Nisyros is a small volcanic island with wild beauty. It belongs to the Dodecanese and is known for its unique natural landscape, volcano, picturesque villages and festivals. Here you will find useful information about the holidays in Nisyros, the villages, the beaches, the food, the activities and the ferry itineraries for the island. Book cheap ferries to Nisyros on Ferryhopper.
Mandraki, the port and capital of Nisyros
Vacation in Nisyros
Nisyros is located between Kos and Tilos and is an ideal destination for relaxing holidays. It has a special beauty, natural landscapes and combines traditional elements with simple, minimal aesthetics.
Due to its volcanic origin, Nisyros has beaches with black pebbles and black or red sand, as well as impressive rocks. However, the most special natural attraction of the island is the volcano itself, which you can indeed visit! The central crater is called Stefanos and is located on the caldera, in the center of Nisyros. Since it is accessible on foot, the walk to the crater is a unique experience and offers an incredible view, but also a strong smell of sulfur. Be careful not to touch anything inside the crater, as the rocks can be extremely hot.
In summers the island is full of people and life. Despite its small size, it offers so many things to do, see and enjoy. In the picturesque villages of Nisyros, you can eat tasty food, admire the beautiful houses and take a walk in narrow alleys.
Before leaving Nisyros, make sure to take a thermal bath in the beautiful building of the Municipal Baths, dating back to 1872.
How to get to Nisyros
Nisyros is easily accessible by ferry from the port of Piraeus in Athens. You can find frequent ferry routes from Piraeus to Nisyros all year long. In case you are already in the Dodecanese, you can travel by ferry to Nisyros from Kos or Rhodes. In the section below, there are more details on how to get to Nisyros by ferry.
What to do in Nisyros
The island of Nisyros offers calm moments with an impressive natural background. It's an ideal destination for both adventure lovers and travelers who seek simplicity in their vacation. You will have the opportunity to visit amazing, unique beaches of volcanic origins, a very rich seabed and hiking routes that will get you through lunar landscapes. During the summer months, Nisyros has a vibrant cultural life with film festivals, music festivals, art exhibitions and of course, the traditional feasts (panigiria) taking place throughout the island.
View of the volcano of Nisyros from Nikia village
Beaches in Nisyros
The beaches of Nisyros are part of the island's wild coastline that was formed by the volcanic eruption. In Nisyros you are to find beaches with amazing waters, unique black pebbles or red sand. Most beaches don't have amenities, so it is good to have with you the essentials to enjoy your day at sea. Nisyros also has an impressive seabed, ideal for diving and snorkeling. Specifically, some of the most beautiful beaches in Nisyros are:
- Chochlaki: This beach is located very close to the port. It has large black pebbles, a few umbrellas and natural shade.
- Pali: The beach of the village of the same name. It is large, with fine dark sand and enough tamarisk trees for shade.
- Pachia Ammos: Beach with black sand and impressive waters, but without shade. It is accessible by a 20 min walk and it’s nude-friendly.
- Gialiskari: Small beach between Mandraki and Palos. It has dark sand and is also known as the White Coast.
- Lyes or Lies: The beach has coves, dark sand, a few pebbles and some tamarisk trees. It is located near the legendary Oasis canteen.
- Avlaki: It is located on the southernmost side of the island. It has a small harbor for diving, large black pebbles and natural shade.
Tip: We suggest you go on a day trip by boat to the neighboring Gyali islet to swim and admire the impressive white landscape due to the pumice mines. You can also visit the other small islets around Nisyros: Pergoussa, Pachia and Stroggili.
Sightseeing and activities in Nisyros
It is worth discovering the hidden beauties of Nisyros by walking on the paths of the island and diving into its diverse seabed. Be sure to go to the thermal baths and, of course, do not forget to take a walk in the crater of the volcano. We also suggest you visit the following attractions in Nisyros:
- Monastery of Panagia Spiliani
- Volcanological Museum of Nisyros
- Folklore Museum of Nisyros
- Holy Monastery of Panagia Kyra
Nightlife in Nisyros
Nightlife is vibrant in Nisyros as travelers gather at the beach or at the kafeneia, playing music and having fun until early in the morning. The summer panigiria of Nisyros are also famous for their vividness and where you will feast while listening and dancing to traditional Greek music. The biggest festival is on the 15th of August in Panagia Spiliani in Mandraki and in Panagia Kyra.
