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Mykonos was a Vegas-style blowout. Santorini was a peaceful retreat. But Ios may have been the stop I was most looking forward to on my Contiki Greek island tour. The island is a notorious stop on the world’s backpacker party circuit — sun and fun enthusiasts flock there every summer, lured by the promise of cheap drinks, white beaches, and proximity to other young hot people. I know, right? It sounds just terrible. Obviously, I had to see this place for myself.

At first I was disappointed to hear we’d be a twenty-five minute walk from the Chora, Ios’s tiny action center. Considering the island has all of five taxi cabs, I saw many self-pitying stumbles home in the dark ahead of me. However, like in Mykonos, I quickly forgave our distance from the action when I laid eyes on the location. I am not kidding when I say that I briefly considered scrapping it all, getting a bartending job, and moving into Far Out Village instead. (Not really. But basically really.)

Far Out Beach Club Ios

Far Out Beach Club Ios

Far Out Beach Club Ios

Far Out Beach Club Ios

Instead, I settled for vowing that someday, I will come back here for a minimum one week of play time. Far Out is broken into three separate accommodation areas at varying budgets, several restaurants, a watersports shop, a dive shop, a gym, a laundry, a beach club, multiple pools — it’s basically an all inclusive resort for the kind of people who don’t think they like all inclusive resorts.

I have a feeling that when I return someday, I’ll probably end up in what our guide Paola (un)affectionately referred to as “The Zoo,” the budget zone with camping, dorms, and super basic bungalows — I might live a flash life in baht, but in euros, I’m still very much a backpacker. So I made sure to soak up every second of enjoying our flash digs in the Village Hotel section of .

Far Out Beach Club Ios

Far Out Beach Club Ios

Far Out Hotel Ios

Far Out Hotel Ios

Far Out Hotel Ios

Because our group was so large, some were staying up at the Hotel and Spa at the top of the hill towards town — the newest and nicest of the accommodation options. Personally, I loved being down by the beach and so close to the water, but could certainly understand why those at the top loved their views, modern rooms, and shorter walk home.

Far Out Hotel Ios

Far Out Hotel Ios

I couldn’t get enough of how genius the Far Out model was. We loved staying in the laid back Village, where we had a relaxing pool to lounge by, a nice restaurant to order from, and a quiet place to sleep. But we also loved the fact that we were next door neighbors to the Beach Club, where the party fired up mid-afternoon and carried into Ios town after dark.

Far Out Village Ios

Far Out Village Ios

Far Out Village Ios

But as delicious as all those pool scenes were, none of them could compare to the addictive waters of Mylopotas Beach. I could get used to waking up to this every morning.

Far Out Beach Ios

Far Out Beach Ios

While I’d been itching to get out on the Aegean since Mykonos, Paola assured us that the prices for watersports would be much easier to swallow in Ios — and she was right. When I heard my roommate Lauren had never been on a Stand Up Paddleboard before, we made our way directly to the rental shack.

Far Out Stand Up Paddling Ios

Far Out Stand Up Paddling Ios

Far Out Stand Up Paddling Ios

Far Out Stand Up Paddling Ios

Granted, we did as much Lounge Down Paddleboarding as Stand Up Paddleboarding, but what can I say? Far Out put me in vacation mode.

But the paddleboarding was just the beginning. Suddenly, I felt an irresistible urge to pay ridiculous amounts of euros to be pulled by a speedboat on a giant inflatable couch, a mission Lauren and I were even able to recruit Paola to join us for. When the staff tried to talk us into more exciting and adrenaline inducing options, we steadfastly resisted. “No, we want the couch. Yes, the one for babies. Perfect. Thanks.”

Far Out Ios

Watersports in Ios

Watersports in Ios

We were slightly excited, as you may be able to sense.

Meltemi Watersports Ios

Watersports in Ios

Meltemi Watersports Ios

Can we just take a moment to appreciate the backdrop this silliness was taking place in front of? Damn I love Greece. Something I also love? The pure elation on these faces.

Watersports in Ios

Meltemi Watersports Ios

Watersports in Ios

Early on in the ride, I suffered the tragic loss of hair tie. While it made for a serious hair snack while we were out on the water, it also resulted in some seriously entertaining images. I whip my hair back and forth, indeed.

