Greek Travel Guide
: Greek Islands & other wonders. Welcome to Hellas! is a cultural & travel guide to Greece and the Greek Islands based on Nigel McGilchrist's awarded books * enriched for the web with additional content.
* "...delightful, well-observed, literary accompaniments to the Greek islands, by a British scholar." The Economist, list of Books of the Year see more...


Discover Greece

Sights not to miss
Archaeological museums

Archaeological Museums in Greece

Vathi of Samos
Goulandris, Museum of Cycladic Art
National Museum of Athens
Acropolis Museum, Athens

UNESCO World Heritage List

UNESCO's World Heritage List for Greece

Archaeological Site of Aigai
Archaeological Site of Olympia
Archaeological Site of Mystras
Acropolis, Athens
Old Town of Corfu
Paleochristian and Byzantine Monuments of Thessalonika
Pythagoreion and Heraion of Samos
Sanctuary of Asklepios at Epidaurus
Monasteries of Daphni, Hosios Loukas and Nea Moni of Chios
The Historic Centre with the Monastery of Saint-John the Theologian & the Cave of the Apocalypse on the Island of Patmos
Medieval City of Rhodes
Mount Athos
Temple of Apollo Epicurius at Bassae
Archaeological Sites of Mycenae and Tiryns
Archaeological Site of Delphi

Travel ideas
Temple of Haphaestus, Athens Greece

The 7 - Day Jewels of the Cyclades

TRAVEL IDEAS * The 7-Day Jewels of the Cyclades * The best of the Aegean Islands 8 day cruises from Athens. Experience a harmonious balance between conventional cruising and private yachting, along with an exciting voyage of discovery, unraveling the wonders of the Greek Islands. Each day you will discover a new port of call, a hidden cove with…

Jeep Safari Adventure Trips

TRAVEL IDEAS * Jeep Safari Adventure Trips * Join the team on a Jeep Safari Adventure who promote the Mountains of Crete, the Cretan Culture, the History, values and traditions. Vist plast that are far from mass tourism to enjoy beautiful panoramic views where only a four wheel drive Land Rover Defender can reach.We are pleased to offer all year…

Wine experience

TRAVEL IDEAS * Wine experience * Greece is one of the oldest wine-producing regions in the world thus a great destination for this kind of special interest tours. The earliest evidence of Greek wine has been dated to 6,500 years. In ancient times, as trade in wine became extensive, it was transported from end to end of the Mediterranean; Greek…

Yoga Cruises

TRAVEL IDEAS * Yoga Cruises * Over the last couple of years, Star Clippers has offered guests free daily yoga and meditation on selected Yoga-themed sailings.With spectacular settings as a background, yoga classes take place in the open air, on Star Clippers’ ships’ sun-warmed teak decks, under thousands of square feet of billowing sails – the…

Mykonos, a week in the most fabulous Cycladic island

TRAVEL IDEAS * MYKONOS, a week in jet-set's top destination island * You need to relax and at the same time be near where there’s constantly a party going on and you're thinking about the Greek Islands? You love a sandy beach but can’t say no to the swimming pool? The half of you worships the night sky full of shining stars and the other half is…

Manna Gea, seaside Eco houses

TRAVEL IDEAS * Manna Gea residential complex* in Paliambela Vonitsas, Aitoloakarnania region Welcome to the residential complex Manna Gea, that in Greek means "Mother Earth." The complex is located at "Manna" in Paliambela Vonitsas next to Amvrakikos gulf, a few kilometers away from Lefkada Island. It consists of 3 houses and 2 studios facing the…

The following is shown by "chance".

Skiathos - around the Island - North of Chora - Kastro


(10km)—one of the most remarkable sites in the Sporades—is best visited in the evening, when it is often empty and the dramatic beauty of its position is best appreciated. When it first comes into view, it is the audacity of the site that amazes. Equally audacious would be any one who dared attempt to capture it, but the indefatigable Khaireddin Barbarossa laid siege to Kastro in 1538, and left it desolate and abandoned.
At exactly what point this rocky peninsula was first in habited is not yet clear. The site was not unknown to the Ancients: there are some rock-cut steps and a platform in the cliff, low-down on the western side near to the sea. In the 13th century Geremia Ghisi may have established his principal fortress at Kastro, as the site of the ancient settlement on the south coast had become increasingly subject to pirate raids. When the island was slowly repopulated in the century after Barbarossa’s attack, this became its only inhabited centre, and it was only after 1829 that Skiathos town grew up once again on the site of the ancient city. Even in its abandoned state today, Kastro gives a clear idea of a mediaeval acropolis, untouched and unaltered by later generations.

