Those who travel by ferry to Agathonisi, arrive in one of the last tranquil paradises in the Greek archipelago, nothing compared with any other island!
Agathonisi is a small island near Patmos and it is actually the northern island of the Dodecanese complex. Its surface is rocky and does not have much plant cover, except for some bushes and wild olive trees. Freshwater is also another scarcity on the island, with only some wells collecting rainwater and some tankers with water coming every while to supply the locals.
The development has been slow, the island got electricity as late as 1984, and landline in 1985. The majority of the islanders works with fisheries and agriculture, only a few are dependent on tourism. And good is that, because there are not many who comes here. Around 800 tourists visit Agathonissi in a year.
In the ancient times, the island was called Yetousa and excavations have revealed some ancient pieces there. As it was frequently attacked by pirates who were sailing along the Aegean from the ancient times till the 19th century, it has not been permanently inhabited. In fact, the first people to come on the island and settle for long were 6 families from Patmos and Fourni in 1895, when the Greek fleet had faced the pirate problem for good.
Agathonisi is also a designated "Natura 2000 Protected Site" that serves as a refuge for rare birds and it boasts unspoiled landscapes, sheltered bays, picturesque settlements, and truly authentic hospitality. A popular target for marauding pirates through the ages, today it remains serene, tranquil, and perfect for a romantic getaway.
Although Agathonisi is small, it would be wise to book your ferry tickets in advance in order to avoid any last minute surprises regarding the availability.
Getting to Agathonisi by Ferry
Several local ferry lines operate throughout the year between the Dodecanese Islands, with stopping off at Agathonisi on a regular basis. Agathonisi can be reached by boat from Patmos, Samos or Lipsi. There is a connection by sea 4 times a week with the islands of Kalymnos and Samos (Pythagoreion port), twice weekly by speed boat with Kalymnos and once a week with Rhodes. Be careful with the departure, it is probably best to leave Agathonisi one or two days before since it might get windy and the boats will be cancelled.
Agathonisi Ferry Port
The Agathonisi ferry port is situated in the settlement of Agios Georgios, which consists of a few shops and some restaurants where you can sit back and make the most of the relaxed atmosphere. Megalo Horio, the only other settlement on the island, lies 1.5 km uphill from the harbor.
Transportation in Agathonisi
On such a tiny island, there is no need for public transport. You can reach any of your desired destinations by walking, so just make sure to bring comfortable sturdy footwear. You can also jump on a small boat at the harbor and reach one of the beautiful remote beaches by sea for a small amount of money.
Holidays in Agathonisi
Agathonisi is too small for most tourists, there are only a few tavernas and there are no shops to shop in. It is an extremely serene island and the silence is so substantial that it is heard. Agathonissi suits those who seek peace and quiet.
Beaches in Agathonisi (h3)
Agathonisi boasts several sheltered beaches that are reachable by foot or by sea. Each one offers a little piece of paradise where you can bathe in crystal clear waters and soak up the island’s tranquil vibes. There are no organized beaches on the island, so make sure to take water and snacks with you before you set off -and wear sturdy walking shoes.
Here is a detailed list of Agathonisi’s beaches:
- Vathi Pigadi
- Spilia Beach
- Gaidouravlakos Beach
- Vathy Pigadi Beach
- Tsangari Beach
- Mikro Ammoudaki & Megalo Ammoudaki Beaches
Places to Visit in Agathonisi
There are five chapels along the island and some nice, quiet coves to swim. Its inhabitants are mostly elders and extremely friendly. Along the port, you will find some taverns and a couple of hotels.
Agathonisi consists of three settlements, Mikro Chorio, Megalo Chorio and Agios Georgios. The biggest village is Megalo Chorio, which has been built in a way that is not visible from the sea, for protection. Megalo Chorio has 100 inhabitants while Mikro Horio has only 20.
In addition, Katholiki, the remains of what was once a little fishing village, Katholiki is almost abandoned now but visitors will enjoy its waterfront location, with the pretty line-up of traditional wooden fishing boats.