Goats scramble around rocky hillsides, their bells gently tinkling. Bees buzz in bushes, gorging on fragrant thyme. Seabirds wheel out to sea, while raptors soar above rocky peaks. A light breeze tickles an oleander-strewn valley. The air is scented with oregano, thyme, rosemary and basil, and the floor is carpeted with wild flowers.
Walking in Tilos is a feast for the scenes. Little wonder that it’s one of the most popular activities, enticing visitors to the island time and time again. The shoulder months of April, May, September and October are perfect for rambling around the island, especially for birders, tempted here to witness migration.
For a tiny island, Tilos has an abundance of wonderful walking routes. Here’s a selection of some of our favourites, which are suitable for most walking abilities.
Lethra: A popular route that takes you along the coastal path from Ilidi Rock, where you can enjoy stunning views back to Livadia and along the coast of Rhodes, Symi and Turkey. Pass the aptly named Red Beach, then head down the goat track to Lethra, where you can enjoy a refreshing dip in clear turquoise waters. Either retrace your steps back to Livadia, or continue through a dry riverbed and take the circular route back.
Mikro Horio: The abandoned village of Mikro Horio is a wonderful place for a wander. The tumbledown, roofless houses mingle with two well-preserved churches, while the remnants of daily life strewn around the village are atmospheric of times past. Take a circular route from Livadia, or combine your walk with a trip to Lethra if you fancy stretching your legs a little further.
Kastro: It’s a steep climb from Megalo Horio to Kastro, but it’s well worth the effort. Ancient and medieval ruins mix within the impressive walls, there’s a church with old frescoes, and, best of all, a commanding view over the island and across the bay to Nisyros. If you’re in need of a swim after the climb, combine this route with our next choice, Skafi.
Skafi: Follow the dirt track from Megalo Horio, down the wide valley to the beach at Skafi. This route is especially popular with nature lovers as, depending on the time of year, it’s filled with butterflies and birds, including bee-eaters, rollers, golden orioles and various raptors. Return along the same track.
Southeast Tilos: Walk around the sweeping bay at Livadia and follow an easy path around the southeastern tip of the island. This is a fantastic route with many diversions, including the deserted village of Gera and beaches at Despoti Nero and Tholos.
Tilos Walking Information
The official municipality website details some of the most popular walks on Tilos, and the Tilos Park office holds information about many of the island’s nature trails. Our island representative, Ian Hogg, is a keen walker and will happily share his local knowledge and advise you of any changes to walking routes.
Pick up a copy of the blue Tilos map before heading off – it’s available in several places on Tilos.
Finally, a few practicalities. Walking in Tilos is generally safe but accidents happen, so always carry a mobile phone in case of emergencies – 112 is the number to call if you’re stuck – and let somebody know where you’re going, especially if you’re walking on your own. Make sure you’re carrying enough water, and take a sunhat and sun cream. Most of all – have fun and enjoy exploring this captivating little island!
Walking in Tilos with Nissia Holidays
If you fancy roaming Tilos’s rugged paths and are seeking a comfortable place to rest your weary feet at the end of the day, check out our selection of Tilos accommodation.
To find out more about the island, see our Ultimate Guide to Tilos. For more information or to book your holiday in Tilos, contact Nissia Holidays on 01455 289421 or email us: firstname.lastname@example.org.