Traditional settlement next to a volcanic crater near the sea.
Ⓒ Militos


NOW 2 °C

Next 5 days

  • WED 4 °C
  • THURS 7 °C
  • FRI 9 °C
  • SAT 11 °C
  • SUN 11 °C
  • MON 11 °C

Source: National Observatory of Athens /

Τhe island of wild beauty

Nisyros is one of the most beautiful Aegean islands, still untouched by the tourism growth. It is part of the Dodecanese group of islands, situated between Kos and Tilos. The island extends over a surface of 41 km and its coastline is 28 km long. It can be reached by ferry from Piraeus, Kos and Rhodes.

According to mythology, it was created during the war between Gods and Giants. Poseidon chased the Giant Polyvotis down to Kos, cut a part of it and threw it to his enemy, sinking him forever in the bottom of the Aegean Sea. The legendary rock is the modern Nisyros and it is said that the volcano’s explosions are the angry breathing of the defeated Giant. These explosions shaped the island, which is considered to be the youngest volcanic centre in Greece, still active – along with the volcanoes of Milos, Santorini and Methana. During antiquity the island thrived on obsidian commerce, extracted by the inhabitants of Nisyros, from the nearby island, Gyali.
According to mythology, Nisyros was created from the Battle of Giants, during the war between Gods and Giants. Poseidon pursued the Giant Polyvotis up to Kos island, cut a part of it and threw it to his enemy, sinking him for ever in the bottom of the Aegean Sea.

Around Nisyros’ villages

Apart from being the capital of the island, Mandraki is also its harbour. It is one of the biggest villages on Nisyros with many available tourism facilities available. Enjoy a stroll around the exquisite pebbled narrow streets and squares (most typical of all being the plateia Delfinion [square of Dolphins]), and take a close look at the white or coloured two-storeyed houses with wooden balconies. The houses are made of volcano rocks and insulated with pumice-stone. The nightlife is not very intense but you will surely have a good time in Mandraki, where there are little tavernas and some bars.
• Paleokastro, a classical period acropolis of the ancient city. It is still in very good condition because of its high quality construction and represents one of the best fortification works of the ancient times, basaltic andesite (volcanic rock), one of the hardest rocks in the world. The main gate is composed by well-hewn stone blocks with a perfect fit of the connecting surfaces. The total length of the fortification is very big, as it surrounds the entire land-lubber site of the rocky hill above the south end of Mandraki.

• The monastery of Panagia Spiliani, built at the top of a hill northwest of Mandraki. The biggest part of the monastery is built in a cave. The cave is divided into two churches. The north is dedicated to the Kimisi tis Theotokou (the Assumption) and the south, Agios Charalambos (Saint Charalambos).

• The Castle of the knights of St. John in Mandraki, built high on a rock at an altimeter of 150 meters. The castle is a reminder of the Knights of St. John having stepped foot on the island and built -in 1315- a magnificent castle in which nestles the Monastery of Panagia Spiliani dedicated to Kimisi of Theotokou (the Assumption).

Located 8 km E of Mandraki, Emporios stands out for its houses’ architecture. It flourished during the 20th century when it had many inhabitants, shops (blacksmith workshops, groceries, tailor-shops, coffee shops) and skilled stone makers. During the ‘60s a great part of the population moved to the village seaport, Palloi.

Porta is the main square of Nikia, where the church of Eisodion tis Theotokou [Presentation of Virgin Mary] is located; this is one of the most gorgeous churches of Greece! Nikia is located 14 km SE away from Mandraki. The square has an ellipsoid shape and pebbled floor designed by Paschalis Paschalakis, a famous artisan of the 19th century, born in Nisyros. Walking through the village, you will find some nice spots looking at the volcano. It is worth visiting  the volcano. You may walk in the crater and watch the boiling holes. The most recent explosion took place in 1888, shaping a cylindrical pipe of volcano elements, with a diameter of at least 25 m. Polyvotis, the largest crater of the volcano, has a diameter of 260m and a depth of 30m. There are five younger craters, in the same area, the largest being “Stefanos" with a diameter of 30 m and a depth of 30m. The volcano surrounds a valley (caldera) 2,400m long and 950m wide. You can also visit the volcanological museum, at the edge of the caldera, offering a unique view. It is well-equipped with samples and pictures of rocks, maps, diagrams, photographs, models of volcanoes, computer simulations and much more. Thanks to the technology you will learn about the volcanic activity of the area through three dimensional moving images.

Take part in the fest of Koimisi tis Theotokou at Panagia Sipliani lasts for 9 days ( August 6-15). During the festivities and on the day of Panagia (August 15th) a procession and a big fair take place at Mandraki. In the evening there is a fair, called "Koupa tis Panaghias" [Virgin Mary's cup]: The first lady of the dance holds a cup in her hand and each one entering the dance puts money in the cup for the church and the island’s sake.

It is worth visiting:
• Panaghia Listiriotissa, located in a cave near the village.
• The medieval castle of Pantoniki which has a unique view. Taksiarches church (11th or 13th cent.) is built on the top of the castle with remarkable frescoes and icons to see.
• The monasteries of Panagia Kyra (7.5 km SE) and Stavros (8.5 km SW), on Argos location.
• Thermal Spas: Located at Loutra, the spring (37° C water temperature) is ideal for rheumatisms, arthritis, skin infections, sciatica and etc.

Filming in Nisyros



In the beautiful island of Kos and in the turquoise Greek seas, 15-year-old Adriana will meet 14-year-old Tony, who is on the island for holidays with his family from Finland, and between them will develop a youthful romance and a tender relationship of love and trust. Overlooking the Aegean Sea, the two children, along with Tony’s brothers, 12-year-old Alexis and 10-year-old Veeti, will unwittingly entangle in a dangerous adventure...


Nisyros is connected with Piraeus and other ports of the Aegean. The conventional ships make the route ""Piraeus - Nisyros"" in about 13 hours.

Other destinations

Arrive by Sea
Reach the island by ferry via Piraeus, Kos and Rhodes.

Ferry routes

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