One of the smallest and least touristic islands in Greece, Kasos is an amazing place to slow down. Explore its beautiful villages, intimate beaches and wild natural scenery.
The island hosts many festivals throughout the summer months. They feature traditional music and delicious food. Some of them celebrate local anniversaries and historic events.
1. Visit the Monastery of Panagia Potamitissa
Whatever Kasos lacks in size it makes up for with wild natural scenery, intimate beaches and charming harbours. The untouched rocky landscapes and lacy seashores are like a well-kept secret, awaiting visitors to discover them. Impressive captain mansions, neoclassical and traditional architectural elements blend with the island’s mystical vibe to create an enchanting canvas of sights to see.
There are also a number of impressive monasteries and chapels to visit on the island, such as the monastery of Panagia Potamitissa (which is built into a cave) and Exi Ekklisies, a complex of six churches situated near the village of Arvanitohori that offer a unique sample of Byzantine architecture and legend has it that they were built to drive away unruly spirits!
If you want to know more about the local culture of Kasos, visit one of the many festivals that take place throughout the summer. These events usually feature a lot of food, drinks and dancing, making for a truly authentic experience.
In the main town of Fry, you can visit the church of Agios Spyridonas, dedicated to the patron saint of the island, and the port of Bouka that boasts a great example of a piratical-era port. Also don’t miss the chance to stroll down the narrow alleys and admire the local architecture of this beautiful village.
You can rent cars, motorbikes or bicycles to explore the island. It is a relatively small island so it shouldn’t be difficult to get around. If you prefer not to drive, there are plenty of taxis available as well.
2. Go Diving
Kasos is a true gem of the Dodecanese, an island that is not just a getaway but also a journey through time. From the traces of its first Phoenician inhabitants to its crucial role in the Trojan War and the Greek Revolution, it has a long and rich history. The wild natural landscapes, dazzling beaches and charming villages offer visitors the opportunity to connect with the local culture.
The picturesque villages of Fry, Panagia and Emporios will take your breath away with their traditional architecture and impressive stone mansions. Wander around the narrow alleys to get a glimpse of everyday life on the island, and don’t forget to stop by one of the many taverns for a taste of the local cuisine.
A visit to Kasos is not complete without a hike through the island’s beautiful trails. The most popular trail starts from Fry and ends at the Monastery of Saint George in Hadies. The imposing caves of Stavros and Ellinokamara are also worth visiting.
In addition to hiking, you can also explore the island’s pristine beaches. Helatros is Kasos’ most secluded beach, located in the island’s southwestern part. This secluded beach is protected from strong currents and is ideal for snorkeling.
3. Visit the Traditional House of Ioulia Daskalaki
As a small island Kasos is packed with things to do. From impressive captain mansions with neoclassical and traditional elements to charming whitewashed churches and magical landscapes this little treasure is an enchanting destination for any traveller. Whether you are looking for water sports or want to take in the local culture and customs Kasos is the place to go.
It is also known for its unique cuisine. Featuring strong influences from both Crete and Egypt the food on Kasos is a true treat for any gourmand! Try out the local dishes like makarounes – a type of pasta with sitaka cheese, boustia – lamb intestines stuffed with rice, kolokithopoulia – stuffed flowers of courgettes and pitaridia – handmade pasta squares with nuts.
The island is home to six churches and each one has its own story behind it! Legend has it that they were built to drive away unruly spirits. The churches can be found near the settlements of Fry, Agios Spyridon and above the port named Bouka.
In addition to the beautiful churches Kasos has a few beaches which are worth visiting. The best ones are located near the capital of Fry, including the beach of Kira Panagia and the secluded beach of Agia Marina. You can also visit the nearby tiny abandoned island of Armathia for a swim in its crystal clear waters.
The locals on the island of Kasos are a close-knit and passionate community with a love for their land. You can see this in their behavior and the way they talk. The Kasians are proud of their island and it is reflected in the many festivals and feasts that happen throughout the year!
4. Go to the Beaches
As a lesser-known island, Kasos has an understated natural beauty that invites you to slow down and appreciate the simplicity of its coastal experience. From sandy beaches to intimate coves, you can find your own little corner on the beach and relax in the crystal clear water.
The best beaches are located near Fry and can be reached by the regional sailboat that runs daily during high season (if weather permits) or with a private boat rental. One of the most famous is Marmara, where you can swim and stroll along the shingle beach that extends into the sea. Another is Avlaki, a beach surrounded by calm waters where you can go swimming and tan in peace.
Those who want to explore the coast of Kasos can also hike on the coastal trail from Avlaki to Arvanitochori. The path takes you past the picturesque villages of Emporeios, Panagia, and Agia Marina. It is a rewarding adventure for hiking enthusiasts as it provides panoramic views of the sea and surrounding mountains.
When you get tired of walking, take a break and enjoy the delicious local cuisine. You can taste fresh fish, cuttlefish with rice, stuffed vine leaves called kasiotic dolmadakia, and makarounes pasta with sitaka (buttery cheese). The traditional food is influenced by Crete and Egypt.
You can also experience Kasos culture by attending a local feast or festival. The people of Kasos love to host parties and feasts to celebrate weddings, baptisms, or religious holidays. The music is played on lyres and lutes with a narrative flair that tells stories from the history of the island. Food, drinks, and dancing are all part of the festivities, making them a unique experience to remember.
5. Visit the Locals
In Kasos, visitors can experience the rocky and mountainous beauty of this Greek island in an unspoiled way. They can watch the ferries dotting the sea like pirate ships in a movie, swim at dazzling beaches with hot sand and enjoy afternoons spent gathering at the village squares. In addition, they can visit many of the island’s beautiful villages where they can see traditional houses with impressive architecture and admire their landscape.
Some of the top attractions on the island include the Six Churches in Exi Ekklisies which are believed to have been built to drive away unruly spirits and the Monastery of Agios Mammas. The latter is a must-visit especially during the summer when it hosts a festival where visitors and locals can dance all night long! You can also visit the Archaeological Museum in Fry which features a collection of ancient pottery, coins and statues.
Another great thing to do is to visit the traditional House of Ioulia Daskalaki which provides visitors with a look into the life of a traditional Greek family in decades past. You can also attend a local event such as the Panigiria where you will have the opportunity to learn how to dance in traditional Greek style and taste some delicious Kasiot cuisine.
During your stay on the island, you can also visit many of the island’s other great attractions including the Bouka port which dates back two centuries and was once a popular pirate hangout. You can also visit the ruins of the castle in Kasos where you can see the remains of the once-powerful royal palace. Finally, you can also explore the Ellinokamara cave which was once used as a place of worship and later as a safe escape from pirate invasions.