Unique pilgrimage

Chios is worth its name “The AegeanIsland of the Saints”, because of the numerous martyrs of the Orthodox Church coming from the island or living in a monastery there. In three days, we will wander in the northwestern part of the island, Amani, worship important sacred places, visit unique religious sites and live the moments of a pure, borderline corner of Greece.

Day 1: ''On the Footsteps of the Saints''

Arrival in Chios by boat. First stop: the early Christian basilica of St. Isidoros (4th century AD), north of the city of Chios, where the tombs of St. Isidoros and Myropi are located. We drive on to the monastery of St. Makarios at the foot of Mount Epos. On a little bit higher altitude, we find the small town of Pityos and we visit the church of St. Georgios the “Chiopolitis” (the one grown in Chios), patron saint of Ayvalik, Turkey (Greek name: Kydonies) till the Asia Minor Catastrophe in 1922.
Next stop: the village of Diefcha and the monastery of Moundes, a deserted monastery dating back to 1574 AD with extraordinary folk hagiography. The today preserved hagiographies of the monastery were made by an unknown hagiographer in 1849 AD. Later on, we will enjoy traditional specialties at a local tavern at the square of Diefcha under a pepper tree (schinus molle). We continue on to the mountain village Katavasi, in order to visit the church of St. Matrona of Chios, a saint who was born and raised in the region. In the evening, we head on to the Monastery of St. Markella, where we will stay for the night. Meanwhile, we will have the chance to enjoy a swim at the clean sandy beach nearby. After a rogation at the church of the Virgin-martyr, we will visit the place of her martyrdom, where there is still a spring with hot water. At the end of the day, there will be dinner at the rural tavern located nearby.

Day 2: ..The wooden carvings of Amani..

The wonderful wooden altarpieces of Chios became widely known all over the island, in all Aegean islands, as well as in Asia Minor from the 17th to the 19th century. Driving all around the Amani area, we have the opportunity to admire wooden carvings, even in the most remote villages of the island. During our first stop in Piramá, we will see the altarpiece of St. John the Baptist. Later on, we will find a later example of wooden carving at the village church of Parparia, before approaching the small village of Agio Galas and the church of Virgin Mary the Aghiogalousena. Its wooden altarpiece was constructed in 1721 AD and is one of the best preserved ones on the island of Chios. The oldest altarpiece, which is definitely worth our admiration, can be found in the church of St. Thaleleos (11th cent. BC), located on a slightly higher altitude than the one of Aghiogalousena. We will take a tour at the caves of the region and enjoy our lunch with monastery specialties at a wonderful natural area among sycamore trees and spring waters.
Our interest in folklore will be broadened through the visit of the Centre of Educational History in Nenitouria, an old, composite-classroom-school from the 60s. Further drive to Kourounia and its Museum of Ecclesiastical/Religious art, where there are exhibits made by the famous Cretan hagiographer Georgios Panagiotakis. At the square of Kourounia, one of the dreamiest “Aegean balconies”, we will enjoy our evening coffee. Our last stop for the day will be the village of Chalandra, where we will admire the altarpiece of St. Paraskevi’s church, the wonder of which saved the city of Chios in 1442 AD. Later on, lunch in Volissos and return to the Monastery of St. Markella.

Day 3: ''At the Exarchate of Volissos''

On our third and last day in the northwestern part of Chios Island, we discover the town of Volissos through its rich, religious tradition, which concluded in its ecclesiastical independence from 1571 to 1859 AD as an Exarchate of Volissos, directly appertaining to the Ecumenical Patriarchate. Our escort, the candle-maker Mr. D. Tziotis, will help us get to know some of the majestic parishes of the once blooming town; the church of St. Georgios in Pyrgos, the aristocratic neighborhood of Volissos; the half-finished –due to the urbanization– church of St. Nikolaos, where secrets about church construction will be revealed; the church of Christ at the village square; the church of Virgin Mary of Pythonas with the wonderful cobblestone flooring at its backyard; the Taxiarchis church of Pythonas, which owns wooden flooring, a bell tower of great beauty and a plaster decoration. Afterwards, lunch at a traditional tavern of Volissos.
On our way back to the start of the trip, pilgrimage at Nea Moni (built in 1042 AD under the Emperor Constantine IX Monomachus). Its valuable mosaics gave the monastery a place among the UNESCO World Heritage Monuments. Shortly before embarking on the ship, we make a stop at the Panagia (Virgin Mary) Voithia monastery, in order to worship the tomb of Ossios Anthimos, the founder of the monastery.
Here comes the end of our pilgrimage in the Chios Island of the Saints. The rest of the island is impatiently waiting for our next trip.

0030 210 8981836
0030 210 8981837
0030 210 8981838

AgoraTravel S.A.
Vas. Georgiou Str. 71,
GR-16675 Glyfada-Athens
Rating of Hotels
Type of Hotels