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Journey to the big blue

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Amorgos: Journey to the big blue

A breathtaking scenery of humbling mountains, craggy and steep cliffs, and the deep blue sea.

At the southeastern tip of the Cyclades, Amorgos is a place of inspiration for artists. Famous from the movie "The Big Blue", it is ideal for those seeking to indulge in the true Cycladic colour, slow living, and relaxation.

The main town of Chora is among the most beautiful of the Cyclades, and the two harbours (Aegiali and Katapola) are the most vibrant settlements on the island, with accommodation facilities, tavernas and bars. Amorgos’ picturesque villages with their well-tender cobbled streets are ideal for walks through the unparalleled landscapes of this unique island.

Routes & Attractions

The Monastery of Panagia Hozoviotissa, wedged into a cliff face and dating back to 1088, is an emblematic and most impressive landmark of the island. Do not hesitate to climb up the 350 steps to the entrance of the Monastery and don’t miss a visit to Archontariki, where you will taste the roasted raki and local loukoumi. The history, architecture and view will definitely reward you.

The Chora of Amorgos, hidden-away from pirates, is famous for its arched alleys, its traditional settlement with blooming jasmines and bougainvilleas, the whitewashed churches, but also the fierce winds blowing against it. Walk up to the square of Kalogerikos with the stunning view of the endless Aegean Sea and, in the evening, enjoy your drink in the cozy bars. Kalogeriko is also the starting point of a hiking path to Hozoviotissa. The central square, Loza, is the perfect spot for a Greek coffee, sweets and drinks made of local herbs of Amorgos.

Visit the Folklore Museum, the Venetian tower of Gavras, that houses the Archaeological Museum, as well as the 11 windmills near the settlement of Troullos.

Tholaria, one of the most beautiful villages of the Cyclades, is amphitheatrically built 200 meters above Aegiali. Its typical Cycladic architecture, whitewashed cobblestone streets, beautiful tavernas, traditional kafeneia, bars and walkways give the village a captivating charm.

Walk the blue path down to Aegiali, enjoying the view of the bay at every turn and stay up all night in its beach bars.

Across Tholaria is the picturesque village of Lagada, with the small chapel of Agia Triada wedged into a rock. In Lagada you will enjoy walks, beautiful cafes and traditional tavernas.

Leaving Aegiali, on the way to Chora, you will meet Asfondylitis, a deserted village with a rich history and impressive views of the southern part of the island. The village is known for its rock paintings.

On the way to Kato Meria, is the monastery of Agios Georgios Valsamitis, which takes its name from the balsam or wild mint that grows in the area. It is said that an ancient sanctuary was once located here dedicated to hydromancy.

On your way to the quiet village of Kato Meria, you will find Arkesini, Kamari, Vroutsi and Kolofana. In Kalotaritissa bay you will see the shipwreck of Amorgos, the half-sunken "Olympia". From there, you can take a boat across to the islet of Gramvousa.

The picturesque harbour of Katapola is full of life in the summers, with plenty of cafes, pastry shops, tavernas and bars, all by the sea.

Beaches & Activities

The small and rocky beach of Agia Anna near Chora is also the most popular of the island, as it was featured in the "Big Blue" by Luc Besson. When swimming in its deep waters you can see the Monastery of Hozoviotissa. The chapel of Agia Anna, on the way to the beach, is another well-known landmark.

Another impressive beach in Kato Meria is Mouros with its characteristic black pebbles, steep cliffs, astonishing deep blue waters, the surrounding caves and a seabed that invites you to hours of exploration. The beach is accessible through stone steps carved on the rocks.

Towards the north of the island, near Aegiali, you will find Agios Pavlos, a beach with sand and white pebbles ideal for families. From there you can take the boat to the islet of Nikouria, with its beautiful turquoise waters.

Opposite Aegiali, lies heavenly Levrossos with its golden fine sand and crystal clear shallow waters. Here you will find natural shade under the tamarisk trees. The beach is also accessible on foot from Tholaria.

The long, sandy beach of Aegiali, in the shape of a horseshoe, is fully organized, with beach bars, cafes and tavernas, and natural shade thanks to the tamarisk trees growing around it.

Close to Katapola, sheltered from the winds, is Maltezi with its fine golden sand and turquoise waters, a beach bar and sun loungers. You can go there by boat from Katapola, or follow a twenty-minute hiking trail from the village of Xylokeratidi.

Tastes of the island

“Psimeni" in Amorgos is the famous hot raki laced with honey, spices and dried fruits and available in different variations.

The most famous local dish is patatato, made with braised goat or lamb and potatoes in the oven, as well as Kalogiros, a summer feast of eggplants and meat, tomato, feta and kasseri cheese in the oven.

Fava is also a special dish in Amorgos; the locals also call it "katsouni” and make it from a type of peas.

Try the local kavourma, the Malaka soft cheese, the aromatic honey and some “pavlous“ (rusks made of barley). Don’t forget the traditional sweets, the xerotigana, which look like diples but without the egg, and also the local pasteli.

During the festivals, the locals will dish up their patatato, kofto (wheat-based dish), xidato (type of goat meat tripe), chickpeas and pilaf with octopus.

Traditions & Events

Almost all year round there are events and festivals for religious celebrations on the island, such as the popular feast of Agia Paraskevi in July, which takes place in Arkesini, with plenty of food being prepared for the visitors.

If you find yourself on the island on the eve of Agios Ioannis Klidonas on June 23, do not miss the custom of the fires in Loza (Chora), followed by a traditional feast.

A large festival is held on August 14 and 15 in Lagada, with local dishes, music and dancing. On the first Sunday after August 15, the traditional feast of Pasteli takes place in the square of Loza in Chora, where visitors may witness all stages of its preparation and take part in the feast afterwards.

Easter celebrations on the island is a unique experience. During the Epitaph procession on Good Friday, the cobbled streets are paved with oregano and sage, while the fires that burn in small cans along the route, create a spiritual atmosphere.

Don’t miss…

Discover the island’s hiking trails as well as the most isolated beaches of the island accessible only by boat.

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