Greece travel

Samos

Samos is one of the most beautiful islands of Greece in the east Aegean, Samos is a green island with forests and with many places to visit. It is very close to Turkey, only about 1km, and has become many peoples favourite Greek island. Samos is also the island of Pythagoras one of the most famous mathematicians of the Greek antiquity.

SamosIt is a fairly large island, and the people on the island live off tourism and agriculture, mainly olives and fruit. The local wine is well known and worth a try. The ouzo also from Samos is one of the best in Greece. Samos is famous as well for its shipbuilding of Greek fishing boats the kaikia or trehantiria.

Most holidaymakers stay in Pythagorion (which was the ancient capital of the island) or Kokkari one of the most picturesque villages of the island, 10 km from Vathy on the north side of Samos. The resort is ideal for wind surfing and has very nice beaches. Both places have many shops, restaurants and bars but they have still not been over commercialised. The latter is considered a very good spot for surfing since it is situated at the windy north coast. Vathy is the main town and capital of Samos. The town has a lot of tourism during the summer and many interesting places to see. The town is divided to the new town of the ano Vathy and the old town with many places to stay, restaurants and accommodations.
Because of its past, Samos has many places of interest, and it is a very good idea to rent a vehicle and explore the island on your own.
Samos is mostly a mountainous island of the north east Aegean. The capital of the island is Samos or Vathy with has 5575 inhabitants. The island is very near to Turkey, with narrow channel, the Strait of Samos, that separates Samos from the coast of Turkey. The island has many natural beauties and is very green.
Its coast line has many wonderful beaches surrounded by pine forests. To the east is the island of Ikaria only a few miles away to the south are the islands of Agathonisi, Patmos and Lipsi and to the north are the islands of Chios and Lesvos. Before taking its final name, the island was called Anthemia (flower blossom) because of its natural beauty.According to Strabo, its name means a coastal mountainous site.
The island has three large bays, the Vathi bay, Marathokambos bay and Tigani and many capes.The coast of Samos has a total length of about 159 km The island has an area of 472.48 square km and its territory is mountainous with high mountains like Kerkis with steep slopes and ravines and Ampelos with highest peak the Prophet Elias (1060 m).Lower branches of these two mountains is Kokrou Dere, the thick mountain, Bairaktari, Mpournias etc.
Samos has no rivers.But there are plenty of water, streams, rivers and streams. There are 3 geothermal water sources with small ferrous quantity. Samos is the manufacturing centre of the prefecture.The island has a significant wine industry and many companies that producing Ouzo.There is also several manufacturing companies that processing agricultural products. The island main export is wine and especially the sweet white Samiotiko wine as well as tobacco.

History Samos is historically a very interesting place. It was an important island during ancient times since it was a rich island that traded with the rest of Greece, the Phoenicians and Persians.

According to mythology, the goddess Hera was born here, and there are still ruins of her temple to be seen, the Heraion.

It was also an intellectual center with various famous people living and working there. One of ancient Greece's best known scientists, Pythagoras, was from this island, but Aristarchus, Epicurus, Herodotus and Aesop also lived here. The island flourished economically and culturally during the 6th and 5th century, but had a drawback when it tried to revolt against Athens in 440 BC to which it was forced to pay yearly tributes.

Later on, Samos was to be a Roman province, and during Byzantine years the island kept its prosperity. When the Turks invaded in the 15th century, Samos lost its freedom and was uninhabited for a century. The island was not to be Greek again until 1931, even though the Greek revolution had started in 1821.

What to See The capital of Samos is Vathy or Samos with little, winding streets, is very beautiful, situated in a bay, with neoclassic architecture, historical churches like Agios Spyridonas and Agia Irini, the byzantine church of St john and the Monastery of Zoodochos Pigi. There is also a  painting exhibition and . an archaeological museum with many artefacts from the excavation of the temple to Hera , as well as a Byzantine museum with exhibits from the religious and byzantine past of the island.The town is actually divided into the old and the new capital. The old capital, Ano Vathy, is built on a hilltop. Every summertime, in the early evening, the long promenade of Vathy is buzzing with people taking a stroll and stopping at the numerous restaurants and cafeterias which line the seafront. The town of Vathy has some impressive neo-classical buildings. The town hall has an art gallery which exhibits paintings of the famous Greek artist, Nikiphoros Litras. There is also an interesting archaeological museum which displays findings from the excavation of the village of Heraion. The Byzantine museum is another place worth seeing with its fascinating exhibits from the Byzantine era. Close to Vathy are some wonderful beaches.