Meltemi Watersports Ios

Watersports in Ios

Clearly, Mylopotas Beach is my kind of place. In fact, I’m already itching to go back. Summer 2015, anyone?

Playing in Ios

Next up… Ios outside Far Out beach club!

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Many thanks to Contiki for hosting me on the . As always, you receive my honest opinion regardless of who is footing the bill.

3-devide-lines
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47 Comments...
  • Ashley
    November 18 2014

    Everything about Far Out looks unreal- the accommodations, the views, and the beach- so gorgeous! And those inflatable couch pictures are pretty hilarious!
    Ashley recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      November 18 2014

      Well worth whatever we paid for them 🙂

  • Silvia
    November 18 2014

    Those couch photos! I almost went to Ios this summer, but ended up changing plans last minute. Bah so much fomo right now!
    Silvia recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      November 18 2014

      I loved it, even more than I thought I would. What can I say! I just have a thing for small islands.

  • Sonja at Breadcrumbs Guide
    November 18 2014

    Those are some pretty awesome hair pics! How long did it take to get a brush through when you were done?
    Sonja at Breadcrumbs Guide recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      November 18 2014

      An hour and half a bottle of leave in conditioner 🙂 Just kidding — I can’t remember, but whatever it was, it was worth it!

  • becky hutner
    November 18 2014

    i love a good hair whipping photo! mine is short now so i can only look on in envy…
    becky hutner recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      November 18 2014

      I think I’d suffer some serious phantom hair syndrome if I ever sheared these locks! They are so much a part of my identity, it’s insane!

  • Emily from Let's Roam Wild
    November 18 2014

    Okay my trip-envy just skyrocketed. I want to go THERE. And may I ask, what did you use to take those adorable floating couch selfies? Looks phenomenal!
    Emily from Let’s Roam Wild recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      November 18 2014

      The selfies were from my underwater camera setup (see obsessions page for more info!) and the wide shots were from a disc of images we bought. So worth the splurge!

  • Krystle
    November 18 2014

    I MUST get to Ios! Count me in. 😉 That water looks incredible! and I love the hair whipping, you have it mastered, I always look like a total dork doing that! hahaha!
    Krystle recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      November 18 2014

      Well it definitely wasn’t intentional, ha! Next time I do something like this I’ll have to remember the backup hair ties…

  • Renuka
    November 18 2014

    I envy you girls! 🙂 Sounds like you had a wonderful time. This beach club looks so classy and beautiful…A perfect place to realize your Greek dreams.
    Renuka recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      November 18 2014

      And I love that they have options at every budget! I could recommend Far Out to almost anyone.

  • Katie
    November 18 2014

    So I just finally realized where Aegean blue comes from… the water is seriously so beautiful, as is the scenery! Awesome hair flip photos, too – haha!
    Katie recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      November 18 2014

      They are a hit 🙂 And yes, I didn’t really know beaches could be this beautiful out of Southeast Asia and the Caribbean. Stunning!

  • Maddy
    November 18 2014

    THIS. LOOKS. INCREDIBLE. Oahu was a great warm up for tropical vacationing but Greece is still #1 on my list! I’m so glad there are so many pictures for me to live through until I can book!

    ps – I’m going to Puerto Rico in March, can you go there and give me ideas please? 😉
    Maddy recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      November 18 2014

      Ha! Sure, you buying? 🙂 I’m so glad to hear you had such a good time in Oahu! That makes my heart happy.

  • That is where we stayed when I was in Ios in 2006, but we were in the Zoo (good name for it). I didn’t even know that there were nicer options 🙂
    Katie @ The World on my Necklace recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      November 18 2014

      Maybe they are newer? Or maybe you were having too much fun to notice 🙂

  • Kelly
    November 18 2014

    This looks incredible! I missed out on going to iOS when I went to the Greek Islands last year, so I will definitely take up your offer for Summer 2015! 😉 x
    Kelly recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      November 18 2014

      I am laughing right now because I’m getting you commented from your iPhone, and it autocorrected Ios to iOS? Happened to me all summer, drove me mad! Ha ha.

      • Kelly
        November 19 2014

        Hahaha oh wow! I’m usually pretty good at picking up those silly autocorrections – good one Kelly! 😛 x
        Kelly recently posted..