The gate is still well-preserved with the site of its draw bridge below; some antique elements of white marble have been incorporated into its lintels. The enceinte of walls is visible at several points, in particular up the west side of the promontory to the south of the drawbridge. At the northern extremity it drops down low and runs around the headland. The promontory was only the fortress, or ‘acropolis’, of the town; the settlement itself stretched all along the bay to the east, where there appear to have been churches on virtually every rocky eminence—some have walls that remain, some are visible only in plan, others are just rubble. The town also extended to the south at least as far as the church of Aghios Demetrios (whose foundations are visible just below where the modern road ends) and maybe even as far back as the spring at Aghios Ioannis. At its height this was a large settlement and it would have been natural to include such a source of water with in the walls if possible.

   Inside the citadel the problem of water had to be re solved in a different manner: immediately on passing through the entrance gate, there is a well-preserved cistern and fountain to the left. Within the citadel area, only the churches survive—as at the Palaiochora settlements on Kythera and on Aegina; all the houses (except for one which has been restored) have gone. The churches are of an architecturally simple design, namely a single aisled hall with pitched roof. Only one of them, visible immediately ahead and to the right on entering, differs significantly, having a dome over the whole of its small, square plan. This was used as a mosque during the years of the Turkish Occupation, though it may well have been built as a church originally. Most of the churches have little decorative interest, except for that of Christos sto Kastro in the dip of the saddle. This is an early 16th century church which must have suffered destruction at the hands of Barbarossa. Its extensive wall-paintings of the life of Christ are of the 18th century: the wooden iconostasis is of the same date.

   The site had obvious defensive appeal, but a number of problems remained—the lack of a protected harbour or anchorage; the difficult supply of water, in particular to the citadel; and the site’s exposure to the often relentless north wind. The fact that, in spite of these difficulties, this was the island’s principal settlement for many centuries in modern history is testimony to the fear and the siege mentality that prevailed for so long amongst the island communities of the Aegean in the face of piracy.

Skiathos Island is part of the Sporades Island Group, Greece.

Is it your next destination !? :-)

Greek Islands Travel Guide : Month's Island
AEGINA ISLAND, Argosaronikos Islands.
    The memorable profile of the island with its conical peak at Mount Oros to the south, becomes familiar long before you ever visit Aegina: it is visible from the Acropolis of Athens, from Piraeus, from the road to Corinth, and from virtually any side by land, air or sea, as you leave or arrive in Athens. That was Aegina’s problem: it was too near to Athens. And its early commercial strength, marine power and economic wealth—in some respects, greater than that of Athens in the 6th century bc—had to be eliminated if Athens were to grow as she wished to do. The island was, in Pericles’s memorable phrase, ‘the eyesore of the Piraeus’. Already by the middle of the 5th century bc Aegina had been reduced by Athens to a clerurchy with no independence and only the faint memory of its past pre eminence. In modernity—as if by an irony of destiny— Aegina once again preceded Athens as the capital city of a partially liberated Greece in 1826, minting the first coins of modern Greece, just as it may have been the first to mint silver coins in Ancient Greece in the 6th century bc.
   That a place as lovely as Aegina should be so close to Athens (a little over 20km as the crow flies) comes as a surprise. And there is much on the island to detain the visitor. Its archaeological remains—the well-preserved Temple of Aphaia and the ancient site of Kolona—are amongst the most interesting and important in the Aegean; there are also impressive later remains of a sanctuary of Zeus below Mount Oros. Deliberately hidden from the unwanted attentions of piracy in the centre of the island is the deserted site of Palaiochora, which was the capital of the island during the Byzantine period; its many scattered churches with painted interiors constitute a treasure house of Byzantine painting.
   Equally hidden— this time in the outskirts of the main town—is the tiny painted church of the Aghii Theodori. Even the town centre of Aegina itself is lively and interesting, and has some elegant streets with neoclassical houses.
   The cultivated landscape of the island is also quite particular—characterised by the many groves of pistachio trees for which the island is famous: in the valley of Kondos where they combine with olive trees and with dense pines above, the effect is of great beauty. A more rugged beauty is offered by the climb to the summit of Mount Oros (531 m) which provides the best all-round panorama anywhere of the Saronic Gulf and the mountainous coasts of Attica and of the Peloponnese. Aegina may be small, but it is full of variety. Communications are quick and easy between the island and Piraeus and Athens: the contrast with them could not be greater...more @ Greek Travel Guide



On their way: Athens, Thessaloniki, Delphi, Mycenae, Olympia, Epidaurus, Monemvasia, Meteora, Korinth, Bassai, Knossos.

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