Walking on Symi
Now, I didn't get to explore as much of the island as I intended, but at 13 km by about 8kms, of hills, valleys and mountain covered land, theres a lot of places to get away from it all, either by road, boat or on foot.
There are some recognised trails (guide books are available, and maps, I think from the SV office). For those who prefer a knowledgeable guide to accompany them, regular guided walks are arranged, check at tour offices, or with the boat captain of the Poseidon, as some boat trips include a guided walk.
There are also many hidden churches and monasteries, some with great views and picturesque interiors. Some however are difficult to access.
The beaches of Symi vary in accessability and facillities, some such as Sesklia are only accessible by excursion boat and has no facillities, St Georges by water taxi, again no facillities, but this may mean that they are quieter than the others.
- Hiking and Walking
- Romantic Travel and Honeymoons
Symi is very rocky and barren in places but dotted around the island are some 365 chapels - one for each day of the year. Many are only accessile by boat or by walking and with a longer stay its possible to explore the island more and discover some.
Backstreets of Chorio
Right at the back of Chorio - near wher the bus stops - is a warren of old overgrown alleyways and narrow steps - its like stepping back in time and hardly any daytrippers up here so it really is off the beaten path!
Arches spanned the old lanes here, just as in Rhodes old town for protection during earthquakes.
- Family Travel
The windmills are located in the eastern part of the city. There is a great view over the Yialos port from the windmills. The windmills streching across the hillside make a very nice view too, to be seen from the top of Chorio.
Ill-gotten gains seldom prosper
Definitelly off the beaten path as we got under the bunch of growing grapes when we lost our way on the Kali Strata. The grapes were delicious... I highly recommend grabbing some when you get lost in here.
Chorio and beyond
Away from Yialos, up the Kali Strata to Chorio, camera, films and a bottle of water, and you're set to wander at will, through the winding streets and lanes past old ruined houses, which often have for sale signs painted on them. At the top of the hill are some ruined windmills, with great views over to Yialos and Pedi from the other side of the mound. I spent many a happy hour, just wandering up and down paths over Chorio and behind Yialos, probably walking in ever decreasing circles, but having a great time in the peace and quiet.
- Hiking and Walking
- Romantic Travel and Honeymoons
St. Nicholas' Bay
We loved it here. It's around the headland from Pedi bay, and you have to follow a very rocky path up and over the hill that seperates them. The path is marked with red dots painted onto the rocks, so you shouldn't get lost. There's quite a little scramble down to the bay from the top of the hill, but that was good fun.
The bay itself is typical - coarse sand, taverna, crystal clear waters, beatiful surroundings... It was like heaven on earth.
Only one thing to watch out for though - goats! They'll be into your bag and stealing your picnic if you don't watch out!
We caught the water taxi back from here to Symi, which was a lovely ride, and only 2.5 euro! (Most water taxis are more than that).
Pedi Bay is down the other side of the hill on which Chori stands. It's kind of the "second port" of Symi, but second means way way behind.
It's been developed a bit as a "holiday resort" too, but for me it has no attractions. I much prefer Symi and Chorio to anything that Pedi has to offer. The bay is OK and the front is lined with tavernas and hotels, and there are water taxis to some of the other very picturesque bays that are near by.
We chose to walk to one such bay rather than spend any amount of time at Pedi - St. Nicholas' Bay (see next tip).
Nimborio is a bay, and very small settlement, a short walk (maybe 40 minutes) from Symi. It's all along quiet track, and fairly level, so it's not much of a challenge for anyone who's basically fit. When you get there you'll find a taverna (a godsend), a small pebble beach, an absolutely fantastic bay for swimming in (like swimming in a pool in an ampitheatre of hills) and a few houses. Some of the houses are ruined, and the roads (such as they are) are strewn with stones & rocks (see pic).
It was an absolutely lovely day that we had here. We loved the walk, the taverna, swimming... the beach is not the prettiest you'll see, but forget that and enjoy the rest.
Just around the headland from the harbour (past the church of Evangelismos) is Noss Beach. It's pretty small, and of course it's pebbles rather than sand, but that's common for hereabouts. There water is clear and there are brollies and a taverna here. It's a good place to come if you don't want to wander far from town - we came here on our final day when we had a ferry to catch later in the afternoon. It's handy too, because on the way back into town you have to pass the Nireus, which is a GREAT place to stop for a frappe (see other tips).
Walking up the Kali Strata or any side street in Symi you will see many beautiful houses. Look at the details, especially doors and windows.
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