A Flora and Fauna of Symi

A personal guide to the wildlife of Symi and beyond

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Blog posts : "karpathos"

Sage Skipper

The sage skipper is a true dry habitat species which is found in harsh, bleak and sparsely vegetated places.  Restricted to Symi, Karpathos and Kithira on the Greek islands and the Greek mainland. Also found in other areas of the Southern Mediterranean where its preferred plant is phlomis and it has two broods with a long flight season from April t…

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The last day.

A few pics from the last day on Karpathos.

A village woman picking wild greens from the mountainside.

An old shepherds hut atop of some nearby terraces.

A raven and one of a small group of corn buntings that were almost invisible amongst the rocks.

No album of Greece would be complete without a picture of a goat.

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Round Profitis Ilias

Karpathos: part two.

This was the mid way point and the highest place on the walk at about 500 metres. The views were literally breathtaking.

Shortly after this point we stopped for lunch. In the distance was an old farmstead and you can see the threshing circle, long since disused. behind us on the hill the terraces stretched almost to …

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A River Valley

We decided that Monday was going to be a lazy day so we drove for twenty minutes on tarmac south of Olympos and then twenty minutes on a dirt track to a secluded river valley. The day did not disappoint and it was all about the wildlife in the end. We were rewarded with frogs, crabs, orchids and a lot more. I've labelled some pictures so you can se…

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Ancient Vrikounda

Ancient Vrikounda sits on a small finger of land jutting out into the sea, overlooking a wild and isolated  bay beneath  its precipitous cliffs and a view of the distant island of Saria. The peninsular is covered with ancient ruins and terraces wherever  you look and in the cliffs there is an ancient church where water drips through the roof into a…

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Collecting "Horta".

Gathering horta (χόρτα) from ancient Vrikounda (Βρυκούνδα) is a complicated business. It takes an hour and a half to walk there and a lot longer to walk back up the hill to Avlona (Αυλόνα) in Northern Karpathos. Radiki and Kardamo are on the menu today, that's dandelion and garden cress.


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Round Profitis Ilias

Karpathos. Part one.

An eight kilometre amble around the 600 meter mountain of Profitis Ilias turned into one of the scariest walks I've ever done and alternately one with breathtaking views of the surrounding countryside. It took us four hours to traverse ancient stone paths that occasionaly had been eroded by scree slopes and others where the …

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Diafani, Διαφάνι

Day 2, Karpathos. We walked up a hill a lot, we walked down hill a lot, we missed a path back to Olympos, we spotted orchids and other wonderful plants and walked down a gorge and arrived at the fishing village of Diafani. We had a beer in a taverna. And caught the school bus back to Olympos (Olibos). We met many cousins of our host. We watched Oli…

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Olympos, Karpathos

The view from our balcony; let's see what the day brings.

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Arkasa, Karpathos

The fields below the seaside town of Arkasa are a rich source for study for naturalists and archeologists alike. Pre- christian temples, mosaics, wildlife and holiday makers all mix together here, although I met nobody today! Well it is January.

Even the hill I'm standing on has an air that is almost unreal with Doric pillar sticking out o…

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The lovely empty beach of Apela on the east side of Karpathos. I disturbed a mediterranean shag sunning itself with wings outstretched on a rock and on the hills above a common buzzard sparring with a kestrel.

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Up The Kali Limni

The walk to the summit of the Kali Limni on Karpathos takes about one and a half hours from the small settlement of Lastos.

Starting from the taverna and leaving out drinking the raki until you return the path is marked by a lone pear tree in the distance.

Our walk was also marked by a group of 30+ ravens playing in a large rising thermal.

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Rain all Day (and Tomorrow)

A look back at Mesochorio on Karpathos. The first part was here.

The terraces are green all the year around thanks to the springs under the church.

Fruit orchards of every description grow here; pomegranates, persimmons, ugly fruit, lemons and oranges.









Farther away there are o…

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Happy Christmas!

This is the summit of the Kali Limni on Karpathos at 4050 feet which we walked up earlier this year.

A Merry Christmas to you all and a Happy New Year too!

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Mesochorio; part one.


Mesochorio is set under some impressive limestone cliffs just a few miles off the main road on the west side of Karpathos.

This is a gem of a village and although many of the buildings have been modernised the real star for me is the green valley and the productive terraces either side of the main church.




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15 blog posts