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Chakli, also known as Halki, is a rectangular shaped island which has more than 34 km of coast and some of the most interesting landscapes of the Dodecanese. The island is mainly covered in mountains and the few beaches that you will find are very small and often covered in rocks or pebbles. Chakli is only a few kilometers from Rhodes and isn’t usually very crowded.
Chakli has the advantage of being in the middle of the ferry routes that connect Rhodes, Karpathos, Kasos and Kos. For this reason you can even decide to land in Rhodes before leaving for Kos (both the islands have international airports) and reaching Chakli.
Why choose Chakli?
If you are looking for peace and quietness chakli is the ideal destination for you. Here you will enjoy the bright blue sea besides the relaxing atmosphere. The only inhabited center is Embrios, a small village located in a bay protected from strong winds.
Near the port you will find many different taverns and restaurants besides houses built in neoclassical style that have been restored and are now hotels or apartments rented to tourists during the summer. On the islands there are the same amount of people and cats, in fact you will probably see them around all the time, especially near the inhabited centers.
Chakli is also a Unesco heritage site and it is known as the island of peace and friendship. Chakli is a small island full of natural beauties where you will find beautiful landscapes and panoramas. If you are looking for something to do during the evening you can decide to visit one of the many taverns where you will be served Ouzo (a typical greek drink) while admiring the wonderful Aegean sea.
Chalki is a wonderful island famous for it’s beautiful beaches and crystal clear waters. Most of the beaches of this island don’t offer any service as they are in very remote places often. The beaches of this island can be reached either by bus or on foot. Here are some of the most interesting beaches you can find in Chalki.
The only sandy beach on Chalki located at about 10 minutes from Embrio. It is very well equipped and near the beach you will find taverns, umbrellas and chaise lounges.
A rocky beach with turquoise waters. There is a 15 minute walk before reaching Emborio that goes through the main road and carries on until the island’s windmills. On this beach there are also some taverns, some chaise lounges and some beach umbrellas.
A beach with pebbles and crystal clear waters surrounded by a lush vegetation and located in the eastern part of the island. This beach is equipped with chaise lounges, beach umbrellas and even a canteen where to get food. It can be easily reached by car or by bus.
A small beach with white pebbles in the southern part of the island, near a dirt road that starts from the old village of Chorio, under the Kastro. A nice place where to relax by the cliff’s shade.
A small limb of land that connects the island to the mainland. An extremely beautiful place that can be reached either by boat or by crossing a path that goes through the abandoned village of Horio.
All the activities to do in Chalki are related to the natural beauties of the island. You can go on long walks by the beach and visit the remains of the many historical buildings. Niborio’s seashore is one of the most fascinating parts of the island and once there you will have the chance to visit one of the many taverns where to order some Ouzo.
An exciting walk
One of the first and best activities that you should do on the island is to go for a long walk of about 6 hours following an old barren road and admiring the beautiful landscape and turquoise sea. Don’t remember to take some water and food besides good shoes and the right clothes.
Boat trip in Chalki
Every day there are boats that leave from Chalki and give you the chance to fully enjoy a day by the sea and visit beaches that would otherwise be inaccessible. The sea is crystal clear and there is also a small island called Nisaki, right in front of Chalki, where you will find lush nature and a wonderful sea.
Taking part in a boat trip also gives you the chance to visit the small island of Nisaki, located in front of Chalki, where you will find lush nature and a wonderful sea. Another thing to do is certainly visit the island of Alimnia, a small and wonderful island in the Dodecanese. Here the boat trip includes visiting the coasts of the island and eating a nice grilled meal for lunch.
The prices compared to the other islands are slightly lower and according to the type of trip you decide to take you will spend about 45 and 70 euros a day.
Trip to the historical buildings
There is also the old village of Chorio and the remains of Saint John’s knights castle located above the antique remains of the Acropolis. Also the churches of Panaghia, Agios Nikolaos, Aghia Triada and the monastery Taxiarchis Michail Panormitis are all worth visiting.
The easiest way to move around Chalki is certainly by walking. In fact on the island you can only choose between walking or taking a small bus that only runs during the summer months. The bus will take you from Chalki’s main village, Emborion, to the beach of Pondamos. The rest of the island can only be explored on foot so you will want to take some comfortable and practical shoes. On the island there are also some taxi boat that give you the chance to explore the island’s coast.
How can you get to Chalki? There is no airport on this island that can only be reached by ferry or fast boat to Emborios, the sole port on the island. The nearest islands with airports are Rhodes and Kos. Both have direct international flights during the summer season (June - September), with connections via Athens during the rest of the year.
How to reach Chalki from Athens
If you are already in Athens, there are two alternatives. Firstly by internal flight to Rhodes or Kos, and secondly by ferry from the port Piraeus. The ferry takes 22 hours, so unless one is looking for a romantic trip around the Aegean Sea, flying is strongly recommended.
How to reach Chalki from Rhodes
Chalki is on the main route between the Dodecanese islands and Piraeus and so there are frequent connections from Rhodes. There is a catamaran ferry linking Rhodes, Tilos, Nisyros, Kos and Kalymnos which stops at Chaki on Tuesday and Thursday mornings and evenings.
There are also two local ferries which connect Chalki daily with Rhodes. These depart from Skala Kamirou, a port on the western side of Rhodes that is directly opposite Chalki. Ferries leave Rhodes at 7 am and 5 pm. The crossing lasts 1 - 2 hours and costs €18.
How to reach Chalki from Kos
Like Rhodes, there is an international airport on Kos. Ferries from Kos run by Dodekanisos Seaways depart twice-weekly from the port of Kos and the crossing takes 2 hours 20 minutes. If planning to reach Chalki via Kos rather than Rhodes, it is best to check the ferry timetable well beforehand.
All the accommodations and hotels that can be found in Chalki are all located in Emborios. Unfortunately there aren’t many accommodations so if you are visiting it during high season we suggest you book a villa or an apartment in advance. Some of the historical buildings have been restored and are now hotels or apartments. All these places can be easily reached on foot by the port. There is also the chance to spend a night in one of Chalki’s historical houses that have been transformed into villas for tourists. Compared to other islands of the dodecanese the prices in Chalki are slightly lower.