The name of this beautiful island probably comes from the Phoenician language and according to Stravon, the historian it means "Altitude by the coast". The island is also appearing with other names in time, such as Parthenia form the Pelasgians who brought Parthena Ira's worship, Anthemis, Dryousa, Doryssa, Kyparissia, Imbrasia or Melamphylos.
Here has been developed a great civilization and here have lived famous people of the arts, the literature, philosophy and theory. In Samos Island the great Pythagoras, the mathematician and philosopher whose theories catalytically affected the universal mathematic thought. Here was also bon the great astronomer Arestarchus, scholar of Euclid. Arestarchus was the first you vouched that the earth is elliptically moving around the sun synchronously with its turn around its pivot.
The first trireme called Samaina was invented in Samos Island. Today, at the ship-repairs of Samos, the best in Greece are still made sloops and botas and you can see them at Marathokampos bay, Kokkarim Agios Isidoros and Karlovasi area.
Samos has also the fame of the most verdant and fertile island in Greece. The thick vegetation starts from the sea and reaches the top of the mountains. The olive groves and the pinewoods occupy the biggest part covering almost 50% of its ground, the rangelands and the firewood 40% and the 10% left is covered by the vineyards, the fruit bearing trees and horticultural.
I the gullies you will see platans, willows, rosebays, reeds, rods, brambles, ivies and ferns. Often their thick leafage is covering the sun and the sky.
The huge variety of the planting and the hypsometrical variations of the island provide a variety of biotopes for crowds of birds, reptiles and mammals as it is testified by the mineralized bones of the paleontologic period and the mummified tiger that are kept at the Natural History Museum of Mytilini.
At the most rare animals of the island we meet chameleon, "derpanora", a very rare kind of glowing lizard also appearing in Rhodes, Symi and kos islands and 11 kinds of snakes and rare mammals such as the Samian jackal and the Mediterranean Monachus Monachus.
In Samos there are the highest mountains in the Aegean like Kerkis Mountain, perfect for climbing and Ampelos with the biggest passability and visits by people of all ages. Between the mountains there are valleys and small flats that give the impression of total harmony and rare beauty. This unique place manages to concentrate the colors of the earth and the sky in a monadic combination.
Despite its small expansion the island is world famous for its wine. Mythology refers that Dionysus, the god of the wine and the vineyards had loved the people of Samos and taught them the viniculture because they helped him to extinguish the Amazons who disesteemed his worship.
The visitor can find many beautiful sights. The most important follow.
The Polykrateian Walls, of 6430 length the protected the ancient city of Samos. Still today the visitor is impressed by the remaining parts.
The Efpalineion Orygma that is a great technical accomplishment of its age despite the lack of means and know how. It was built at the middle of the 6th century for the water supply of the city by Efpalinos, the architecture. It is a tunnel of 1036 m length that crossed the mountain. Still today it impresses for the explicit detail of the cutting.
The port of the city is the 3rd biggest masterpieces of Polycrates epoch with its piers and jetties. Hera's Temple is the biggest Herodotus described. Here you will see a tiled road 4 m wide called Sacred Road, with statues and other offerings on both sides that joined the city with the Temple of the Goddess that was 108,73 long, 54, 8 wide and 25 m tall. It was a peripterous and dipterous temple built by the architect Theodore and had 133 columns with the one saved until today that has given its name to the area.
Numerous are the beaches you can find. The most important are the above.
Agios Ioannis, Avlakia, Varsamo, Giangos, Kampos, Kerveli, Klima, Kokkari, Kyriakos, Lemonakia, Limani, Karlovasi, Limnionas, Makria, Pounta, Megalo Seitani, Mikro Seitani, Mourtia, Mpallos, Mycally, Ormos, Koumaihika, Plaka, Poseidonio, Potami, Potokaki, Pythagoreio, Sykia, Tsamados, Tsampos, Tsopela, Chrisi Ammos and Psili Ammos.
You should surely taste and be supplied by wine, oil and honey, oranges and onions.
If you visit the island during the festal period you should surely watch the Easter's festival, the Karlovasitiko carnival, the Nautical Week, the Insular Evenings, the March of the Loafs at the Sunday of Carnival and the Fishermen' Fiesta.