View Map

Overview

Chíos is the 5th largest of the Greek islands and so there is a lot to see, but it’s still a little off the regular tourist trail and remains one of the most traditional of the islands. It has always been a comparatively prosperous island, thanks to its agriculture and its role as a maritime trading center. It also has a claim to fame as the birthplace of the poet Homer, author of The Iliad and The Odyssey. It’s known throughout Greece for its unusual mastic trees, which ooze a kind of resin that is used for a variety of purposes, including producing liquor, soap, chewing gum and sweets. The traditional villages where this ...

Chíos is the 5th largest of the Greek islands and so there is a lot to see, but it’s still a little off the regular tourist trail and remains one of the most traditional of the islands. It has always been a comparatively prosperous island, thanks to its agriculture and its role as a maritime trading center. It also has a claim to fame as the birthplace of the poet Homer, author of The Iliad and The Odyssey. It’s known throughout Greece for its unusual mastic trees, which ooze a kind of resin that is used for a variety of purposes, including producing liquor, soap, chewing gum and sweets. The traditional villages where this resin is produced, known as the Mastic Villages, make for a good day’s drive. Another significant site on the island is the monastery of Néa Moní, which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and dates to the 11th century. Chíos also has plenty of fine beaches, the best near Mármaro, while inland are dramatic volcanic mountains that rise to a height of 4,255 feet (1,297 m), at Mount Pelinéo.

Mike Gerrard
About the Expert

Mike Gerrard is the author of the National Geographic Traveler Guide to Greece, as well as guides to Athens, Crete, Corfu, the Greek Mainland, and the Greek islands for publishers including AA, AAA, Thomas Cook, Dorling Kindersley, Michelin, and New Holland. With his wife Donna Dailey, he also publishes the Greece Travel Secrets website.

view full overview

Mike Gerrard for Triporati

Compare Flight, Car Rental, and Hotel Rates

Note: A new window will open for each site you select.

Note: A new window will open for each site you select.

Note: A new window will open for each site you select.

Facts at a Glance

  • Location: Fifth largest of the Greek islands, situated in the Aegean Sea, five miles off the Asia Minor coast.
  • Language: Greek
  • Currency: Euro
  • Research: Wikipedia | Wikitravel
  • Weather: Daylight | Rainfall

Climate

  • Best Time to Visit:

    Early autumn is when the mastic resin is collected, making it a good time to visit.