Let’s explore the Beaches of Patmos
The islands shape and its 63 km coastline offers a wide selection of beaches, from sandy and organized shores with umbrellas and beach bars to solitary coves. The choice of where to enjoy some of the clearest, refreshing and tranquil waters of the Aegean Sea is yours. If you’re arriving with a private boat or simply renting one, you’re in for an unforgettable experience and not only on our island, for Patmos has many small and larger neighbouring islands making short distance excursions enticing.
Psili Ammos is an adventure. It’s a sandy beach, which makes it popular, but it’s a 20-30 minute walk or 40-60 minute boat ride from Skala. So it’s not something you’d do every day. This is a good thing, because it’s everyone’s favorite beach and otherwise it would be over crowded. It is especially crowded in high season (August) on Sundays, because of locals spending their day – off there and the extra amount of tourists. The walk is over two hills and a small mountain on a well-trotted donkey track, so the chances of getting lost are unlikely. Avoid walking there around midday because it gets hot and tiring especially for the elderly, children and the unfit. On windy days people spend their day playing with the waves that get around 0.5 to 1 meter high, the sand does seem to get everywhere so take precautions. On a calm day you’ll need a spray for the flies which aren’t always there, but when are can become a little annoying.
The beach is divided in half (unofficially), the furthest from the tavern is the nudist half: although nudism is prohibited on this holy island on some beaches it is tolerated. On the side of the tavern (which is the side you will be entering) you will not see any nudists, even when going for a walk along the beach these people will get dressed, as a sign of respect, for the island and for people who may be offended by nudity. There are also stone wind stoppers built by passing campers who camp under tamarisk trees. They have built six of these and many of them have been coming here for years. Some of them just come for Psili Ammos and don’t leave the beach until it’s time for them to leave the island. So don’t be surprised if you don’t get a spot for your tent.
The beach is taken care of by a family that owns the tavern catering for your basic needs. The food is amazingly well cooked with fresh ingredients, especially the goat-stew (you will notice the goats all around the surrounding mountains). If you’re planning to spend the night and want dinner you must inform the tavern so they cook enough portions.
Petra is also known by locals as Kallikatsou, it’s a type of small crow (jackdaw) that used to nest there. The famous rock has been a home to more than crows though, in the times of Holy Christodoulos there was a hermitage. Handmade stairs, a water cistern and a drainage system are all visible and functional till today. The one word to describe Petra would be bizarre, climbing to the top will give you an intense feeling that varies from person to person. People have slipped of Petra so do be careful, climbing during night or low visibility is not recommended Petra beach is organized with umbrellas, sun beds and a canteen.
It’s a natural beach of chunky rocks that runs off Petra towards the south side of the island. There begins a popular nudist beach called Plaki. It is a sandy beach with small pebbles, there is only one small tree so go early if you want natural shade. At the end of Plaki begin a collection of small coves and beaches with small pebbles. You can walk along the road while looking down to select a beach or a cove. Some are not as accessible as they seem, so do have a good look around before starting your descent. Chances are you will have a hideaway of your own but these coves get shady early during the day because of their natural positioning
Livadi Geranou (Pothitou)
This picturesque bay has become one of the most popular beaches on the island. It’s a sandy beach with some small pebbles and the water is almost always calm due to the protection offered by the facing island of Agios Giorgios (St. George) named after the small church that’s on it. The island is at a swimming distance with a small sandy beach that awaits you, but there is usually a draft and some extra effort is needed at some points (not recommended for the unfit).
Its 12 kilometres from Skala and about a 35 minute walk from the bus station on Kambos beach. To get there you take a right at the junction at the end of Kambos beach and go up the hill. Turn left at the top of the hill and after about 3 kilometres to your right is the down hill asphalt road that takes you to the beach. There is a tavern there that supplies you with your basic needs. It is very popular with tourists and locals alike.
Lambi is renowned for its rare multicolored pebbles. There used to be hills of them but the pebbles are so beautiful it is hard to resist making a collection of them which means hills have been flattened out, so be wise before starting your own collection. The word Lambi means shining and is derived from the sun reflecting against the beautiful stones and the clear waters of the bay. The beach is long and has tamarisk shrubs for shade. It can be reached by turning left at the junction after Kambos beach. If walking it takes around 25 minutes from Kambos Beach.
There are usually boats (caiques) that leave from Skala around 10AM and take about an hour. Being on the north side of the island it is open to meltemi winds so boats are not always available for this location. It’s also a pleasant location for lunch and dinner, the taverns are on the beach and serve delicious food in a peaceful atmosphere There are also the remains of the old settlement Platys Gialos and the church of the Transformation (Metamorphosis) which is from the 16th century and considered as one of the most important sanctuaries of the island.
Agrio Livadi is approximately 1.5 km from Skala, it has a long sandy beach with small pebbles. Sun beds and water sports are available here. It also has a taverna and a beach bar. Its mainly shallow waters make it ideal for toddlers and the water is warmer than in most other beaches around the island. There are some nice little coves to your left which are accessible only by boat so you can rent paddle boats and paddle there but only in good weather because the currents do get strong as soon as you reach the end of the cove. Agia Thekla (Saint Thekla) is a little island opposite the cove, it’s named after the church that was built on it. There is also a beach there if you can paddle out to it.
Meloi beach is one of the closest beaches to the port of Skala. Being only 2 km away it’s a 15-minute walk making it very popular with people who have no transportation, it’s a sandy beach with tamarisk trees for shade. The islands camping site is only 20 meters away from the beach offering a popular restaurant and a mini market. There is also a traditional Greek tavern and a dock for shallow mooring. A beach not so well known on Patmos Island.
You can get to Lefkes Beach if you turn left just before Kambos village. The road is tarmac up to a point but the rest that reaches to the beach is a dirt road. On your way to Lefkes Beach you will find yourself in a typical rural landscape of Patmos. On the beach there is a Canteen for your needs.