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While no Greek island is like another, Chios has one of the most distinctive faces, thanks to the unique fortress-like architecture of its villages that makes them look so different to their sugar-cube cousins on other islands. That style stems from the island's history as the ancestral home of shipping barons and the world's only commercial producer of mastic. Many of these unusual heritage buildings now serve as hotels, bringing Chios into the top league of unusual accommodations.

The island's terrain ranges from lonesome mountain crags in the north, to the citrus-grove estates of Kampos near the island’s port capital in the centre, to the fertile Mastihohoria in the south, where generations of mastic growers have turned their villages into decorative art gems.

The intriguing, little-visited satellite islands of Psara and Inousses share Chios’ legacy of maritime greatness.

Top attractions

These are our favorite local haunts, touristy spots, and hidden gems throughout Chios.