overhead view of beach sifnos greek islands by Carla Coulson one of the places I love to visit

Sifnos – Places I loved

Photo of beach and white houses Sifnos

Today I am very excited to share with you places to visit on the Greek Island of Sifnos!

When the oversized ferry dropped its giant door and let us off on another Greek Island the excitement was high, just the same as the first time I put my big toe on a Greek Island.

Love rush is an understatement for how I feel about Greece and the Cycladic Island of Sifnos is now one of my new favourites.

Carla Coulson Sifnos Greece Travel Photography0006

Cheronnisos Beach Copyright Carla Coulson

Sifnos is surrounded by crystal clear water and if you love swimming as much as I do this is a real TREAT! Old fashioned beaches that look like they belong in a 70’s postcard abound and I imagine if you go out of season they would almost be deserted.

White greek church on Vathi beach sifnos photo by carla coulson

Vathi Beach Copyright Carla Coulson

We were so excited about Vathi beach and it’s tavern we were literally the only ones on it at 9am and camped under the tables to be sure we wouldn’t miss out on a lunch spot. I LOVED this tavern where you sit under the tamarind trees with your toes in the sand. The  food was amazing. I ate enough big beans to start sprouting!

white church on the greek island of sifnos

Vathi Copyright Carla Coulson

This picture-postcard church is at Vathy and you get the double whammy with water from both sides.

Zoodochos Pigi church on the greek island of sifnos by Carla Coulson

Zoodochos Pigi Copyright Carla Coulson

Now the Greeks know about building beautiful monasteries and they seem to like to build them in out of the way places, hanging off cliffs, perched on boulders or as in Sifnos’s case on its own private rocky Island.

 boat in the water and tavern on Cheronnosis beach sifnos by Carla Coulson

 Cheronnosis beach Copyright Carla Coulson

Loved this beach and the tavern that runs along the mini dock. Yep loved this tavern so much (not pictured) I was almost sleeping under the tables here too! Didn’t want to miss out on a seat at lunch.

 Francesco and Octopus drying at Faros Beach tavern on greek island of Sifnos

 Francesco and Friends at Faros Beach Copyright Carla Coulson

You will be forgiven for thinking we passed our entire time eating (well we almost did). We pledged to try as many taverns as possible and that came true! On the rocks at Faros was another fave.

The port from Saint Eliseus monastery sifnos photo by Carla Coulson

The port from Saint Eliseus Copyright Carla Coulson

The Port from  Saint Eliseus up on the hill. Looks like I was in a plane but just trying not to be blown off the cliff whilst taking this pic.

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 The transparent water always so difficult to leave Copyright Carla Coulson

Photo of Appollonia from Kato Petali on greek island of Sifnos by Carla Coulson

 Appollonia from Kato Petali Copyright Carla Coulson

I love walking the old paths that once connected the villages before the roads were built. This pic was taken on the path from Appollonia to Kato Petali.

places to visit on the Greek Island of Sifnos white stone Entrance to  Zoodochos Pigi monastery on the island of Sifnos

 Zoodochos Pigi Copyright Carla Coulson

Sifnos has 365 churches on the island and this is the big kahuna. In a spectacular setting..

Carla Coulson Sifnos Greece Travel Photography0001

 Appollonia Copyright Carla Coulson

I was obsessed with this house and it’s simple entrance. I could imagine living here.

Pink bougainvillea shade cover Artemonas sifnos by Carla Coulson

Artemonas Copyright Carla Coulson

And here. Now if that isn’t the best bouganvillea I have ever seen!! Love Artemonas a combo of village houses and big neoclassical homes with large gardens and lemon trees.. Divine. Definately would stay in this village next time.

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 Figs Kato Petali Copyright Carla Coulson

Gawd was having daydreams of living on this island and drying my own figs in the sun. Ate kilos from the trees along the roads

ceramic workshop places to visit on the Greek Island of Sifnos

Ceramic Factory Vathi Beach Copyright Carla Coulson

This is one of the old ceramic factories in Sifnos up the end to the left of Vathi beach. I now drink my morning coffee out of the sweetest coffee cups this man and his son made.

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 Kittycat Copyright Carla Coulson

And the greatest thing about leaving your beloved cat at home is wherever you go in Greece you are reminded of him. Cats everywhere and I loved this little guy at the shop in Vathi.

Carla Coulson Sifnos Greece Travel Photography0017

 Francesco Copyright Carla Coulson

There is a saying in Greece ‘una faccia una razza’ (which is actually Italian) which means ‘One Race One Face’. The Mediterranean has seen so many exchanges of culture through the centuries that it has become one place. When Francesco is in Greece they speak to him in Greek and he gets that inner glow of happiness to think the Greeks believe he belongs to their great country.

And of course just being in Greece makes you enjoy their love of life and teaches you about Kefi.

What to do in Sifnos:

Stay:  In the fabulous village of Artemonas with it’s neoclassical homes and lovely gardens. Divine village

Swim: At Vathi behind the church, At Cheronnosis and the beach on the left before you arrive. Faros is lovely too

Eat: Gawd you can almost go anywhere on this island but don’t miss Manolis Tavern under the tamarind trees Vathi. Don’t miss the tavern at Cheronnosis that flanks the water. Fabulous.

