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KASTELORIZO

Kastelorizo (other name "Megisti") is a beautiful, rocky and mountainous island of the Dodecanese Group.

Its capital, Kastelorizo, amphitheatrically built at the roots of a hill embracing the three slopes of the bay, gathers all the citizens of the island.

The picturesqueness of the view hardly is described. The painted in interesting chromatic tones bi-level and triplex palaces with the wooden scales and the verandas, the pictorial port and the paved alleys synthesize a magnificent spectacle while the, considered as preservable, settlement offers the visitor the glance of a idyllic view and the sense of the past prestige.

Kastelorizo counting a population of 275 citizens, the majority of whom dealing with tourism and fishery, at the ancient times was called Megisti, from its first settler Megisteas. Neolithic tools, prehistoric walls, carved mausoleums, a golden corona of the Mycenaean Times that today is exhibited at the Athenian Museum and other troves testify that the island was already inhabited from the primeval times. Ruins of the Apollo the Great Temple are also discovered, the worship to whom was widely common in Kastelorizo and the coastline of Mikra Asia.

The historical Kastelorizo Island presents numerous monuments and sights that invite the visitor to quest. The most significant are:

The Fortress of the Crusader Knights of the Order of St. John. A building of the 14th century, constructed at the top of a small hill over the port on a russet rock (Castello Rosso-Kastelorizo).

The fine kept Lyckios Tomb below the Castle at the entrance of the port. Lyckians where called the all the Mikra Asia denizens because their god, Lycos Apollo was worshiped as a wolf.

Paliokastro-the senior monument in Kastelorizo. There are saved ancient buildings and cisterns while Neolithic tools have been discovered. At the surrounding fence you will find the churches of Holy Mary of the Castle, Agia Marina's, Agia PAraskevi's and Agios Georgios'  churches.

Over Mandraki towers the Cathedral of St. Constantine and St. Helen, the Patron Saints of Kastelorizo. It is a temple of fine art and arched cathedral architectonic rhythm, with rich pictorialism, marble temples and a towering marble belfry. The roof of this cathedral pillows on twelve monolithic granitic columns transferred from the Apollo's Temple at Patara-Lyckia-Mikra Asia.

The Archaeological Museum appoints of many exhibits of the Ancient, the Middle Age and the Modern Times as such from the folkloric art and the traditional culture, generally, of the island.

The "Blue Grotto" ("Spilia of Parasta") at the southeastward of the island. A cavern of significant natural beauty, maybe the most beautiful in the Mediterranean and one of the most infrequent geologic phenomenon. It is a huge marine cave, better known as "Fokiali" from the seals (fokia-seal) inhabiting there, where blue and azure sheens floodlight the place and this spectacular view is completed by the numerous stalactites and stalagmites.

Eventually, don't forget that next to Kastelorizo stands the Ro islet, proud and reputable for its Lady, Despoina Achladioti who raised the Greek flag for decades against the Turkish provocativeness. She touched all the Greeks and was graced by the Nation. Another neighbor islet is Stroggyli where you can see the nautical lighthouse. The only habitants of this islet are the lighthouse-keepers.

There, you will swim at Faros, Plakes, Mandraki Ro, Agios Georgios and Stroggyli beaches.

Map of Kastelorizo

Click to enlarge

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