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The Dodecanese islands are the island group farthest from mainland Greece, and usually farthest from the popular mind. This can be bad for the islanders, but good for you, the traveler. These islands hug the coast of Turkey, and some are actually within swimming distance. The most famous is the island of Rhodes, which in ancient times was known for its colossus, and is now best known for its bars and clubs. The scene is not as intense as Mykonos, but it has a gentility and a laid-back quality typical of people who are trying to get away from the crush of the crowd. The island of Kos, birthplace of Hippocrates, at first soared in the tourism ...

The Dodecanese islands are the island group farthest from mainland Greece, and usually farthest from the popular mind. This can be bad for the islanders, but good for you, the traveler. These islands hug the coast of Turkey, and some are actually within swimming distance. The most famous is the island of Rhodes, which in ancient times was known for its colossus, and is now best known for its bars and clubs. The scene is not as intense as Mykonos, but it has a gentility and a laid-back quality typical of people who are trying to get away from the crush of the crowd. The island of Kos, birthplace of Hippocrates, at first soared in the tourism firmament but has now come to rest as something of a tourism backwater. Quiet times and low prices are the order of the day. And tiny little Kastellorizo, the absolute easternmost isle, within spitting distance of Turkey, is one of the best places on the planet to relax, have a drink and a seafood dinner, and indulge in a little romance.

Richard Sterling
About the Expert

Richard Sterling is the author of Lonely Planet's World Food: Greece, Eyewitness Travel Guide Vietnam, and many other books.

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Richard Sterling for Triporati

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Facts at a Glance

  • Location: The Dodecanese are a group of 12 larger plus 150 smaller Greek islands, east of Turkey in the Aegean Sea, of which 26 are inhabited.
  • Language: Greek
  • Currency: Euro
  • Research: Wikipedia | Wikitravel

Climate

  • Best Time to Visit:

    Any time, though ferries can be delayed in winter.