Greece is Europe’s most famous tourist destination – especially in the heat of summer, but the Greek Mediterranean sun is gentle. Its rays sweep across the surface of the Aegean Sea and wrap around the windmills of Mykonos, dancing along the seashores of Crete, Rhodes, Skiathos and Kos. It’s a truly enchanting image!

Of course, it is a very attractive picture, we often watch it on TV and it is estimated that over two million British people visit Greece every year.

Some would say we get bored with the familiarity of travel – in the 11th largest country in Western Europe, there is a Greece away from postcards and social media subscriptions. This year a travel reference might be an alternative to Greece.

There are a few ‘lesser lights’ here that are not well known by many. But these places are certainly underrated and in some cases, they are clearly off the beaten track. Again, they have all the hallmarks of a Greek holiday – temperamental mountains, tavernas by the water, paths through pine forests, simple hotels with sun terraces, small bays supported by tides that gently reach the sea.

In fact, the only thing these places may be missing is the large number of other tourists that could avoid the crowds for a good outing!

It is not a big deal to say that Crete is the largest island in Greece. The second largest is more of a mystery. In fact Evia is the one that fits, an outcrop whose identity is so obscure that it has two names (it is also known as Euboea) – and so geographically obscure that at its narrowest point, only 130 feet of the Euripus Channel separates it from the mainland.
However, a closer look at the map reveals it to be a giant 110 miles long and 31 miles wide, pushing into the Aegean Sea 40 miles north of Athens. This location makes it a popular summer playground for many Greek city breakers, but its forested terrain and long coast can also be a delightful place for overseas visitors.