Kalymnos in detail


Worth a Trip: Vathys & Rina

Follow the barren coast road northeast from Pothia, instead of heading straight over to the west coast, and, after winding for 13km along the cliffs, it enters a long, lush, east-facing valley that was historically the agricultural heartland of Kalymnos. Narrow roads here thread between citrus orchards, bordered by high stone walls known as koumoula.

The valley takes its name from the inland settlement of Vathys, but the attraction for visitors is the little harbour of Rina. From the sea, it's accessed by a slender twisting inlet that’s more like a fjord than anything you’d expect to find on a Greek island. In summer, large excursion boats bring troupes of day trippers here from Kos for lunch, keeping a clutch of competitive quayside tavernas busy, but it’s a lovely spot at quieter times. Easy walks lead to 1500-year-old chapels on the hillside to either side of the bay. This is the place to hire a kayak or stand-up paddleboard and enjoy the tranquil waters. Grab your gear from Kalymnos Kayak Centre at the end of the harbour.

Inland, beyond Vathys, a windswept road switchbacks up and over the mountains to reach the island’s northwest coast, providing a speedier way to reach Emborios from Pothia than the built-up route through Myrties and Masouri.