BY Alexia Amvrazi

| Sep 16, 2016

Destinations

Lydia Carras: For the Love of Patmos

It’s all about the architecture, the long walks and those little tavernas by the sea…“I first visited Patmos as a child, and have been fascinated by it ever since. My sister bought a house within a week of her first visit, and years later we too bought a home that we lovingly restored. I still come every summer and Easter.

Ιt’s not a coincidence that the island has attracted so many artists and intellectuals.  There are several places where you can enjoy Patmos’ cultural wealth – like the Evangelismos Convent, southwest of the island’s main town of Chora, or the Stavrakas Mansion, right in Chora, which hosts various cultural exhibitions and events.

My favorite thing to do on Patmos is to walk. A stroll around Chora is top of my list, as are walks to the Monastery of St John and the 17th-century Zoodohou Pigis convent.

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Construction in Chora is very strictly regulated, but when you enter the houses you can see that there has been an amazing use of imagination to stay within those rules. For instance, I give full credit to the architect who created Akti Suites and Spa – an exemplary complex that shows how you can make something modern, yet at the same time, absolutely respectful of Patmos’ aesthetic tradition and its natural landscape.

My favorite thing to do on Patmos is to walk. A stroll around Chora is top of my list, as are walks to the Monastery of St John and the 17th-century Zoodohou Pigis convent. Another spectacular trek takes you from the old town to “Kypi tou Osiou”, a beautiful seaside spot, or from Vayia to “Panayia tou Geranou”. If you enjoy photography, some must-sees are the site of the ancient city at Kastelli archaeological site and the Aporthianos path.

For eating out, go to Lambi for fish, then walk to Livadi ton Kalogeron. Another lovely ramble starts from Diakofti, where there’s a humble little taverna by the sea – the location is wonderful especially in the evening, from sunset on. In the daytime, it’s a lovely half-hour walk from there to Psili Ammos, a small sandy beach in a beautiful landscape; there’s also a taverna where you can eat really well. The Tarsanas (boat yard) is lovely, too, as is a fun little taverna in the middle of Kampos village, where all the dishes are cooked in the traditional style.”

Lydia Carras is an environmentalist who cofounded and runs the Greek Society for the Environment and Cultural Heritage. She is also a documentary filmmaker, the director of “Patmos: Echoes of the Apocalypse”. Her society created the first ever signposting for walks on Patmos (www.monopatiapolitismou.gr).
Originally published in Thalassea magazine by Hellenic Seaways