Celebrating Eid in Safety on Symi

7.30 a.m. Tuesday morning and Pedi bay was pretty busy.

Symi is a very steep island with more steps than roads.  This view is from the top of the Kali Strata, just below the village square with its tavernas and traditional bars. Chorio is where the main permanent community lives and has its own shops, cafes, tavernas, bakeries and supermarkets.  If you look carefully at the hills behind the houses you can just make out the scar that is the big sweep the motor road makes to get from Yialos to Chorio.

Looking down at Yialos and Harani on Tuesday morning, even the harbour and outlying anchorages were full. Most of the yachts you can see in this picture are Turkish, even if they may be carrying US or other flags of convenience.

One of the alternative pedestrian routes to town, there is a broad turn off to the right about halfway down the Kali Strata, on the lower side of the high school, which zigzags down to the harbour and pops out near the bus stop.  Various lanes and contour paths branch off this, leading to other tiers of houses.

Yialos early on Wednesday morning.

Thursday morning and a most welcome sight - the water ship!  As Symi has no natural water it is dependent on a small desalination plant on the Pedi road and water boats that come in from Rhodes and even further afield. This is why swimming pools and water features are not a part of Symi's landscape and you won't find many bath tubs either!  Mind you, Symi's sheltered beaches with their spectacular surroundings offer an attractive alternative to swimming pools.

The waterfront in Yialos is lined with pretty cafes, bars and tavernas.  With so much maritime activity in the summer there is always something to watch.  Most of these venues offer free wifi to patrons these days, for those who prefer to spend their time in one of the world's prettiest harbours looking at cat memes on their devices.

Who needs cat memes when there are local cats of character to observe? This one belongs to one of the supermarkets in Yialos and is, as you can see, quite polite and very well fed.  He has appeared on this blog before over the years.  Many harbour businesses keep a cat or two as working cats to keep pests under control.

Up in Chorio this small supermarket is keeping the flag flying.

The most photographed sunflower on Symi just keeps on going.
Symi benefited vastly from the Eid holidays this year as hundreds of Turks, mostly on boats of various shapes and sizes, elected to celebrate the end of Ramadan on a peaceful Greek island with no security concerns.  Symi is the perfect get away from the cares of the world and those with access to visas and boats made the most of an opportunity to visit a safe EU destination on their doorstep.

The landmark Lemonitissa church is having a fresh coat of paint.

A concession to our many Turkish visitors - an ouzerie near our office, advertising mezzes and live Greek music in Turkish.

Have a good weekend.


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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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