Passengers who travel by the ferry to Tilos, arrive on Aegean Island that has a great natural beauty, rocky mountains, crystal beaches, walnuts and olive trees!
Tilos island belongs to the Dodecanese complex. It is located to the northwest of Rhodes and it is actually a tiny island with a few permanent inhabitants. Tilos has developed over the last few years as the paradise for campers and peace lovers.
The capital of Tilos is Megalo Chorio, a small village that lacks some of the modern amenities and has thus preserved its traditional character with its old churches and small, cozy homes. The main harbor of the island is Livadia. This is where large ferries and small fishing boats usually moor.
Tilos has got extraordinary architectural and archaeological attractions. There are the ruins of some medieval castles, a Byzantine monastery and a village declared as a cultural monument, Mikro Chorio.
Mountainous Tilos is in fact a protected ecological park, part of the Natura 2000 network, with rich flora and fauna, abundant waters and fertile areas. Plus some charming secluded beaches, mostly accessible by boat or foot.
Make your booking in advance with a ferry to Tilos, since the island gets really crowded in summer months, therefore, it is possible that you will not find any ferry tickets or hotel room availability.
Ferry connections to Tilos
There is a ferry connection between Tilos and Athens, as ferries depart from Piraeus port. If you are traveling from Athens to Tilos, then it might be more convenient for you to reach Rhodes or Kos by plane within a one or two - hours trip and then travel to Tilos by ferry. Ferry services to Kalymnos, Nisyros, Kos and Rhodes are available all year round.From the port of Tilos there are regular routes to Astypalea, Kastelorizo, Symi and Piraeus/Athens, whereas ferry crossings to Leros, Paros, Naxos and Patmos are only available seasonally. In addition, there is Tilos to Halki connection, but again, only on a seasonal basis.
In any case, Tilos is also connected by ferry with other islands of the Dodecanese, like Simi, Leros, and Patmos.
- Piraeus to Tilos: Get from the biggest port in Greece, Piraeus and the surrounding islands to Tilos. The trip is quite long and it lasts approximately 17 hours, about 3 times a week
Tilos ferry port
Tilos ferry port sits on a fabulous bay nestled amongst a lush landscape and steep-sided mountains. It's located in the southeast coast of the island, in the village of Livadia. Livadia, the island’s port, is the most touristic place in Tilos.
Tilos Transportation Options
Tilos is a quite small and tranquil island. However, there are many interesting places to visit here! Below you will find out which are the available options for your transfers.
Don't forget to get informed about how to get to Tilos in order to optimize your travel.
Distances in Tilos are relatively short and it is not really necessary to use the bus. However, you can check Tilos Bus that connects almost all villages on the island.
A taxi is definitely an option that offers you easy and fast transfer to your destination. You can find some taxis in central spots, like Chora. Otherwise, you can call the numbers +30 22460 44169/44066, 694 520 0436.
Car and motorbike rentals
With a car or motorcycle, you can explore the island at your own pace and gain access to the most secluded spots! In case you don't have your own vehicle, it is an excellent idea to rent one for your sightseeing trips! You will find rental agencies close to the port. As Tilos is quite small, a motorbike might be a better choice.
You can explore the most breathtaking spots of the island, by joining an organized tour. Fully equipped boats transfer you to the most beautiful, secluded beaches around the island and to nearby islands, too. You will find these kinds of boats on Livadia port.
Taxi boats transfer you to any of the island's secluded spots, like Tholos and Agios Sergios beaches. They depart from Livadia port.
Holidays in Tilos
Tilos is one of those tiny Greek islands that belongs to the Dodecanese chain. Still untouched by mass tourism, Tilos island keeps its unspoiled charm. Thanks to its secluded location and raw natural ambiance, Tilos has emerged as an alternative destination for holidays in Greece.
Tourism on the island is not developed but it would certainly be a nice experience to spend a few days there and relax. The island may not have any luxury to offer you, but you will love it for its beauty and authentic style.
Beaches in Tilos
After exploring the villages of Tilos Greece, you should head to the beach. Quite frankly, there's luscious swimming to be had on Tilos beaches! As you’d expect from an unspoiled island, Tilos beaches are secluded and unorganized, ideal for those who seek privacy. Some of them are naturist beaches and can be easily accessed either on foot or by the small local bus.
Hereunder, you will find a list of the best beaches on Tilos island:
- Livadia: If you prefer an organized beach, go to the coast close to the port of Livadia is ideal for you, offering plenty of amenities
- Eristos: The most well-known beach on the island is sandy, easily accessible and provides many trees, ideal for shade. It’s also campers’ favorite. It is not organized, but there is a tavern, shops and cantina nearby
- Plaka: Lovely waters and many trees that provide nice shade, accessible by car. There are no amenities nearby, so make sure to bring your own supplies
- Lethra: A quiet, scenic pebbly beach with crystalline blue waters. Its not easy to reach but is worth the walk
- Agios Sergios - Tholos - Skafi: They are among the hardest to access on the island, but like Lethra, it will reward you in the end
Things to see & do in Tilos
An island far from the crowds of the more popular Rhodes, the little island of Tilos, with its rugged mountains, verdant hills and picturesque beaches, is one of the few remaining islands where visitors can experience authentic island life. Tilos, in the Dodecanese, is one of the greenest places in Greece, and seduces travelers in search of respite and tranquility. Here are the best things to see and do in Tilos.
