Places like Mikonos and Santorini get thousands of tourists every year, eager to take the gorgeous picture of the sunset over the white houses, waiting with hundreds of people aligned in the same spot to capture that special moment…

Well, let me take you to the Pearl of Dodecanese, a magnificent island that is kept almost as a secret. No white houses here, but a burst of colors to express the joy of living in the most exclusive island of Greece. Welcome to Symi!

The most beautiful harbor of all Greece. Get your camera ready for a spectacular view when arriving to the main harbor on a boat. Multicolored houses hang on the hills, side by side, with their beautiful neoclassical facades, where the blue, the green, the yellow, the pink… offer a captivating picture. The harbor offers lovely narrow streets with many charming cafes and souvenir shops. Get lost in the tiny streets and follow the delicious scent of the meals getting cooked in the restaurants’ kitchens. , Some of the typical Greek dishes take all day to be prepared, your palate will be as pleased as your eyes!

The old windmills and the Kastro. Now is time to put your trainers on and walk up the 500 stone steps along the beautiful Strata (road), passing pretty little boutiques and bars on the way to the top of the hill. The old stone windmills are not in service anymore but the locals decided to keep them for the charm of the neighborhood. At the top of the hill, have a look around the churches or the Kastro (castle), and from there, simply sit and watch the stunning views. On one side, admire the main harbor, its sailboats and yachts coming for the night, and on the other side, try to count the number of churches in the middle of the colorful houses. Truly a perfect place to enjoy the sunset!

Wild gorgeous creeks. Only a few beaches of the island can be reached by the road. Embark on a boat and leave the main village to spend the day in a creek. You can decide to either head to some of the beautifully arranged beaches with all the comfort of nice taverns (local fish restaurants) or explore some of the numerous wild creeks. For a complete immersion in nature, get your snorkeling equipment to swim with the fishes and comfortable shoes to visit the wild land. You may try some delicious figs from the trees by the beach, or pick some wild sage to try later as an infusion. Don’t be surprised to encounter wild goats or donkeys, and let your 5 senses transport you far from your routine.

A miraculous icon. At the south of the island, in a sumptuous 18th-century monastery lies the miraculous icon of Archangel Michael Panormitis. Found centuries ago, many wishes and prayers are said to have come true and people from all over Greece come to kiss the white gold icon. The Venetian-styled building has a glorious baroque bell tower and its stunning orthodox church is richly ornamented. Two small museums welcome the visitors and offer typical Greek culture objects, along with amphora and many bottles found on the shores, containing the sailors’ prayers.

In Greek mythology, Symi was reputed to be the birthplace of the Charities, also known as the 3 Graces. No wonder there is much beauty, charm and grace on this island!

If you wish to fully discover all the superb coves and villages, what better way than a boat? Have a look at the fantastic retreats on the WellnessBoat, no doubt it’ll drop its anchor in Symi. Welcome on board!

« An enchanting retreat, discovering the wild beauty of the region going off the beaten track. The kindness of the crew, all the charming little islands, and the positive energy of our fantastic coach and guide. An amazing human adventure with lots of giggles, nights under the stars, thanks a million! » Elisa, passenger of the WellnessBoat, August 2017.

About the author: Cyrielle is a former Parisian fashion addict who’s now voguing between Greece & Turkey on a luxury sailboat sharing wellness & happiness tips with her passengers. Her mission is to encourage people to take care of themselves through their own-designed wellness routine. She is training in positive psychology and knows many talented wellness experts, organizing retreats with them on the WellnessBoat.