Located between Karpathos and Crete is the southernmost island of the Dodecanese; a grey naked rock suddenly emerging from the white-water sea to survey the most turbulent passage of the Greek seas, the strait of Kassos and Karpathos. Kassos owes its name to the rough sea and hard weather conditions: the Phoenician name Kas means the foam of the stormy sea and ideally portrays the wild natural beauty as well as the tenderness of the people of Kassos. This remote island remains one of the most enchanting and best hidden secrets of the Aegean.
Home to sea captains, majestic Kassos boasts about its grand nautical history. From Homer’s era and the participation of the island’s warships in the Trojan War to Kassos great contribution to the Greek Revolution. From the times when its shipyards were building Kassos’ renown sail boats to the 18th and 19th century when the island’s commercial fleet would reach the far side of the world, bringing wealth and riches back to Kassos.
The island’s unique personality has its roots on this strong nautical tradition. The cosmopolitan soul of the locals and their adherence to their primordial traditions; The island’s unique culinary culture with influences coming from as far as Asia Minor and Egypt but also Italy and America. But, most of all, the warmth of the people who welcome and greet all visitors: “Na s’evro” they say! "So glad to see you!” And they open their door and their heart to you overwhelming you with their intense feelings and building everlasting bonds of friendship.
The heart of the trading activities and administrative functions of Kassos beats at Fri, the capital and home to the island’s only harbour. Built in 1840 in an eyebrow shape around the picturesque harbour of Mpouka with its colourful fishing boats; an old pirate hideout. A jewel of islanding popular architecture with stone-built, pastel mansions and eye-catching, exquisite captains’ houses. A beautiful listed building from the 1900’s , the old town hall, houses the Archaeological Museum and the Folklore Collection of Kassos. A landmark at Fri, the imposing church of Agios Spyridonas, the island’s patron saint, with its impressive belfry and the beautifully ornamented wooden screen that dates back to the 19th century. In front of the island’s Town Hall is the Monument of the – known locally as – the Holocaust Day, built in memory of the Massacre of Kassos civilians by the Turks in 1824.