AMORGOS



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Amorgos- general

General

The grand landscapes of Amorgos are full of dramatic settings. A long human presence on the island has left many monuments and settlements behind, all of them characterised by sites of courageous beauty. When the island was an important centre of Cycladic culture in the 3rd millennium bc, trading with Naxos and the smaller islands in its own protective lea and producing marble sculpture of the highest quality, the citadel at Markiani­ was built on a cliff-top summit looking across open waters to Thera in the south and to Naxos in the north. Nearly 2,000 years later, the three cities founded in historic times on Amorgos—tactfully distanced from one another so as to divide the island into three equal parts—all occupy exhilarating summits or promontories. And 2,000 years later again, when monks fleeing Arab incursions into Palestine took refuge on the island, they established their community in the most improbable site of all, half-way up a 400m precipice above the sea. The famous monastery of the Panaghia Chozoviotissa which grew from this community is one the most unforgettable sites of the Aegean. It was visited by le Corbusier in 1933 and notably influenced his work.
   The quality of the archaeological remains is often as remarkable as the setting. The fortified refuge-tower or complex of farm-buildings at Aghia Triada near Arkesi­ni is the most impressive of any which has come down to us from Hellenistic times, both in its dimensions and in the quality of its construction. And from the same epoch, even the lowly lavatories of the ancient gymnasium at Minoa—roof, seats and flushing drain still intact—must surely be the best preserved conveniences from Greek Antiquity anywhere.
   Few other islands combine as succinctly so much history and landscape and important archaeology as Amorgos: and few do it with such disarming simplicity. A little modernity has come to the island in roads and buildings and tourism, but never obtrusively. The two ports of the island, the Chora, and the villages of the rural interior, have all been well preserved without any straining pre tension, and development on Amorgos has remained respectful of the island’s history and dignified grandeur. Walking on the island is a great pleasure, too. The paths— many of them ancient arteries of communication—are well marked. Both the more agrarian plateaux of western Amorgos and the dramatic, Hebridean slopes of the eastern end of the island, leave deep impressions in the memory for the beauty of their vegetation and the splendid views which they afford.


Amorgos Island is part of the Cyclades Island Group, Greece.


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access

Amorgos Island, Greece.

Amorgos lies at the terminus of a ferry-route; it is a mini mum 7–8 hr journey (often longer) between Piraeus and the island, with several stops en route—always include either Naxos or Paros.
Blue Star Ferries operates the service daily in the summer and five days a week in winter, alternating between the island's two ports: Katápola, the principal destination, in the centre, and Aigiáli ("Egiáli", "Yáli") 20km further north.
It is important for any itinerary to establish which of the two is the port of arrival/departure.
Blue Star also connects Aigiáli (only) with Astypalaia three times weekly.
The F/B Express Skopelitis, based in Katápola, plies through the Lesser Cyclades to Naxos and returns daily in summer, always stopping at Koufonisi, Schoinousa and Herakleia en route, also including Aigiáli and Donousa three times weekly.
The service runs from April–end Oct, weather permitting. The Blue Star services maintain connections with these smaller islands 2–3 times a week in winter.

Amorgos Travel Guide

beaches

Amorgos Island, Greece.

Some of the many beautiful beaches in Amorgos are found:
around AEGIALI
Aegiali beach
Agios Pavlos Beach
Levrossos beach
Mikri Glifada beach
Nikouria beach
Psili ammos beach
Xalara beach

around CHORA
Agia Anna beach, famous for its blue crystal clear waters. In this location, scenes of the movie "Le grand blue" (The big blue, 1988) were filmed.

around KATAPOLA
Maltezi beach

around KATO MERIA
Ammoudi beach
Kalotaritissa beach
Mouros beach
Paradisia beach

Amorgos Travel Guide

eating

Amorgos Island, Greece.

Some of the best food is to be found in the island's small rural villages:
the taverna Giorgalinis in Vroútsi and Marouso in Arkesíni (Chorió), in the west; or Sandouraki in Tholaria at the north end of the island. Katina's To Limani at Aigiáli serves some of the best seasonal and traditional Greek fare on the island, and is popular with local families, especially on Sundays.
More rarified, but offering some interesting mezes, is To Chima in the heart of Chora.

Amorgos Travel Guide

further reading

Amorgos Island, Greece.

Lila Marangou, The Monastery of the Panaghia Khozoviotissa, Athens 2005. The author is indebted to the writings of Prof. Lila Marangou on archaeological matters which constitute the most complete and authoritative account of the island’s monuments.

Amorgos Travel Guide

lodging

Amorgos Island, Greece.

Two small, comfortable hotels provide welcoming and attractive solutions in the medium price-range:
the ‘Emprostiada’ Traditional Guest House (in a new build, but of traditional design) in the heart of Chora (T. 22850 71013, fax 71814, www.amorgos-studios.amorgos.net );
and the more conventional Hotel Vigla (T. 22850 73288, fax 73332, www.vigla-hotel. amorgos.net) in the hill-town of Tholaria, above Aigiáli.
Offering simpler facilities, are: the Pension Amorgos on the harbour-front of Katapola (same management and numbers as Emprostiada above); in the village of Langáda, Artemis Rooms (T. 22850 73226, www.amorgos studios.amorgos.net; open all year); the same owners also rent rooms on the beach near Aigiáli.
Highly recommended for visits to Amorgos based around walking, riding, historic sightseeing, botanising and bird-watching, are - Special Interest Holidays who offer an excellent range of civilised activities and places to stay (T. 693 982 0828, www.special-interest-holidays.com).

Amorgos Travel Guide

museums

Amorgos Island, Greece.


The Archaeological Museum
Monastery of Hozoviotissa
Agioi Anargiroi

Amorgos Travel Guide

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