ANAFI

Austere beauty; rough and arid landscape; a small realm of stone surrounded by the sound of wind and sea. At the southeast corner of the Cyclades and in the shadow of the famous island of Santorini, Anafi offers the traveller a unique demonstration of the grandeur of simplicity… a praise to slowness. A true haven of serenity and tranquillity, in perfect harmony with its mythical past. According to the legend, Anafi is the rock that Apollo created so that the Argonauts of Jason would take refuge in their way back from Colchis after their quest for the Golden Fleece.

Bathed in the Mediterranean light, protected in its enchanting and mystic solitude, Anafi holds onto the memories of its long history through the centuries. From the Dorians, who were the first to set foot on the island in the 8th century BC, to its peak as a mighty city-state in the classical and Hellenistic times, to its sieze by the Romans, the Byzantines, the Venetians and the Turks. In the years of Greek liberation and during the interwar period Anafi was a place of exile for political prisoners. Traces of the past are found everywhere: the ancient acropolis and ancient temples, the Roman statues, the Byzantine churches, the medieval fortresses and the Venetian castles…paths carved on sacred alleys unveil a land of abundant history.

Anafi is in full balance with nature. The locals are warm-hearted people, happy and joyful, with a pure soul. They are also famous builders. In 1883, they were invited by King Otto to move to Athens so that they would contribute to the construction of the newly established capital. They chose the rocky and steep slopes of the southeast side of the Acropolis to settle. It was there where they created the famous neighbourhood of "Anafiotika", a real Cycladic village and one of the most beautiful quarters of Plaka.

Chora, the capital and the only village on the island with just 260 inhabitants, is a fine example of the locals’ skilful art. Built on a hill in the shadow of the Venetian castle, the village mesmerizes the visitor with its romantic atmosphere. Narrow cobbled alleys, white domed houses with whitewashed terraces and multi-coloured bougainvilleas, picturesque windmills and beautiful churches with Byzantine and post-Byzantine icons. A pure scenery of the Cyclades. This is where Anafi's heart beats since the medieval times. During the summer months, visitors and locals have their fiestas overlooking the Cretan Sea.

  • view_headlineSights and routes in Anafi

    Anafi is an island devoted to nature, ideal for hiking and sightseeing through ancient trails and monuments of nature.

    Kalamos is the jewel of Anafi and the most famous natural monument of the island. A huge limestone rock, majestic and mysterious, that rises above the sea at an altitude of 460 meters. It is the second largest monolith in the Mediterranean, after Gibraltar, designated as a Natura 2000 zone and the preferred destination for experienced mountaineers and climbers. Legend has it, when you approach it, you feel attracted by a staggering force.

    • At the highest peak of Kalamos rises the monastery of Panagia Kalamiotissa, a small masterpiece of the 18th century, built on the site of a medieval fortress. A single nave church with a white dome and bell tower, a few cells and a water tank. It is the most significant religious monument on the island. The views of the Aegean Sea from the balcony of the monastery are amazing.

    • The archaeological site on the hill of Castelli, at an altitude of 327 meters, testifies to the glorious past of the old city-state. You can admire the ruins of the fortifications, the significant remnants of the necropolis with tombs and impressive Roman funerary monuments, such as the marble sarcophagus next to the picturesque chapel of Panagia in Dokari located at the foot of the hill.

    Drakontospilo on the north side of Kalamos, a most unique geological formation on the island. Its impressive entrance reaches a height of 10 meters, while the gold-emerald interior decoration of columns, natural basins and stalactites. The cave is accessible only through a rough path.

    • The historic monastery of Zoodochos Pigi built on a magical location on the narrow isthmus that connects the island with Kalamos Peninsula. It was built on the ruins of the ancient temple of Apollo Aiglitis, which, according to legend, was built by the Argonauts. Some elements of its masonry and columns are still preserved in the courtyard of the monastery. It is one of the most important places of pilgrimage in the Cyclades since the years of the Turkish occupation.

    • The Archaeological Collection in Chora, where you can admire Roman statues and sculptures found in Kasteli (ancient Anafi).

