A stiff switchback climb along the road from Pondamos Beach leads up through Halki’s fertile central valley to Horio. This picturesque ruin was originally the island’s main village, hidden away to escape the eyes of roving pirates. A freshly cobbled footpath heads up to the battlements of the Knights of St John Castle that once protected it. Pass through its forbidding gateway to see a restored chapel and amazing long-range views.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Dodecanese attractions

1. Pondamos Beach

1.42 MILES

Pretty little Pondamos Beach is lapped by the turquoise waters of a crescent bay 15 minutes' walk up and over the hill west of Emborios. The only way to…

2. Traditional House of Chalki


Perched on the hillside, not far up from the harbour (signed to the right off the road to Pondamos Beach), the Traditional House of Chalki – an…

3. Ftenagia Beach

2.11 MILES

The closest beach to the village, accessed by walking over the headland 500m south of the harbour. Fine pebbles and clear waters with sunbeds on a…

4. Kania Beach

2.29 MILES

A gorgeous little slip of a beach with the island's best beach taverna. Sunbeds are free if you consume cuisine and drinks. The waters here seem even…

5. Monolithos Castle

10.74 MILES

Monolithos’ 15th-century castle crowns an isolated pinnacle 2km west of the village towards Fourni Beach. Beside a cafe at a curve in the road, a short…

6. Fourni Beach

12.06 MILES

A precipitous paved road winds down for 5km beyond Monolithos Castle to reach Fourni Beach. A long curve of coarse, gravel-like sand, it’s often too rough…

7. Mikro Horio

17.89 MILES

When pirates prowled the Dodecanese, this medieval settlement was Tilos’ main population centre. Its last inhabitants only left after WWII and it now…

8. Museum

20.5 MILES

This small museum's key collection is the fossil remains of some of the island's ancient population of dwarf elephants. At the time of research, the…