Samos VathyPythagoreon is the third largest village, and is in itself worth visiting. Here, there is a small archaeological museum, as well as some interesting churches. There is also a Venetian citadel here, and a little further away you can visit the monastery of Panagia Spiliani (The Virgin Mary of the Cave). Ancient ruins of the old town can be seen here, as well as the water tunnel/pipe of Eupalinus from the 6th century BC.
You can also visit the ruins of the Hera temple, Heraion. What you see today dates back to the 6th century BC, but the first temple built to her honour here was actually constructed in the 13th century BC and was made of wood.

The villages Pyrgos and Marathokambos as well as the town Karlovasi, where there are some waterfalls, are well worth visiting. The fishing village Ireon is very picturesque. For nature lovers, the Valley of the Nightingales is a lovely place.

Marothokampos is a picturesque village of Samos and is located 40km to the west of the capital. On the nearby mountain of Kerkis, the highest mountain in the Aegean, you can visit the Cave of Pythagoras where the famous mathematician of the Greek Antiquity, Pythagoras, used to hide from the persecution of the tyrant of Samos, Polycrates. Close to this lies another cave where a small church is secreted inside. In Kakoperato is another interesting cave with its fascinating formations of stalactites and stalagmites. This cave is located close to the beach of Votsalakia on the west side of Marothokampos. In the area there is the interesting Monastery of St. Joan, which can be reached by boat from Ormos. Above the village of Kalithea there is another cave that has a small, old church dedicated to the Virgin Mary, inside are some beautiful frescoes. Another interesting village to visit is the village of Mitilinioi, where Mitilinioi village stands today, the ancient city Hissia was.  It is a place of great paleontologic interest and many fossils have been found here of animals which existed some million years ago. Samples of the fossils can be seen today in the Paleontological Museum of the area. Among them you can see fossils of dwarf elephants, a prehistorical lions, giraffes, rhinoceros and a horses.

Karlovassi is another town and port of Samos, it used to be once a great commercial centre. This greatness can be imagined today when you marvel at the many mansions and monuments that still exist in the town. Some of the most important old buildings still exist and are being used for practical civil purposes. These include the building which today is the School of Mathematics, and the buildings which now house the primary school and the Magistrates Court. Nearby Kalovassi there are ruins of a Byzantine fortress and adjacent to this is a church which dates from the 11th century AD. In the village of Kondokaika is the interesting monastery of St Hellias that dates from the 17th century AD and has wonderful Byzantine frescoes.

What to Do :Try to explore the villages on the island, especially the ones in the mountains. You'll also find water sports on the island as well as great opportunities for snorkelling and fishing. Boat trips to Turkey are also offered, as well as to neighbouring islands. There is a daily hydrofoil that connects the island with the Dodecanese islands of Patmos, Lipsi, Leros,Kalymnos and Kos ,so you can make a day trip to one of those islands. There are several festivals on Samos. The most interesting is the festival held on Vathi which celebrates the unification of Samos with the rest of Greece on the 11th of November. On the 20th August is the festival which celebrates St. Hellias. This festival is held at Karlovasi where you can enjoy a special dish made from meat and wheat, called giorti. This is given to everyone free of charge. As everywhere in Greece, the Assumption of the Virgin Mary on 15th August is a special day in Samos. In June there is the Fisherman’s Festival in Pithagorio. On 6th August is the commemoration of the Battle of Mycale, held in Portokaki.

