Past patrons – including David Bowie – and spots where you can sink Greek wines with stuffed courgette blossoms star are on our hitlist of drinking dens across the Dodecanese island of Patmos.
An easy-going, spiritually rich Dodecanese beauty with a chic design edge, Patmos has a quieter nightlife scene than some of its sister islands of Rhodes or Kos – but it’s still packed with super-scenic spots to sip crafted cocktails, sample Greek wines or knock back a few glasses of ouzo. Here’s our pick of the best bars in Patmos – including ancient taverns, forward-thinking cocktail bars and lantern-lit rooftop lounges.
Purple-pink bougainvillaea, soft turquoise windows and beamed ceilings adorn this wonderfully atmospheric, reimagined 17th-century home in Unesco-listed Chora. Going strong for three decades, it’s now a glamorous bar-restaurant and a Patmos hotspot, where you can settle in with a passionfruit martini or a bottle of wine on the romantic roof terrace. Astivi’s Mediterranean-Asian fusion menu wanders from salmon spaghetti to beef tartare – and its former patrons are said to have once included David Bowie.
Drink in the knockout views across Skala’s pretty ferry port at this seductive roof-terrace cocktail lounge with salt-white cushioned benches, deck chairs and candle-lit tables. Sunset is the perfect time to swing by, ideally with an Aperol spritz or a mojito in hand. You might catch a live music session in the rustic-modern indoor bar space – which also has a small library and light snacks.
An arty Skala address with a bohemian spirit, KouKou serves well-mixed cocktails and strong espresso on a hidden-away terrace with rainbow-painted furniture, just back from the ferry dock. Pieces by local artists hang on the open-stone walls – and regular DJ nights, live music and other events liven things up on the weekends. You can also pop in for brunch bites.
Housed in a historical, whitewashed building in the thick of hilltop Chora, Thalami is another cocktail bar charmer offering an ever-changing line-up of liquid mixes. Rustle up an Aperol spritz on the unbelievably pretty and intimate plaza and watch the Patmos evening scene swing into action. The framed shirt on the wall inside was apparently worn on the island by David Bowie in the 1980s.
Some of the island’s most creative cocktails – both classic and with-a-twist – are mixed up at this buzzy Chora hangout, which is tucked into a centuries-old lane just off the main village square. It’s an idyllic Greek summer setting, with courtyard tables and benches in the shadow of an ancient bell tower. The whole place gets packed as the night goes on.
Fabulous farm-to-fork restaurant Benetos delivers killer cocktails and a strong selection of Greek wines – including Patmos-grown labels – alongside its creative yet unpretentious fusion cooking. It’s surrounded by the Greek-American owners’ vegetable gardens and the romantic terrace has views across Sapsila bay. Pair a bottle of Patmian assyrtiko wine with one of the island’s most memorable meals – stuffed courgette blossoms – along with the squid-ink risotto and various home-baked desserts.
Overlooking the harbourfront in Skala, laid-back Arion has been a favourite Patmos meeting point among both islanders and visitors for decades. With its wood ceilings, exposed stone walls and panelled bar, it has an old-school charm that lends itself perfectly to live guitar and other music nights. Or just grab a roadside terrace perch and a chilled beer and spot the ferries rolling in from across the Aegean.
If you want to see more of Patmos, there are plenty of things to see and do nearby, as well as some great local restaurants. Alternatively, head further out to Rhodes and book from a wide range of hotels on Culture Trip. Once you’ve seen all the local attractions, travel to Kos and stay in one of the best hotels on the island.
KEEN TO EXPLORE THE WORLD?
Connect with like-minded people on our premium trips curated by local insiders and with care for the world
Since you are here, we would like to share our vision for the future of travel - and the direction Culture Trip is moving in.
Culture Trip launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful — and this is still in our DNA today. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes certain places and communities so special.
Increasingly we believe the world needs more meaningful, real-life connections between curious travellers keen to explore the world in a more responsible way. That is why we have intensively curated a collection of premium small-group trips as an invitation to meet and connect with new, like-minded people for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in three categories: Culture Trips, Rail Trips and Private Trips. Our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.
Culture Trips are deeply immersive 5 to 16 days itineraries, that combine authentic local experiences, exciting activities and 4-5* accommodation to look forward to at the end of each day. Our Rail Trips are our most planet-friendly itineraries that invite you to take the scenic route, relax whilst getting under the skin of a destination. Our Private Trips are fully tailored itineraries, curated by our Travel Experts specifically for you, your friends or your family.
We know that many of you worry about the environmental impact of travel and are looking for ways of expanding horizons in ways that do minimal harm - and may even bring benefits. We are committed to go as far as possible in curating our trips with care for the planet. That is why all of our trips are flightless in destination, fully carbon offset - and we have ambitious plans to be net zero in the very near future.