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Hydra is one of the Saronic Islands of Greece, located in the Aegean Sea between the Saronic Gulf and the Argolic Gulf. It is separated from the Peloponnese by a narrow strip of water. In ancient times, the island was known as Hydrea (Υδρέα, derived from the Greek word for "water"), a reference to the natural springs on the island.The municipality of Hydra consists of the islands Hydra (pop. 1948, area 49.6km2), Dokos (pop. 18, area 13.5km2), and a few uninhabited islets, total area 64.443km2. The province of Hydra (Επαρχία Ύδρας) was one of the provinces of the Piraeus Prefecture. Its territory corresponded with that of the current municipality. It was abolished in 2006.There is one main town, known simply as "Hydra port" (pop. 1,900 in 2011). It consists of a crescent-shaped harbor, around which is centered a strand of restaurants, shops, markets, and galleries that cater to tourists and locals (Hydriots). Steep stone streets lead up and outward from the harbor area. Most of the local residences, as well as the hostelries on the island, are located on these streets. Other small villages or hamlets on the island include Mandraki (pop. 11), Kamini, Vlychos (19), Palamidas, Episkopi, and Molos.Transport, tourism and leisureHydra depends on tourism, and Athenians account for a sizable segment of its visitors. High-speed hydrofoils and catamarans from Piraeus, some 37nmi away, serve Hydra, stopping first at Poros before going on to Spetses. There is a passenger ferry service providing an alternative to Hydrofoils that runs from Hydra Harbor to Metochi on the Peloponnese coast. Many Athenians drive to Metochi, leave their car in the secure car park, and take the 20-minute passenger ferry across to Hydra.Hydra is in Saronic Gulf Islands. Plan your tour of Hydra and Greece travel itinerary using our Greece driving holiday planning tool .
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