Taking the ferry to Leros, the traveler will discover a virgin and relaxing island with an unusual character, ideal for those seeking solitude and tranquility!
The island of Leros is located between Patmos and Kalymnos and is a stunning island in the Dodecanese complex, relatively small meaning that two or three days should be enough to see everything. According to Greek mythology, Leros was the place chosen by the goddess Artemis for hunting because of the amount of wild deer there.This picturesque island has a pristine natural beauty with lush green valleys mixed with a dry hilly landscape, and breathtaking cliffs that hang over the sea. The island also has a unique architecture that bears witness to the influences of the Cycladic, Italian and Alexandrian!
The capital of Leros is Agia Marina, the administrative and commercial centre and the second port of the island. It is located amphitheatrical between two hillsides and impresses with its well-preserved mansions with colorful windows and traditional houses with special architecture built during the Italian occupation. Also of particular interest is Lakki, or Porto Lago, which is the main port of the island. The settlement was built entirely by the Italians in the early 1930s and stands out for its magnificent architecture with art deco elements known as Italian Razonalism, which was popular in the 1930s. The combination of Venetian, Renaissance and Islamic decorations make Lakki an architectural achievement.
Apart from the interesting historical sights, the beautiful villages and the unique settlements, Leros is an island that offers the visitor beautiful beaches, beautiful paths for unforgettable hiking activities and an intense nightlife all year round, with several bars and cafes, countless choices for food in traditional fish taverns and restaurants. In the summer various events are organized with concerts, festivals with traditional dances in many parts of the island attracting the interest of tourists who stay up with the locals until the early hours of the morning.
Also, in the last decade or so, the island has developed as a diving destination, attracting people who wish to discover some of the many ancient shipwrecks that have been found in the surrounding sea and for fishing enthusiasts.
If you want to discover this hidden gem of the Dodecanese, book your ferry tickets in advance!
Ferry connections to Leros
From Piraeus to Leros
From Piraeus to Leros there are frequent itineraries about 5-7 itineraries per week and the journey takes about 8-10 hours. Although it is a long journey by ferry, it is a challenge for ferry travel enthusiasts. Due to the long duration of the trip the ferries that operate the route to Leros, and the Dodecanese in general, are conventional with plenty of cabins and sufficient garages available.
Arriving from Athens airport by metro, you can use the free bus located opposite the main entrance of the station in the port. The buses take you to the ferries.
Please note that both the duration and frequency of the Piraeus to Leros ferry services may vary from season to season, so we would advise you to do a live check to get the latest information.
From Kavala to Leros
There is a connection from the port of Kavala to Leros with ferries that operate once a week and only during the high season. The duration of the trip from Kavala to Leros lasts approximately 24 hours. The route is not direct and all trips are with several stops on other islands.
Ports of Leros
The ports of Leros are Agia Marina and Lakki.
Agia Marina is the main tourist centre and the port where most ships and excursion boats call.There are cafes on the waterfront, with beautiful views across the bay and a picturesque windmill perched on a dam at the northern end.
Lakki or Porto Lago, is the largest natural bay in the Balkans and the deepest natural harbour in the Mediterranean Sea. The port extends along the bay to the settlement of Agia Marina on the eastern coastline of the island so that a traveller can arrive at one port with one ferry company and depart from another port with another ferry company. The visitor arriving in Lakki has the chance to see the Italian city design with its long streets and squares full of trees and gardens and to admire buildings of amazing beauty. Around the port area there are picturesque shops for coffee and food with local specialties.
How to Get Around Leros
The traveler can move to Leros by public bus, taxi or by renting a car.
Leros has a bus network that connects the main parts of the port and the capital with some villages and beaches, but the routes are not so frequent. However, it is an economical solution for those who do not travel by car. For more information, you can visit Leros Bus.
A taxi may be an expensive option, compared to buses for example, but it is certainly an option that offers you easy and fast transport to your destination. Many taxis can be found in every central point, for example at the port or airport. For further details, please visit Leros Taxis.
Renting a Car
Renting a car is very convenient, as you will be able to visit places not served by bus and explore the island in the most secluded places. You can find a few car rental agencies in central locations around the island. For more, please click on Leros Car Rental.
Leros Airport to Leros Ferry Ports
The airport is located in the northeastern part of the island in Partheni, 17km from Lakki, just 20 minutes from the marina by car or taxi. From Leros airport to the ports of Leros, you can take a local bus or a taxi outside the airport every time a flight arrives. Also, there are no car rental agencies at the airport so if you wish to rent a car you should arrange this before you arrive. Alternatively, many hotels on the island of Leros provide airport transfers. For more information about a taxi transfer, please visit Leros Airport Taxis.
Holidays in Leros
In recent years, holidays in Leros are increasingly gaining the preference of travelers! This island that for years was accompanied by the memory of the history of the hospital (psychiatric hospital), was quite misunderstood and fortunately year after year is rightly changing its image
Leros has an authenticity and diversity in many ways as it introduces the visitor to its rich history. It is a quiet Greek island where the sun and the sea coexist harmoniously, peaceful and surprisingly green, with small valleys between hills. It has a special capital, the romantic and beautiful Agia Marina, the traditional Platanos, with its market and shops, and the picturesque Panteli, a cosmopolitan village with a lovely marina and beautiful windmills. On this Aegean island there is a special, preserved character in its architecture that bears witness to its history. Castles , churches, monasteries , white houses, cobbled streets, flowered alleys, tavernas, shops and bars - it is a wonderful combination that the traveller encounters when visiting Leros. An 11th century Byzantine castle, lit up at night, once the home of the crusading knights, looks down from a hill above the villages and welcomes tourists offering stunning panoramic views. There is a road to the castle but active visitors can climb the 400 steps up to the castle gate.