    • "Katikies", the traditional houses of shepherds that decorate the countryside of Anafi, are listed buildings and fine examples of folklore architecture, unique in the Aegean Sea. Each residence has its own stone oven, a circular structure in the courtyard used for baking barley rusks.

    • The beaches of Anafi. Sandy and sheltered from the wind in the South, rocky and isolated in the North. True oases of tranquility and reflection with crystal clear blue waters. The most popular and easily accessible are located on the south coast. The famous beach of Roukounas, the largest sandy beach of the Aegean Sea; Kleisidi; Flamourou; Katsouni; the beach of Katalymatsa with the ruins of the old port lying on the seabed; the pebbled beach of Megalos Potamos; the beach of Monastiri (Prasies); Agii Anargiri with its steep cliffs and the chapel known by the same name.

  • view_headlineWhat’s not to miss…

    • Enjoy the sunset and sunrise from the very top of Kalamos rock with stunning views to the Aegean Sea. To get there you have to follow the path that connects the Monastery of Zoodochos Pigi to the Monastery of Kalamiotissa located at the top. Many visitors choose to spend the night in the courtyard of the monastery in sleeping bags and wait for the exquisite sunrise.

    • Take a boat ride around the island and discover the beauty of remote untouched and small islands (Ftena, Pachia, Makra) across Anafi. The view of the vertical cliffs of Kalamos is breathtaking.

    • Buy some top quality local honey.

    • Enjoy the local cuisine and specialties such as cheese and saffron bread, roasted goat, balothia (fresh local pasta), tzonari (salted pork with onions and potatoes), gemista (honey pies, sesame and walnuts), koufeto (pastry with honey and almond) and others.

    • Enjoy a glass of strofiliatiko, the famous local wine.

    • Visit Anafi on September 7th-8th for the festivities at Panagia Kalamiotissa Monastery, the most important festival on the island.

  • view_headlineTravelling to and from Anafi

    Travel to and from Anafi with ANEK LINES. Enjoy a comfortable journey with one of the leading passenger ferry operators in the Mediterranean.

    ΑΝΕΚ connects Piraeus and other popular destinations with Anafi through the Cyclades, Crete and Dodecanese route (Piraeus, Milos, Santorini, Anafi, Heraklion, Sitia, Kassos, Karpathos, Diafani, Halki, Rhodes) with port-to- port itineraries. The company offers top quality services and authentic Cretan “philoxenia” on board.

    The modern fleet and highly trained crew of ANEK, promise a pleasant on board stay, meeting the needs and demands of the modern traveller. ANEK ferries have spacious cabins of all categories, comfortable and air-conditioned all-user areas with many entertainment options, modern stores, gourmet restaurants and café -bars.

    ANEK highly values gastronomy and offers exquisite menus based on authentic Cretan products and tastes of the Cretan cuisine. All ΑΝΕΚ ferries offer 24hour internet service (wi-fi and Internet Corners) at designated areas.

    Discover our best prices for ferry tickets and unique offers for passenger tickets and cabin accommodation throughout the year.

  • view_headlineArriving at Anafi

    ANEK LINES boat arrives at the port of Agios Nikolaos (Gialos), at the south part of the island. The port is approximately 3km away from Chora. The only bus on the island runs on a regular service from the port to the town centre (Limani Clisidi - Chora). A second bus service connects Chora with famous beaches on the island along the “Chora-Roukounas-Agioi Anargiroi-Monasteri” route.

    Alternatively, you can move around the island by car or motorcycle. ANEK LINES offers reliable and value for money transportation services so you can take along your own car, motorcycle, trailer or caravan and enjoy unique trips around the island.

  • view_headlineUseful telephone numbers

    ΑΝΕΚ LINES – Central Reservation Dept: 0030 210 4197400, 0030 210 4197420 Anafi Travel: 0030 22860 61408, 0030 22860 61220 Anafi Municipality: 0030 22860 61266 Police: 0030 22860 61216 Doctor’s Office: 0030 22860 61215 Post Office/ Bank: 0030 22860 61203

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