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More time for Tilos or Nisyros?

Denver, Colorado
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89 posts
39 reviews
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More time for Tilos or Nisyros?

We have 6 days to spend on these two islands. Because of ferry schedules, we can have 1 day on Nisyros and 5 on Tilos. Or we can have 2 1/2 on Tilos and 3 1/2 on Nisyros.

To those of you who have visited both, which do you think would be the best choice? My impression is that Tilos has a little more to see and do, but I hate to short-change Nisyros.

A little more detail: we leave Kastellorizo on Sept. 8, arriving at either Tilos (22:10) or Nisyros (23:40). We must be back in Rhodes for a 16:45 flight on Sept. 15.

I'm only looking at the Blue Star ferries. There is a Dodecanese Seaways ferry scheduled from Nisyros to Tilos on Sept. 11, but I'm not sure if they're totally reliable at that time of year? If it doesn't run that day, I'd miss Tilos completely.

I appreciate any advice!

Athens, Greece
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1. Re: More time for Tilos or Nisyros?

The time tables unfortunately have changed many times this summer , the blue star diagoras will probably remain the same though.

I recommend tilos for these 6 days and another time that you will go to kos you can visit nisiros too. Tilos and rhodes have a lot of connections, the same goes for nisiros and Kos. So its better to combine them like that.

For many pictures from tilos you can check here:


Birmingham, United...
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2. Re: More time for Tilos or Nisyros?


I have been to both Tilos and Nisyros several times just about always taking them both together. Often the ferry between the two does dictate the number of days to some extent, I just play that by ear an adapt to whatever ferry days/timings there are. Your second option of 2½ days on Tilos and 3½ days on Nisyros is by far the best option.

When in the Dodecanese you normally use other ferries than Bluestar. You may in fact have more options than that. For example the local ferry 'Panagia Spiliani' runs from Nisyros > Kos about 07:30 most mornings, though on occasions seems to fill in for other ferries, also sometimes a boat to Kardamena(Kos). The island ticket agencies will have the details.

Walking map of Nisyros:


Tilos ferry ticket agency:


Not sure why you are backtracking to Rhodes when from Kos there are almost as many flights/ferries direct to Athens/Piraeus.

The dodging back to Rhodes bit is mainly for Europeans who have direct flights back home from there, this does not mean it's the most time efficient when going thru Athens.

The simple geographical line Kastelorizo > Tilos > Nisyros > Kos is the most efficient as once on Nisyros there are more ferries to Kos than Rhodes.

No point in trying to anticipate supposed unreliability of any ferry, if it happens, it happens and that's it. It is overall quite rare.

Edited: 4:37 am, August 01, 2011
Denver, Colorado
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89 posts
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3. Re: More time for Tilos or Nisyros?

Thanks -- I appreciate all the information.

The reason for going back to Rhodes was so that we could catch an early morning flight; we're actually going on to Lesvos, via Athens. Now, of course, Aegean has cancelled that early morning flight so we'll have to fly late afternoon from either Kos or Rhodes. Once we arrive in Rhodes on Aug 30, I'll see what the ferry situation looks like and maybe see about switching that flight to Kos.

We've been grounded for a day twice in Greece in September so I tend to try to use the bigger ferries. But you're right, if it happens, it's not earth-shattering.

I guess my main reason for posting was to see if there's enough to do on Nisyros to occupy 3 1/2 days. I have heard of many people spending a week or more on Tilos but Nisyros seems to be more of a place for a day trip. The walking map will be very helpful. We're thinking of renting motorbikes as well for the trip to the volcano.

We are so looking forward to seeing these islands!

4. Re: More time for Tilos or Nisyros?

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