Just a quick sail away from Athens, the gorgeous island of Aegina is a popular destination for busy tourists in need of a quick getaway. Filled with glittery beaches, alluring nature, superb restaurants, and mysterious monasteries, Aegina stands out as one of the most beautiful Greek islands. Named after a nymph who eloped with Zeuss, bearing a child who will later become the king of the empire, Aegina has a strong historical heritage that goes back to 2000 BC. At one point, this Saronic island was a powerful maritime that rivaled Athens’s influence and became the first capital of the modern Greek state in the 19th century.
Within half an hour of leaving the Piraeus Marina, you’ll see Venetian mansions gleaming in the port, surrounded by yachts and fishing boats in the harbor. Although many choose to come here for a day cruise, it’s impossible to see all the important historical sites in less than a week - Aegina truly is the perfect place for anyone with a flair for exploring different cultures. Whether you just want to enjoy the sapphire-colored coves, munch on pistachios famously grown here, enjoy the mouthwatering cuisine or get a glimpse of what the world was like once upon a time, you’ll find so much to do, it might be easy to get overwhelmed - that’s why we’ve gathered the most important spots to visit during your luxury charter cruise.
Best Beaches In Aegina
Agia Marina Beach
Although you’ll find many no-name virgin coves on your cruise, Aegina has several organized beaches ideal for a refreshing swim in the crystal clear seas. Agia Marina is the longest sandy beach here, with shallow waters and limpid seas that make it a great choice for a day of splashing and shell-collecting with your little sailors. This blue flag beach has a wonderful selection of restaurants and tavernas serving drinks right by the water. Named after the small whitewashed Church of Agia Marina, this sandy bay houses a festival devoted to the saint on July 17th, when you can enjoy music and celebrations with the locals.
Situated in a tranquil village of the same name, Perdika Beach is the place to come for a dive in the deep cobalt seas and is surrounded by rocky cliffs. Drop your anchor for a day to enjoy the translucent waters and use your yachts fishing equipment - the bay has a rich aquatic life, full of different kinds of fish to prepare on the sundeck of your luxury charter yacht.
If you’re looking to spend a day simply enjoying nature, swimming, and bronzing far from touristy crowds, drop your anchor near this enchanting beach. Karnagio has no facilities or restaurants, just long strips of fine-grained sand and incredibly clear seas in soft hues of blue.
During your stay in Aegina, make sure to visit this tiny uninhabited islet which boasts an Eden-like beach surrounded by flourishing vegetation. The water is warm and incredibly clean, and after swimming, you can walk to the fragrant pine forests and bump into wild peacocks, horses, deer, pheasants, and squirrels on your way.
A family-friendly beach with shallow waters and long stretches on sun kissed sand, Marathonas is a tropical paradise with several traditional tavernas that offer drinks, refreshments, and complimentary parasols. With warm seas full of fish and gorgeous strips of soft sand, this is the ideal spot to enjoy some fun with little ones or dive with friends before getting some colorful cocktails to sip on at sunset.
Best Places To Visit in Aegina
The capital and main port of the island is a true hedonist playground. The vibrant waterfront promenade is dotted with cafes and tavernas that overlook the glittery harbor, and after a fun day of strolling and shopping, you can dance the night away in one of the bars with live music. The culture vultures will have their hands full - visit the Apollo temple on the northern part of town, or simply soak in the views of the pastel-hued neoclassical villas that add an elegant aura to the maze of old streets.
The Archaeological Museum of Aegina has a rich, eclectic exhibition of artifacts that date back to Mesopotamia and Ancient Greece, with Early Bronze Age pottery, Mycenaean figurines, and Middle Helladic and Early Mycenaean pottery. Thousands of people flock to Aegina each year to visit the Church of Agios Nektarios, one of the most recognized Greek saints, and pray for miracles that happen here often.
