Kalymnos: The Best Greek Island for Hanging Around


Kalymnos climbing
(Courtesy Nikolaos Smalios).

The Greek island of Kalymnos is considered one of the top climbing destinations in the world. It receives 10,000 climbers every year who normally spend about a week on the island.

Since climbing is better enjoyed during cooler months, this also means that Kalymnos is a popular Greek offseason destination.

Climbing Kalymnos.
(Courtesy: Alternatrips).

Kalymnos is a favorite sports destination for climbing fanatics. With more than 3,500 routes to please an adventurous audience, this means also the climbs are pre-equipped with permanent drilled-in bolts. All that is required to climb are rock shoes, rope, and quickdraws (slings with two carabiners to attach the rope to the bolts).

Kalymnos also offers vast tracts of still-unexplored rock. As experts agree, even although it’s never without some risk — accidents still occur — it is one of the safer forms of climbing.

Climbing in Kalymnos (Courtesy: Climbing Magazine).

These are the reasons which attract a wide variety of climbers to Kalymnos, with different characteristics in terms of age and ability.

Kalymnos is chosen by teenage climbers, families of climbers and climbers in their 70s. One of the islands most famous climbing spots is the Grande Grotta — a vast cave shaped with a roof boasting a forest of large hanging stalactites.

Kalymnos climbing
Grande Grotta (Courtesy: Johannes Marschick)

At night, climbers usually gather in the bars and tavernas of Massouri to enjoy a relaxing moment. Other than climbing, Kalymnos is also famous for its past related to sponge harvesting, a thriving industry during the past century that made the island known all over the world.

Pothia, the island’s main town, is a maze of brightly colored houses and seaside spots where to relax during any climbing holiday. Southwest of Pothia, at a short distance, is Therma, an area with hot therapeutic springs.


This famous climbing destination receives adventurers all year long; many of them keep falling in love with the natural scenery and insist on returning to the island.

This is also what happened with a very original couple of climbers from Luxembourg who last November organized the most extreme wedding on the Greek island.

Kalymnosola.com reports that Marc Morocutti and eight-months-pregnant Sandy Kirtz pledged eternal love while hanging from one of the unique beauty climbing spots that overlook the nearby island of Telendos.


Extreme wedding in Kalymnos.
Extreme Wedding in Kalymnos,