Sifnos is the island of flavours and birthplace of famous poets, like Ioannis Gryparis, Kleanthis Triantafyllou (or Rampagas) and Aristomenis Provelegios, as well as award winning chefs, like Nikos Tselementes. Unique traditional villages, organised or secluded beaches, and 227 churches spread around the island are waiting to be discovered.
Apollonia, the capital of Sifnos (also called Hora), is built in the shape of an amphitheatre over three hills in the centre of the island. The narrow streets and the whitewashed houses form a beautiful, traditional Cycladic settlement. During your evening walk, pay a visit to the Folklore Museum at Hiroon Square (Heroes’ Square).
And whether you wind up visiting a small taverna or classy restaurant in Hora you can sample some of Sifnos’ exceptional dishes cooked by chefs who know how to tempt our taste buds. When night falls, set out to discover fancy lounge bars and the hottest nightclubs on the island, and dance the night away! Apollonia also boasts elegant hotels, and homey guesthouses.
A few kilometres away from the town lies the traditional settlement of Artemonas, famous for its neo-classical mansions and outstanding panoramic views of the island. Some of the most famous restaurants and patisseries of Sifnos will welcome you here with fresh homemade biscuits and hot doughnuts. If you’re looking to spend a relaxing vacation, then Artemonas is the ideal place to book your accommodation.
The historic settlement of Kastro (meaning castle), inhabited since ancient times, is built over the ruins of ancient Sifnos, on an abrupt rock with a breathtaking view of the sea. A beautiful outdoor museum and one of the most picturesque villages in the island, Kastro stands out for its old houses with wooden balconies, ancient columns and narrow courtyards. The visitor still enters the village from the castle’s old entrances. In the past, these arcade-like entrances were used as war towers in order to protect the settlement. The houses in the front, built one next to another, were inhabited by ordinary people, whereas the inner, and more protected part of the settlement, was occupied by the upper class. Admire the picturesque little church of Eftamartyros (Church of Seven Martyrs), perched on a rock that seems to rise from the sea, and don’t forget to visit the Archaeological Museum.
Sifnos is the centre of pottery in the Cyclades and has been for thousands of years. The island’s unique soil in combination with the continuous sunshine resulted in the development of the art of pottery on the island, an art that continues today with the many pottery workshops where you can buy ceramics, utensils and decorative items.
Taste mouth-watering local specialities
Sifnos is known throughout Greece for its delicious cuisine and great cooks. So during your holiday on the island you must try: fried chickpea balls; manoura (cream cheese); mastelo (lamb cooked in red wine and spices); amigdalota (small round sweets made with almonds, rosewater and sugar); and honey pie.
Swim in crystal-clear waters
Whether cosmopolitan or secluded, all the beaches in Sifnos offer sun-worshippers azure waters. Kamares, the port of the island, has a sandy beach with trees and beach bars; Platys Yialos is the most cosmopolitan and lively beach on the island, while next to it lies Vathi, a sandy beach with shallow waters and many tavernas where you can enjoy fresh fish. The rocks at Chrysopigi are ideal for diving. If you’d like to rest under cool shade, head to the next beach which is surrounded by salt-water loving trees. If you find yourself in Kastro, follow down the path to the Church of the Seven Martyrs, and enjoy a leisurely swim or unwind with a book lazing on a sun lounger.