Koufonissi, or to be more precise Ano Koufonissi, has one of the most picturesque bays in the Cyclades. Apart from the dozens of small boats bobbing up and down in the bay, the views across to the two uninhabited islands of Keros and Kato Koufonissi are also spectacular.
Unfortunately the Chora comes as a bit of a disappointment. Although this is the most populous of the small islands, the village has very little character as it is dominated by recently built hotels and rent rooms. There are two streets, either side of the sandy beach, which contain something of the picturesque charm of a traditional Cyclades village. To the west of the beach is the main street of the old Chora with traditional houses, an ouzeri which fills with Greeks each evening, the church and a number of quality souvenir shops aimed at tourists. To the east of the beach is a smaller area, probably once the fishermen's quarters.
Connections with Naxos and other islands are better here than in the other small Cyclades islands south of Naxos and this also contributes to its popularity with tourists. This is the place to come for fine views and a beautiful bay, but there is little of the charm of the Cyclades to be found in the Chora itself.
By Ian Swindale