Hello, I am new in this forum, I am Greek, just retired, and looking for a place in Greece, Turkey, Italy, France, or, if I get daring enough, Egypt.
A few comment on what I read above. Yes, make sure there is a hospital on the island you retire. Winter storms cut off islands for weeks. Syros is what I am eying.
Evia? Not my choice. Evia people are sweet, calmer than the average Greek, but inhospitable and independent. Then, there is Larco, a state mining company, the curse of this beautiful island. You may wake up one morning by dynamite explosions.
As for Kardamyli and Stoupa, yes! Beautiful, and Maniates are straightforward people. Hospitable. On the minus side, land is very expensive hear as Germans have moved in. Also the road to Kalamata is winding and not in the best shape.
The villages northwest of Kalamata are something you should look into. Deserted and mostly occupied by old folks, and lots of Albanian farm workers. Cheap land! Beautiful hills, best climate. On the minus side: The Greek Airforce has a pilot training base near Messini. Horrid jet sound almost daily, day and night. People are warm here.
Myself I am considering Syros. It has a history of culture (imagine Greek hunters playing opera records? God my ears suffer with the pathetic laika songs, men singers wailing, a corrupt genre of Turkish music). It has a hospital, a ship yard, orthodox and catholic churches, and till recently it was Italian territory. I would like some culture in people. This you will not find in Evia or Messinia.
In the same vein, Chios and Lesvos are two island I am considering. Ah! I can visit Turkey in a few minutes daily!
Real estate advice. Why go through realtors? You can save A LOT by consulting local classifieds. I mean a lot! There are several classifieds web pages, one of the busiest is greekads c om