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Anafi beaches 2012

Athens, Greece
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Anafi beaches 2012

We just came back from a week's stay in Anafi. Lovely island, unspoilt beaches, virgin cycladic nature, this is how we remembered Anafi.

This summer, however, we (and many others tourists) were negatively surprised by the immense number of the free campers that were allowed to camp in EVERY beach of the island. The biggest and most beautiful beach of the island, Roukounas, was aesthetically spoilt by the tents that were expanded everywhere. You couldn't find some shade, a tree, to protect yourself from the hot sun. At the entrance of the beach, on your left, the local authorities had built some showers and wc. And so what? Do they have the right to legalize the illegal free camping?

We believe that this situation is absolutely negative for the tourism of Anafi; we and many others we have talked about it, are not willing to go back next year if the the free camping wouldn't be forbidden.

london
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1. Re: Anafi beaches 2012

Absolutely agree

Athens, Greece
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2. Re: Anafi beaches 2012

THANKS for your support!

Scotland
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3. Re: Anafi beaches 2012

HI We have been on Anafi four times the last time being last year.

We love the island but had a problem with flies on the beach.....nipping us. We were quite uncomfortable on some beaches. Could it be the camping?

Wewill to return to Anafi.

When you say every beach....that is an increase from 2011. Although we didn't go to Roukounas last year for that reason. No Shade.

It is a unique island......

london
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4. Re: Anafi beaches 2012

thats the reason why is became so popular in the first place!!! ive been visiting Anafi since the mid 90's and it was the people that camped that made it popular in the first place - due to there being no where else to stay. You should think about this fact!!!

London, United...
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5. Re: Anafi beaches 2012

I have been going to Anafi for 21 years now. There were no roads, no port, nothing, everything was truly pristine and virgin. All one had to do was to set up camp in Chalara or Megas Potamos the islands' two most beautiful beaches catch fish to survive and go in search of fruit, herbs and water every day. This is what a true holiday is and this is what true romantic adventure is. Unfortunately modern day tourism wants to destroy Anafi by buliding apartments, hotels etc...I do agree that the situation in Roukounas is rather dismal however, as most who select this type of holiday {by the way free camping is not illegal}, i.e., free camping, simply select to do this as it is seen as modern or trendy and decry any advances of having to pay for anyhting. That is, today's free campers as opposed to those of bygone eras, are those opposed to paying for anyhting in life and their holidays in general and most of these individuals, I know for a fact at Roukounas, have more money than 1000 of us put together. Anafi was a philosophy and a union between nature and our soul. All that has alas disappeared as today's generation of free campers are simply there to mess with their i-phones, to actually capture private moments of fellow nude people bathing etc, and smoke drugs all day. Nothing to do with the Anafi of the 80' and 90' that I remember and have spent every September since 1986 until 2012 in Anafi.

London, United...
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6. Re: Anafi beaches 2012

Always ask Marios the bus driver to let you into hidden secrets of Anafi. Also pay a visit to Glaros Bar where a long-time friend of mine Aristeidis, has perhaps the most beautiful little bar ever to be found in the entire Mediterranean and where by night various, people congregate and play true traditional Greek music - not mainstream or that which most tourists / visitors are aware of.

Also hit Kleisidi beach during the end of September and during October to November when the South winds kick-in and there is great surfing to be found (not comparing of course this to the surfing available in the Canary Islands), but still for two months or so, you can get 3 metre waves.

We are currently trying to work a project whereby visitors will start arriving in Anafi during March and help the tourist season last up to November through diversified tourism as it is a major migratory path of birds and I have personally taken numerous enthusiasts and ornithological groups to various locations on the island. After the island of Tilos which also deserves a visit, Anafi is the second largest sanctuary of the critically endangered Eleonora's Falcon which migrates to Greece and the Mediterranean in general during March and embarks upon its formidable return migration, October to November, to Madagascar, the Seychelles and Mauritius. The Eleonora's Falcon is protected by international law and all birds are tagged electronically. If a bird is killed the penalty is life imprisonment.

