3 island tour from Kos
The 3 Island Tour from Kos is an exciting way to explore some of the most stunning islands in Greece. This tour is perfect for those who want to experience the beauty of the Aegean Sea and the historical architecture of the islands.
The 3 island tour from the island of Kos usually starts in the port of Kos (capital). Alternatively, some providers (on certain days) also offer the excursions from the port of Mastichari (center of the island, northern side). The three islands approached by boat are
- the neighboring island of Kalymnos, known for sponge diving and rock climbing
- the small monastery island of Plati,
- as well as the small island of Pserimos
The excursions start at different times (times of the day), but usually last the same length of time. If you leave earlier, you will come back earlier. The route also changes depending on the selected ship so that the boats don’t get in each other’s way. This means that a different timetable from the text described below is possible. The tour offers a one hour stop per island plus an extra hour on the island with the meal. In Kalymnos the time can sometimes be a bit longer (1-2 hours depending on the boat arrival) regardless of the meal.
The cost for the 3 island tour from Kos is between 15-20 euros from Kos without food, 20-25 euros from Kos with food, 25-35 from all places with food and transfer, depending on the season and crowds.
The 3 island tour at a glance
The island of Kos, part of the Dodecanese group of islands in Greece, is a popular tourist destination for travelers from all over the world. One of the most exciting ways to explore the beauty of the Greek islands is the 3 island tour from Kos, which takes you to the mesmerizing islands of Kalymnos, Plati and Pserimos.
Kalymnos is the first island on this tour and is known for its spectacular beaches and rock formations. The island is also a rock climber’s paradise as there are many opportunities for rock climbing. When in Kalymnos, make sure to visit the famous monastery of Agios Savvas, perched high on a hill overlooking the town. You can also visit the traditional fishing villages of Vathi and Myrties, known for their excellent seafood restaurants.
Next, head to the island of Plati, one of the smaller islands in the Dodecanese group of islands. Plati is known for its untouched nature and beautiful beaches. The island is a popular destination for water sports enthusiasts, who have the opportunity to enjoy snorkeling and diving in crystal clear waters. When in Plati you should take a stroll through the picturesque village of Panormos, known for its traditional houses and narrow streets.
The last island on this tour is Pserimos, a tiny island with only 80 inhabitants. Pserimos is known for its tranquil atmosphere and unspoiled landscape. Here you can visit the picturesque port of Pserimos and swim in the crystal clear waters of the island. If you are looking for a break from the hustle and bustle of everyday life, Pserimos is the perfect place to relax and unwind.
Most of the boats that offer the island tour are wooden boats built like a pirate ship (two masts), but with extremely fast propulsion. Sails are not hoisted on the boats. At the entrance is the covered area with a small bar. Oftentimes, photos are taken upon entering, which can then be bought. On the lower deck there are then mats and chairs and the toilets in the front part of the ship. On the upper deck there are benches, chairs and sunbathing mats. The rear area of the upper deck is reserved for the captain in the middle. Some boats also offer a water slide, which is put into operation at the Plati jetty. You can slide down from the upper deck into the water.
Crossing to Kalymnos
The crossing to Kalymnos takes about 55 minutes from Kos town and just under 40 minutes from Mastichari. The journey is unspectacular – with the exception of the exit from Kos and the entrance to Pothia. Water as far as the eye can see without an island or a landmark. Usually on the first leg you get all the information about the rest of the day in several languages. The entrance to Pothia in Kalymnos is best photographed from the front on the upper deck. On the left side on the mountain are several monasteries and a large church, on the right there is a large Greek flag. In the middle of the port of Pothia with the many yachts, sailing ships and boats and the promenade.
There are different ways to discover Photia. Ships often offer a guided tour, which includes a sponge factory (sponge shop). On the other hand, you can also discover Kalymnos on your own. A good route leads along the promenade on the way there and on the way back on the opposite side of the promenade with the many shops or in the parallel alley.
When the boat exits, turn right and you will soon come to the Naval Museum, Church of Christ and City Hall. Along the waterfront there are also some statues, one of the protector of Kaylmnos and the other the famous sponge diver. At the end of the promenade there is a fish market where you can turn around. Also note the multitude of different boats along the way – fishing boats, yachts and sailing ships.
You can then return to the boardwalk on the shop side. Back in the center you can also make bargains in shops via alleys parallel to the promenade. Around the boat mooring there are some shops with sponges used for tourist tours (only now without many people). If you still have time, the church on the left side of the berth should be used. This is slightly elevated and offers a good view of Pothia. Then return to the ship via the promenade.
