Molivos village on Lesbos Island - Lesvos, Greece


Village / CityMolivos 
Coast / inlandCoast
RegionNorth of Lesvos
BeachesPebble stone beach
HighlightsCastle, harbour, tavernas, Agora
Local bus serviceYes
Map availableNo


Lesbos  lesbos island  Lesvos  Greek island lesbos

Local information

Molivos is a beautiful town in the north part of the Greek Aegean island of Lesvos/Lesbos, dominated by its ancient hilltop castle and with phenomenal sea views. The winding cobbled streets reveal the tranquillity of traditional Greek life, majestic town houses, painted in reds and greens, alongside an array of stylish tavernas, bars and shops. Molivos has a range of mini-markets nearby as well as a good baker and butcher. Nightlife is unsophisticated and mainly centres on the lively harbour front with its many tavernas and bars, some with live music, as well as the occasional nightclub.(Fewer bars, shops etc open in low season) Molivos has an open-air cinema in peak season, with films in English and Agora (shopping street) with wisteria above you to provide some shade while shopping.
Molivos is 5 kilometres from Eftalou where you can relax in the local hot springs. The village Molivos is build around the hills so al lot of accommodation do have great sea/bay views. The agora is the main shopping street with all nice shops, 2 pharmacies and lots of tavernas to explore. Molivos lively harbour has many options for a great romantic lunch/dinner or just for having a drink in your favourite bar.

Molivos/Molyvos has several ATM cash machines or exchange option for your currency.



Molyvos means "lead" in Greek and the name was given to Mithymna by the Turks. However, or whoever gave the town its name it has become today one of the most visited and popular tourists attractions on the island.
Molivos (or Mithymna) at the northern tip of Lesvos is arguably the most beautiful village of the island with its picturesque harbor dominated by the castle and tiers of red-tiled stone houses climbing up the slopes away from the blue sea. At night, the flood lit castle turns the harbor into one of the most romantic places on earth, perfect for a special dinner-for-two.

Molivos, the capital of the Province, and the contiguous villages of Skala Sykamania, Sykamnia, Lepetymnos, Argenos, Vafios and rural area of Eftalou comprise the present Municipality of Mithymna. According to mythology, Mithymna was one of the five daughters of the mythical King Makara. During the middle ages Mithymna takes on the name Molivos or Molyvos. The writing of Molivos with an iota (i) could be considered the proper way to spell the name, if we were to accept the assumption that the stem of the word is the West European periphrastic denomination Mont d' olives (mountain of olives).  

The traditional architecture of the town reflects the modus Vivendi and social life styles of the past. In 1965 the competent authorities put a preservation order on the entire settlement of Molivos (Mithymna), thus declaring it a protected town. Mithymna owns an archaeological collection with impressive findings from the surrounding area, and a library with a collection of over ten thousand volumes and manuscripts.

In the past, music was the beloved activity of the Mithymnian people. Arion was a brilliant poet who set music to verses like no other. Zeus, Dionysos and Hercules were especially worshipped. Virgule mentions that the grapes of Mithymna were unequalled in their nectars and aromas.
Since 1960, tourist development has played a critical role in the life and evolution of Molivos. Every year a significant number of cultural events and conferences, both national and international, are held in Molivos. Art exhibitions, lectures, theatrical performances and folklore events are held in the town.

Apart from the tourist industry, the local inhabitants also work in the fishing, olive cultivation, cattle-breeding and farming sector.

Human presence at Mithymna goes back to prehistoric times. The name of the ancient city is pre-Greek, and in the writings of ancient authors, on ancient coins and in inscriptions it appears in the Aeolic form of "Mathymna" and the Attic "Methymna" or "Methymna". In the antiquity the city was an important military, commercial and manufacturing centre, with links with Thrace, the Hellespont, and Asia Minor, where, after 770 BC, It founded colonies.