Go in peace until we meet again.

somerset
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7. Re: Anafi beaches 2012

Anafi is beautiful and this will be are 3rd trip back , but i agree that the free camping has got out of hand and should be restricted ,as you say there isn't anywhere to shelter under the trees when it gets very hot ,and if you do try and shelter under an occupied tree you feel you shouldn't as the people look at you as if its their tree an no onelses

London, United...
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8. Re: Anafi beaches 2012

It is also worth discovering some of Anafi's other beaches. Hidden secrets are the beach of Livoskopos looking towards the east and on a clear day when there is not too much blur effect from the heat and or wind (best weather for this is April-June and then October) one can have clear views to the islands of Anydros and Amorgos and some of the small cyclades islands in between Ios and Naxos. Another gem of a beach is Chalara a steep footpath leading to the left away from the Ancient site of the Temple of Apollo Aiglitis where the present day monastery is situated and only for the intrepid. Unparalleled views of the south side of Amorgos where you can discern the famous monastery of the Panagia Hozoviotissa as well as views of the islands of Ofidoussa and Astypalaia. On a very clear day one is able to even pick out the outline of Kalymnos.

Anafi is a gem of an island and has its own rightful timeless place for tranquility and beauty - almost motionless through time almost divine in nature. This year was my 23 year visiting Anafi and every time, even though lots of things have changed, the place has stood the test of time in more ways than one.

Best fish is to be found in the tavernas of Anemos and Liotrivi. Both of the owners are fishermen and literally what has just been caught 1-2 hours previously is served directly onto your plate.

This year, Katsouni beach and Flamourou beach have succumbed to the sea with large swathes of sand and beach, no less, having completely vanished under the sea. This was witnessed again during the early '90's and then mysteriously nature made the beaches re-appear again. It was possible until 4 years back to walk waist high from Flamourou beach all the way to Exo Roukounas traversing through some 20-25 little beach coves with their own tiny little almost "private" beach and sea.

Anafi is also a bird watcher's paradise particularly during the spring but more so during the autumn migration and we are trying to actively involve the local community as well and as serving to extend the tourist season at both ends for organising dedicated bird watching tours. This would help all sides of the community and the island's image, for the locals particularly the older generation, are currently more intent on hunting and killing animals / birds etc. rather than helping to protect their unique flora & fauna and even being so thick-headed as failing to see the immense financial benefits of attracting such toruism during the months of March-April as well as September through to November.

So go in peace, until we meet again in Greece.

London, United...
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9. Re: Anafi beaches 2012

Back to Anafi this summer after an absence of three years. It still captures most of what I want on a Cycladic island, and there is still that sense of remoteness that comes from the infrequency of the ferry timetable here. But, the rough campers are as prevalent as ever, and infest every scrap of shade from Klisidhi to Monastiri (with the exception of one small cove near Roukounas with a house on it); I cannot fathom why this situation persists, as they have effectively monopolised most of the island's best beaches.

I walked the coastal path from the port to Monastiri this year - it is more clearly marked on the map than in reality in some parts, with a really tricky part around some plutocratic compound (not yours is it, VictorT?)..

London, United...
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10. Re: Anafi beaches 2012

Definitely not mine Stephen, I always stay with my long time friend Aristeidis who owns Glaros Bar.

I do agree with you that the situation with free camping is not only prevalent but also has nothing to do with this type of lifestyle in any case - let me explain what I mean. Many - many years ago, yes we all used to do free camping, but we also used to respect nature both in terms of where we set up camp with regards to respecting natural habitats as well respecting those who did not wish to camp out and were not into this lifestyle. What with the crisis in Greece and what with this neo-leftist (which I would call fascist - as both extremes in essence constitute this) mentality that everything is a free for all with complete disregard for anybody else there are more and more mainly "culturally" shallow and "culturally" uneducated people who have a chip on the shoulder attitude and have taken it upon themselves to go out of their way to demonstrate that they are free campers. I / we never felt a need to advertise such in the past. It seems to have become a fashion where everybody tries to outwit everybody else, and the first criticism that is voiced to me is why am I against free campers, when in essence I am not; I am simply aginst this maurauding free-for all that everyhting belongs to them for 2-3 months and "screw" pardon my English everything and everybody else. Have spoken to the mayor and several opinion makers on the island, but they do not seem to share the concerns of such attitude nor alas, do they yet seem to be able and see the potential in developing a different type of tourism product, one that would guarantee tourism for 9 months of the year, and sustain income, jobs and the environment.

The house(s) you are mentioning I presume is a big one located in between Katsouni and Flamourou beach. It belongs to a neurosurgeon of Greek origin that lives and works in the USA. There are several little farm houses adjacent to this location also. It used to be possible many years ago to walk from Katsouni all the way to Roukounas, but the sea has now risen and the coastline has changed drastically.

Might be worth your while next time to try the northern part of the island which is more virgin in terms of nature.

Take care