Let’s explore Kos island

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       Over the past two years, Kos island has had two major challenges: refugee camps and last July`s earthquake. I think this beautiful island has fallen into disfavour and I would like to rehabilitate it a little. Few years ago I spent a week in this island and I can say it was a very beautiful one. I liked Kos because you could cycle all around the island. There are many dedicated cycle lanes so it’s easy and safe, to cycle to many destinations in Kos.

And now a little bit of geography….

        Kos Island, located in the southeast of the Aegean Sea, is part of the Dodecanese islands group. The main advantages of this island are: the small area which permit you to visit the whole island, well organized, accessible and beautiful beaches with fine sand, the richness of historical sites, local gastronomy supported by the locals’ concern for sustainable agriculture.

         All the beaches of Kos island are beautiful, accessible, ready to offer you a day of indulgence on a lounger or an active one with water sports, snorkeling, swimming in the Aegean waters. You must know that the sea temperature that laves the shores of this island is 220C in June and around 240C from July to September due to the currents. When you get into the water, you freshen up. Perfect in a hot day! Here are the first five beaches that I liked most:

  1. Thermes (Empros Thermi) is located about 12 km away from the city of Kos. The uniqueness of this place lies in the presence of springs with sulfuric and hot water. There is a small swimming pool, arranged by the locals, in which tourists can laze. It’s about the semicircle placement of some boulders, among which sea water takes place. I was amazed because most of the tourists who were lying in the warm water were surprised when the colder waves passed among the boulders. Everyone was reacting in his own way: some of them were jumping, others were screaming or laughing. During the mandatory snorkeling session, I saw many gas bubbles rising to the surface so I experienced the swimming in the bubbling water. The beach is long and divided in two sections: an organized part with umbrellas and an unorganized one.
  2. Kardamena beach is about six kilometers long and serves the resort of the same name with the most luxurious hotels on the island and an intense nightlife. This beach has two sectors: a calm, tranquil beach with taverns and another one with all the amenities to satisfy a wide range of wishes. We obviously picked up the quiet one because it was morning and we want to relax. The marine life was very varied…..so we snorkeled.
  3. Agios Stefanos is located in the bay of Kamari. The beauty of this beach is complemented by the island of Kastri and the ruins of Agios Stefanos Basilica. On the island of Kastri there is the small monastery Agios Nikolas. You can reach the island by  boat or  swimming. The beach possesses an excellent mix of facilities, activities, and beautiful scenery, making it a really good all-rounder.
  4. The Paradise and Camel beaches are located near Agios Stefanos beach. The first one is well organized, the second more wild. Paradise Beach, in my opinion, offers everything you want, large beach areas bordered by rocks, the opportunity to practice water sports, a very exciting mini water park, restaurants and pubs for all tastes and at prices to suit every pocket. The mini water park is consisting of a few slides and inflatable rocks in the water. I saw that teenagers were enjoying it.
  5. Mastichari, the famous beach for its fine white sand and emerald crystal water is located 27 km south of Kos town and 3 km north west of Antimachia. The tamarix trees on the beach provide shade and help create a quaint landscape. This beach offers plenty of tourist amenities so you can spend the whole day here. If you want to visit the island of Kalymnos the nearby village offers daily connections.

      I want to mention other beautiful beaches such as Psalidi with pebbles, Kavo Paradise, Lambi, Tigaki and Marmari with fine sand.

…..and a little bit of history.

      The island of Kos was under the domination of the Venetians, the Knights of Rhodes, the Ottomans, the Germans, in order to return to Greece in 1947. All of them let an important influence in the architecture, way of life and food.

       The town of Kos impressed me by its numerous attractions: Plane tree of Hippocrates, Ancient Agora, The Castle of Joanites (St. John’s Knights), Hippocratic Museum, Gazi Hassan Mosque, St. Paraskevi Greek Orthodox Church, etc.

        The plane tree of Hippocrates raises many controversies because this tree is about 500 year old, so it is impossible to be there in the 5th century BC…… but its story is beautiful enough to attract tourists.

          About 4 km away from the Ancient Agora, the Asclepeion Sanctuary finds the ruins of a former medical school, founded in the 3rd century BC. Asclepius was, in greek mythology, the god of medicine.

         For the historical vestiges mentioned above, it’s a good idea to use a guide. You will find interesting things! Find it at https://www.toursbylocals.com/Kos-Tours or read the inscriptions carefully.

         Zia, the village where the most tourists go to see a magnificent sunset is located on the slopes of Dikeos Mountain. I like the fact that local people try to preserve the traditional character of the place although the crowd of tourists suffocates this small village, especially in the afternoon and evening, because the sunset and the magnificent view of the sea are special. I invite you to explore this village and beyond the taverns! You will find traditional houses and narrow streets specific to the mountain villages.

           At first sight, Kos seems to be an ordinary island. I have to visit it to find out that I was wrong. It has so many beautiful places only to be explored!

Have you been in Kos recently? What’s your opinion about this island?

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