Getting to the beautiful and unique Ios island requires more than just flying, but it is definitely worth it!
As Ios island is relatively small (population is 2,000), there is not an airport on the island. To get to Ios you need to fly elsewhere and then travel by ferry. Below you will find the four most common (and easiest) options that will get you to Ios.
Flying to Athens: Athens is the capital city of Greece, and Athens International Airport has incoming flights from almost anywhere in the world. Athens airport is around one hour from the main Port of Piraeus, either by Metro (12€) or the X96 Bus (6€). Ferries to Ios usually leave early in the morning (around 07:20) so flying to Athens usually requires an overnight stay. You will find many travel agencies in Piraeus where you can buy your ferry ticket, but in high season (July and August) we suggest you book your ticket in advance (due to the number of people travelling). The duration of the ferry trips vary from 4 hours to 7 hours depending on whether you take a high speed ferry (approx cost of ticket is 70€) or a normal ferry (approx cost of ticket 40€). After a number of stops at other islands along the way, you will find your self arriving at Ios island!
Flying to Santorini: Santorini island is the biggest island close to Ios. Santorini Airport is small, and there are a lot of flights during the Summer. At Arrivals, you will find many taxis that will take you to the port. Prices are expensive – starting from 40€ (for one person). The drive from the airport to the port takes approx 20 minutes.
Useful Tip: We suggest you use a minibus transfer service which will cost you approx 18€ per person and they are very reliable.
After a short journey of 20 minutes you will arrive at Santorini Port, which during the summer season can be very busy. Ferries to Ios leave sporadically throughout the day: the earliest at 09:00 and latest at 21:00. Depending on what time your flight lands, you should be able to get a ferry to Ios the same day, so no overnight in Santorini will be required. Ferry tickets can be bought at Santorini Port, but again during high season (July and August) we suggest you book your tickets in advance. High speed ferries take approx 50 minutes and normal ferries take approx 1 hour and 15 minutes to get to Ios from Santorini.
Flying to Heraklion in Crete: Sometimes it is worth flying to Heraklion, as flights can be cheaper. As all Ios-bound ferries leave Heraklion in the morning between 07:00 and 07:30 and take about 3 hours to Ios, you will most likely need to stay overnight in Heraklion, so don’t forget to add that cost to your expenses when planning your trip to Ios. Ferry tickets from Heraklion to Ios cost 70€ and can be bought at the Port of Heraklion. Again, during high season (July and August) we suggest you book your tickets in advance. The public bus from Heraklion Airport to the port is very popular with low cost prices at 2€ per person. A taxi from Heraklion Airport to the port will cost you approx 10€.
Flying to Mykonos: Mykonos is another island in the Cyclades, only 2 hours and 30 minutes away from Ios. The ferry from Mykonos to Ios leaves daily at 14:30 so if your flight lands early in the morning you will be able to reach Ios the same day. Ferry tickets cost 54€ and can be bought at the port of Mykonos. Again, during high season (July and August) we suggest you book your ticket in advance. A Taxi from Mykonos Airport to the port will cost around 10€ and will take up to 4 passengers. If you need to do an overnight stay in Mykonos keep in mind that hotels cost more than Ios.
However you decide to travel to Ios, the moment you set foot on this unique Greek island, you will know it was worth the extra effort! Within minutes, you will be captivated by the natural charm and mystic beauty of Ios, and it won’t be long until you will be trying to figure out how to extend your holiday here, or plan your next visit to Ios, like so many that have travelled here before you.
Welcome to Ios and enjoy your holiday!