Climbing in Kalymnos
Now the number of routes bolted in Kalymnos are more than 2000 and are ready to be climbed all the season. With approximately 10 months summer Kalymnos became an attraction for climbers from all over the world, from amateurs to pros this island has to offer a climbing style that is very rarely found in climbing. It is not random that Kalymnos has been choosen between, China, Tailand, Spain as one of the most popular climbing destinations worldwide! From the unique tufa formations, till the fact that in limited places so many different climbing sectors are so close one with another.
Climbing in Kalymnos started when popular climbers from Italy visited the island for holidays, but watching the endless possibility of climbing they returned as soon as possible with drills and bolt to start bolting routes in Kalymnos. All started in the late 90s something that makes Kalymnos one relatively new climbing destination. The first Italians that were bolting routes in Kalymnos got themselves arrested, because climbing in the island was something completely unknown to the Kalymian, who were thinking that those people are trying to steal their rocks and stalactites.
If you have the impression that climbing in not for everyone.. think twice! take your family, friends with no age limitation and try an unforgettable experience in Kalymnos! Of course for something like this to happen you need a certified instructor to make what looks difficult to you, a piece of cake. There is no doubt about the safety of climbing, considering that Kalymnos built it’s reputation with climbing. If you are a new-be in this experience an instructor is highly recommended!
Few years now there is a climbing gym that operates in Kalymnos, Pothia under the management of Loukas Ntourdourekas, one the best greek climbers!
Sight-seen in Kalymnos
Specially interesting are the “Castle of the mainland” and the “Castle of Chrisoheria”. The first is belongs to the Byzantine period while the second was built in the times of Knights and was used as a residence for the governor of Kalymnos at that time.
There are four museums in the island. The “Archeological Museum” that hosts variety of treasures that have been pulled out from the se. The “Sailing Museum” which is associated with the rich sailing activity in the island. The “Valsamidis Sea Findings Museum” which exhibits different kinds of sponges and other finding from the depths of the Mediterranean sea. Finally there is the “House of Kalymnos” which is a copy of a Kalymnian house from the past.
There are numerous churches all over the island with beautiful images and many holy utensils and hagiographies. The one’s that you should definitely pay a visit are the ‘Church of Saint Savas’, and the ‘Saint Nikolaos’ which won’t leave you untouched.
Although if you happen to be in Kalymnos in the Easter you will be amazed by the sounds of the homemade explosives that are being exploded the night of the Resurrection.
Although you can eat any kind of food in Kalymnos, it would be interesting to seize the opportunity to try some of the island’s special dishes. You should try grape leaves, mousaka, filled tomatoes and the Kalymnos greek salad.
The original Kalymnian product are the ‘Krithines Kouloures’ which is a kind of rusk that was initially made by the Kalymnian sailors who took long sea trips because it was the only food that could be preserved for a long time.
Also the Easter Mouri is a Kalymnian delight made in an earthen utensil and contains lamb filled with rise. Of course sea food is always a good choice, deliciously combined with some Tsipouro, or Ouzo, or Retsina…
A day trip to Telendos is a must
For climbers -Unlimited climbing routes, which are in great condition if you compare with sectors like Odyssey were the routes are becoming polished. Also the view from Telendos is something completely different. After climbing you can enjoy yourself in one of the most beautiful beaches in Telendos located behind Evangelia Studios in the left side (as you see Telendos from Masouri) of the island. You can find many options to have your launch and enjoy sea food delights. The boats run from Melitsaxas to Telendos every 30minutes until midnight. Climbers can go directly to the climbing sectors of Telendos with a fee around 60-80€ (the boat has a capacity of 20 people maximum) a price you can negotiate. To arrange the transportation to sectors in Telendos visit the harbour of Melitsaxas one day earlier and go straight to a captain of the fishing boats in the harbour.
For the visitors – Special celebrations in Kalymnos is the celebration of Virgin Mary in 15th August, with local traditional dancing in Telendos were everyone can participate. Also during the full moon in August there is every year the “Full Moon Party” in the beach in Telendos. Loud music and dancing until the morning. The music will direct you to the right place! Those days the boats to Telendos run all night.
Getting from Pothia to Masouri
Unfortunately every year things are unpredictable. The bus is a very cheap and convenient way if you consider that the price is only 1,5€ for a distance of 16km. We recommend asking locals about the timetables to get accurate information.
If your only solution is to take a taxi, make sure that you ask the driver to start the taximeter! Most of the drivers will ask you an amount of 15 to 20€ to drive you to Masouri. With the taximeter on, you won’t pay more than 13€. Of course late night rides might be more expensive.
ACTIVITIES IN KALYMNOS (OTHER THAN CLIMBING)
Diving is something you must definitely try. The bottom of the sea hides the other half beauty of Kalymnos. The cost of the diving experience is about 50€ per person for an adventure that lasts more than 5 hours. Everyone can participate so don’t miss this opportunity. You can find all the information needed in Kalymnos Diving Center.
Deep Water Solo in the area of Vathy. You should check the availability of the canoes few days before because of their limited number.
Sailing in Pothia. Rent a boat with a captain and make a trip in the nearby islands like Pserimos, Plati, Telendos.
Windsurfing usually between Kalymnos and Telendos where the sea gets narrow and the wind is 3-5 knots and even more most of the times.
Mountain bike – There are many routes for mountain bike in Kalymnos. Ask the touristic information about the details.
Hiking is also an option but not recommended during summer. All the hiking trails are maintained and marked. You can get more details from the touristic information desk in Pothia.
Kalymnos Climbing Guide
– 64 climbing sectors
– Nearly 1,700 routes
– A concise crag planner
– New photo-topos and stunning images
– Detailed maps with approach paths
– More useful crag info: conditions, rock type, sun, orientation, ‘child-friendliness’ of each crag
– More details on how to equip new routes
– More tips on travel, accommodation, amenities, local interests and rest-day activities
– A new, more user-friendly page layout