From the mid-19th century onwards and under Turkish domination, Halki reached the golden age of prosperity. Along with Symi, Kalymnos, and Kastellorizo, the islands developed their trade, sponge fishing and considerably increased the population's intellectual and financial status. Unfortunately, in the final years of Turkish rule and during Italian domination the privileged rights once given to the island were removed, and most of the population immigrated abroad. Halki was integrated in Greece along with the rest of the Dodecanissos islands in 1948.
The island's only populated village, is Nimborio, positioned amphitheatrically around the windless harbor.
As you stroll along the scenic roads, have a look at the neoclassical Town hall building, dating back to the 19th century, and the stone Clock tower standing beside it. With a visit to the church of Ag, Nicolaos, the island's patron saint, built in 1861, you can admire the unique belfry, the hagiographies and rare wooden iconostasis.
A pleasant walk of 2,5 klm leads you to the old capital of Halki, Horio, with its old stone houses built amphitheatrically on the hill below the Castle. 4.000 inhabitants once lived here out of fear of the pirates. When this threat started to wear out around 1850-1870, the residents of Horio established the seaside village of Nimborio and gradually abandoned their initial nest, which is now deserted. The last years some of the abandoned houses are under re-construction and a few houses are already back in life there.
On the top of the hill above the village, towers the Castle of the Knights with a breathtaking view of neighboring Rhodes, Alimnia and Tilos. Numerous churches and monasteries enrich the list of sights to see at Halki which is completed by Kamenos Spilios in Amiglai. Here, in 1658, Morozoni extinguished the islanders hiding in the cave by setting fire to its entrance.
The island currently has 300 permanent residents who occupy themselves mainly with tourism, a field which developed substantially after 1983 when the appropriate infrastructure was created and the island was declared the worldwide Centre of Peace and Friendship.