Passengers who take the ferry to Symi, reach an ideal destination in Dodecanese islands very close to Rhodes with traditional villages and beautiful beaches!
According to mythology, the island was named after the nymph Symi, who was married to the God of the seas Poseidon. Chorio or Ano Symi is the main town of the island and is located between two mountains. The town and its buildings date back to the 19th century. The whole island of Simi together with the very small islands around is considered to be an archaeological site as according to the scientist the monuments and other findings date back from the prehistoric period. The first inhabitants were the Kares, the Phοenicians and the Dorians.
In the following years, the history of Symi is not different from the one of the other Dodecanese Islands. The Romans, the Byzantine Εmpire and then the Knights of Rhodes took control of the island who contributed on the prosperity of Symi regarding the trade, navigation and sponge gathering. After a long period of Turkish domination in 1912 the island was found under Italian rule, a really difficult period for the inhabitants who faced a period of great poverty until 1943. Later on, Symi passed to the British rule and in 1948 was integrated into Greece together with the other Dodecanese Islands.
Book your ferry tickets to Symi in advance and have a great holiday!
Ferry routes to Symi
Symi is connected to other islands of the Dodecanese complex with ferry routes from Kos, Rhodes, Kastelorizo, Kalymnos, Leros, Lipsoi, Tilos and Nisyros. More often during the summer period tourists have the opportunity to travel even for a daily excursion to the close islands and enjoy the sea and sun, taste the local food and learn about the history of the islands.
With a quick search through our website you can find the most convenient schedule, choose the type of vessel, book your tickets in advance and feel free to start your vacation.
The most common Symi ferry routes are:
- Piraeus/Athens to Symi ferry with 3 weekly sailings, more often during summer
- Ferry Rhodes to Symi with 2 crossings on average per day. A good opportunity is to arrange even a boat day trip from Rhodes to Symi.
- Kos to Symi with up to 3 sailings per day, depending on the date of travelling and on seasonality
Symi ferry ports
Symi ferry port called Gialos is located just in the center of the island and upon arrival and in a walking distance. It is a neoclassical harbour with colourful buildings and traditional mansions that serves the ferries arriving from Piraeus and other Dodecanese islands as well as the North Aegean Sea. All the facilities are available in Gialos like restaurants, shops and bars and hotels.
Panormitis is the second port of Symi situated in the southwestern part of the island and it is used for crossings to and from Rhodes. Panormitis is a small port, offers basic amenities and is connected to Gialos by local boat. Organize your trip by visiting our online booking engine for more information about the Symi ferry schedule
Symi Port to Symi town
The capital of the island is known as Chora where the Gialos port is located. The town of Symi consists of two parts: the port of Gialos and Chorio. Visitors who arrive to Simi port can take the bus to Chorio or rent a motorbike or a taxi. For information about the buses and taxis in Symi, please visit Transportation Services in Symi.
Villages and beaches in Symi
Symi is surrounded by magnificent villages and beaches with beautiful bays , some of them accessible only by local boats. The most visited are listed below:
Chorio or Ano Symi
Chorio or Ano Symi is the capital of the island connected to the port with 500 stone steps called Kali Strata. On the top of a hill there is the Castle also called “Mouse Castle” with the church Megali Panagia. On the hill of Noulia the visitors can see the windmills that testify the period of the prosperity of the island. Fortunately, In the eastern part of the castle the perimeter walls are preserved in good condition. The main square is the center of the island with local shops, bars and restaurants. The Archaeological and folklore museum is worth visiting.
Arriving in Gialos, the visitor meets one of the most characteristic villages of the island. The town hall square, the clock that was built in 1881 and the statue of the little fisherman are some of the attractions of the area. The little bay of Gialos with the clear waters is located very close to Symi town. Seaside taverns offer tasty meals and wine.
Αsk for the famous small prawns of Symi that can be eaten with the shell.
In a distance of around 300 meters from Symi town is the organized beach of Nos with sunbeds and umbrellas and also a tavern where you can find and taste the local specialities
The homonymous beach of Pedi village is located in the west side of Symi town, at a distance of 2km is visited by tourists who want to sunbathing, relax and have a lunch in a local restaurant with fresh seafood and Greek wine
One of the most significant areas in Symi is the village of Panormitis with the 18th century Monastery of Archangel Michael Panormitis, the protector of the sailors. As it is situated in the seafront of the village, the travelers can admire it upon arrival of the ferry.
Do not miss to visit the inside part of the monastery with the monk’s cells and the courtyards as well as the museum. The Rhodes to Symi ferry catamaran departs from this port.
One of the favourite beaches in Symi is Marathounda at a distance of 18 km south of Gialos and 2 km from the Monastery of Panormitis. Easily accessible by car or a local boat, the pebbly bay offers sunbeds, umbrellas and a local tavern for a delicious meal.
Nimporio or Emporio
Nimborio Beach, 3km northwest of Symi town is a place for swimming and relaxing in a close walking distance to the bays of Faneromeni, Marathounta and Agios Nikolaos. During the ancient times Emporio was the commercial harbor of the island but today is a picturesque fishing village
On the east side of the island between Pedi and Marathounta there is the impressive beach of Agios Georgios, accessible only by sea with a local small boat. It is one of the most beautiful beaches of the island due to the huge rock of 300 meters that stands behind it.
Another beautiful beach, mostly sandy, is Agios Nikolaos. Organized with umbrellas and sunbeds is preferred by families with children. It also has a small beach bar and a tavern for lunch. It is accessible from Gialos by water taxi or by Pedi by a local boat. If you prefer walking you need 20 min also from Pedi.
Take the boat from Pedi or Gialos and visit Nanou, a pebbly beach on the east side of the island, northern than Marathounta. Umbrellas, sunbeds and a small restaurant are available. Enjoy your swimming at one of the most beautiful beaches in Symi.
Do not leave the island without visiting Agia Marina beach in a bay with a small island with the omonimous church. The best way is to approach by a water taxi as the walking distance is about 40 minutes.