Symi is quite the treck if you’re starting out from Athens. However, it is well worth it. After a flight to Rhodes and an hour boat ride, we finally arrived in Symi, an island quite close to neighboring Turkey.
Let me start off by saying that Symi was stunning. With beautiful multi colored houses that climb into the cliffs, and a harbor filled with tavernas, cafes, and shops. It is also very green and mountainous compared to many of the popular Cyclades islands. The waters are prestine for swimming, and I highly recommend taking one of the chartered boats to different beaches unaccessible by walking.
My family and I stayed in Pedi, in my cousins house which is literally right on the water. I mean literally. You walk out and hit the water after about 10 steps. There is a small beach in Pedi with a few local tavernas around, as well as the beach Agios Nikolaos which you can reach after a pretty short (but still tiring) yet beautiful hike, or by boat.
I also recommend visiting the Panormitis Monastery. It is definitely a change of scenery and is a nice new part of the island to check out. The views you will see during the drive from Pedi to the monastery are amazing. Aside from the monastery there are also places to swim there as well. The food in general was excellent and be sure to try, of course, Symi shrimp.
Although I didn’t really look into nightlife much, this part of my trip was definitely more about family time and I enjoyed every minuet spent on the island. In my opinion Symi is a perfect place for this type of vacation.