Situated at the southernmost point of the Dodecanese, Kasos is a remote island that’s far off the beaten tourist path. It’s for exactly that reason that I really enjoyed the place so much! Behind the rugged landscape lies a beauty found only in the parts of Greece that have remained relatively undeveloped over the last 50 years. It creates a quaint authenticity, where the pace of life is slow and the simple things are what matter most.
The island is only 49 square kilometres in size, with a population of around 1,000. That’s probably the peak summer populace, because it certainly feels as though there’s far fewer people calling the place home. Plus like a lot of these small islands, in the winter months many of the residents, particularly the older ones, head to the bigger islands.
Kasos has several great little beaches, however they can be challenging to get to, including Ammouas beach, which is a couple kilometers from town. Antiperatos Beach, with its three small coves and stunning blue-green waters, is another 5km or so down the coast. If you want to really get away from it all then Helathros is the spot for you. This pebbled beach is flanked by tall, rocky headlands, creating a delightful bay with clear waters. It’s located at the southern end of the island and is often completely deserted.
Apart from the pretty landscape, there’s a long and tumultuous history that’s well worth exploring. From Minoan times, right through to the modern era, Kasos has seen many trials and tribulations. The present day residents are a proud lot, shaped by the challenges faced by living in such a far away corner and also by the experiences of their forebears. The result is a populace of incredibly friendly and welcoming people, who embrace visitors and love to share their slice of the Aegean.
If you find yourself in this distant part of the country, or if you’re looking for an island that embodies the Greece of old, then Kasos is well worth spending some time on. It might be a bit of an effort to get there, but once you arrive, you’ll be glad you did it.
See Kasos in Episode 6 of Series 4!