Satellite image of the island
Satellite image of the island
Halki is located in Greece
Location within the region
Coordinates: 36°14′N 27°34′E / 36.233°N 27.567°E / 36.233; 27.567
Administrative regionSouth Aegean
Regional unitRhodes
 • Municipality37.04 km2 (14.30 sq mi)
Highest elevation
601 m (1,972 ft)
Lowest elevation
0 m (0 ft)
 • Municipality475
 • Density13/km2 (33/sq mi)
Time zoneUTC+2 (EET)
 • Summer (DST)UTC+3 (EEST)
Postal code
851 10
Area code(s)22460
Vehicle registrationΚΧ, ΡΟ, ΡΚ
Port of Emporio, Halki Island, Dodecanese

Halki (Greek: Χάλκη; alternatively Chalce or Chalki) is a Greek island and municipality in the Dodecanese archipelago in the Aegean Sea, some 9 km (6 mi) west of Rhodes. With an area of 28 km2 (11 sq mi), it is the smallest inhabited island of the Dodecanese. It is part of the Rhodes regional unit.[2] It has a permanent population of 330 (increased during the summer months), concentrated in the only village of Emporio. The 2021 census showed a population of 475 inhabitants. The community is divided in two parts, Chorio (Χωριό, also spelled Horio, "Village") and Emporio (Εμποριό, "Market").


The island supported a much larger population but, following emigration in the mid-20th century, Chorio was almost completely abandoned. A sizable group of the residents moved to Tarpon Springs, Florida, establishing the Greek-American community there that continues to this day. A ruined medieval castle of the Knights of St. John overlooks the old town and the chapel contains some of the original frescoes.

List of Halki rulers
Rhodian Hexapolis 700-408 BC
Rhodes 408-332 BC
Macedonian Empire 332-323 BC
Rhodes 323-164 BC
Roman Empire 164 BC - 395
Byzantine Empire 395 - 7th century
Arabs 7th century - 825
Byzantine Empire 825 - 1204
Venice 1204 -
Genoa - 1523
Ottoman Empire 1523 - 1912
Italy 1912–1948
Greece 1948


Church on the left and typical houses of Emporio

The Municipality of Chalki includes several uninhabited offshore islands, the largest of which is Alimia to the northeast, and has a total land area of 37.043 square kilometres (14.302 sq mi).[3] The island's primary industry is tourism, although fishing is also substantial. There is virtually no natural water supply on the island and rainfall is collected in large cisterns. Drinking water is brought in from Rhodes, but there can be shortages during the summer months due to the increased population. As of 2014, there is a desalination plant on the island and the water boat no longer comes every few days. However, bottled water still arrives.

Solar power

A solar park, currently generating 1.8 gigawatthours of electricity annually, stands as a noteworthy achievement on the island of Halki. Spearheaded by project developer Vassilis Zafiropoulos from Akuo, this initiative is anticipated to markedly diminish the island's carbon footprint, reducing CO2 emissions by an estimated 2,576 tonnes—equivalent to the emissions of 617 conventional cars.[4]

Furthermore, the economic impact is substantial, with €260,000 in savings on green energy production. This amount is deemed sufficient to cover the energy costs for over 200 island families, contributing to a remarkable shift toward sustainable and cost-effective energy solutions.[4]

Resulting in zero-euro electricity bills for households on the island, the project has proven particularly advantageous for small businesses, exemplified by a shop in the port reporting substantial savings. A notable testimonial highlights a substantial reduction from €8,000 to €1,500 in annual electricity costs.[4]

Beyond its impact on individual consumers, the project extends its benefits to the transportation sector, offering free electricity for vehicles on the island, including usage by the local police force.[4]

The success of the Halki model has broader implications, as it serves as a blueprint for replication on other islands in Greece, contributing to the widespread adoption of sustainable energy practices and technological advancements for enhanced community well-being.[4]


Dimitris Kremastinos (1942–2020), former Greek Minister of Health (1993–1996)


  1. ^ "Αποτελέσματα Απογραφής Πληθυσμού - Κατοικιών 2021, Μόνιμος Πληθυσμός κατά οικισμό" [Results of the 2021 Population - Housing Census, Permanent population by settlement] (in Greek). Hellenic Statistical Authority. 29 March 2024.
  2. ^ "ΦΕΚ A 87/2010, Kallikratis reform law text" (in Greek). Government Gazette.
  3. ^ "Population & housing census 2001 (incl. area and average elevation)" (PDF) (in Greek). National Statistical Service of Greece.
  4. ^ a b c d e "Halki: Greek island serves as model for solar power communities". euronews. 2023-06-07. Retrieved 2023-09-29.

Further reading

Media related to Halki at Wikimedia Commons