Shop: Almond sweets! The island is famous for the beautiful sweets and Artemonas is the home to three great shops. The oldest one is after the square on the path coming from Appollonia. Ceramics.. Sifnos is famous for it’s beautiful ceramics and there are many shops in Kamares and Appollonia.

See: The villages on foot, take the path to Artemonas from Appollonia and also the villages of Kato Petali and Exambela. Beautiful.. Oh and as many of the 365 churches on the island.

If you would like some travel photography tips please click here or if you would like more Greek Island Inspiration please click here.

I hope you enjoyed these lovely places to visit on the Greek Island of Sifnos

“Happy is the man, I thought, who, before dying, has the good fortune to sail the Aegean sea.??? Nikos Kazantzakis, Zorba The Greek


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Travel Photography Series Part 3 – Architecture

Venice Travel Photography series

Venice for Gourmet Traveller Copyright Carla Coulson

My trip to Puglia inspired me to write this third part in my travel photography series on how to include architecture in your travel stories. In case you missed the first two parts, you can catch up on how you can include food and people into your travel stories.

Having a husband who is an architect has helped me to love architecture even more! This has become a favourite part for me of shooting a travel story.

Travel Means Architecture

There are important pieces of architecture that are typical to that place that will immediately tell the reader where the story is set.

Let’s take Paris and Venice as examples: the white facades and grey tin roofs are typically Parisian as are the canals of Venice, gondala’s and the Venetian faded walls and architecture. Most travel stories open with a shot that sets the scene so the reader almost doesn’t need to read the title, you know immediately that you are in Paris, Venice, Morocco or Australia!

Venice carla coulson travel photography tips

Venice Copyright Carla Coulson Chasing a Dream

The fun thing about shooting a city is that there are many different types of architecture from iconic masterpieces (like the Doges Palace in the top photo), humble exteriors and details, modern masterpieces, chic areas and working class areas of a city and of course interiors.. 

Doges palace venice travel photography series

Venice for Gourmet Traveller Copyright Carla Coulson

Iconic Masterpieces

Every city (almost) has an iconic piece of architecture (or two) that defines it. Sydney has the Opera House, Paris the Tower Eiffel, Venice the Doges Palace and St Marks Church and Florence the incredible Duomo.

Try and include an iconic masterpiece in your travel story, you can bring your own slant to it by shooting it in the light you like, or a particular time of day or something quirky in the foreground.


Venice Carla Coulson travel phtography series

Venice for Gourmet Traveller Copyright Carla Coulson

Humble Exteriors

A well rounded travel story needs many different angles of the city which means showing different areas and architecture. I loved this simple small bridge over a canal in Venice and the colour palette and having variety gives your art director more choice. I also adored the working class island of Burano where the small fisherman’s homes were a huge contrast to the St Mark’s Square and the Doges Palace. Keep your eyes peeled for architecture that tells a different story to the iconic masterpieces.

Burano carla coulson travel photography series

Fisherman’s home Burano Venice Copyright Carla Coulson

Get Up High

In most cities there is an important landmark (such as the cathedral in Milan below) where you can get a different vantage point on the city. Can be fun too if there is a lift!

Duomo Milan Carla Coulson travel photography series

Milan for Gourmet Traveller Copyright Carla Coulson

Architectural Details

I rode, walked and skipped by this fountain a hundred times in Florence and I was always drawn to Neptunes butt! (Sorry guys) Architectural details take us in close to the art of a city and brings the focus up close.

Carla Coulson florence travel photography series

Florence Copyright Carla Coulson

Inside Outside

Try and get into a city and show it from the inside out. That can mean as much as pushing open a door to see a courtyard or walking into the entrance of a museum etc. The above pic was a courtyard off Via Montenapoleone in Milan.

Courtyard off Via Montenapoleone_MG_6631

Milan for Gourmet Traveller Copyright Carla Coulson


Interiors are another fabulous way to get in the architecture of a city. Getting inside adds depth to your story and tells a more intimate part of the cities life. The pic below was taken in the Armani Bar in Milan.

Armani Hotel Bar making signature cocktail (will check name) _MG_5896

Interior – Milan for Gourmet Traveller Copyright Carla Coulson


Hotel Danieli Venice Travel photography series

Venice for Gourmet Traveller copyright Carla Coulson

This interior was taken in the Hotel Danieli in Venice which has an incredible Venetian Gothic staircase.

Simple Details

I am a huge fan of simple details, of striped curtains covering a doorway to a house, a carved face on a corner of a street, washing strung in front of a beautiful buildings.. Don’t overlook details, they often tell the best stories!

Burano 1 Carla Coulson travel photography series

Burano Copyright Carla Coulson

You might like to check out the last part in this series on travel photography, including events in your photographic story.

If you want to learn how to take/create your body of work and sell it online, join my Free Training by clicking above.

These are just some ideas to get you started and I know all of you are always interested  in permissions so you can read about them here.

Wishing you every happiness with your travel stories!

My Favourite Gear

Canon EOS 5D Mark III 

Canon EF 24-70mm 

Canon EF 35mm 

“Like all great travellers, I have seen more than I remember, and remember more than I have seen.”  Benjamin Disraeli




PS: Feel free to share to fellow travel bugs and photographers. xx