11 Most Beautiful Dodecanese Islands

Martina Rosado
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Nisyros

One of the most popular island groups in the Greek Dodecanese is the Nisyros Islands, which are located in the northeast of the Peloponnese and are known for its sheltered coves.

Said to originate thanks to a god who leaned against an unoccupied island, the largest of the Nisyros islands is Nisyros. Piloted by the saint Kosmas, who lived around the 3rd century, the island is also known as the island of saints and is where St. Spyridon is buried.

The island has many beautiful bays and sea caves, where you can find silvery sponges and even amber.

Even though the Nisyros Islands are only 26 km from the mainland, the picture-postcard village of Stegna, located in the middle of the island, takes you back to a quiet Greece of the past.

To reach Stegna, take a ferry from the port of Mandraki, located between Kyllini and Alimos in the port Piraeus.

The ferry ride itself offers spectacular views of the island of Nisyros as well as of other islands located along this part of the mainland.

Kastellorizo

Island is located in the Aegean Sea, between Asia and Europe, stretching over a length of 25 km and has a maximum width of about 2 km. The southern part of the island is dominated by a volcano and the central part is the most active coastal plain. It is one of the most beautiful islands of Dodekanese, with rocky hills, white beaches, black lava, green areas, pine forests, and a clear blue sky.

Halki

Astypalaia

Symi

Greece.

Symi is probably the most beautiful island to visit in the Dodecanese.

This is the most southern part of the Mediterranean Sea. So it is full of beautiful white sandy beaches and crystal clear aquamarine waters.

The climate here is also very mild, even though the island is 700m above sea level.

Leros

Patmos

Patmos is one of those places in Greece that has something for everyone. It offers sea, forest, beaches, hiking trails that can be found all over the island, and historical attractions that include early Christian shrines.

Patmos is one of the most popular Greek islands because of one reason. It is the very least commercial of the Dodecanese Islands and all of its main attractions are historical churches.

The best time to visit Patmos is from May to September. The weather in the summer is usually sunny, with small rain showers in the middle of the day on the south part of the island. The temperatures are moderate, the humidity is low, and the odds of getting sick from the sea are extremely low.

You can visit Patmos by boat, ferry, or private yacht. You can drive on the island, but traffic can be pretty bad during the tourist season.

There are great places to eat on the island, including the much talked about Restaurant Komninos with great traditional cuisine and my personal favorite, the Dalamos with delicious fresh seafood. There are also great places to buy souvenirs, island art, ceramics and whatever else you want.

The best beaches are on the south and west part of the island, but you can find other options no matter where you stay.

If you have fitness goals in mind, you will find that the walking, hiking, and swimming are plenty rewarding.

Kalymnos

With lots of white sandy beaches, the Kalymnos is a great choice for the one who wants to relax on holidays in Kalymnos. Here you can see the red and yellow traditional houses, the deep blue sea, green fields and the pink and white traditional houses.

It is a part of the Dodecanese Islands, one of the most beautiful islands of Greece. It is the most popular island apart from Rhodes and could be found in every travel guide.

Munroe beach with is the largest village of Kalymnos. Here you can find several shops, restaurants and bars, and many excellent places for lounging.

The main attraction of this island is the wine production. The island is known for its excellent quality of wine and you will find many vineyards and wine taverns where you can taste the excellent and famous wine of Karolymnos.

Since Kalymnos is a popular tourist destination, you should expect a high summer population during the high season (June to September).

During the winter season, the island is an ideal destination for one who wants to be alone. However, there are many tourists who come here as a great starting point for exploring Greece.

Karpathos

Karpathos is known as the “Daughter of Aphrodite” and is the largest island of the Dodecanese. Its southern coast is protected by the Kapariada Peninsula, where are found the Kechrovouni and the Kechrovia monasteries.

Karpathos is also famous for its tranquil beaches, medieval rock churches, and verdant landscapes. The island’s capital, Chora is a lively fishing port featuring a scenic harbor around which ring whitewashed houses and Byzantine churches.

The island’s main town was damaged severely during an earthquake in 1953, which destroyed many of its dwellings and even left the sand beneath the roofs of many houses displaced by several meters.

In the center of this Cretan-Romanesque town stands the church of Agios Nikolaos built in the 13th century.

It’s worth visiting the island’s second capital called Porto Heli, to see the ruins of the 12th-century monastery of the Panagia Evangelistria.

The rock-cut vaults of the monastery contain some of the earliest Byzantine frescoes in the country. The narthex and the church’s bell tower are still intact.

Kos

Kos, the largest of the Dodecanese islands, has been inhabited since prehistoric times, but really gained international notice as an independent region in 1918, when Germany, Italy, and France began plans for a large, multipurpose international port. During the nearly four decades of Greek rule before the Dodecanese were returned to Italy after World War II, Kos became a major resort center, with British and other European wealthy elites dividing their time between their European residences and their villas on the island.

Rhodes