Travel back in time on Astypalea, a radiant Greek island brimming with old-world charm. The whitewashed houses, bougainvillea-lined streets and blue-domed Byzantine churches have barely changed in centuries. Relax on beautiful beaches, swim in the jewel-toned Aegean Sea and enjoy sumptuous seafood.
Things to do in Astypalaia
The postcard-perfect town of Hora cascades down a pair of hillsides. Whitewashed houses with bright blue doors, windows and balconies line the cobbled streets. Get lost in a maze of narrow alleys and peer into courtyards filled with geraniums, hibiscus and bougainvillea.
Walk up to the centuries-old Venetian castle for sweeping views of the Aegean Sea. Eight red-roofed windmills line the road up to the stronghold, which was built to defend the town from pirates. You’ll enter the castle through a heavily fortified vaulted passageway. The imposing stone walls will look even more impressive up close.
Honey-coloured pebble sand and translucent water await at Kaminakia Beach. It’s one of the prettiest beaches on the island and a favourite with locals. Rent a sun lounger and umbrella or claim a spot under the shade of a tamarisk tree. Vatses Beach is framed by rocky hills and mountains. Snorkel in the crystal-clear and spot wild goats perched on the hillsides.
Hora is the largest town on Astypalea and is home to some of the island’s best cafes, bars and restaurants. The lively harbourfront district features breezy cafes and traditional tavernas where you can enjoy ocean-fresh seafood. Walk up to the main village to find atmospheric tapas, wine and cocktail bars.
Getting around Astypalaia
All towns and villages on Astypalea are pedestrian-friendly and easy to get around on foot. Local buses run between Hora, Livadi, Agios Andreas, Maltezana and other settlements on the island. Ferries connect Astypalea with other islands in the Dodecanese archipelago, including Rhodes, Kos, Patmos and Symi.