Leros Turismo escursionistico


The Island of Leros is a small "kingdom" for travelling and wandering on foot. Many routes have been signposted and are an invitation for the rambler. The island offers both short and long routes around its various villages and bays.

From antiquity to the Second World War

Thanks to the even terrain of its land, Leros is ideal for relaxing and enjoyable walking and cycling. The traveller who chooses to walk or cycle around the island will be able to enjoy its most beautiful and charming corners as a variety of colours and soothing sounds of nature will accompany him/her. You can follow paths that lead to archaeological, historical and military monuments. Some monuments left behind after the Italian occupation of the island hold particular interest. More information on the military monuments including The ‘Tunnel’ Military Museum can be obtained from the Municipality of Leros. 

Towards the Castle of the Virgin Mary

To reach the Castle of Panagia (the Kastro or Castle of Panteli), given that you enjoy romantic walks, you must first leave your vehicle in the Platanos car park and start your climb from the neighborhood of Platanos towards Agia Paraskevi. From there, follow the footpath with approximately 500 steps.

Stroll through the beautiful alleyways of Platanos and Agia Paraskevi and, at the point where the village ends, start climbing the hill and you will be greeted by the wonderful aroma of mountain thyme and other herbs. At Apityki, you will see the barracks buildings and the military firing ranges. You may feel tired as you climb but the view that awaits you will reward your efforts. The people of Leros promise and take an oath to climb up this hill when they do the pilgrimage to pray for assistance from the PanagiaVirgin Mary.

When you reach the Castle gates, you will feel that have you travelled back through time. If you let your imagination wander, you may even see the Knights and the people of Leros guarding the fortress from their enemy’s attacks. 

From Lakki to Xerokambos

As you leave Lakki behind, take the road that leads to Xerokambos until you reach Temenia. At Temenia, which used to be an industrial zone, you will seer the building of the Public Electricity Company. Next to this building is the old Dogliani gas works. The next thing you will find is the carpentry workshop of the Italian Pengo who had the only wood-carving and finishing machine at that time. The Catholic cemetery once located near the carpentry workshop is today an Orthodox cemetery, although there are still some Italian graves left.

Upon leaving Temenia behind, you will reach Lepida and on our right is Leros’s Psychiatric Hospital originally built as a hangar to house the Italian G. Rosseti hydroplanes. You can distinguish some impressive buildings as well as one of two cranes used to lift the hydroplanes onto dry ground. The three large hydroplane hangars no longer exist and in fact one of them now is located in Tatoi, Attica where the Aeroplane Museum is presently housed.

Leaving the gates of the Psychiatric Hospital to your right and as you continue along the road to Xerokambos, you will reach the village of Sfakia where there is an asphalt-paved road on our left that leads to Mount Tsigounas. The barracks of the 113th anti-aircraft battery as well as the boiler room for the power generators can be seen.

As soon as you see the first homes at Xerokambos right after the church of Agios Vlassis, you can see the sign indicating the road towards Palaiokastro. The ascent to Palaiokastro will take to pre-historic times where you will see the remains of the ‘Cyclopean Wall’. At the same location you will be able to visit places of historical and religious interest, such as the little church of the Virgin Mary and the ruins of another early Christian church. The ancestors of Leros used to hide in the acropolis in order to protect themselves from the raids and you will see the remains of this acropolis.

Continuing on the road towards Xerokambos and you will come across the village church of Agios Fanourios. Take the path that leads to Mt. Skoubarda and you will come to the barracks of the 262nd firing range and the church of Agios Gerogios. The road is paved with asphalt only at the beginning. The view from the top is breath-taking as you will see the entire island and the horizon will meet the majesty of the Aegean Sea.

Also, the historical building from the Second World War can be seen on on this exact walk. Continue your walk down the road to Xerokambos towards the beach and go through the village. The road continues as far as Diapori – Tourtouras and the electric power station FT3.  The road is asphalt-paved up to the small church of the Virgin Mary of Kavouradaina. You are encouraged to take a break here and cherish a quiet moment as you visit the church. From Diapori to the base of the 281st and 388th anti-aircraft batteries continue on foot as there is no access by car. Making the effort to complete this walk will be well worth your while because inside the barracks, wall paintings produced during the occupation can be discerned.

