The best thing about this island is its complete lack of tourists. For one month only (August), the island buzzes with activity, and for the remainder of the time, you can pretty much have the island to yourself. The main square next to the port is surrounded by tavernas, which stay open all hours and all serve excellent food. There are a few beaches, the largest one being at Tiganakia, which has nearby small islands that can be reached by swimming. Other than that, the island has no natural water and is rocky and barren.
Arki is probably one of the least-visited islands in Greece, with a permanent population of only 40 people. The island population is so small that on my last visit the school only had one pupil! There is not so much to 'see' here, but the atmosphere can be enticing. There are few facilities on the island with only a handful of rooms run by the local taveras Tripas & Nikolaos and only one very small mini-market, so don't expect the same type of treatment you would get in the nearby resort islands. The island has become something of a haven for yahting types, resulting in a strange mix of extremely wealthy foreigners and relatively poor local fishermen.
The main 'cool' spot on Arki is Manoli’s taverna. A little shaded courtyard, withspeakers arranged randomly in the trees - it’s a music and flower-filled oasis onthis rocky little island. The owner is most definitely "Mr Cool": Manoli has lived foryears in Athens and Germany, but chose to return to his home island for the quiet life.Happily for us, he also brought back with him a great love and collection of music: it's notunusual for a spontaneous evening of dancing to break out here!
A 15 minutes hike up the hill to an tiny old church gives a breath-taking view of the surroundingislands.
About Tiganakia Beach
On any other island, this beach would be overlooked; however, this is Arki's one and only decent beach. Although it is not hundreds of metres long and sandy, it is pleasant in its own way, and out of season, you are guaranteed to have it all to yourself. The beach is in a slight cove and separated into three parts by rocky outcroppings. It is part pebbled, part sandy. The main attraction to this beach, however, is the swimming. It is easy to reach the nearby small islands by swimming across the bay, although you will have to watch out for boats during high season.
Now for the bad part: The beach is a good 45-minute walk from the town, with no paths and only one sign to direct you. To reach it, you should head away from the town along the main road, passing a couple of bays on your right, and when you reach the end of the road, continue straight until you reach a sign, do as it instructs, and walk in the direction of the island you can see in the distance. You should eventually reach your destination. In summary, it is not an essential trip, but worthwhile if you fancy a dip in the sea.