Visit Karpathos and live the unique experience of exploring an island that looks like a huge open-air archeological and folklore museum!
The route that one follows from Spoa to Olympus (or Elympos, as the locals call it) looks like it moves on the backbone of Karpathos and presents to the visitor the wild beauty of the landscape behind Mount Kimara. On the left, the dirt roads lead to the rural parts of Ahamandia, Argoni, Pei with the terrible cliffs. On the right, difficult dirt roads descend to the pebble beaches of Agnontia, Agios Minas, Natis and Forokli.
Around Olympus, gray mountains with pointed peaks, to which windmills climb. The landscape will surely enchant you!
For a wonderful, panoramic view, visit the village of Othos. Othos is often lost in the clouds, as it is the highest village of Karpathos with an altitude of 510 meters. This makes its amphitheatrically built houses enjoy the best panoramic views.
Archaeological Sites - Monuments
At the entrance of the port is the "Mountain", the rock 23 meters high, with the remains of the ancient citadel, while on the main road to Aperi, at the place "Afoti", there are ruins (some columns and stone carvings) of the ancient Fotini, early Christian basilica 5th-6th century. Discovered findings prove that the Temple was built on the site of the sanctuary of Dioscuri.
In the cave of Poseidon, in the place "Mills", there is a monumental carved tomb or sanctuary that is believed to have belonged to the goddess Aphrodite.
At 16 km southwest of Pigadia, you will find Arkasa, with the impressive landscape and the small peninsula of the citadel stretching forward, while rocks rise behind.
It is worth going up to Paleokastro as the view is stunning, while you will see relics from antiquity to Venetian rule and Ottoman rule. The area seems to have been inhabited continuously since the Prehistoric Age, as evidenced by the monuments.
In the picturesque fishing village of Finiki, just one kilometer from Arkasa, you will see a bronze boat dedicated to the heroes of the Resistance against the Germans.
In the seaside village of Lefkos and specifically in Sokastro, there are ruins of Byzantine and medieval times.
In Volada (ten kilometers from Pigadia) you will find the ruins of three castles built in three different eras.
Finally, it is worth visiting:
the neoclassical monuments of the District and the Customs
the Tomb of Digenis in the area of Lori - Aperi
the Roman Aqueducts in White
the ancient ones in the area around Agios Nikolaos Spoon
In Pigadia you can see the Archaeological Museum. It is also worth visiting the Folklore Museum of Meneto, the Ecclesiastical, Historical and Folklore Museum of Arkasa and the Folklore Museum of Othos, which aim to present to the visitor the historical route of the place and to promote the customs and traditions of the island.
Churches & Monasteries
Aperi, built at a height of 320 meters, was the old capital of the island, while it is the seat of the Metropolitan of Karpathos and Kasos, the smallest seat of the Metropolitan in all of Greece.
At a distance of two kilometers outside Pigadia, is the church of Agia Kyriaki, built on a rock and with a wonderful view.
Built on a hill are the Menetes with the manicured houses and the church of the Assumption of the Virgin, of the 19th century, which is considered miraculous. In the same area it is worth visiting the church of Agios Mamma.
In the area of Arkasa, where today is the church of Hagia Sophia, there was an early Christian basilica of the 4th-6th century, the remains of which are still preserved. The church of Agia Anastasia is of the 5th century and has wonderful mosaics.
Some other churches that you should definitely visit are:
the church of the Assumption of the Virgin, of the 16th century, where on the 15th of August there is a big festival in the grace of the Virgin and the Virgin Mary Chrysovalantou, in Olympus both.
the church of Agios Georgios in Lefkos
the church of Agios Loukas in Apella
Panagia Vrysiani in Mesochori which took its name from the springs that gush under the church.
Also two kilometers after Aperi, you will find the settlement of Kyra Panagia with the church of the same name. A spectacular rocky wall, the pebbles and the crimson dome of the church of Kyra Panagia, compose one of the most characteristic and prominent icons of Karpathos.
Finally, the monasteries are famous:
Monastery of Agios Georgios Vassos
Agios Ioannis Spoon (deserted chapel built in caves with stalactites, formerly a fortress with loopholes for protection from pirates)
Agios Nikolaos Spoon (ancient monastery built to protect sailors)
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