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Take a walk in the picturesque village of Kefalos, on the island’s western edge, site of the ancient capital Pili, with its stone built houses and traditional cafes. Close by, you’ll come across the old medieval village of Pili, no longer inhabited. The settlement, built on an easily defended promontory, with a tall fort dominating the town, is dated to the days of the Macedonian dynasties, in the 11th century AD. Although the town is completely ruined, it offers breath taking views of the nearby island of Kalymnos and the Bodrum peninsula on the Turkish coast.

A bygone era atmosphere will greet you in the village of Platanias, just 2 km from the city, where you may visit the island’s old Muslim quarter. In the rural village of Antimachia, you can visit the famous windmills. Do not miss a visit to the Venetian fortress and to the reproduction of the “Antimacheia House”, showcased in the folk art museum. From the lovely Zia, a small village built on green hills, you can enjoy panoramic views spanning the whole island.


Imposing and perfectly preserved, the fortress of Antimacheia is located right next to the village of the same name. The 14th century edifice was built by the Knights of St John to reinforce the island’s defence. The fortress lives in historical lore due to the 1457 defenders’ heroic stand, when 15 knights held the fort for 23 days, fighting off 16,000 Ottoman soldiers, who finally lifted the siege. In its interior, visit the churches of Agia Paraskevi, Agios Nikolaos and Panagia Eleimonistra.


In this cosmopolitan island’s market, a wide variety of shopping opportunities await you! Within the old town’s confines, dozens of stores selling jewellery, pottery, leather, clothes and accessories, hand woven textiles, embroidery and replicas of ancient vases, vie for the visitor’s attention. Fine pottery shops are also to be found in Kardamaina. Purchase local honey, wine, herbs and confectioneries, made from locally sourced tomato. In Mastihari, buy the local famed honey, while practically every pastry shop on the island will amaze you with its creations.


From the village of Kardamaina, take the boat to the neighbouring volcanic island of Nisyros, while from Mastihari, you can reach Kalymnos. Take a daily boat cruise to nearby Leros, Patmos, Leipsoi, Pserimos and Turkish Bodrum.