Overview and attractions of the island of Symi

Simi island is one of the Dodecanese islands located 40 km from Rhodes. The island has a stunning natural landscape and you can enjoy its graphite cliffs overhanging the sapphire sea, the beaches with the blue-colored pebbles, and all this surrounded by slender cypresses.

The island is notable for its chapels and monasteries, museums and fortresses, as well as colorful houses and picturesque bays where you can relax on the sandy beaches and then go to one of the fishing taverns and taste freshly caught fish.

Museums and attractions in Athens   What to see in Symi

  • Castro Fortress

  • Historical Museum

  • Museum of Maritime History

  • Rukouniotis Monastery

  • Panormitis Monastery

  • The villages of Symi

  • Beaches

Castro Fortress

To explore the island you can start with a walk through the capital, above which the ruins of the ancient fortress Kastro, built in the 14th century, towers. Before the fortress, there was an antique acropolis, and then the castle in the Byzantine style. Above the main entrance is the symbolioannite, and next to the walls of the fortress there are fragments of ancient buildings. From the top of the hill, there is an impressive view of the sea. At the highest point of the hill, there is a chapel.

History Museum

In the capital of the island, there are a large number of mansions, many of which operate as hotels. However, one of these mansions was decided to convert into a museum, where artifacts and objects of arts and crafts are kept. In the museum, you can see ancient sculptures, pottery, a collection of weapons, as well as a collection of Byzantine icons, coins, and manuscripts. There is also a folklore section, with items from the island's inhabitants and old photographs.

Museum of Maritime History 

The collection is devoted to the maritime history of the island. The museum is located in a mansion built in the neoclassical style. One room of the museum is dedicated to the sponges that were mined on the island. The museum also displays paintings, as well as carved wooden ships, shipping charts, and diving suits.

Rukouniotis Monastery

The monastery was built on the ruins of an ancient sanctuary. This spiritual center is considered the oldest on the island. It took on its present form during the Juno era when a fortress was built and by the 17th century, there was a community of monks. One of the main relics that attracts pilgrims here is the icon of the Archangel Michael. Another attraction of the monastery is the cypress, which has been growing here for more than a century.

Panormitis Monastery

The exact date of the construction of this monastery is unknown. However, manuscripts indicate that it was already functioning in the 15th century. The interior walls of the monastery are decorated with Byzantine frescoes. In the holy cloister are kept ancient icons, and in the two church museums under the monastery can be seen objects of folk culture, church vessels, and Byzantine manuscripts. The miracle-working icon of the Archangel Michael is also kept here.

Villages of the island

On Simi, several settlements are a must-visit during your vacation. The village of Emporio attracts attention with its architecture and the surrounding area has a large number of ancient monuments: the Church of St. Mercury, catacombs, Roman mosaics, etc. The village of Pedi is a resort with a crystal clear sea, lovely taverns, and a private atmosphere.

Beaches in Athens   Symi Island Beaches

Simi Island is becoming more and more popular for visits every year. Most of the beaches are pebbly, but you can also find sandy coves.

Agios Nikolaos

The well-known beach of the island with golden sand and natural shade from the high cliffs. The beach is equipped with everything you need for a good holiday, surrounded by the taverns. It is safe to stay here with small children.

Agia Marina

This beach is situated in the northern part of the island. The beach is also safe for children. Next to the beach, there is a small church where the weddings of residents take place.

Nanu Beach

This beach can be accessed on foot, but it is better to get here by boat. The beach is located in a small harbor, which is protected from the wind by the coastal rocks. It is always sparsely populated, so a quiet holiday is guaranteed.

Pedi Beach

In one bay there are several well-equipped beaches. There are cafes and taverns all around.


Located in a large harbor with a pebbly shoreline. Here you can not only relax on the beach but also rent a room in the guest house and taste the local cuisine.


The island's wild beach with clear water. There are always few tourists here, so the beach offers fishing and swimming. The beach is practically unequipped.

Beach Nose

A paradise place, which is considered one of the most beautiful on the island. From here you have spectacular views of the surrounding area.

charter yacht   How to reach Symi

The easiest way to Symi is from Rhodes or Kos. It is very close and the route is very comfortable. It is perfect for families and lovers of wandering and new colorful places. 

From Rhodes, Symi is only 18 miles away and Kos is about 38 nautical miles.

Facilities at the Symi Marina

The marina at Symi is a whole town. The mooring is deep in the big bay that surrounds the beautiful town. Even though the marina has enough space, it is always difficult to find a free one, as all the yachting enthusiasts from the neighboring islands come here. 

There is a connection to electricity and water, but no other amenities.

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