The Dodecanese islands have long been popular destinations for British holidaymakers, and it’s easy to see why. Their location at the south-eastern end of the Aegean Sea provides them with the warmest, sunniest climate, while it is this strategically important location which has led to a procession of battles, invasions and conquests, which in turn have created a colourful legacy in the form of architecture, archaeology and culture.

While Rhodes and Kos get the lion’s share of visitors to the Dodecanese islands, there are many smaller islands nearby which appeal to those seeking a quiet destination where they can explore on foot, indulge in local cuisine and encounter the traditional Greek way of life.

Dodecanese islands, Greece Dodecanese islands, Greece

Here’s a look at five of the smaller islands in the region.

Halki
Designated ‘The island of peace and friendship’ by UNESCO in 1983, it’s certainly not hard to encounter the renowned Greek hospitality wherever you go on Halki. The bulk of the island’s 478 residents live in Emborio, a pretty harbour village with Venetian houses along its waterfront. There are a handful of tavernas and cafes, with narrow lanes winding up from the harbour. Swimming is possible just beyond the harbour. Many visitors take a bus into the mountains for the 5-mile journey to the Monastery of St John, and then walk back to the coast. Halki is reached by ferry from Rhodes.

Halki, Dodecanese islands, Greece Halki, Dodecanese islands, Greece

Nissyros
This circular island is dominated by the pair of volcanic craters at its heart. They are dormant (having last erupted in 1888) and while the craters themselves resemble a barren, lunar landscape, the volcanic slopes are fertile and they provide great walking opportunities (as the island is small you can cover a lot of ground in a day); look out for the pigs which roam free here. Nissyros is reached by ferry from Kos.

Nissyros, Dodecanese islands Nissyros, Dodecanese islands

Patmos
At the northern end of the Dodecanese, Patmos is a must for history buffs. It was here that St John is said to written the Book of Revelations, and the magnificent hilltop fortress of the Monastery of St John forms an unforgettable backdrop to the port town of Skala. Patmos has sandy beaches and many hidden coves, making it ideal for gentle exploration, while the hilly interior is crossed by several good walking trails (if you use the good local bus service you can plan a one-way hike which covers much of the island). Patmos is reached by ferry from Samos.

Patmos, Dodecansese islands, Greece Patmos, Dodecansese islands, Greece

Leros
Roughly halfway between Samos and Kos, Leros is a laid-back island where fishing remains one of the main activities. Pretty tavernas dot the waterfront and there’s never a shortage of good, fresh seafood. Leros has one of the best natural harbours in the Mediterranean, and this made it a busy port during WW2. A bitter air and sea battle took place here, and was the inspiration for the classic book and film The Guns of Navarone. Leros is reached by ferry or fast cat from Rhodes or Kos.

Leros, Dodecanese islands, Greece Leros, Dodecanese islands, Greece

Lipsi
Offering a classic Greek island escape, Lipsi is a perfect option for those wanting to explore a small island at a gentle pace. You’ll find a number of old monasteries and churches, and many of these are best discovered by taking to the island’s walking trails. The harbour is, as always, the focus of village life and it’s here that you’ll find the small selection of tavernas and shops. A popular excursion from Lipsi is to explore the tiny unpopulated islands nearby. Lipsi is reached by ferry from Kos, and an overnight stay in Kos may be needed.

Lipsi harbour, Dodecanese islands, Greece Lipsi harbour, Dodecanese islands, Greece
Justin Blaza

By Justin Blaza

6th July 2016



Talk to our Greece expert

Justin Blaza
Justin Blaza

Justin came to us straight from university and has been on reservations ever since. Over this time he has developed an in-depth knowledge of Greece and her islands and uses his first-hand experiences to design complex island hopping itineraries around the Cyclades and the Dodecanese as well as fly drives on the Greek mainland. Justin loves the lesser-known regions and islands of Greece including Folegandros, Thessaly and the Peloponnese.

Call one of our experts to discuss your next holiday with Sunvil on

020 8568 4499

We're open today till 5:30 PM

Make an Enquiry

Please use this form to request further information about a Sunvil holiday or destination.

We promise that a member of our specialist reservation teams will reply personally to your holiday enquiry before 5.30pm if received before 12.00pm (Monday to Friday). Enquiries received after 12.00pm will be replied to within 24-hours (excluding Sundays).

If your enquiry is of an urgent nature, please telephone our dedicated reservation teams on the numbers listed below.

Our lines are open from 9.00am to 5.30pm Monday-Friday and from 9.30am to 4.30pm Saturday.

  • Greece: 020 8758 4758
  • Cyprus: 020 8758 4759
  • Portugal, the Azores, Spain, Italy, Sicily and Scandinavia: 020 8758 4722
  • Latin America: 020 8758 4774

Required Information

* Mandatory Information
Title *
First name *
Surname *
Telephone number *
Alternative telephone number
Email address *
Confirm email address
Preferred method of communication *
If you would like to be called during a specific period, please specify

Details

Preferred departure date *
Duration *
Preferred UK departure airport *
Party size *

Back

  • Adults(12+ yrs)
  • Children(2 to 11 yrs)
  • Infants(Under 2 yrs)
Budget range
Other comments:

Email newsletters

We promise that a member of our specialist reservation teams will reply personally to your holiday enquiry before 5.30pm if received before 12.00pm (Monday to Friday). Enquiries received after 12.00pm will be replied to within 24-hours (excluding Sundays).

If your enquiry is of an urgent nature, please telephone our dedicated reservation teams on the numbers listed below.

Our lines are open from 9.00am to 5.30pm Monday-Friday and from 9.30am to 4.30pm Saturday.

  • Greece: 020 8758 4758
  • Cyprus: 020 8758 4759
  • Portugal, the Azores, Spain, Italy, Sicily and Scandinavia: 020 8758 4722
  • Latin America: 020 8758 4774

Required Information

* Mandatory Information
Title *
First name *
Surname *
Telephone number *
Alternative telephone number
Email address *
Confirm email address
Preferred method of communication *
If you would like to be called during a specific period, please specify
Booking reference number *
Alternatively, please enter your query in the box below:

Email newsletters

Thank you for your enquiry

Thank you for your enquiry. A member of our specialist reservation teams will be in touch shortly.

If your enquiry is of an urgent nature, please telephone our dedicated reservation teams on the numbers listed below.

Our lines are open from 9.00am to 5.30pm Monday-Friday and from 9.30am to 4.30pm Saturday.

  • Greece: 020 8758 4758
  • Cyprus: 020 8758 4759
  • Portugal, the Azores, Italy, Sicily and Scandinavia: 020 8758 4722
  • Latin America: 020 8758 4774

Your details have been saved

Feel free to continue to browse the site and add to your enquiry. Don't forget to send the enquiry before you leave!

My Suitcase

We understand that so much choice can be overwhelming which is why we have developed 'My Suitcase'. This facility allows you to save and compare your favourite holidays, and even allows you to return to your selection at a later stage.

Why not use 'My Suitcase' to compile a wish list of your future Sunvil holidays?

 

Sign in


New to Sunvil?

Create Account


Already have an account?

Password reset

Back

Close

Close