greece travel logo

So You Want to Live on a Greek Island?

Certainly if there is a paradise on earth the Greek Islands are it and if you could give up the chaos of your life at home to live here you would be eternally happy. Or would you?

Greek Island of KeaSo you want to live on an island in Greece...

Who wouldn't? You get off the ferry with the rest of the tourists and suddenly you are home, in a place that is magical, where the sun shines every day and the sea is a color you have only seen on Indian jewelry. The nights are spent at restaurants where all the tables are outdoors overlooking the sea and the conversation flows like water from one of the mountain springs you drank from on your trek through the hills. Certainly if there is a paradise on earth the Greek islands are it and if you could give up the chaos of your life at home to live here you would be eternally happy.

Ten things to remember though:

1. You are on vacation and so is everyone you meet with the exception of the people who are making money on you being on vacation so the mood is certainly a little different from what it will be in January and February when...
2....a Greek island can be a lonely place. Unless you are a self motivated person who can get deeply into his art or meditation you may find yourself going to the harbor in desperation, hoping that someone gets off the boat whom you can talk to.
3. There is not much to do on a Greek island in the winter besides chores and hobbies you dream up for yourself and/or going to the cafeneons which can lead to a slight drinking problem.
4. Many of the people you see happily living their idyllic life on the small Greek island where you spend your summer, will board the ferry not long after you and go back to their homes in Athens where they ride the bus to work just like you and because of that....
5.....many of your favorite places will be closed until a few weeks before the tourists arrive again
6. In some islands where there is a strong year round foreign population (Mykonos, Skiathos, Hydra) spending the winter on a Greek island is not like a prison sentence and can be very enjoyable, but buying a house is expensive. The smaller islands you will probably feel like an outsider and you may develop some of the habits of alienation.
7. You can't swim in Greece in the winter. If you could there would be year-round tourism on the islands.
8. Land and homes are expensive and depending on the island and your nationality the legality of you buying a house will be questionable.
9. The islands are damp and cold in the winter and the houses are too.

Greek Island10. And the final reason (there are more but I am only giving 10), is because if you decide that you hate living on a Greek Island then you will have to sell your house which you may find to be as difficult as buying one or worse because you may have paid way too much.

However.....we have a house on a Greek island and we love it so if you have your heart set on buying a piece of heaven for yourself do this: Rent a house on the island of your choice for a year. Renting by the year is cheap. You will get to know the village and the villagers will get to know you and should you decide to buy a house there is less chance you will be taken advantage of or wind up in a place that you decide you don't like.

Greece is like heaven. But unlike heaven it is not perfect and if it were actually heaven you could not buy it. And unlike heaven it's a great place to visit but you may not want to live there.

See Easy Steps for Restoring or Building a House in Greece
How to Buy a House in Greece and Real Estate in Greece

Help Support Matt's 
Do you enjoy using my site? Have you found it entertaining as well as useful? If so please show your appreciation by booking hotels through the travel agencies and the links found on my  
Greece Hotels website. The small commission I make on the bookings enable me to keep working and in most cases you won't find them any cheaper by searching elsewhere.  You can find hotels, apartments, rooms and even houses through's Greece Pages which also contributes to my website when you book. If you are appreciative of all the free information you get on my websites you can send a donation through Paypal