Here’s a list of the 15 best things to do in Samos (Greece), along with famous landmarks, museums, and other points of interest.
Samos is a Greek Island that is located in the eastern Aegean Sea, right off the coast of Turkey. It’s a historic island that has long been famous for its wine production. During ancient times, it was a very powerful city-state, and today, one can discover that rich heritage.
In this article, I’m sharing some of the best places to visit in Samos as well as attractions that shouldn’t be missed while visiting.
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Samos’ north-eastern Livadaki Beach is a true natural marvel. This beautiful stretch of sand is located in a secluded cove and offers just the right mix of beach amenities like sunbeds, umbrellas, and a few restaurants/bars as well as stunning nature.
Even though the beach gets quite busy it never feels too crowded. The hills surrounding the beach are great for walks and offer many scenic spots, where you can enjoy great views over the Aegean Sea.
There are also kayak rentals here that are very much recommended as the view from the water is even more beautiful than from land.
Samos offers two great archaeological museums that shouldn’t be missed when coming here. The museums offer great collections of artifacts from the island and explain the various stages of human settlement on Samos.
The exhibits include archaic pottery, sculptures, clay figures, and wooden items. Coming here is a great way to get a break from beach life and learn some interesting aspects of Greek history.
You can find the Archeological Museum of Vathy in Samos Town and the Archeological Museum of Pythagorion in the namesake village on Samos’ south-western coast.
The waterfalls of Potami are one of the most impressive natural attractions of the island. They are located near Karlovasi and also feature two small lakes that can be used for swimming (if you don’t mind the cool temperatures).
These waterfalls are of stunning beauty and are located in a secluded area that can only be reached by walking along the river from Potami. The scenic walk is definitely part of the attraction as nature here is very impressive.
Psili Ammos Beach
Psili Ammos Beach is known for being a great place for families as children will find playing on this stretch of sand a really fun way to spend the day.
This beach is surrounded by pine forests and offers plenty of infrastructure including hotels, restaurants, and watersports. Even though the beach is quite busy during the summer the atmosphere here is always very relaxed making the beach a great place to spend a few days.
The most impressive aspect of the beach is its turquoise water that shimmers in all kinds of blue hues when the sun is out.
Monastery of Panagia Spiliani
The Monastery of Panagia Spiliani is located 125 m above sea level. What makes the monastery so interesting is that it is built in a cave which gives it a very unique atmosphere.
Local archaeologists believe that the cave was used as a worshipping site even before Christianity arrived here. The monastery is located just north of Pythagorion and is known all over the island for its fantastic coastal views.
Not only can you see the Aegean Sea from here but also Samos’ international airport which makes the area great for plane spotting.
Heraion of Samos
The archaeological site Heraion of Samos is located just a few meters north of the village Ireo. It is located right at the beach. This ionic temple was built in the 8th century BC and is dedicated to the goddess Hera.
Even though only fragments of ruins are found here today the site is an interesting place to visit as it is quite big and diverse. Keep in mind that it gets very hot here during the summers as there is almost no shade which makes the best time to visit the morning hours.
Tunnel of Eupalinos
The Tunnels of Eupalinos are another great site that can add some diversity to your beach holiday on Samos. The tunnels have a length of more than 1 km and run through Mount Kastro.
They were built as an aqueduct in the 6th century BC. Since 1992 the tunnels are considered a UNESCO World Heritage Site due to their significance as an engineering achievement in the ancient world.
There are different guided tours available that vary in length and difficulty. The tunnels are also a great way to escape the heat as the temperatures are quite cool here during all seasons.
Kokkari is a popular spot on Samos’ northern coast. Even though the village has started attracting more visitors over the last years it has still retained its authentic charm.
There is a big pebble beach here that is surrounded by traditional Greek homes including a few restaurants and small hotels. At the eastern end of the beach, you can find a small cliff that offers great views.
The eastern end of Kokkari is also where many restaurants and touristic venues are located. Considering its size, Kokkari offers a huge choice of great dining options mostly serving traditional Greek cuisine including fresh fish from the Aegean Sea.
The Metamorphosis Church is the best-conserved building from the Byzantine Age in all of Samos. It was erected in the 11th century and is known for its typical style consisting of four columns and a cruciform.
One of the main attractions of the church is how embedded it is in beautiful nature. You can find the Metamorphosis Church a few meters inland from Potami beach. Make sure not to miss the ruins of the Venetian castle nearby.
Mount Kerkis is the highest peak on Samos and dominates the island’s interior. The extinct volcano stands at 1433 m above sea level and is a great spot for hikers offering numerous trails of various lengths.
The mountain is very barren and does not support much plant life but that doesn’t make it any less impressive. Keep in mind however that hiking here can be quite challenging, especially in the heat.
The slopes of Mount Kerkis are home to many small monasteries that you might stumble across on your way to the top. Needless to say, the mountain offers the best views in all of Samos.
Tsamadou Beach is one of the most beautiful in all of Greece and features crystal clear waters in a bay surrounded by lush forests. There are a few taverns here that offer great authentic food in case you are hungry.
There are sunbeds here and the pebbles are soft and easy to walk on making the beach great for children. The eastern end of the beach is a dedicated nudist area so keep that in mind when coming here.
East and west of Tsamadou Beach are smaller bays that often also feature small stretches of beach. It is worth exploring them if you are looking for a bit more serenity.
Caves of Pythagoras
The Caves of Pythagoras are the historic hiding spot of the world-famous philosopher. They are located near Votsalakia Beach but are quite difficult to access the climb from the small road connecting the caves to the beach is very steep.
The views from here are marvelous and are one of the main attractions of the site. According to local historians, Pythagoras used one of the caves as a living space and another as a classroom for his students. Long after Pythagoras’ death, two chapels were built here.
Try wine from Samos
Samos is known for its great wines and there is no way you can come here without trying the local varieties at least once. There are numerous family-owned wine estates here that are worth visiting.
You can also head over to the local wine museum located just west of Samos Town. The climate on the island is ideally suited to the cultivation of the Muscat grape which is known for producing extraordinarily sweet wines that are great as a dessert.
Needless to say, a bottle of wine is a great souvenir or a gift to bring home from the island of Samos.
Lemonakia Beach is located on the northern coast of Samos and is home to many hotels and resorts. This pebble beach offers very good infrastructure including sunbed and umbrella rentals as well as restaurants and bars.
It is the perfect place for a relaxed beach holiday. The colors of the water here are amazing and especially in contrast with the white pebbles of the beach, simply breathtaking. Lemonakia is also known for its relaxed atmosphere.
It is hard not to be happy here when being surrounded by great Greek food, beautiful sunshine, turquoise waters, and having lush pine forests as a backdrop to all the scenic beauty of the coastline.
Pythagorion is one of the most interesting towns in all of Samos and offers a wealth of interesting historical sites. There is the interesting Archeological Museum found here as well as the Tower of Lykourgos Logothetis, and Pythagoras statue, which is situated right at the entrance of the harbor.
Even though the town doesn’t offer a beach many visitors are coming here as the town offers one of the busiest marinas on the island and offers a great choice of restaurants and bars catering to the owners of all the lovely boats situated here.
Want more recommendations on things to do in Samos, Greece? Leave a comment below!