  • Martina Donkers
    November 18 2014

    Hey Meihoukai!

    Ohhhhh so pretty!!! I want to go to Greece!!

    They have one of those inflatable couches at Leleuvia in Fiji which I’m planning on returning to in a few weeks. Last time I was there I decided it was just too expensive though… Would you say it’s worth it? It looks like FUN!!

    I love Greece’s whitewashed buildings. It’s just. So. Pretty.

    Martina 🙂
    Martina Donkers recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      November 18 2014

      It was definitely expensive (I can’t remember the exact price but I did cringe) but as soon as we started I turned to the girls and said it was worth every euro! So much fun, definitely worth the splurge.

  • Justine
    November 18 2014

    Everything about this looks like so much fun! Ha, I hate when I lose hair ties. My hair would have become SUCH a tangled mess! But in your case it made for some great candid shots. Love the photos 🙂
    Justine recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      November 18 2014

      There is no greater panic than realizing you’ve left the house without a hair tie (or lotion, in my case… dry skin is my kryptonite!) But in this case, it at least had a hilarious result 🙂

  • Neysha
    November 18 2014

    Oh so beautiful!! Greece never disappoints :). I’m especially drooling at these pictures of warm sun as the weather drops to -2C in South Korea. Come back warmth!!
    Neysha recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      November 19 2014

      I am absolutely in denial looking at the weather reports for New York right now. Can’t believe it’s going to be below freezing! I just… can’t.

  • Aaah looks amazing, and what a backdrop to zoom around to! Despite tragic loss of hair tie (which I can totally relate to! haha) it looks like it was well worth the splurge 🙂 Your incredible photos have further solidified Greece being right up at the top of my travel wishlist!

    • Meihoukai
      November 19 2014

      Absolutely one of my favorite countries, Christie! I just adore it.

  • Miquel
    November 18 2014

    This looks like a blast. I need some ocean in my life!
    Miquel recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      November 19 2014

      I’ve been away from it for a week and I miss it already.

  • Laura
    November 19 2014

    I am getting serious Greece envy reading about all these Contiki posts. I think I’m going to have to go to Greece. Maybe on a Contiki tour. ASAP.
    Laura recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      November 19 2014

      Do it! Do it! I’d be thrilled to read along 🙂

  • itsgoa
    November 19 2014

    Your post have made my mind think about Greece…
    itsgoa recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      November 19 2014

      Sounds like it’s time to go, itsgoa 🙂

  • Leah
    November 19 2014

    I am IN for summer 2015! But seriously. This place looks divine and you already know I’m going a little crazy reading all these Greece posts…….
    Leah recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      November 19 2014

      I am ALL ABOUT a Wanderland field trip to Ios 🙂 Let’s make it happen!

  • Breanna
    November 19 2014

    Summer 2015?! I could totally be there, all summer! And not get bored….. Ok maybe less than all summer because I like summer in Alberta too.

    • Meihoukai
      November 19 2014

      That’s always my problem, Breanna. Summer is THE time to travel in so many fabulous places, but I just love spending those beautiful balmy months in New York State!

  • Chris
    November 20 2014

    Sometimes it doesn’t matter how you travel, as long as you have fun!

    Look forward to catching up on your posts in a few weeks time (jetting off to Cuba tomorrow)! 😀
    Chris recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      November 20 2014

      Oh, I’m insanely jealous! I’m dying to get to Cuba one of these days…

  • Erika
    November 20 2014

    I have no idea how your hair looks so good after that experience. Mine would seriously be crazy.

    Regardless, you’ve convinced me. I’ve got to go here.
    Erika recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      November 21 2014

      I’ll be jealous when you do, Erika! 🙂

  • Camels & Chocolate
    November 26 2014

    Yep, I could easily spend a day here.

    Side note: I’ve thought it for awhile, but has anyone ever told you that you remind them of Hayden P circa the Heroes years??
    Camels & Chocolate recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      November 28 2014

      No they have not, but now that I’m a hardcore Nashville fan, CONSIDER ME FLATTERED. (I did go through a bangs faze in high school, and I was told I looked like Hillary Duff so often that my coworkers at my summer job put up a tally on the wall to keep track. Ugh.)