Kos gives you a choice of lively party towns, laid-back seaside resorts and traditional fishing villages – all of them with beautiful beaches.
Kos’s coastline covers 290 kilometres, plenty of which is blanketed by beach. Soft sands, bar-backed promenades, hidden coves – this little island has the lot.
Cosmopolitan Kos Town has something for everyone, with its handy beach, medieval castle and harbour-side bars. Kardamena is the island’s party hub, while laid-back Kefalos will keep families happy with its combination of holiday resort handiness and traditional charm.
Away from the main resorts you’ll find acres of unspoiled countryside, peppered with quaint villages that have hardly changed in centuries. Some of the island’s most famous historic sites are even older – the Asklepieion, Hippocrates’ ancient hospital, dates from 357 BC.
Kamari Beach in Kefalos is one of the longest and prettiest stretches of sand on the island. Kardamena is where you’ll find the best beach parties. Mastichari Beach is a family-friendly spot that’s also good for windsurfing.
Wander round the ancient ruins of the Asklepieion, one of the world’s first hospitals, explore the medieval Castle of Neratzia in Kos Town or take a hike up Mount Dikeos for a bird’s-eye view of the island. A boat trip to the island of Nisyros is an exhilarating experience – it’s home to Greece’s only active volcano.
Kos comes with a handful of waterparks – the Lido Waterpark in Mastichari is one of the best. Plus there are plenty of rocky coastal paths and rustic mountain villages, which you can explore on foot or on horseback.
Kos serves up top-notch Mediterranean fare, so you can look forward to fresh seafood, hand-picked salads and hearty meat dishes. Island specialities include katimeria – a type of cheese pie – and varvara, a sweet treat made with honey, nuts and pomegranate.
Kos does a strong line in handicrafts and you can snap up everything from handmade jewellery and leather goods to olive oil soap at the island’s many boutiques and stalls. Make for the mountain villages to buy beautiful handwoven fabrics.
Bar Street in Kardamena is where you’ll find the most pumping parties, but Kos Town has its fair share of after-hours fun, too. Sip a cocktail at one of the stylish harbour-front bars or dive into a side-street taverna and raise a glass of retsina with the locals.
Kos is one of the Dodecanese Islands, which also include Rhodes. Although it belongs to Greece, it actually sits just off the coast of Turkey, opposite Bodrum bay.
Time differenceGMT +2 hours
Beerfrom €3 a bottle
3 course mealfrom around €20