Astipalea also known as Astypalea is a Greek island belonging to the Dodecanese which is an island group of twelve major islands in the southeastern Aegean Sea. Along with numerous smaller uninhabited offshore islets, it forms the Municipality of Astypalaia.
The coasts of Astypalea are rocky with many small pebble and strewn beaches. A small band of land of roughly 10 kilometres, almost separates the island in two sections. The capital and the previous main harbour of the island is Astypalea or Hora.
A new harbour has been built in Agios Andreas on the mid island from where now the connections are west and east with Piraeus and the other islands of the Dodecanese.
The beauty of Hora is accented by its white houses surrounding the walls of the Byzantine fortress. Hora is built on a hill which is protruded from the sea forming two bays; the Livadia and Pera Yialos.
You can moor on the ferry quay but you might be asked to move for a short time when the ferry is due. You can also anchor in the bay. The bay is fairly sheltered except to south east winds.
The large bay of Livadhi is located on the south side of the Chora where you can anchor at the head of the beach.
In the sailing season the area is dominated by northerly winds. The wind called the Meltemi is caused by the large low pressure system in the east and the two large High pressure areas in the west of the Azores and the Balkan-High.
But several years sailing in this area are not enough to discover all nearly.
The coastline of Astypalea is rocky and wild with beautiful coves and beaches. The shape of the island resembles an egg-timer narrowing in the middle to a strip which connects the two sections.
To the southeast there are several little islands such as Hondro, Ligno, Aghia Kyriaki which has a church dedicated to Saint Kyriaki, Kounoup and Koutsomytis with a lovely swimming beach.
A little further away are the Tria Nisya, Syrna and Adelfi and to the west are the small islands of Pontikoussa, Ktenia, Katsagreli and Ofidoussa. Going north you will come to Fokionisia.