In addition, the island has modern facilities, beautiful beaches with many water sports options and unforgettable cultural attractions that offer an unforgettable holiday. Special mention should be made of the hospitality of the locals who continue their traditions and culture, enticing visitors to participate in the island's events. Wonderful food for the lovers of gastronomy served in wonderful taverns and beautiful restaurants.So much to see on this small island , a gem of the Dodecanese.
You can see below some of the best sightseeing in Leros.
Sightseeing in Leros
- Castle of Panagia (Virgin Mary) or Castle of Pantelio: a castle that dominates the skyline with an incredible view over the entire region of the Aegean, from Patmos and Kalymnos and beyond. In the castle, you will find the church of the Holy Mother, which celebrates its August 15 feast day in style, as well as a church museum with various sacred objects
- "Merikias Tunnel" War Museum: It is a part of tunnels around Lakki and there was the maritime administration of Italians, who remained in Leros for 31 years (1912- 1943). A network of subterranean and above-ground former ammunition depots constitute a fascinating museum
- Temple of Artemis in Partheni: the archaeological ruins at Partheni, located next to the airport. During excavations in 1980, a group of churches built on top of Roman structures was discovered. The remains of a temple of Artemis are located on top of a small hill, west of the airport. Only the lower parts of the walls survived but the site still offers a great panoramic view
- Bellenis Tower and Museum of Folklore and History: built entirely of local stone in 1925, the two-storey stately home houses the Historical Museum, Folklore Museum, Press Museum and the Municipal Art Gallery and Library
- Bourtzi Fortress in Agia Marina: a small coastal fortress of uncertain chronology in Agia Marina, Leros
- Saint Isidorus Church: is the most picturesque church of Leros, is in the area of Kokkali and is one of the most romantic settings of the island as the sunset here is one of the most beautiful ones.. The chapel is the most photographed church of the island, and seems to emerge from a rock in the middle of the sea. This is why many couples choose to have their wedding or the christening of their children there
- Virgin Mary of Kavouradena: one of the most delightful and picturesque churches of the island is near Xerokampos village, built on a rock on the coastline
- Visit small villages : except from the main places as Agia Marina, Lakki and Platanos, we suggest you visit some picturesque villages like Alinda, Partheni, Panteli, Krithoni and Xerokampos
- Do some hiking activities on the paths of the island: Leros offers hiking activities with very beautiful paths. Some of the most beautiful trails is from Merikia’s museum tunnel to Katsouni and the Lighthouse, Dragon trail and Galaktoboureko
- Diving and snorkeling: Leros has gradually developed into a successful and impressive diving attraction of great ecological value yearning to be explored due to the existence of the unique sea ecosystems of the Mediterranean sea and enriched with a great number of ships, planes, unique shipwrecks museums from the 2nd War, incomparable historical monuments of incomparable beauty, which are detected even today at the extensive sea area
Beaches in Leros
For those that summer holidays are combined mainly with lying on beaches and relaxing on a sun lounger we will be glad to inform them that beaches in Leros are plenty, all of which have plenty of facilities.
These are some of the best beaches that you definitely have to visit while on the island:
- Vromolithos Beach: just before the Panteli is a classic choice, It is a large, sandy, with facilities , tavernas and a beach bar
- Agios Spyridonas: ideal for those who can not decide what they prefer: pebbles or sand as it has both with clear blue waters
- Gourna: a dark sandy beach and clear, shallow waters , organized with umbrellas and with trees that offer shade. Near the beach there are tavernas and cafes
- Krithoni: very popular beach of Leros organized with crystal clear water
- Koulouki: It consists of three consecutive coves with light sand and surrounded by pines. On the middle beach, there is a snack bar
- Agia Kioura: a small, beautiful and hidden beach. Ideal for relaxation with crystal waters. Note, that it can get quite crowded in busy periods and there is no canteen or umbrellas, so be prepared
- Agia Marina: it is one of the most famous beaches of the island with shallow clear waters, which is why it is mainly preferred by families
- Dio Liskaria: a beautiful, sheltered bay with clear blue waters, organized with umbrellas and sunbeds, while nearby you will find taverns and cafes
- Xirokampos: a large, sandy beach with deep waters is suitable for diving and snorkeling
- Merikia: a quiet beach located near Koulouki with crystal-clear waters and large tamarisk trees that offer their shade
- Penteli: a famous, large beach of Leros is located next to Vromolithos with one of the largest beach bars on the island. Near the beach many taverna are available
- Alinda: one of the largest beaches of Leros with blue waters, sand and pebbles, organized. In the vicinity there are several taverns
Hotels in Leros
There are several hotels in Leros that can satisfy all tastes.Luxury hotels and beautiful resorts as well as smaller hotels with special decoration !
Please find below some of the best rated hotels and accommodation:
- Crithoni's Paradise
- Panteli Beach Hotel
- Saraya Resort
- Archontiko Angelou
- Alidian bay Suites Leros
- Boulafendis Hotel Apartments
- Villa Clara Leros
Island Hopping from Leros
The location of Leros between a multitude of islands in the North Aegean and the Dodecanese is ideal for those who want to go island hopping from Leros and explore many popular islands! In particular, you can travel by ferry directly to the following places:
Routes to the ports of Kalymnos, Rhodes, Kos, Patmos, Lipsi and Symi are offered regularly, while routes to Kastelorizo, Nisyros, Katapola/Amorgos and Tilos are only available seasonally. Finally, there are seasonal routes to Pythagorion/Samos, Arki, Fourni and Agios Kirikos/Ikaria.