Sunset Retsina

It is a sizzling summer’s day on Symi and Turkish gulets and Italian power yachts are jockeying for space on the quay in Yialos. The water taxis are packed, as are the beaches. As one visitor said, looking out of my office window at the crowds waiting to board the water taxis this morning, ‘it looks like the relief of Dunkirk!’ One newly opened haven of relative peace and quiet that is worth discovering by visitors in search of a more private Symi beach experience is the new beach facility and taverna at Toli Bay near Agios Emilianos. This is accessible by road and, for the energetic, on foot. At the moment the concrete road ends just past Roukouniotis monastery and the road down to the beach is a fairly steep dirt track (4 wheel drive recommended) so it is not as yet accessible by taxi. Visitors without wheels can, however, take a taxi as far as Roukouniotis and then walk the rest of the way, about a half hour downhill stroll along a very scenic part of the island’s coast.

The taverna is situated in a natural grove of oleanders and has beautiful views right across Toli Bay and there are sunbeds and umbrellas provided along the pebble beach. There is a jetty for taxi boats but at this stage boat connections are still irregular as when the meltemi blows across the bay in the afternoons there can be a swell which makes coming alongside in a boat tricky. The taverna is also open in the evenings, as we discovered when we went over for a sunset retsina late on Wednesday afternoon and found the kitchen staff busy with preparations for the night ahead. The venue is popular with locals, particularly those with small holdings and farmsteads in the area, making for an authentic experience.

Something else we noticed on this particular excursion is that the wind turbine is finally in action. The giant windmill seemed to be undergoing various tests as although there was a stiff wind blowing the blades alternated between spinning at an erratic speed and then stopping at various angles. It is certainly a dramatic addition to Symi’s landscape and we hope that it becomes productive soon.

Have a good weekend.



Richard  – (Friday, August 14, 2009)  

I look forward to seeing a photo of the windmill in action.

Anonymous –   – (Saturday, August 15, 2009)  

What lovely scenery! Symi seems to be an absolutely beautiful place. I will have to add it to my list of places to visit in my retirement. Thanks for sharing.

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About this Blog

I sailed into Panormitis Bay, Symi, by chance one windy July day in 1993 and have been here ever since. The locals tell me that this is one of the miracles of St Michael of Panormitis. A BA graduate with majors in English, Philosophy and Classical Civilisation, the idea of living in what is to all intents and purposes an archaeological site appeals to me. Not as small as Kastellorizo, not as touristy as Rhodes, Symi is just the right size. I live on a small holding which my husband and I have reclaimed from a ruin of over-grazing and neglect and turned into a small oasis over the course of the past 22 years. I also work part-time for Symi Visitor Accommodation, helping independent travellers discover and enjoy Symi's simple pleasures for themselves.

This page is kindly sponsored by Wendy Wilcox, Symi Visitor Accommodation.

Adriana Shum

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