Kos


Apart from Rhodes Kos is the most famous island of the Dodecanese. It is relatively big (290
km˛), about 30.000 people live on the island. Kos is well known for its long sandy beaches. Since the 1980'ies the main source of income is tourism. The island is well developed and – thanks to the international airport – attracts quite a few package holiday makers. Since they tend to spend a bit of money it certainly is good for the islanders. The good old days where you had long stretch of beach to yourself are over though. It still is a lot better than other places where you hardly find enough space for a beach towel.

Kos - View from the Sea

We recommend Hotel Koala in Kos Town.

Capital and by far the biggest town on the island is Kos. Overlooking the city is an impressive Venetian castle. It dominates the view and well worth visiting. Not to be missed is also the archaeological museum.

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The big walls of the castle in Kos Town

Kos is also interesting for hikers. Kos might be an island but its mountains are quite something. The highest is an impressive 880 meters high.

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There are plenty of interesting tours through the mountains with their remote villages. These places are still very traditional. The majority of the package holiday makers never come here. One of the few quiet places near the sea is Mastihari, a small fishing village 35 kilometres away from the capital.

Kos' archaeologists are most interested in the ruins of an old Asklepieion near the Hippocratic Museum.


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The famous ancient physician was born on Kos; well at least that's what they say. The plane tree under that Hippocrates has taught can be found in Kos town; well kind of anyway. Needless to say and when you think about obviously it cannot be. No plane tree in the world gets that old. The plane tree there is in fact only about 500 years old but the locals believe that this tree is a descendant of the old tree and that's good enough to advertise it as the "Plane Tree of Hippocrates". What can you say?

The famous tree of Hippocrates on Kos

It still is a pretty picture and fair enough; all the people that fail to read the explanation will probably believe they've seen a 2500 years old plane tree. Why not? Back to Hippocrates and the Asklepieionp; allegedly in this very temple Hippocrates was taught medicine by a guy named Herodicus. The latter apparently invented therapeutic exercise to treat diseases. 

My place to stay on Kos has been for many years the Hotel Koala. Nice single rooms with a balcony cost out of the high saison only 22 Euro with breakfast (double rooms are mostly less than 30 Euro). All rooms have free WIFI Internet. In winter I have stayed in the upmarket Kosta Hotel at the port (low prices out of saison). A good list with other accommodation on Kos you can find here.

The cheapest place to stay on Kos is the camp site. It's about 3 kilometres out of town but if you arrive by ferry a mini van will pick you up. It belongs to "Kos Camping" and is free of charge. There is a large number of rooms in town, rent rooms, pensions and hotels. There also is a wide range of restaurants. Prices are average.

Flights to Kos: The international airport is quite busy during summer. There are daily planes mainly form England and Germany. Domestic flights come from Athens and Rhodes.

Ferries to Kos: Although it is a quite long way there are daily ferries from Athens, hard to believe but true. Other daily connections are to Rhodes, Kalymnos and Patmos. Not every day but frequently there are boats to Nisyros and Tilos. Should you be in a rush the "Flying Dolphins" would be your first choice. They connect Kos with pretty all the major islands around. During high season you can also book a trip to Bodrum in Turkey. From what I'm aware these smaller passenger boats also go during winter but not as frequently.

 

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