SÉRIFOS has long languished outside the mainstream of history and modern tourism. Little has happened here since Perseus returned with Medusa’s head in time to save his mother, Danaë, from being ravished by the local king Polydectes – turning him, his court and the green island into stone. Many would-be visitors are deterred by the apparently barren, hilly interior, which, with the stark, rocky coastline, makes Sérifos appear uninhabited until the ferry turns into postcard-picturesque Livádhi Bay. This element of surprise continues as you slowly discover a number of lovely beaches around the island.

Sérifos is also great for serious walkers, who can head for several small villages in the under-explored interior, plus some isolated coves. Many people still keep livestock and produce their own cognac-red wines, which are an acquired taste.

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