Rhodes' biggest draw might be its beaches, but there's plenty to do on the largest Dodecanese Island besides top up your suntan and learn to windsurf. From exploring the island’s ancient cities to sipping wine in a traditional winery, here’s how to get the most of 3 days on the Greek isle.
Symi Island, Rhodes, Greece
Natural beauty aside, Symi is most known for the Archangel Michael of Panormitis Monastery, a 15th-century complex that’s home to a library of rare Byzantine manuscripts and two museums that exhibit an eclectic mix of Orthodox icons and ancient fishing equipment. Tours typically depart from Rhodes’ main port, include scenic round-trip ferry rides, and give you time to check out the monastery and enjoy the sun-soaked Symi harbor.
Had a lovely day on Symi - end of season so not too busy and weather was perfect for exploring. Walked to Pedi and back and up to the castle. Plenty of time for wandering and browsing. The guide Lily was great. Lovely visit to the monastery - if you go you must try the spinach and cheese pies from the bakery. My only comment would be that while the guys on the King Saron ferry tried to be very strict about mask wearing in all areas of the boat, there were several irresponsible passengers onboard who took them off at every opportunity and really should know better.
Rowena_H, Nov 2020
Things to Know Before You Go
With its period architecture and Old World charm, Symi is a must for history buffs and travelers seeking an alternative style of Greek island.
The island has a multitude of accommodation and dining options; advance booking is necessary in the peak summer season.
Most of the beaches on Symi are rock and pebble, so wear sturdy shoes.
How to Get There
Symi is an hour north of Rhodes by ferry (operated by several different companies). There are also daily ferries from Kos in the summer.
When to Get There
For the best weather and fewest crowds, head to Symi in June or October. The Archangel Michael of Panormitis Monastery is usually open daily year-round, while its museums are open from April through October.
Exploring the Beaches of Symi Island
No journey to Symi would be complete without some time on the beach. The closest beach to Symi Town is Nos, a family-friendly stretch of sand with sunbeds and other amenities. If you’re looking to escape the crowds, Panormitis Beach is the place to go, and can be combined with a monastery visit.
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- Ancient Kamiros
- Valley of the Butterflies (Petaloudes)
- Filerimos Hill
- Profitis Ilias
- Kritinia Castle
- Acropolis of Rhodes
- Aquarium of Rhodes
- Mandraki Harbour
- Throne of Helios
- Rhodes Wine Country
- Palace of the Grand Master of the Knights of Rhodes
- Medieval City of Rhodes
- Street of the Knights (Odos Ippoton)
- Bee Museum
- Archaeological Museum of Rhodes