The best Greek Islands to Visit with Kids in the Cyclades

mother three daughters plaka naxos

Naxos, the Small Cyclades and Amorgos

In the course of planning their summer vacation, parents wonder about kid-friendly destinations; which Greek islands to visit with kids, where to stay, which beaches are the kid-friendly ones and whether they will find things to do with their children, that would render the whole family happy! So, which are the characteristics that make a destination a family friendly place?

Well, almost everyone agrees that the first thing we need is accessibility to the extent this relates to safety! Kid-friendly destinations are the places that are easy to reach -direct landing is an asset- and close to health facilities. Related to accessibility are the smooth climate and a welcoming nature -no heavy seas, no rocky shores, no extreme climate conditions, no wild mountains- which does not hold for all Greek islands.

A second criterion to choose a Greek island for your summer vacation with kids is family friendly accommodation, a prerequisite indeed, for relaxed holidays… for the parents as well. Check MAMAKITA standards here to see what we mean by that. Last but not least, it is important to be able to book kid friendly activities and tours, and find trustworthy service-providers.

Six days on Naxos with kids

Naxos is the number one Greek island destination for those vacationing with kids. Tourists and Greeks alike, when considering where to spend their summer vacation in Greece, choose Naxos. And they have good reason to! The beaches are sandy and shallow with crystal-clear waters… There are plenty of family-friendly accommodation choices… It is the perfect base for excursions and island-hopping to other Aegean islands, like Santorini, Mykonos, Delos and Paros… And, it offers visitors something more than just sun and sea: picturesque villages, shady-green hiking trails, good food, local traditional products, authentic people and the tranquility that each family needs to create their own raucous!

It is very easy to get to Naxos either by plane (charter flights directly to Naxos Airport) or by ferry from Piraeus. Naxos provides a frequent connection with the paradise of the Aegean, the Small Cyclades! Get the ultimate 6-day family friendly itinerary on Naxos here.

Eight days on the Small Cyclades with kids

Many are the reasons why a family would choose one of the smaller islands for their vacation: The parents may wish to avoid the long distances that they would have to travel in order to explore a larger island; they may prefer to travel without driving a car; they may be looking for a beach with a small tavern where they would not have to dress up for dinner or any other activity; they may not like crowded beaches or too much commotion. 

For those, the island complex of the Small (or Lesser) Cyclades would be their best choice. Located between Naxos and Amorgos, the complex of the Small (or Lesser) Cyclades, Donoussa, Schinoussa, Koufonisia and Iraklia offer much more than you can imagine, especially for families with babies, toddlers and preschool age kids. These tiny islands, blessed with so many baby and toddler-friendly beaches in such a small distance, save parents who love exploring as much as possible from long distances and the crowds of the most popular Aegean islands and from driving a car to reach the beach and dressing up for dinner! If you wish to experience the real and authentic Aegean paradise and to slow down and connect with nature and the sea, these Greek islands are the best choice.

The ideal islands for accommodation with kids in the Small Cyclades are Donoussa and Upper Koufonisi easily accessible by boat from Piraeus and Naxos. In fact, there is nothing that you would be needing during your family summer holidays that would not be at your fingertips.

If you happen to be at Iraklia at the end of August, you will have the opportunity to participate in the celebrations (panigyri) honoring St. John the Baptist at Cyclops’ Cave. This would be a genuinely Greek experience. People arrive on boats from Schinoussa throughout the previous night to get a chance to hear the most exquisite local fiddler, Nikos Economides.

Amorgos with Kids

Amorgos is the most eastern island of the Cyclades, and due to its oblong shape, it seems to operate as a breakwater that protects the eastern Small Cyclades from the heavy seas. It is the island where the film “Le Grand Bleu”, the “Big Blue” was shot, with a special “energy” and among the Greeks’ favorites.

Amorgos is not considered as a top kid-friendly destination; however, you will find family friendly accommodations in Aegiali, which could serve as a perfect base for you to explore this authentic island that you may fall in love with. It would be a pity to travel to the Small Cyclades and not visit Amorgos. 

Ideal time to travel to the Greek Islands with Kids

Naxos and Amorgos are windy in August. The most beautiful and kid-friendly beaches on Naxos are located in the west; maistros (the Northwest wind blowing in the Greek Seas) reaches its peak during the last 2 weeks of August. The ideal time to visit Naxos and Amorgos is late spring and early summer. Small Cyclades’ climate is smoother, because they are protected by Naxos and Amorgos. However, in August Donoussa and Upper Koufonisi get very crowded.

Willing to travel to the Greek Islands with kids? Check our ready-made itineraries on Naxos, the Small Cyclades and Amorgos and let the best family travel advisors in Greece create your family’s “Grecious” story!

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