Note that in Kalymnos you usually have a stay of just over an hour. This isn’t very much for a capital, so keep an eye on the clock.
Drive between Kalymnos and Plati
Dolphins can often be seen between Kalymnos and Plati, but there is no guarantee. The chances are about 10% (per day) to spot dolphins. The dolphins like the waters because of the rich food supply as Kalymnos has fish farms. On the approximately 30 minute drive between Kalymnos and Plati you will pass several rings in the water where fish are farmed. Of course, this food supply also attracts other fish – including dolphins. Also, now is a good time to throw on your bathing suits for the next island.
The monastery island of Plati
The island of Plati offers a jetty to moor, which has very sharp stones (be sure to take bathing shoes or the like with you). It is possible to go barefoot, but really very slowly. I recommend that you first hike relatively dressed over the footbridge to the small chapel (monastery) (approx. 1 minute). It’s nothing special, but it offers a nice view of the ships and the island. You can also climb a little further for the photo motif, which changes the perspective again.
Then you should go cool down. The water is clear and has a slightly turquoise shimmer. On the left side of the jetty there are stone cliffs, on the right side there is a sandy beach, which tends to get crowded quickly. Just swim out a bit and it will be calmer. Many also use the opportunity to jump into the water from the boat in Plati. Some ships also have slides that can be used. A stay of one hour is usually sufficient.
Don’t forget to admire the island with the monastery when entering and leaving. Most ships dock in Plati at the jetty (two berths for boats). If this is not possible, it can happen that the ship anchors.
From Plati to Pserimos
You can use the crossing from Plati to Pserimos to dry your swimwear or to change. The crossing is short and only takes 10 minutes. Just admire Greek sea and sun and enjoy the crossing. If there is food on Pserimos, the restaurant will be visited first (note this for clothing choices).
Discover and experience Pserimos
In contrast to Plati, Pserimos offers sufficient space for anchoring, with the ships anchoring in the U-shaped bay either on one side or the other. There are souvenir stands on both sides, although the price is also negotiable. Provided there is a meal (see details below), the crew will take you there. Food usually comes within the first 15 minutes, drinks can take longer.
In addition to a church and a few elevated vantage points, Pserimos otherwise only offers a beautiful long sandy beach, which lies between the ports. The water is gently sloping, but a bit cloudy and, due to the sheltered location, significantly warmer than on the island of Kos. With the sound of the sea, you can really let your soul dangle.
Return to Kos
The return trip to Kos and Mastichari takes only half an hour from Pserimos. You can use this to dry yourself, change clothes and pack your things. When entering, photos of the old town of Kos can of course be shot again. In Mastichari you can photograph the statue of Poseidon at the port entrance.
Before Covid there was often food on the ship, but now the food is eaten in restaurants. This can take place on either Pserimos island or Kalymnos island (depending on the route). There is a good hour left for the meal – this means that a two-hour stay on the food island is planned instead of one hour.
You can usually choose from four different dishes:
- Souvlaki (a skewer, with rice, coleslaw, tzatziki, fries)
- Fish (usually breaded, with rice and fries)
- Chicken (chicken nuggets with rice and fries)
- Vegetarian (mostly pasta)
Drinks are not included in the meal and must be ordered and paid for separately. Note that there are often no chilled drinks in the restaurants – wine and beer are served with ice cubes. Alternatively, it is possible to buy cold drinks on the ships.
Summary 3 island tour
Overall, the 3 islands tour from Kos offers an unforgettable experience that should not be missed. From stunning scenery to rich culture and history, this tour has it all. If you are looking for a unique and exciting way to experience the beauty of Greece, then the 3 island tour from Kos is the perfect choice for you.
How long is the crossing between Kos and Kalmynos?
How long is the crossing between Mastichari and Kalmynos?
The travel time between Mastichari (Kos) and Pothia (Kalymnos) takes 40 minutes.
Is there a toilet on the boats?
The boats are equipped with toilets, some even separate for men and women.
Are there drinks and food on board?
Drinks can be bought at the bar on the ships. You can choose from water, soft drinks, cocktails, beer and harder alcohol. During the journey there are always “Happy Hours” with special offers, such as 2 beers for €5 or each cocktail for €4. Nothing is offered for food on the ships.
How many passengers do the ships carry?
The ships carry up to 200 passengers. Depending on the size, some more, some less.
More posts about Kos
Here you can find more posts about the Greek island of Kos.
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