a vibrant capital full of cultural events.
Galissas is one of the best beach towns of Syros island because it is secluded and peaceful enough for you to enjoy a real relaxing vacation in an idyllic setting. It is located on the Southwestern part of Syros and it is a popular summer destination without being too busy and chaotic, even in July and August.
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A Guide to Galissas Beach Town
Galissas is the largest beach on the island and it is suitable for everybody since it has both an equipped area with umbrellas and sunbeds and also an unspoiled public one. Its sandy shore and pristine water have earned it the Blue Flag, which is the international award given to the best beaches with excellent water quality.
Galissas is the perfect place for your family summer vacation thanks to its shallow water, the presence of a lifeguard and the availability of toilet facilities, showers and changing rooms which make it comfortable and safe.
There are also some facilities for disabled people, like easy access to the sea and parking close to the entrance. If you prefer an active holiday, there’s something for you too: you’ll be able to play volleyball and to try some watersports!
When is the best time to visit Galissas
May, June and September are the best months to visit the island with fewer tourists around, but Galissas can be fully enjoyed all summer long.
Things to do in Galissas Beach Town
Hiking around Galissas
A nice scenic hike will take you to the small church of Agia Pakou, right on top of the hill overlooking Galissas Beach. It only takes 10 minutes to go there and the best time of the day is at sunset for a great view and some stunning pictures. The climb is short but the rugged terrain requires suitable shoes.
Another great hike will take you to the church of Agios Stefanos in a natural cave. It will take you about 40 minutes to reach it but the scenery is worth it.
The story of this church is also fascinating: it was built by a local fisherman who was attacked by an octopus and he managed to save himself by praying the Saint.
If you happen to be there in summer, remember that the patronal feast is celebrated on August 19th: on this occasion, you’ll be able to take part in the liturgy and to be given some loukoumi (a local dessert) and some mastic from Chios at the end of the mass.
Swimming, snorkelling and sunbathing
The largest beach is Galissas, but there’s another beautiful spot nearby! It is named Armeos Beach and it is just on the other side of the hill. Access is quite easy but the rocky path requires suitable shoes. It is a nudist beach and it has no facilities being completely wild and unspoiled. Beware that there is no sand and it’s mainly a gravel beach.
Take a boat tour
You can reach the church of Agios Stefanos from the sea, which will offer you some amazing views of the coast.
Watch the sunset
The best places are Galissas Beach, Armeos Beach or the top of the hill.
Things to do around Syros Island
The capital of Syros can be visited in half a day and you can take your time wandering through its picturesque streets until you reach the harbour and the waterfront. Don’t miss the Church of Resurrection and its view or a break in a café located in the central Plateia Miaouli with its European vibe.
Explore the best beaches of the island
The vibrant and popular Agathopes Beach, the fishing village of Kini Beach, the secluded Delphini Beach, the windy Vari Beach or the shaded and green Megas Gialos Beach.
Check here: The best beaches in Syros Island.
Where to eat in Galissas
- Savvas: Greek home cooking with a wide menu full of typical recipes.
- Iliovasilema: it’s a modern gourmet tavern offering some original dishes. It’s a bit expensive but the unusual menu and the location on the beach make it a great choice for a night out.
Where to stay in Galissas
- Hotel Benois: a typical beach resort offering all the comforts you might need, from a large swimming pool to a continental breakfast in the open air. – Click here for more information and to book your stay.
- Stefos Rooms: nice apartments with balcony just a few meters from the beach and the local restaurants. You’ll also have a small equipped kitchen to cook your own meals. – Click here for more information and to book your stay.
- Angela’s: rooms and apartments perfect for families and immersed in a peaceful setting. There is also a common garden and some of the apartments have an equipped kitchenette. Free parking on site. – Click here for more information and to book your stay.
How to get to Syros Island
- By ferry from Athens: catch the daily ferry from Piraeus (Athens’ main harbour) and you’ll get to Syros island in about 3h30 with a car/passenger ferry. You can also bring your car with you. There is also a smaller highspeed ferry that takes around 2 hours. This type of ferry is more expensive and is not for people prone to seasickness.
- By ferry from other islands: Syros is well connected to Mykonos, Tinos and Paros and the journey takes about 1h.
- By air from Athens: Syros has a small airport with direct flights to Athens. Flight time is 35 minutes.
How to go from Ermoupolis harbour to Galissas Beach Town
- By bus: it takes about 45 minutes and it’s also an excellent way to get a first glimpse of the island and its landscapes. The cost is 1.70 euro. For more information visit https://www.syrosisland.gr/en/ktel/
- By taxi: faster than the bus, it will only take you 10 minutes to get to Galissas. A ride costs about 12 euro.
- By rented car: if you feel like exploring the island during your stay, renting a car is a great idea too.