From Lakki to Patella

The walking path to Patella offers much information about the Italian military organization of the island during its occupation. The first monument to be seen is the torpedo boat, ‘Queen Olga’ on the beach of Lakki. The Italian Naval Administration Building and the large warehouse next to it, is to your right. A few meters further down you can see the YNTEL building and the residence of the Commander of the Naval Base. This is where the last Governor, Admiral Mascerpa, also stayed.

The buildings in Gonia were the first to be built, before the town of Lakki even though development continued much later.

The present marina at Lakki used to be the dock where torpedo boats where anchored during time of war. At the top of the hill is the base for the anti-aircraft, machine gun. Pass through a pine-filled, forested area at Gonia and you will come to Koulouki and Merikia. 

There are large deserted warehouses that were used for the storage and assembly of ammunition. The asphalt - paved road ends at Merikia. At Merikia you have the opportunity to visit the famous “Tunnel” War Museum where there are many military artefacts, photographs and audiovisual material from the Battle of Leros. The War Museum is a first step to distinguishing and promoting the history of Leros.

Continue and you will come to the natural harbour at Cape Katsouni where you can see the barracks and the place where the machine that pulled the submarine network was positioned. The firearms bases of the 250th and 227th batteries are here as well as the half-destroyed watch tower. If you return to the main road and continue, you will reach the Ducci firing range, with a small number of buildings with iron-clad doors and windows on one of them. The signs of the explosions are visible.

Continuing, we reach the peak of Patella. This was where the headquarters of the FAM DI CAT, the administration and coordination of the entire anti-aircraft system, used to be. It also had radars for tracking planes and watch towers under the administration of the Second Lieutenant V. Spigai. Today, the roof of the watch tower is demolished. There are also some barracks and administrative buildings. 

From Lakki to Partheni

On your way to Platanos, you will come across a road on the right at the height of Agyra, which leads to Vigla where you see the 306th battery.. This is one of the island’s most impressive fortress and protected positions. There are some tunnel entrances, fire-arms posts and the barracks.

Turn left and you will come to the church of Agios Nikolaos the Poor where the Italians’ wireless communications system, three very tall antennae and their building is. Today, the building is abandoned and barren.

If we turn left at Agyra, we reach Pachi where the posts of the 211th anti-aircraft battery are still visible.

Continuing on this beautiful trail from Rachi, we reach Kamara and Alinta. At Alinta it is worth visiting the Manolis Isichos History and Folkloric Museum in the Beleni Tower. This is the only museum of modern history in the Dodecanese.

Leaving Alinta and heading for Partheni in the areas of Kamara and Smalou, you will see some of the Italian warehouses that are still in use today. Near these warehouses is a dirt road which leads to the 906th battery at Diplogourna, with a barracks with wall-paintings and inscriptions on the walls. In the region of Markellos, you can see the remains of the Farinata firing range.

Reaching Partheni, you will see a number of military buildings that are still in use but entrance to them is forbidden. At the dock you will see the metal rails and the wagons, used to transport the mines and the torpedoes.

Continue, you reach the small port of Rina. The ship ‘Ivorea’ took refuge at this port but was discovered and sunk by the Germans. A small part of the boat which was not completely destroyed is semi-submerged and can be seen near the beach. We can still make out the bollards and the remains of the submarine netting.

Heading to Blefouti, we encounter the remains of the 888th anti-aircraft battery at the peak. The 899th anti-aircraft battery was located at the Cape of Asfoungaros and on the façade of this building the inscription “Siamo orgogliosi di occupare un posto de combattimento, di sacrifice e di dovere” survives which means “we are proud to be in a battle position for sacrifice and duty”. As you continue, you will come to the Bay of Vagia where the Germans landed after the Battle of Leros. Opposite the islet of Stroggyli a German landing craft has been sunk at a depth of six metres.

Moreover, at Agios Polykarpos, Agios Spyridonas, Gerakas, Klidi, Thymari, Facoudia and elsewhere, you will be able to visit more batteries.The majority of which still have wall-paintings from the era.