Beaches : Surfers love the north side because of its winds, so most go to the village Kokkari. It is not well suited for children since it is stony and the waves often are high. For families it is better to go to the beaches Psili Ammos ot Potokaki. Samos's beaches are either pebble or sand ones. Although not a beach, the waterfalls near Karlovassi are wonderful for swimming.Samos has plenty of beaches all around its coast line. Here you will find some of the best beaches in the north east Aegean. The beaches of Samos are mainly pebble and sand. Many of them are well organised and accessible by car, buses or bikes. On the organised beaches you will find umbrellas, sun beds, beach bars and taverns or restaurants.
Beaches in Vathy Samos: Near and around Vathy the capital of Samos are the beaches of Mykali with pebbles very long and well organised with water sports facilities and restaurants.
The beach of Psili Ammos is a sandy beach not so long but with nice sand and shallow waters. Another beach in Vathy is Poseidonio beach accessible by cat or scooter, pebbles and organise with umbrellas and a restaurant.
Near to the village Avlakia you will find the beach of Tsampou with pebbles but affected from the Meltemi winds.
Near to Kokkari located probably the best beach of Samos the Tsamadou beach that you can see on every tourist liflet about Samos. Its surrounded by green landscape with crystal blue waters and white pebbles. You can get there by car but you have to walk about 180 meters to get to the beach. Very near to Tsamadou is Lemonakia beach another wonderful beach of Samos with pebbles and well organised.
The beach of Kokkari is ideal for windsurfing with many facilities, cafes, restaurants and umbrellas and has become a meeting point mainly for German surfers but is getting rough with the meltemi.

Samos nightlife : For the most bars and discos Samos town Vathy is the best place to go. There is also a quite good nightlife in Karlovassi and Pythagorion.

Food: Samos has both international and Greek restaurants. The widest variety is in Vathy. Give the local wine a try. There are also many traditional taverns in the smaller villages, and they often have their very own specialties. Sometimes you'll have to ask for them since they are not on the menu.

Shopping: The local wine and Ouzo is a nice souvenir to enjoy during cold winter nights at home. Samos also produces a lot of ceramics, but also religious items like icons are good buys. The island also has quite a lot of art and antiques, as well as clothes, leatherwear and jewellery. Samos also has a special kind of rugs which are called Flokati.

Getting Around Apart from the possibilities or rent a car or a bike, you can also get around fairly easy with the local buses. There are also boats that can take you to some of the beaches, as well as the little island Samiopoula.

Samos Hotels:

hotel kerveli samosThe 3 star hotel Kerveli in Samos located in Kerveli in a very quiet area to the east part of Samos with excellent views in Turkey. The hotel is very clean with friendly staff and very good food in the restaurant of the hotel. The area is vey nice with many trees ,the sea has crystal blue waters and you can swim there from the private pier of the hotel . There is also a swimming pool and a bar where you can relax and enjoy the view. The hotel offers car and bicycle hire.

samos hotel accommodationThe 3 star Ino Village Hotel located in Kalami very near to Samos town. the hotel's location offers a panoramic view to Samos town and the sea.
The Ino Village is only 10 minutes away from Samos port with its shopping centre, restaurants, cafes and bars. The beach is very near to the hotel just 450 meters. This accommodation is an ideal place to make it your base for exploring Samos. the hotel offers a large swimming pool, bar, restaurant and garden.

Accommodation in mirini samosMirini hotel is a 3 star accommodation in Samos. This three floor hotel situated only a few meters from the beach and all of its rooms have sea views and balconies.
There is a lounge room and a large terrace where you can have your breakfast or later a drink enjoying the amazing sunset. The hotel Mirini offers AC in all rooms, elevator,  free internet access and parking.

kerkis hotel samosThe hotel Kerkis Bay with comfortable rooms all build in traditional style, located in the picturesque village of Marathokampos in samos.All rooms have modern facilities including air condition, satellite tv, private balconies and fridge. In the hotel Kerkis you will find the typical hospitality of Samos and a friendly staff. In the restaurants you will taste the best Greek cuisine and in the bar you can enjoy a drink. the hotel has rooms for disabled guests and family rooms.

Getting There: Samos during he summer has a lot of charter connections with many west European countries. Many tourists choose to fly to Samos and from there to visit some of the near by Dodecanese islands like Patmos and Leros by hydrofoils. The journey is about one to one and a half hour. Samos has its own airport. If you are travelling on your own you can also take from Athens a ferry boat from Piraeus, there are about five a week, during high season daily. From Samos you can also get to other islands like Paros, Naxos, Leros, Kalymnos, Patmos and Kos. The hydrofoils run mainly during high season. You can also go to Turkey.

Facts about Samos* Phone numbers*
Size: 470 sq. km International code: 0030
Population: about 50 000 Local code: 22730
Cash machine: Yes Hospital: 27426
Internet cafe: Yes  Port Police 27890
Highest Mountain:Kerkis 1440mt Tourist Information: 61389
Airport: Yes Tourist Police: 27333
Tour Operators: Telephone company (OTE)
Taxi: 28404

Samos mappa

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Welcome to Samos