Ios was the vacation we had been waiting the whole trip for. Italy was walking around 8 miles a day trying to see as much as possible, Athens was visiting as many ruins as we could remember from Greek mythology, but Ios was where we stopped to breathe.
Ios is a small island in the Aegean Sea with about 2,000 people living on its hills year around. During the high season (July-September) the small island is flooded with tourists from all over the world. We arrived at the start of this peak season so it wasn't too crowded yet. We stayed in a hotel called Villa Mata which we found on Airbnb. The hotel owner who quickly became one of our favorite humans on the island was waiting for us at the port with a big sign and a huge smile at 11pm when our ferry arrived.
He showed us the short walk from the port to his hotel and we couldn't believe how beautiful Villa Mata was! Grape vines and fig trees surrounded the Greek styled building and there was a cute area to sit with tables and chairs downstairs. Our room was upstairs and much bigger than we expected with our own bathroom, balcony with a table and chairs and a sink with kitchen utensils, air conditioning, mini fridge, and plenty of shelves to store our things. If anyone is looking for a place to stay on the island we cannot recommend Villa Mata enough as it's a 1 minute walk to the beach, 4 minute walk to the bus stop, port and cute local restaurants, and a 10 minute walk to Chora Village which is where most of the island lives.
The relaxing vibes and location of Villa Mata set the pace for our week, allowing us to spend our days and nights exactly how we wanted whether we were looking to dance all night with Australians or relax on a quiet beach with fresh veggie gyros.
We would do a terrible job trying to describe the beauty of these beaches so take a gander at these sweet pics.