The monastery next to the church is among Balkans’ largest ones and is famous as a thaumaturgic site. If you don’t mind the walk, you can visit the Byzantine ghost town of Paleochora, known 9th-century basilicas and frescos just uphill from the monastery.
If you fall in love with the town (and we’re sure you will), you can find some souvenirs to remember it in one of many waterfront shops. Hunt for accessories at Argentiera, or visit the Ceramic Laboratory for some interior decor - Mourtzis is a chic spot with all kinds of pistachio delicacies where you can find tasty goods to gift to friends back home.
A town whose lovely beach we already mentioned, Perdika is a scenic spot just 9 km south of the main city. The charm of Aegean-style square houses and fishing boats dropping their daily catch in the bustling port will leave you spellbound within minutes. The first settlement in Perdika began in the Mycenean era, and the picturesque village served as a hiding place for the infamous pirate Barbarossa, who devastated the island in the 16th century. Photography enthusiasts might enjoy a visit to the low cylindric house opposite the fishing harbor that actually served as a camera obscura. The town has three beaches, Karavostasi, Agia Paraskevi, and Stavrolimenas, where you can enjoy a swim after a full day of sightseeing.
The most developed tourist resort on the island, Agia Marina owes its popularity to the crystal clear seas, rich cultural scene, and many tavernas, bars, and cafes serving delicious meals and drinks. Tucked between lush olive groves, pine trees, and pistachio orchards, Agia Marina is a mesmerizing town that attracts thousands of visitors each year. Make sure to stop by the Temple of Aphaia, one of the best-preserved examples of Doric architecture and the island’s most emblematic site. Agia Marina is the best place to do some shopping on the island - Tria shop offers a wide variety of handmade jewelry and souvenirs, while Fistikoupoli is where you’ll find the largest selection of pistachio-based goods to enjoy later on the foredeck of your luxury charter yacht.
A quiet fishing village that comes to life in August and July, Souvala is a popular summer destination adored by Athenians, many of who own summer houses here. In spite of increasingly developing tourism, the village managed to retain an authentic Greek atmosphere and boasts numerous tavernas and cafes where you can have the best pistachio baklava on the island. Built around a crescent-shaped bay, the harbor oozes a typical Mediterranean atmosphere and serves as a nice base for your Saronic adventure.
Best restaurants in Aegina
Ammos, Marathonas Beach
Set in a turquoise bay perfect for a day of swimming and sunbathing, Ammos Restaurants enjoys a cult following thanks to impressive seafood dishes and an enthralling environment. The atmosphere is casual and relaxed, and the French family-owned business blossoms year after year. Offering a menu that consists of moderately priced gourmet meals, Ammos is a great pick for a sunset dinner by the sea.
Thymari, Agia Marina
A charming garden restaurant with a good selection of both fish and meat, Thymari is a wonderful place for lunch with friends and family that attracts visitors with locally sourced dishes and fresh ingredients. Vegans and vegetarians won’t be disappointed either, and some gluten-free options are also available on the menu.
A seafood restaurant with an exceptional menu, Remetzo is set on a cute terrace that overlooks the aquamarine bay, where you can try the best-grilled octopus on the island. The place is ridiculously underpriced, yet maintains the cooking standard of a 5-star restaurant. Popular among the yachties who moor to indulge in fine cuisine in a gorgeous ambiance, Remetzo is a great choice for both families and couples looking to enjoy a romantic meal by the sea.
Kappos Etsi, Aegina
A crimson-colored garden with a typical Greek vibe, Kappos Etsi is a restaurant in the capital that offers some of the best traditional cuisine on the island. Owned by a friendly chef Dimitrios Kappos who’s always happy to help and recommend the perfect dish to suit your tastes, the restaurant is a hit among those looking for a family-friendly joint to kick back and relax with simple meals cooked to perfection.
Another ravishing place in the main town, Tsias is located right on the waterfront and offers a wide range of seafood dishes and a great wine list to pair with your fresh calamari and kalamata olives.