Greece wasn't our favorite country (which doesn't mean you won't love it) and Ios contributed to 90% of the dislike.
Naive and little as we were at the time, we gave into everyone's "omg but you MUST go to Ios, best place ever!! the parties there are out of control!!!" etc etc. What we really
discovered was an overpriced island (beautiful as it was) full of drunk Australian teenagers (and ridiculously sad 20 somethings) wearing bar hopping singlets. There were also a distinctive
breed of males who enjoyed the obnoxious yet 'classic' chant of 'yeah the boys, up the boys' and made sure the rest of the island knew all about it...
I like a good night out as much as the next person but I can safely confirm there was nothing GOOD about Ios nightlife. I am fairly certain the only reason people enjoy themselves here is because
they spend the entire time completely off their head... no backpacker in their right mind would think it a plausible idea to spend 25 euro on a bar merchandise singlet.??
Anyway!!! Ebbs and I spent 5 nights here because it was peak season and so I had pre-booked everything and we couldn't escape (without loosing lots of money). We were there in late August
which we were told was 'the end of the season' so the town was a little quieter than usual (thank god). The island is pretty small and has one main town called Chora and several beaches in its
different bays. The main mode of transport is bus and quad bike.
To get here it is a 40 minute ferry from Santorini which cost 60 euros.
As much as I didn't like Ios I actually had a super lovely time here because we bumped into our friends from Sziget who we ended up staying with for the entire time. We all got along really well
and had many family dinners sitting on our balcony at sunset.
We did a lot of laying by the pool and swimming at the beach. We were told there is quite a lot to explore on the uninhabited section of the island but we honestly couldn't be bothered to get
ourselves there (pathetic I know). We spent a few afternoons at the beach near the Far Out beach club which hosts the infamous 'wet t'shirt' competition. We made the mistake of watching one and I
have to say it was more degrading and disgusting than I could ever imagined.. and yet I watched the entire thing??
There is one main supermarket that has most things you need (although it is very small). Other than that food is fairly affordable (which was a surprise) Gyros sell for 2.20 euro etc.
Hiring quad bikes is fairly essential in order to get around and explore the far corners of the island (which we did not). They cost 30 euro a day to hire which is super expensive so make
sure you have a plan of where to go on the days you have one. Also, DO NOT ride with more than 3 people on the bikes. The island is small and everyone knows everyone. Our friends got fined 100
euro for having 3 people on a quad instead of 2 because someone spotted them and told the owner.
The 'nightlife' starts at around midnight and usually peaks around 3:30.
On Ebbs' birthday we went to the Pathos Beach Club for sunset (on recommendation of our hotel owner), which was incredible (although very windy and no surprises here... very expensive!!) They
made me buy a drink just to sit with my friends even though I don't drink and wouldn't let me have anything non-alcoholic?
For dinner we went to a beautiful Greek tavern and had moussaka and Greek salad with our friends.
We stayed in the Skala hotel which was situated on the hill behind the main town. It was a bit of a walk up but it was worth it for the view. It cost us 18 euro each a night (almost $30) but we
had a 2 story apartment with a kitchen and a beautiful balcony.
For Ebbs' birthday we stayed at the Seabreeaze hotel on the other side of the island which I booked on Airbnb. It cost $120 a night which was fine for a special occasion and I have never stayed
(or seen) anywhere as luxurious as this hotel.