This butterfly-shaped Island is ten islands in one. It belongs to the Dodecanese but it has a Cycladic soul as evidenced by its picture-perfect white Chora topped by the Kastro, considered by many as the most beautiful chora in the whole Aegean Sea.
Lying down gently on the water, with a thin isthmus to divide the two “wings, dotted on the south coast by an archipelago of tiny islands and rocks, Astiphalea rugged coast boasts spectacular swimming opportunities and wonderful day and/or night mooring spots almost always in perfect loneliness.
The small harbour of Skala is lively enough but never crowded or too noisy; from there, a short uphill walk takes you the white Chora on the top of the mount where a row of red-roofed white windmills make this place unique. From the well-preserved Kastro you can enjoy an unparalleled view on the archipelago of several tiny islands set into a cobalt-blue sea.
The south coast offers several beautiful mooring opportunities in magnificent bays or coves, including Ormos Livadhi boasting the best view on the Chora and excellent beach-front taverns as well as Maltezana, not to mention the suspended atmosphere of the solitary Agrilithi gulf.
On the north coast, a very narrow opening leads into the magical and unique Vathi bay, a natural and safe harbour protected by all winds, an ideal shelter when meltemi reaches gale-force strenght. On the land, a family-run tavern serves exquisite Greek food in a very informal and special atmosphere.
Astiphalea is the epitome of the Greek islands and a perfect holiday destination; between a swim in its crystal clear waters, a dive from one of its spectacular rocky formations or natural arches, a walk in the picturesque chora and a quite challenging excursion to an isolated pristine beach that can be reached only on foot through a downhill path (along the way, especially on the steep uphill way back, you can have a refreshing stop bathing in the fresh water ponds) Astiphalea is an island not to be missed.