Sea view from Nisyros and the edge of Tilos in the background
Food in Nisyros
Nisyros has several tavernas, restaurants and kafeneia, where you will taste delicious traditional recipes and local products. We suggest you try:
- local falafel
- local cheeses (mizithra and sakouliasti)
- potato puree with garlic and almonds
- roast kid
- tomato spoon sweet
- local soft drink with cinnamon
Villages in Nisyros
There are only 4 villages in Nisyros and it is worth visiting them all, to admire the traditional architectural elements and their special aesthetics. More specifically:
- Mandraki: The capital and port of the island. Take a walk in the alleys with the cute shops and then go to Ilikiomeni square for coffee, raki and meze. You should definitely stop at the Cafe of Andrikos, a trademark hangout of Nisyros.
- Pali: A quiet picturesque harbor with the best fresh fish on the island.
- Nikia: There, you will find the most beautiful panoramic view of the volcano and a beautiful square with a traditional floor made of pebbles.
- Emporios: A mountainous settlement with several old houses, as the village had been abandoned due to an earthquake. In the old square, you will eat fine delicacies at Triantaphyllos (Apyria), while at the entrance of the village you will enjoy your coffee and drinks with an incredible view of Aposperi .
Tip: look for Thermi Spilia (Hot Cave) at the entrance of Emporio. This is a small stone room with warm air from the volcano - an ideal natural sauna!
Useful information for Nisyros
Recently, Nisyros has become a quite popular destination for travelers from all over the world. The island has developed significantly as you can find services such as supermarkets, pharmacies, stores, ATMs and gas stations. In addition, the Regional Clinical of Nisyros is located in Mandraki. Regarding accommodation, there are many rooms and hotels in Mandraki and Pali. The island is also a top destination for camping-lovers.
Important phone numbers for your stay in Nisyros
Here are some useful contacts for yout holidays in Nisyros
- Nisyros Port Authority: +302242031222
- Nisyros Regional Clinic: +302242031217
- Nisyros Police: +302242031201
- Municipality of Nisyros: +302242031203
- Tourist information: +302242031204
Picturesque houses and alleys in Mandraki of Nisyros
Transportation in Nisyros
In Nisyros you can easily get around by local bus, which serves daily the route Mandraki - Loutra - Pali - Emporios - Nikia. As Nisyros is a relatively small island, you can explore it on foot through its walking paths. However, you can surely bring your vehicle to the island or rent one there.
Ports in Nisyros
The main port of Nisyros is located in Mandraki, which is also the capital of the island. Near the port, you can find stores and cafes to spend some time, while you are waiting for your ferry. Keep in mind that the port can be crowded as Nisyros is connected with many other islands of the Dodecanese.
Island hopping from Nisyros
Nisyros is located in the center of the Dodecanese. For this reason, it is quite easy to visit other islands of the complex and combine different holiday destinations. From Nisyros you can “hop” to the following islands:
On the updated Map of Ferries of Ferryhopper you will find all the ferry connections from Nisyros and the Dodecanese to plan your summer island hopping in just a few clicks!
The small pier in Avlaki, ideal for dives into the blue sea
Nisyros ferry: schedules and tickets
Nisyros is connected to Athens by regular ferry routes via the port of Piraeus throughout the year. The ferry connection is operated at least 2 times a week by Blue Star Ferries. The ferry trip from Piraeus to Nisyros lasts around 13.5 hours. Due to the long duration of the crossing, we suggest you book a cabin for a more relaxing trip.
You can also reach Nisyros from Rhodes by ferry. The itineraries are operated all year round, with increased frequency in the summer months. During the high season, there are up to 6 weekly departures. The ferry companies that usually operate on the Rhodes - Nisyros connection are Blue Star Ferries, Dodekanisos Seaways and Saos Ferries.
Where to book ferry tickets online to Nisyros
On Ferryhopper you can book ferry tickets to Nisyros online, at the best prices and in just 4 clicks! On our search engine, you can find all direct and indirect ferry connections to Nisyros from Athens and the nearby Dodecanese islands, to choose the most convenient ferry itinerary for you!