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Located in the Dodecanese group of the islands, the Greek island of Karpathos lies in the eastern Aegean Sea and is the second largest of the Dodecanese islands. Its relatively remote location has meant that the island has managed to retain many of its traditions and customs, traditional dress and dialect which resembles the dialect of the Greek island of Crete and of Cyprus.
The island's north has many rugged mountains but in contrast the south of the island is quite fertile, and visitors can see many wildflowers during the winter and spring. The island's coastal areas are characterised by beautiful beaches which tend to be quiet and are often nestled between the island's cliffs. The island's beaches differ quite markedly from each other which is dependent on the beach's location. The east coast beaches tend to be smaller and gravelly, but tend not to be too windy. The beaches on the south coast tend to have fine white sand as do the beaches on the island's west coast, although these are the most exposed to the Meltemi and are only really available when the wind isn't too strong. Finally, the beaches in the north are difficult to get to and are really only accessible by sea or by jeep.
Ferries from Karpathos depart to the ports of Piraeus, Rhodes, Heraklion, Milos, Anafi, Sitia, Santorini, Chalki and Kasos.
Kos is a Greek island that lies in the eastern Aegean Sea and is situated to the south of the island of Kalymnos and to the north of the island of Nisyros. The island, which is only around 3 miles off the Turkish coast and sits in the Keramiko Gulf, or the Kos Gulf, is the third largest of the Dodecanese islands. Kos is a well known and popular holiday destination where visitors go to enjoy the island's beaches. Kos was also one of the first Greek islands to recognise the benefits of tourism to its economy and as a result many hotels were built along the island's long and sandy coastline in the east and south. Cycling is a popular activity on Kos as the island's terrain is quite flat and because there are many bicycle hire outlets throughout the island along with some dedicated cycle paths between some of the larger hotels.
There are daily services between Kos and Piraeus along with services between Kos and the rest of the Dodecanese, the islands of the north eastern Aegean and Turkey. The trip by conventional ferry can take up to 13 hours, depending on the intermediate stopovers, and the trip with a high speed boat can take between 5 and 8 hours.