The delightful Kalloni Bay Hotel has hosted birdwatchers from around the world for well over 20 years now and we have regularly stayed here for almost as long. Opening up each year in mid April has allowed the hotel to extend their tourist season by nearly a month. Regular tourists generally don’t arrive until mid May. This new season from mid April – mid May is aimed mainly at the hundreds of birdwatchers, nature lovers and botanists who flock here to enjoy the wonderful array of nature on offer in one of the most unspoilt islands in the Aegean.
The Kalloni Bay Hotel is not a wildlife lodge, but it is positioned within easy reach of many of the top birding sites and thus makes a perfect base from which to explore the island.
The staff and management have embraced the visiting wildlife enthusiasts and not only offer accommodation at a season when most hotels are just thinking of opening, they also appreciate the love all these people have for the island and its nature.
Whether you walk, rent a car or even a cycle, you don’t need to travel far before you can indulge in the natural side of this beautiful island. Even right outside the entrance to the hotel is a reedy pool that attracts migrating birds and holds several species of reptile and amphibian. A little further afield are two rivers, salt pans, grassy fields and the ocean which attract countless birds on migration during the spring and autumn.
The hotel now offers early breakfasts for both residents and non residents during April and May, simply because they know nature lovers like to get out early.
The breakfasts are without doubt the best available within the choice of hotels in this tiny fishing village and include a full assortment of both hot and cold buffet. Dinners are also buffet and the choice again beats any of the rival hotels. Picnic boxes can also be arranged and all of the staff cannot do enough to be helpful.
The rooms are clean; they all have a shower room; refrigerator and plenty of space to unpack all that you bring. Set on two floors; half of the rooms have balconies that look out towards the front and over the reedy Kalloni pool. Great for looking for herons and water birds. The other rooms look out the back where just a few trees are situated.
From 2017 we helped the hotel set up a bird information service which basically was a step up from the single sightings book that was on show at reception for visiting birders to write down what they had seen and where.
Now we have information boards showing the whole range of nature on offer and how best to identify it. These display boards cover reptiles, butterflies, dragonflies and will soon cover flora, insects, mammals and some of the more tricky to identify bird species. There is also a daily log highlighting the rare and unusual species that have been found. Once a week during this season the hotel has also opened its doors to a birders social evening where naturalists staying in the area are welcome to come in the evening and meet and chat with like minded people and check out the information available.
The Kalloni Bay Hotel has recognised the importance of being situated on a main highway for bird migration, as well as being on an unspoilt island teeming with natural wonders.
This is a great example of a tourist hotel embracing nature and the people that love it. They are seeking to reduce their plastic waste and single use bottles and are open for advise and just want to please.
We highly recommend this hotel and the delightful way in which it is run.