In the Byzantine period (312-1355), it was the target of frequent pirate raids, or served as a refuge for warring rivals. From Byzantine times down to the present, Molivos has remained and developed in the same geographical position. In the Middle Ages, in order to deal with raids from the sea, and because of a considerable reduction in its population, the town was gradually concentrated in a part only of its initial site and of necessity clustered in the caste area.

From the eleventh century, trade in the Aegean came into the hands of the Genoese and the Venetians. for the former, after Gateluzzi (1355-1462) had established, by peaceful means, their rule in Lesvos, Mithymna was an important commercial port. Having safeguarded their control by building fortifications, they encouraged the cultivation of the olive and the development of the trade in olive oil. It was in this period that the town became known as Molivos.


There are several archaeological areas at the ancient city of Molivos is hidden above harbour area and at several places around the village people still find hidden ruins.



Molivos has a long coast line with pebble stone beaches; at the far end you will find a sandy beach with some more privacy, some public showers but no public toilets. No lifeguards present.

The town has two blue flag beaches. Molivos, a sandy pebble beach stretching towards Petra, ideal for activities like volleyball, water sports such as cannoning or parasailing and Eftalou beach, famous for its crystal clear waters is approximately situated 4 km from the village. If you like Diving contact Lesvos Scuba, they also offer courses for beginners.


Open air cinema

Concerts in Molivos castle just look her for the program

Open air club, beach bar and several tavernas

Several internet cafés

Local activities, trips

Diving, swimming, tennis, walking, cycling, fishing, horse riding, wind-surfing, water skiing and mountain-biking.
Bird watching in spring and autumn and Molivos is about half an hour from the gulf of Kalloni where many interesting birds can be spotted (120 seen by guests!).
Mountain bikes can be hired locally.
Donkey treks can be arranged with local travel agents.
You can snorkel around the rocks off Molivos.
Molivos beach, pebble stone and small sandy beach.
Boat trips along the coast with swimming and barbeque are wonderfully relaxing.
Walk along the gorgeous, winding, cobbled streets lined with traditional artworks, and interesting jewelers, boutiques, pastry shops.
The castle crowns the town, differing fantastic views of the coastline, and over the sea to Turkey
Ride donkeys or horses along the many paths in the vicinity of Molivos.
The landscape around the mountain of Lepetimnos provides ideal walks, mountain climbs.
Visit the springs of Eftalou Lesbos, an entrancing place right on the beach.
Check out the museum and art gallery
Dine at one of the most beautiful harbors in Greece.

Hiking - several routes and guides will take you to breathtaking areas
Safari jeep trips - look at Safari link for more options
Boat trips - several options to near beaches or areas
Car rental - look at car rental link for more options
Restaurants - look at restaurants link for more options
Donkey trekking - day and night trips





Mitilini airport 60 km from Molivos


Molivos beach


Mitilini harbour 55 km, Molivos harbour 500 metres


Molivos village, shops, ATM


Transport Transfer

There are reasonably good bus services across the island, especially between Molivos and Mitilini. In May to September there is a local bus service all day long from Eftalou to Molivos to Petra and then to Anaxos and back. However, there is a less frequent winter service. There is a taxi rank just outside the town and fares are reasonable. A car is really not necessary within Molivos but if you wish to explore the whole island it would certainly be an advantage. There is a large port in Mytilini with daily sailings to Athens (about 9 hours) and Chios, and also frequent sailings to Limnos and Rhodes.
Domestic flights to Athens take about 45 minutes (Aegean and Olympic Airways). Direct charter flights from the UK (Gatwick and Manchester) are from May to Mid October on Thursdays. Otherwise you have to fly via Athens (Easy jet, Olympic and British Airways). There are also direct flights from Holland, Norway and Germany in the summer. ). In season the changeover day for rentals is Thursday.



Shops are open from 10.00 hours to 24.00 hours or later depends on the season.
Tavernas will open until 01.00 or later depends on the season


Important phone numbers

Police  (tourist)                









Taxi service