• Sights - Nisyros
  • Image of the Caldera Crater
  • Image of Nisyros town

Explore Nisyros


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Caldera - Crater - 10.5 km

Nisyros is an island known for its caldera, the youngest active volcano in Greece. The caldera is located in the center of the island and attracts a lot of people every year who want to admire this special spectacle up close. The volcano has been inactive for 15,000 years, but its glowing rock is well hidden underground and heats the seawater.

The diameter of the caldera is 4 km and its floor is 100 m above sea level. The cone of the volcano was formed 60,000 years ago. Through a series of eruptions, it reached a height of 600 meters above sea level and took on its current shape.

It is estimated that there are around 20 craters inside the volcano. However, those who come to Caldera usually visit two craters, Stefanos and Little Stefanos. These are the two oldest hydrothermal craters located below Nikia. There are other craters located in the area of Lofos, such as Logothetis, Polyvotis and Alexandros. The best place to admire the caldera is the prophet Ilias of Nikia. The view it offers is fascinating and is the best way to round off a visit to the volcano of Nisyros.

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Panagia Spiliani - 5.1 km

Panagia Spiliani is one of the most popular monasteries of the Aegean islands. It takes its name from its location, as it is situated in the cave of a hill overlooking Mandraki. To reach the monastery, you have to climb 130 steps from the temple of Potamitissa.

The tradition of the monastery is particularly interesting. In 1400 AD, a farmer brought an icon of the Virgin Mary to the temple of Potamitissa. A few days later, however, the icon disappeared and was found in a cave on the edge of a high cliff. This was not an isolated incident, as it was repeated several times. As a result, the villagers erected a church in this sacred cave.

The image of the Virgin Mary plays an important role in the lives of the villagers, as they turn to her for both happy and sad events. Agios Nikolaos is depicted on the back of the icon and the Virgin Mary with the Child on the front, while the entire icon is made of silver.

Every fifteenth of August, the feast of the Virgin Mary, dozens of believers from all over the Dodecanese come to venerate the icon. The image is surrounded by thousands of believers, which confirms its great value. On this day, the biggest festival on the island takes place with traditional food, dancing and music, which lasts until the early hours of the morning.

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Paleokastro - 7.1 km

Paleokastro is the fortress of the ancient city of Nisyros. It is a very impressive fortress in size and appearance, reaching a size of 130 hectares and a circumference of 2 kilometers. It was built in the capital of Nisyros, Mandraki, on the slopes of a hill. To the west it ends at a cliff, while to the north it reaches the monastery of Panagia Spiliani.

For the construction of Paleokastro, a material was used that is found in abundance on the island, namely the local black volcanic stone. Just before the entrance to the north gate is an engraved inscription that reads "DAMOSION TO CHORION PENTE PODES APO TO TEIXEOS". This phrase refers to the width of the public zone - outside Paleokastro - in which any intervention was forbidden for defensive reasons. It is a characteristic attraction of the island, whose history begins in the 4th century BC.

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Nikia - 10.5 km.

Nisyros has a multitude of small villages that are well worth a visit. Nikia has a very special place among them. What will you find there? Unique architecture that reflects the island's tradition. If you want to feel the pulse of the island's history, you will come into contact with it during a walk in Nikia. You will not see any cars on the road, as they are not allowed. So you have the opportunity to walk through the narrow streets of the village and reach its characteristic square, where there is only a church and two cafés. Nikia looks like an uninhabited place, but that is precisely what makes it so charming and special. Nikia also offers a breathtaking panoramic view of the volcano, especially of its largest crater, Stefanos.

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Emporios - 6 km.

Another settlement not to be missed is Emporios. It is very close to the capital of Nisyros, Mandraki, and is a semi-mountainous destination. Emporios is a settlement of great cultural value and is therefore protected by the Ministry of Culture as a place of special architectural identity. It is built on the edge of the caldera and extends around the castle of Pantoniki. Emporios highlights the picturesqueness of the whole of Nisyros. You will come across alleys, narrow streets, beautiful houses with traditional architecture and everything that makes you love Nisyros even more. The view of the volcano is another gift to all who visit, as the sight it offers is shocking.

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Volcano Museum - 10.4 km

There is no more suitable place than Nisyros to host the unique Volcanological Museum of Greece. It is a very interesting experience that you rarely get to do on vacation. You will have the opportunity to discover the history not only of the island volcano, but also of the active volcanoes of Greece and learn facts about their structure, their processes and their role in the environment. In the exhibition area of the museum you will find all the rocks of the caldera, the volcano of Nisyros, as well as rocks from various volcanoes. The Volcanic Museum is located in the village of Nikia and is one of the attractions you should not miss.

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Archaeological Museum - 4.8 km

Mandraki is home to the Archaeological Museum of Nisyros, a very special attraction of the island. It is worth a visit because you have the opportunity to discover exactly how the island's inhabitants lived in the past. The contact with Neolithic tools, vases from the necropolis of Nisyros, Hellenistic and Roman inscriptions and exhibits from the Byzantine monuments will help you understand the history of the place even better and connect with its great past.

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Folklore Museum - 5.1 km

Another museum that proves the great history of Nisyros. The Folklore Museum will impress you from the moment you enter. It is located in a two-story 18th century mansion with amazing architecture in Mandraki.

The interior of the museum represents a traditional Nisyrian house. It includes all the rooms, i.e. the kitchen, the oven and the bedroom or sleeping chamber. In this area there are two storage rooms, the cellar and the caravan, where the inhabitants stored clothes, quilts and anything else they wanted to keep. The atmosphere created by the strong element of tradition will transport you to another time. As you make your way from room to room, you will discover ploughs, sickles, hand mills and other objects of folk art. You will have the opportunity to admire unique embroideries and textiles as well as rare photographic material of people who held a very important position in Nisyros society.

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Ecclesiastical museum - 5.1 km

In the Nisyros Ecclesiastical Museum you will find unique ecclesiastical relics that represent a large chapter in the island's history. Old candlesticks, censers, chalices, vestments, church utensils - all from the monastery of Panagia tis Spiliani and the parish of Panagia Potamitissa.

However, the variety of exhibits in the museum does not end there. You will also be impressed by valuable exhibits of ecclesiastical secrets, such as old swimsuits, wedding dresses and jewellery worn by the women of the island just before they got married. Other exhibits relate to the island's feasts, such as old cauldrons used as cooking utensils for preparing chickpeas and clay bowls in which food was served.