Cook's Club Tigaki Kos
Whether you arrive by boat or plane, the first thing you’ll notice as you approach Kos is its coastline - a mesmerising fusion of deep turquoise and azure blues. But hang around for a little while and you’ll discover that Kos is more than just its beaches. This striking island is a heady mix of breathtaking scenery, thriving nightlife and Mediterranean charm.
Despite its size - the third largest island in the Dodecanese -, it’s small enough to explore on your own. And while tourism is certainly not new to Kos, there are still plenty of hidden nooks, local taverns and hilltop villages to explore – away from the hordes of sunburned tourists.
Starlight Beach Bar (Kardamena)
Kardamena’s ultimate chill out spot. Spend long days in the sun at this all-day beach bar, located on a beautiful stretch of Kardamena beach. The food is fresh, the drinks are delicious, and the music is always on point.
Mylos Beach Bar (Kos Town)
A favourite amongst locals and travelers alike, Mylos is the beach bar for the cool kids. Laid-back vibe, great drinks and a wholesome menu make it the perfect spot to spend a day in the sunshine. Music plays all day, and the volume rises with the sun.
Ammos Beach Bar (Psalidi)
Situated on the beach of Psalidi around 6km from Kos town, Ammos Beach Bar is a little slice of island heaven. Open from 10am till 2pm, the beach bar offers a varied selection of fresh breakfast options, juices, smoothies, snacks and cocktails – all served in a minimalist-luxe setting.
The Watermill of Zia (Zia)
A slightly wacky, very colourful hilltop restaurant overlooking the leafy green village of Zia. Order the homemade lemonade and sit back and enjoy the sweeping views over the mountains of Kos.
Chaichoútes (Ag. Dimitrios)
A pared-back traditional Greek dining experience, where the food is fresh, the service is great and the atmosphere is as authentic as it can get. The unique aged-stone setting boasts wonderful views over Kos. If you’re lucky, you might even get the chance to listen to some live music.
Nick the Fisherman (Kos Town)
Owned by a family of fishermen, this modest seafood restaurant serves the fresh catch of the day, every day. If you’re feeling experimental, let your chef surprise you with a range of different courses, and chug it back with a glass or two of the 50 different ouzo’s they have in house.
Taverna Oria (Paleo Pili)
If you visit one tavern while you’re on Kos, make it this one. While its location is a little off-the-beaten-track – you’ll need a car and it requires a short 15-minute hike up a red dust road - Taverna Oria is worth the effort. Overflowing with blooms and overlooking the Castle of Paleo Pili, the understated tavern serves modest, delicious meals and refreshments at great prices.
Paradise Beach gets all the praise, but neighbouring Camel Beach will win over your heart. If you’re a little adventurous and take a stroll along the rocks, there are a handful of secluded sandy spots where you can sunbake and bathe in solitude.
There’s more to Kardamena than package-holidays and shameless hedonism. Its crystalline bay is dotted with fine, white sand beaches to park your beach towel on and clear, still water to wade in.
It’s a day trip in itself, but the isolated beach of Kavo Paradiso is truly worth the hassle. A well-kept secret amongst locals, the pristine bay sits proudly on the island’s south coast - wild, tranquil and secluded.
Arguably the most authentic town on Kos, Zia is a small, leafy village perched in the mountains above Kos. Tucked away between lush green forests, its idyllic location on the slopes of Mountain Dikeos offers breathtaking views over Kos. The main street is dotted with plenty of shops and taverns worth checking out.
Thermal Hot Springs
In the south-eastern corner of the island, these sulpher springs feed into a rock pool, where the hot water from the spring mixes with the cooler water from the ocean to produce a warm therapeutic bath. The result of a volcanic eruption millions of years ago, it is said that the spring water has healing properties. Tip: visit at dusk for stunning views and fewer crowds.
If you’re tired of the beach and want to explore a peaceful natural oasis, Plaka forest is the place to be. A beautiful natural reserve in the heart of Kos, the park is brimming with pine trees, winding paths and an impressive population of peacocks. Spend a couple of hours exploring the exotic island flora and fauna – you might even spot some terrapins.