crosswords puzzle with names of Greek islands

Beyond crosswords: Greek vacation islands

The Greek islands are not just a popular holiday destination, but also often used in crosswords all over the world. Did you ever wonder what the difference is between the 5 letter words Corfu and Crete? Or if Kos is really as small as the mere 3 letters its name counts?

Here is an overview of the Greek islands used in crossword puzzles. Sorted by the number of letters, so you can easily find your answers. But don’t do just that. Maybe some islands will not fit your puzzle today, they might point you to the destination for your next holiday!

3 letters

  • KOS
    Kos lies in the South East of the Aegean sea, close to Turkey and part of the Dodecanese. It is an average-sized island, around 290 km², more than 70.000 acres. Kos is famous for its beaches but is also full of historic landmarks.
  • IOS
    Ios lies in the middle of the Aegean sea and is part of the Cyclades. It is an average – small island, around 100 km², close to 27.000 acres. Ios is known for its vibrant nightlife but also has clear waters and picturesque cliff-top villages.

4 letters

  • EVIA
    This island might have a small name, it is 3.684 km², or 900.000 acres big. Evia, or Euboea, lies North of Athens, in the Aegean sea but is connected to the mainland by bridges. Evia is not well known by foreign tourists, but instead is the perfect getaway for people who work and live in Athens. Unfortunately, large parts of northern Evia were completely destroyed by the 2021 wildfires.
  • PAXI
    Paxi is a small paradise in the Ionian Sea, located just under the island of Corfu. It is only 30 km² or 7.000 acres. Paxi is known for its old olive trees and clear blue sea, some say the best in Greece.
daylight entering a cave in Greece white stone blue sea

5 letters – The Greek islands most used in crosswords

  • CORFU
    Corfu, or Kerkyra in Greek, as well as Crete, are two islands that are often used in crosswords, but do you know the difference between them? Corfu is a lush green island in the North West of Greece, in the Ionian Sea. The island is 585 km², 145.000 acres. Corfu has a strong Venetian influence and is the only Greek island that has never been occupied by the Ottomans. Corfu is famous for its architecture but has great beaches and hiking trails as well.
  • CRETE
    Crete is the most Southern island of Greece and also the biggest with 8.450 km² (over 2 million acres!). Crete has its own sea, the Creten Sea. Crete is so big that it is not just famous for one thing but instead has everything. There are places to go for nightlife, but also areas with untouched nature. There are great beaches, tasty food, and rich and welcoming culture. Because Crete is the most Southern island, it has the warmest climate of whole Greece, temperatures rarely drop below 15 degrees Celsius, or 70 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • NAXOS
    Naxos lies in the middle of the Aegean sea and is part of the Cyclades. It is an average-large-sized island, around 430km², close to 100.000 acres. Naxos is known for its white sandy beaches and ideal wind conditions for watersports.

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6 letters

  • RHODES
    Rhodes is close to Kos, in the East of the Aegean. It is the largest island in the Dodecanese with its 1.400 km², 346.000 acres. Rhodes is known for its beach resorts and ancient ruins and is a popular summer holiday destination.
  • LESBOS
    Although this name might make children giggle, the meaning of Lesvos in Greek is forested or woody. Lesbos is famous for its agriculture and cheese. Due to its location close to Turkey, Lesbos was the place where refugees used to enter Greece. This made the island very unpopular for tourists, who started returning over the last few years. Lesbos is a large island with 1.600 km², over 400.000 acres.

7 letters

  • MYKONOS
    Mykonos is famous all over the world. It is an average-sized island of 105 km² (26.000 acres) and is part of the Cyclades in the Aegean sea. Mykonos is an expensive party island known to be gay-friendly. “The Island of the Winds” is a nickname of Mykonos, due to the strong Meltemi winds that usually blow.
  • THASSOS
    Thassos is a pretty large but mostly unknown island in the North of the Aegean sea. The island is 380 km² (94.000 acres) and filled with lush green forests. The beaches here are sand, pebble, and even marble. Thassos is a paradise in the North.
underwater at sea in Greece, blue and clear like a swimming pool

8 letters

  • SKIATHOS
    The Sporades, which also counts 8 letters, is the name of the island group to which Skiathos and Skopelos belong. They are located just North of Evia, above Athens. Skiathos is the biggest of the Sporades, but still only 50 km² (12.000 acres). Skiathos is known for its sandy beaches and beautiful nature. Both Skiathos and Skopelos are famous for being the decor of Mamma Mia, the movie from 2007.
  • SKOPELOS
    Skopelos is slightly bigger than Skiathos, 95 km² (23.000 acres). However, the island is quieter and less visited. Again sandy beaches and the beauty of nature is what attracts tourist to come here. Skopelos is famous for the church Agios Ioannis Kastri. A small white church on top of a rock, overlooking the coast of Skopelos and Alonissos, which takes us to the 9.letter islands.

9 letters

  • SANTORINI
    Santorini is a natural wonder. This special island is the only inhabited caldera in the entire world and the perfect place for a honeymoon in Greece. The island’s land is shaped by a volcano eruption and is just 76 km² (19.000 acres). Santorini is known for its sunset and picturesque white-washed villages. But also its landscape is unique, and is made up of black, red, and white lava.
  • ZAKYNTHOS
    This Ionian party island is large, 405 km², or 100.000 acres). It is mostly known for its famous shipwreck beach but this is just a small part of what Zakynthos has to offer. Like other Ionian islands, the island is green with steep white cliffs and the water of the sea is blue and clear.

10 letters

  • CEPHALONIA
    Cephalonia is a large island west of Greece’s mainland. It is 786 km² big (194.000 acres) and the largest in the Ionian sea, but not the most famous. Unfortunately, not many tourists explore the full beauty of this island. Cephalonia is home to amazing beaches, nymph caves, and endangered sea turtles. The island is known for its wine, sweets, and food amongst the Greeks.
  • SAMOTHRACE
    Samothrace is the place to be for Greeks in their twenties. The island is a giant mountain with lush green forests and clear water streams with ponds and waterfalls. The islands’ landscape is unspoiled and wild. Samothrace is 178 km² big (44.000 acres), but the land is basically a mountain of 1.6 km high (1 mile).

11 letters

  • ELAFONISSOS
    The smallest island on this list of Greek islands, has the highest amount of letters in your crosswords. Elafonissos is just 18 km² or almost 4.400 acres. Making a round along the entire island by car, will not take you more than 20 minutes. Elafonissos lies close to Neapoli, in the South of Peleponnese, at the borders of the Aegean and Ionian seas. It is known for its beautiful waters and white sandy beaches.

Read more about Greek islands:

old castle wall on mountain overlooking traditional town

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