Patmos in Greece

Monastery of St John the Divine. Patmos.

Island group: Dodecanese | Capital: Skala | Population: 3000 | Area: 34 km2 | Highest mountain: 269 m | Airport: No

Patmos in Swedish.

Patmos is a pleasant little island that attracts visitors from all over the Christian world. The island is often referred to as the Greek Jerusalem. It was on Patmos that St. John the Divine received a revelation from God that the world would come to an end. In 95 AD St John was banished to Patmos from Ephesus in Turkey. He hid himself in a cave for two years. In the cave, he talked with God, and it resulted in the Book of Revelation, or Apocalypse. The cave is still there, and so is the fissure in the rock where St John talked to God. So they say. If it were not for the fissure it would not be so many cruise ships outside Patmos' port town Skala. The cave is well-visited.

Getting here
If you're travelling on your own it is easiest to go by air to Samos and continue by ferry to Patmos. The small ferry, Nisos Kalymnos, leaves from Pythagorion on Samos to Patmos every second day. Boat connections with Piraeus, Athens' port, is also good, usually daily connection during high season.

Getting around
Patmos is a small island with few roads. The best way to explore the island is by moped. There are also bicycles for rent. In Skala there are several car, mopeds and bicycle rental services. Buss runs between the port and Chora. Some trips go on to Kambos beach and Grikou. Excursion boats to Lipsi and Arki departs from Skala in good weather.

Psili Amos.

Psili Amos.

The village of Skala.

The village of Skala.

Skala is Patmos' port and the village where most things happens and also where most tourists stay. There are plenty of tavernas, cafes and bars. In Skala there is a beach that will do just fine for a morning or evening swim. Do not miss Restaurant Pantelis into the narrow alleys near the port, looking like a tourist trap, but appearances are deceptive. Great food and low prices. Chora looks, from a distance, like an impregnable fortress, the Monastery of St John the Divine dominates. It is a typical Greek Chora with many small alleys lined with whitewashed houses. Chora is pretty desolate and silent, except for the area where the monastery lies, of course.

Psili Amos is definitely the best beach on Patmos. Unfortunately it lies a little out of the way. Either you go with a bathing boat from Skala, the trip takes about an hour each way, or you get there on your own. If you drive a moped or car, you first go to Diakofti, park there, and then walk over the mountain. The walk takes about 30 minutes. The beach consists of fine white sand and it really is inevitably for a swim. Plenty of shade from tamarisk trees. The nice beach taverna that lies under the trees is in itself worth the walk here.

On the north-east of Patmos lies some of the island's best beaches. The first of the beaches are Meloi, which is wonderfully located in a bay. Kambos beach is one of the better beaches, and perhaps the most popular. It's a long, fairly fine sandy beach in a bay with green-blue water. Here's the most you can imagine in terms of beach facilities. Lambi beach at the top of the northeast is a long pebble beach. Many go here to eat flambéed saganaki. I can highly recommend it!

The Cave of the Apocalypse and the Monastery of St John the Divine (see picture at the top of the page) is two sights that no one misses, of course. The grotto is not much to see unless you believe in the Bible. The monastery is more worldly and well worth visiting. The monastery was founded in the 11th century and it is one of the most important monasteries in Greece.

If you're not travelling during high season there is no problem to find good accommodation. When the ferries call at the port there are letter of rooms waiting with colourful signs and brochures. Most options are in Skala and there is where most tourists stay. In Chora, it is hard to find a place to stay. We usually stay at Captain's House when we are on Patmos.

Book Captain's House here »

Book hotel, studios and apartments in Patmos here »

Kambos beach. Patmos.

Kambos beach.

Ferry timetable »

Lipsi - nearest island »

Photos from Patmos »

More photos on our Swedish site »

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