Greek Guide


Symi Beaches Greece Greek Holiday Destinations

The coastline of Symi is peppered with pretty pebble beaches many of which can only be reached by boat or by some hard walking and a hazardous scramble over the rocks. Excursion boats run right round the island and regular water taxis transport day trippers to all the most popular beaches during high season.

The nearest beach to the port town of Gialos is Nos (Navtikos Omilos Symis) which is a five minute walk north past the bell tower and boatyards of Harani. It's a tiny beach and tends to get over crowded during July and August.

Head two kilometres downhill east of Horio and you'll come to the fishing village of Pedhi which has a narrow beach lined with hotels, domatia and tavernas. There's a regular bus service from Gialos, via Horio, to this burgeoning resort which is popular with local families and visiting yachties. You might prefer to walk another 20 minutes east of Pedhi to the better beach of Agios Nikolaos. The path is quite rocky and involves a steep descent over large rocks so if you don't fancy the hike take a water taxi from Pedhi. The beach (the only sandy one on the island) is shaded by tamarisk trees and is well served with sun beds, shades, a taverna and toilets. The gently shelving sand makes it ideal for children.

From Pedhi you can also take a water taxi or follow the paint splodged path out to the tiny shingle beach of Agia Marina at the north east tip of the island. The walk will take you about 45 minutes. The beach has a taverna, sun beds and shades and overlooks a monastery capped islet which is easy to swim to.

One of the most popular beaches is at Nanou Bay nestling at the base of some imposing cliffs on the island's east coast. It's a 200 metre sand and pebble beach with a scenic backdrop of pine trees. You can reach it by water taxi or if you're feeling fit it's a wonderful three hour walk from Horio head out to Panagia Strateri in the centre of the island then veer off to the left and descend for about 45 minutes through a forested gorge. Reward yourself with lunch in the beachside taverna then take a water taxi back.

A three hour walk west of the port town will take through pine forests to remote Agios Emilanos Beach where a tiny monastery is tethered to the island by a causeway. A hike of about 90 minutes will get you to the island's most beautiful bay at Agios Vasillios where you'll find unspoilt Lapathos Beach. There's a spectacular and very steep descent to the beach if you go on an organised boat trip be prepared to swim to the beach as there's no jetty here.

There are regular boat excursions to the Taxiarchis Mihail Panormitis monastery at the southern end of the island. Some organised tours take in a visit to the monastery, a swim in the harbour below and a barbecue lunch.

Excursion boats also visit some of the island's more remote beaches and the islet of Sesklia, off the southern coast of Symi, where there's a lovely tree lined beach but no tourist facilities.

Be aware the sea urchins can be a problem at certain times of the year so if you're planning to swim off the rocks it's advisable to wear plastic shoes.