Islands of the Argo-Saronic Gulf
Situated between Athens and the Peloponnese the islands of the Saronic Gulf (Salamina, Aegina, Angistiri, Poros, Hydra and Spetses) are all so diverse from each other despite their close proximity to each other and the mainland. These six islands have for a long time been a popular weekend getaway for Athenians, the nearest island, Salamina, is usually just thought of as a suburb of Athens and is only a 15 minute ferry ride from the Greek capital. It hasn't been until recently that foreign visitors have started to visit the islands, many staying in Athens and don't want to leave Greece without at least experiencing one Greek island before they leave.
The closest island to Athens and the most accessible is Salamina, which is very famous for the battle that was fought off its coast. Many Athenians using the island's great beaches throughout the summer months as it is so close the city. Just one hour south of Pireaus is Aegina which is fairly quiet but does have its very famous ancient temple of Aphaia that is very popular and one of the best preserved in Greece.
After Aegina is the island of Poros which is a holiday island and can get busy, although there are plenty of quiet places on the island especially inland. Poros is only a couple of hundred metres from the coast of the Peloponnese.
The next two islands are actually in the Argolistic Gulf, but are still classed as islands of the Saronic Gulf. There is the once very fashionable island of Hydra which attracted artists, musicians and movie stars. Now this beautiful island attracts thousands of Athenians on weekend breaks as well the many international visitors who want to explore this island.
Spetses is the furthest Saronic island from Athens and is probably the prettiest with many spectacular beaches and huge Pine forests, but as with all of the Saronic islands there are plenty of weekend holiday homes for wealthy Athenians.
Saronic Gulf islands - Information
The islands of the Saronic gulf are all just a short trip by ferry from Athens, the nearest being Salamina which is only a 15 minute ferry ride from Athens, the furthest is Spetses which off the coast of the Peloponnese and is a coupkle of hours from Athens.