Symi Island, Yialos Harbour ©Solange Hando
Just 35 minutes from Rhodes by catamaran, Symi is one of the most enticing Dodecanese islands. The main settlement, also called Symi, includes the colourful harbour of Yialos and Chorio, the old village climbing up the hillside through a maze of steps and lanes.
Pedi Beach Hotel, Symi ©Solange Hando
Yialos has its share of hotels but just over the hill on the east coast, Pedi Beach welcomes you in a secluded bay lined with fishing boats, pretty cottages and a clean pebble beach lapped by crystal clear waters.
It's the perfect place to relax, away from it all, casual and friendly in an authentic Greek setting.
Quiet Corner in Pedi Beach Hotel ©Solange Hando
This low-rise traditional hotel has 56 rooms, from single to family, simply furnished but all with balcony and sea or mountain views. The buffet restaurant and bar include a panoramic terrace overlooking the bay.
The Pedi Beach Hotel has air conditioning, a small library, a pleasant courtyard draped in palms and bougainvillea, beach umbrellas and sunbeds.
Looking across the Bay from Pedi Beach Hotel, Symi ©Solange Hando
Framed by mountains and cliffs, the bay is formed by a deep inlet of the Aegean sea, a true haven of peace, especially in early or late season.
Here you soon forget the hustle and bustle of Yialos but if you feel like a change, the town is within walking distance, about 30 minutes up then downhill (with spectacular views), but there's also a regular bus service for less than 2 euros each way.
Saint Nicholas Cove, Pedi ©Solange Hando
Guests can swim by the hotel but for a desert island feel, follow the scenic coastal path and within 10 minutes or so, you will reach this glorious little beach, accessed only on foot or by water taxi.
Other popular excursions in Symi range from mountain and village tours to cruises around the island, stopping en route at the stunning monastery of Panormitis down south.
Panormitis Monastery on Symi Island, Greece ©Solange Hando