Situated between Kos and Leros, Kalymnos is the fourth largest island in the Dodecanese. It is surrounded by quiet islets, some inhabited only by sheep and goats, others – like Telendos and Pserimos – with just a few houses and tavernas. The Kalymnian landscape is rocky, its majestic mountain slopes fragrant with thyme, sage and oregano – essential ingredients in the delicious honey for which the island is famous. Fertile valleys offer pleasing contrast, especially Vathi with its turquoise fiord and peaceful groves of citrus fruit.
Kalymnos is best known as home of the world’s finest sponge divers. The sea has always been a focal point for island life and its colorful traditions and sense of community remain almost unchanged. Picturesque landscapes for walking, clear blue seas for snorkeling or scuba-diving, rock faces of unique quality for climbing and a warm-hearted hospitality are just some of the pleasures that await the visitor. Kalymnos is also a good base for visiting nearby islands. Patmos, Lipsi, Leros, Kos and Nisiros are all accessible for day trips.
“Have you seen the isle where the fig tree blossoms,
where the gnarled olive tree spreads its silvery leaves?
Have you beheld the daughter of the Sun and the Sea,
The mother of the sponge? She who conceives young
lions, breeds giants and the Kings of the Main?
It’s Kalymnos you have seen, one of the Twelve islands.”