Hydra is one of the
easiest islands to get to from Athens. Unfortunately the ferry companies decided it was not worth running them so now you are stuck taking the Flying Dolphins or the highspeed Flying Cat which also makes it one of the most expensive islands to get to. This may not be a big deal to you who are just going there and coming back, but it is a big issue with the islanders. For those who want to stop along the way you can also get
there in installments, stopping in Aegina, Methena or
Poros and taking the next boat and continuing your journey just as you could with the ferries. Only now after a couple islands you may have blown your travel budget for the week so if you want to see the other Saronic Islands as well you should probably go with the One-Day-Three-Island Saronic Gulf cruise that runs 364 days a year and
visits all the
Saronic Islands except Spetses. The Flying
Dolphins and Flying Cats leave every two or three hours in the summer
from Pireaus and take about an hour and a quarter to get to Hydra. The first one leaves at 8am and the last one around 7pm on weekdays and 8:30 on Friday.
It's a good idea to buy your tickets in advance
especially during the summer and on weekends. There are a couple larger high-speed boats, infinitely more comfortable than the Flying Dolphins though on such a short trip it really does not matter all that much. Once the ferry schedules are up you can find them and book your tickets at Ferryhopper.com and pick up your tickets in the port at one of the ticket booths right
by where the boat leaves from.
If you arrive
burdened with luggage don't worry about the
possibility that it may be a climb to your hotel.
The donkeys who mingle in the port are for the
purpose of transferring you, your luggage or your
kids to your hotel. Kids love them, at least I know I did
when I was a kid. You will also notice the
frequent comings and goings of the water-taxis.
These are the daredevils of the island
transportation world, or appear to be, though they
are actually quite safe and can get you to where
you are going fast. If you are staying at the
Miramare, Kamini, Vlyhos or anywhere too far to drag your luggage that has access to the sea then this is
the way to go. There is a sign with prices at the
water-taxi stand. They will even take you to Spetses, Porto Helli, Nafplion and anywhere on the Peloponessos you can afford to go.
There is an alternative way of getting to Hydra. Take a bus or taxi to Hermioni or Porto Heli in The Argolis and you can catch the Flying Dolphin or Flying Cat several times a day. It is not a bad idea if you are staying in
Nafplion, though it is a long bus ride and expensive taxi trip from Athens. You can also drive to Metochi, a small hole-in-the-wall town between Hermioni and
Galata and there is a boat that leaves from a battered concrete dock and crosses directly across to Hydra every few hours in the summer for about 6 euros a person. The trip takes about 12 minutes. If you are driving around The Argolis and you just want to pop over to Hydra for a couple hours this is a way to do it. Many people who have houses in Hydra leave their cars here in the parking lot. Some people have left their cars and never returned to get them for whatever reason. If you plan to go
back to the mainland through Metochi you need to arrange for a taxi to pick you up on the other side. The website for Hydralines is in Greek and is not a secure site but you can phone them at 6947325263 or e-mail them for the schedule or to make a reservation. If you have money to burn you can also come by helicopter which you can arrange through any of the Athens Travel Agencies.