Symi Travel Guide > Symi Overview > The mix of Symi

The mix of Symi

Back to Top of Page Kali Strata

Although the actual number of steps is often disputed - 350 or 375? - it is well worth climbing Kali Strata up to Chorio, to see the beauty of Symi - worth every step! At the top there is a selection of restaurants, bars and a kafeneion where the local men spend their time chatting and putting the world to rights. Treat yourself to a well-earned rest up here and enjoy the fabulous view with some refreshments.The view is glorious by day, but by night it's quite breathtaking!

 - Symi Travel Guide
As you ascend the many steps, you will have the chance to observe many of Symi's neo-classical mansions, many of which have been beautifully renovated and painted in pleasing pastel colours. These houses were built for the most part during the 19th century, during Symi's period of great prosperity, which was largely a result of the sponge trade.
On either side of the steps are many churches too, and amongst the many interesting buildings is a restored mansion with beautiful wall-paintings and a finely preserved Old Pharmacy.

Back to Top of Page Symi Harbour

Symi has one of the most beautiful harbours in Greece. On either side of a steep-sided, fjord-like inlet rise the elegant neo-Classical houses, tier upon tier, painted in pastels and ochres. There has been virtually no modern concrete construction here and many of these fine old houses are being renovated as holiday homes. The harbour is a lively enough place that buzzes into frantic activity when the day trippers arrive. Fishing boats line the jetties, with a backdrop of busy shops and tavernas contributing to the vibrant atmosphere.

Back to Top of Page Chrorio centre

In Chorio there are a couple of supermarkets, one right on the Kali Strata, and one near where the bus turns around.
Also in the square is a kiosk and a card phone.
It is said that some of Symi's best tavernas are to be found up here in Chorio, well worth a visit for the food, the views, and the pleasant relief of no traffic!
At the back of Chorio - near where the bus stops - is a warren of old overgrown alleyways and narrow steps. Well worth exploring, it is like stepping back in time and is really off the beaten track. The old lanes are spanned by buttresses and arches for added stability during earthquakes.
The remains of prehistoric walls, built for protection, can be seen in places, and the ancient acropolis was of course built at the highest point. This was built upon in Byzantine times and became a fortress, to which the Knights of St John, in their turn, added a tower from which they could signal to their primary base in Rhodes. There is still quite a lot of the successive citadels visible.