It is better to use a booking engine like http://www.ferriesingreece.com or others if you plan to visit aegina in high season or a week end.
It is sometimes difficult to find tickets on the port and the worst is that they do not sell returning tickets. So once arrived in Aegina, you have to buy your returning tickets with other 100 people also waiting for a ticket. Sundays afternoon are hell.
Aegina lies in the centre of the Argosaronic Gulf at the distance about 28 km from Piraeus. When we were going to Poros by cruise ship Giorgis it was situated to the west of our starboard. I could watch its shores very attentively.
We were going back from Hydra Island when Aegina was to the east. So I could watch its opposite shores. Aegina is roughly triangular in shape, approximately 15 km from east to west and 10 km from north to south. An extinct volcano constitutes two thirds of Aegina.
The southern volcanic part of the island is rugged and mountainous, and largely barren. Its highest rise is the conical Mount Oros (more than 500 m) in the south, and the Panhellenian ridge stretches northward with narrow fertile valleys on either side.
Greek mythology tells us that Aegina was a daughter of the river god Asopus and the nymph Metope. When Zeus abducted Aegina, he took her to Oenone, an island close to Attica. Here, Aegina gave birth to Aeacus, who would later become king of Oenone; henceforth, the island's name Aegina.
It reached the zenith of its development during the VI-th century BC, when, as an independent power, it was the first city in Greece to mint coins.
The island made an important contribution to the war against the Turks in 1821. Aegina was the seat of the first Greek government, under Kapodistria (Russian Greek), before being succeeded in this role by Nafplio. It was the first capital of the New Greek state for almost two years.
Aegina Island is most famous in Greece for its pistachio production. You can visit pistachio orchards during your day trip and have a short walk around the trees. At Aegina town, there are dozens of stalls and shops selling local pistachios in bags of every size. You will no doubt be offered free samples by the handful from almost every merchant.
Fondest memory: Enjoy a free sample! I ate so many free samples of pistachios as I walked around the market!
As a result I skipped lunch and just bought something to drink. Of course I also looked for homemade pistachio ice cream, but I couldn't find any at the local cafes and shops.
Aegina lies almost in the center of the Saronic islands and is the closest island to Athens with the exception of Salamina, just a few miles away.
There are many reasons that made Aegina a popular holiday destination. The beautiful Aegina town, beautiful beaches, traditional architecture, picturesque villages like Agia Marina and Perdika and of course the sanctuary of Aphaia and the famous church of Agios Nektarios next to Paleohora.
Christos Kapralos (1909 - 1993) is one of my favourite greek sculptors, as i know all his history, because he was born in Panetolio(West Greece), my mothers birthplace.
He studied painting at the Athens School of FINE ARTS ( 1929-1934) and sculpture at the Academies GRAND CHAUMIERE and COLAROSSI , PARIS ( 1934-1940)
In the island of Aegina Capralos since 1963 had his own summer studio , sharing his time between Athens and Aegina.
The Museum is situated 3 km distance from the port of Aegina. In the studios you can see painting, sculptures on the porous stone of Aegina, small sculptures on bronze, teracottas and ceramic.
Favorite thing: In the 5th century the original inhabitants of the island built the temple of Aphaia in the traditional Doric style. It is one of the best preserved, free standing Doric temples. It is especially surprising since this temple is 200 years older than the Parthenon in Athens.
After returning to Aiginas port, and while waiting for the ferry to Peraias, I take at least half an hour to enjoy my cold frappe, in a cafe, by the harbour, watching people go by....
If I am really in good mood, I can also go for an icecream or so (Superb, Ultimate pleasures ;-))
Fondest memory: That day, on the way back, that captain impressed me somehow. This black scarf on his left hand, declares that he is mourning for the loss of member of his family. He was like out of a Greek movie of the 60's and loved to photo him, but his seriousness discouraged me from any attempt. It took all my courage to achieve that photo.
Fondest memory: Paradoxally enough, in that tiny island, you will find kind of wildlife: the place is full of peacocks and deers! Yes, they even come close to you, and allow you to feed them :-) I only made it to photo this bird, hopefully, the comming summer I will have photo of the deers too! :-)
This big church (6 km far of Aigina) is next to the female monastery which was founded by Agios (Saint) Nektarios -the saint of affection and forgiveness- at the beginning of the 20th century.
He lived there during the last years of his life, as an ascetic, until his death (8 November 1920). His grave is next to the church, under the shadow of a tree, which was planted by him. He was proclaimed saint in 1961.
It is a nice place, where thousand of birds, basicly, and animals are treated (about 4.500 every year). Skilled scientists, with volunteers, work there and free them -almost 50%- when they have been healed. That happens in different places in Greece, depending on the season and the kind of the animal.
This hospital is a non-governmental, non-profit organization, aiming to offer medical treatment to any wild animal or bird found in greek territory. Its income depend basicly on the donations of its friends.
Favorite thing: This beach is not so well-known, that makes it surely more attractive. It is near the traditional village of Perdika, famous for such clean and crystal beaches - and its nice tavernas! You can also go to the small island Moni from there...
Favorite thing: This nice village is 12 km from Souvala, at the western part of the island, near the temple of Aphaia. The sandy beach of the village is the longest in Aigina. Agia Marina is the most touristic place -except the capital- of the island.
The ruined venetian tower of Markellos is one of the most impressive buildings in Aigina. This mediaeval tower was the seat of the greek government from 1826 to 1827 (near the end of the war for independence).
Aigina was the first capital of modern Greece, between 1828-1829.