Greek Islands - Books and Movies

The Greek Islands are magical places, that have inspired many tales. Here are a few books and movies about the Greek Islands. Each is entertaining in its own right, and perhaps they will lead you to visit the Greek Islands some day yourself!

Shirley Valentine
Shirley Valentine

Romance in Mykonos

One of my favorites is Shirley Valentine. I wonder how many women were inspired to visit Mykonos after seeing this movie about a bored British housewife. She packs her travel clothes and sets off on a Greek Island vacation, where she discovers that there's more to life than cooking eggs and chips for her husband.

It's a charming film, celebrating her new-found spirit and independence, and a little romance with a sexy Greek, too. Apparently, many Greek restaurant owners saw that movie. Rumor has it that they now serve chips with everything. (You'll understand when you see the movie!)

Mykonos, the famous Greek Island

Santorini Island looks peaceful now. Photo by Wolfgang Staudt (flickr)
Santorini Island looks peaceful now. Photo by Wolfgang Staudt (flickr)
Lara Croft - Tomb Raider
Lara Croft - Tomb Raider

Explosions on Santorini

That said, when I visited Spetses, I found it charming and appealing - not really a place that would inspire an emotional volcano.

However, I did visit the site of a real volcano: the Island of Santorini. Parts of the Angelina Jolie film Lara Croft: Tomb Raider, Cradle of Life were filmed in Santorini.

In the year 1,650 BC, a massive volcanic eruption destroyed an advanced civilation on the island of Thera -- present day Santorini. The explosion was one of the biggest in 10,000 years, and the caldera it left is spectacular.

Today, Santorini is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Greece. While many people stay in town, I stayed down near the water. It was the best sleep I've had in year.

Santorini video

The Magus on Phraxos

A particularly powerful book is John Fowles' The Magus, set in a school on the lonely island of Phraxos.

Like all of Fowles' work, The Magus is complex and disturbingly erotic. After reading it, I was filled with an almost masochistic desire to visit this place that seemed to be capable of stirring up an emotional volcano.

However, when researching Phraxos, I would discover that there was no such place! Fowles based The Magus in Spetses, where he taught school. It seems that I am not the only one who searched for the enigmatic yet non-existent Island of Phraxos.


Greek Islands Hot Spots

show route and directions
A markerMykonos, Greece -
Mykonos 84600, Greece
[get directions]

B markerSantorini, Greece -
Nísos Thíra, Greece
[get directions]

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Comments 4 comments

happyexplorer profile image

happyexplorer 7 years ago from Mostly USA, sometimes elsewhere Author

Hmm... I think I'm going to have to rent Shirley Valentine again. Definitely a feel-good movie! (-:


Angel 5 years ago

What are the 3 things I love most? Books, movies, and traveling - you have it all here! I already watched Tomb Raider and I'm surely renting Shirley and Magus because it shows my number one vacation place - Greece! Thanks happyexplorer!


happyexplorer profile image

happyexplorer 5 years ago from Mostly USA, sometimes elsewhere Author

Hi Angel,

We have 3 things in common! I did rent Shirley Valentine again and I'm sure you'll love it. Thanks for dropping by!


Amerimex 4 years ago

I took my mom to mykonos and stayed in the shirley valentine hotel. It was truly a dream come true for her and so happy we made it happen. Worth every penny.

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