It’s well worth renting a car or scooter to explore Andros’ vast mountains and sprinkling of picturesque villages. Its mountain drives are panorama-filled.
The north of the island, with the lush watershed around Arni, gives way to raw, windswept hills as the road zigzags to Vourkoti and Agios Nikolaou with its sweeping views.
Paleopoli, 7km south of Batsi on the coast road, is the site of Ancient Andros and its sunken harbour. Only rubble remains but the small roadside Archaeological Museum of Paleopoli displays finds.
The island is cleaved by a sweeping agricultural valley, and loads of small villages with springs, often marked by marble lions’ heads and the like, surround Hora. The road winds through Sariza, Stenies, Mesathouri, Strapouries and Menites – all fun to explore.
In the south, visit quaint agricultural villages like Livadia, Kochilou, Piskopio, and Aidonia, which has ruined tower houses. The area’s charming landscape of fields and cypresses encircle Ormos Korthiou, an uninspiring bayside village.
Between Gavrio and Paleopoli Bay excellent beaches include Golden Beach (Hrisi Ammos), Delavoia (one half of which is naturist), Anerousa, and Green Beach. Near Hora, check out lovely Gialia Beach.
Spectacular Halkolimionas – with tawny sand and a tiny church – sits 2km down a stone-terraced valley near the junction for Hora. A small beach bar sets up here in summer.
Many of the best beaches, such as Ahla, Vori and Vitali (all in the northeast), are only reached by 4WD, ATV or boat. Boat trips can usually be arranged (or boats hired) in Batsi and Nimborio.