Stroll around Mikro Chorio
A deserted village between Livadia (the main port) and Megalo Chorio (the island’s capital), Mikro Chorio boasts ruins of imposing buildings and stone houses. Abandoned after the 1940s, this ghost town has a small bar that only runs during the summer, as well as a stunning whitewashed church that overlooks the settlement. Don’t visit without exploring the 14th-century castle built by the Knights of the Order of Saint John.
Sunbathe at Livadia beach
The main port of Tilos, 7 kilometers from Megalo Chorio, has traditional houses, picturesque churches and the ruins of medieval castles nearby. The highlight is certainly its beach, located next to the port. Well organized, this is a long sandy beach where you will find sunbeds and umbrellas as well as cafés and tavernas in which to enjoy a delicious meal after a long sunbathing session.
Discover Megalo Chorio's archaeological and paleontological sites
While the construction project for an archaeological museum in Tilos is underway, you can still enjoy archaeological and paleontological finds at the museum Tilos, housed in the town hall in Megalo Chorio. Get acquainted with statuettes, sculptures from the Classical and Hellenistic periods, and ancient inscriptions and pottery. The paleontological collection includes fossils of dwarf elephants, the only extinct species of elephant found in Europe. These were discovered in the Charkadio Cave, near Megalo Chorio. Once you are done, make sure to stroll around the alleys and streets and get lost in the small capital.
Delve into Charkadio Cave
Located 2 kilometers south of Megalo Chorio, at the centre of the island, the Charkadio Cave has become an important sight after a phenomenal discovery of 1971 by the geologist and speleologist Nikolaos Simeonides. His team brought into light Neolithic artifacts, including hunting tools and pottery. But the most important discoveries were of the fossilized bones of elephants, turtle and deer within the cave. According to scientists, dwarf elephants lived on Tilos 45,000 years ago and disappeared about 4,000 years ago.
Visit the Church of Taxiarchis
The Taxiarchis Church, also known as the church of the Archangel Michael, is one of the oldest monasteries in the Dodecanese. This peaceful haven, built in 1425, is located within the castle of Megalo Chorio, and stopped operating in the 19th century. You will be charmed by its pebbled yard, as well as by its carved wooden iconostasis from the 19th century and impressive bell tower.
Take pictures in the Medieval Castle of Tilos
Located on top of Megalo Chorio, the castle was built by the Knights of Saint John in the 15th century, while the church of Archangel Michael located within was built later on. Once home to an entire village, the castle was deserted around the 18th century, when piracy was prohibited. While not much remains of the castle, the external wall, the cisterns and the ruins of the nearby Messaria fortress, built around 1366, are visible. This is also an excellent place to watch the sun sets over the Bay of Agios Antonios.
Tan at one of the wonderful beaches
Crystal-clear waters, idyllic stretches of sand and pebbles: this is what you get in Tilos. While the most popular beach is Livadia, there are plenty of other beaches to discover, such as the quaint Agions Antonios, with its small fishing harbor, or the beautiful Plaka, tucked in the western part of the island. Eristos beach is also a favorite, thanks to its golden sand, but we are pretty sure the pebbled shores of Lethra will still charm you. You will also find beaches accessible only by boat, such as Skafi, Agios Sergios or Tholos.
Visit the Monastery of Agios Panteleimonas
Undeniably the most important church on the island, the Monastery of Agios Panteleimonas, dedicated to the protector of the island, is worth a look. Standing at the end of the only road on the island, this important site of pilgrimage was built in the 15th century and includes spectacular Byzantine frescoes. Set in a lush area, the monastery is also home to a wooden iconostasis dating from the 18th century.
Walk the old pathways
Tilos is a paradise protected under the Natura2000 network, and the best way to explore it is hiking. Thanks to the networks of old marked tracks, you can wander inland, discover the fascinating and unspoiled nature of the island and quickly understand why ecology is dear to the locals. Take it all in, smell the local flora and open your eyes. You may come across abandoned churches at the bend of a track or stumble upon forgotten ruins. You may never want to leave this green paradise.
Do some birdwatching
Since the whole island is an ecological park, Tilos is home to over 100 bird species, some of which are endangered or rare. Come with your gear and you may catch a sight of a peregrine, a Bonelli’s eagle or an Eleanora’s falcon. Just remember not to be a nuisance to them.
Hotels in Tilos
There are plenty of hotels, airbnb, rooms and accommodation in the town. A wide range of Tilos apartments, hotels, resorts and villas all over the island welcome you to enjoy your stay by the sea offering all the requested facilities.
Here are some suggestions in order to choose your ideal hotel in Tilos:
- Ilidi Rock
- Stefanakis Villas
- Eristos Beach Hotel