If you're looking for a place tucked away from the crowds, the volcanic Island of Nisyros is perfect. Catch a boat from Kefalos and begin exploring your new destination at a leisurely pace. Nisyros is famous for its active volcano in the middle of the island. But it's got a lot more to offer, from scenic coastal views to pristine beaches and thermal springs. And, it's all steeped in ancient Greek mythology.
Pay the volcano a visitNisyros' main attraction is the volcano that has not one, but three gigantic craters. Which, by the way, are called Polyvotis, Alexandros and Stephanos. You can get up close to the volcano, which was formed after a massive eruption in the 15th century. The best way to get the most from your visit is with a guided tour of the volcano. Your guide will take you down the crater's edge and tell you stories of the Greek legends woven into this intriguing island. Legends say that the island was formed when the Greek God Poseidon threw a big stone into the sea in an attempt to defeat his enemy, the Giant Polyvotis. As you listen to the mysterious origin story of the island, you'll notice the strong smell of sulphur fumes coming from the bubbling pits.
Scout the villagesWhen your boat docks, you'll take your first step in the sleepy village of Mandraki. Stroll past whitewashed houses and stop at one of the local restaurants for a bite to eat. While you're there, inquire about the local almond liquor, ”Soumada' and treat yourself to a glass with your meal. Learn more about the history of the island with a visit to the Castle of Spiliani, a mysterious fortress built by Knights. You can also investigate the Paleokastro, another ancient fortress dating back to the 4th century BC. Nikia village is set on the rim of the volcano's crater and offers outstanding coastal views. It's a quiet village and home to the monastery of Agios Ioannis Theologists. If you want to see how the locals live, head to the traditional town of Nisyros Emporios. Submerged in lush Greenhills and picturesque mountains, you can enjoy a relaxing stroll through grapevines and olive trees. If you're feeling peckish, make your way to the centre of the village and try some local dishes in the restaurant.
Relax on the beachThe final village to explore is Pali, which is a traditional fishing village known for its inviting sandy beach. Soak up the warm sunshine and let time pass you by, as you lie back on the soft golden sands overlooking the sea. Explore the cove of Lies and make your way to the lapping dunes of Pahia Ammos. When you're ready to head back, you can walk along the White Beach, which leads you to the village of Mandraki. But, before you leave, make sure you take some time to relax and enjoy a dip in one of the village's therapeutic thermal baths.