Chios ~ The fragrant island


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The villages of Chios are over 60 in number and are spread in every corner of the island. Geographically, they can be divided into 3 groups: "Notiochora" (villages of South Chios), "Voriochora" (villages of North Chios) and villages of central Chios. However, each one of them has its own distinctive character.

Notiochora are also known as "Mastichochoria" (Mastic villages), as the mastic tree grows only on the north part of the island. These villages usually have more local population than the rest. They also include the medieval castle-villages (Mesta, Pyrgi etc) with their ever-impressing architecture, intact over the centuries.

In central Chios, there are "Kambochora" (villages of Kampos) with their fertile land, but also other villages near the island's capital city, like Karyes, and medieval villages like Anavatos and Avgonyma.

The northern villages are more isolated and "climbed-up" the mountainous areas of the island. They include Volissos and many other smaller villages known for their natural beauty.

Pyrgi is one the largest villages of south Chios, located 25 kilimeters away from the city. It is a castle-village, which still maintains its medieval character until our days.

Pyrgi (variation of the word "tower" in Greek) owes its name to its tall tower, around which the village was built.

Mesta is a medieval castle-village and one of the most beautiful "mastic-villages" (mastihohoria) of Chios. It is located at the south-west part of the island, 35 kms away from Chios city and it has been designated a listed monument. Thanks to its fortress-like architecture, untouched by the hands of time, it is considered one of the most impressive villages of Chios.

Viki is a small mountainous village in northern Chios, located 40 kilometers from the city. It is built on the northern side of the highest mountain of the island, Pelinnaio, at an altitude of 360 meters. It is about 2.5 km away from the sea.

Kalamoti is a village in south Chios. It is located 25 km away from the city of Chios and has a population of about 700 people.

Kipouries is a small picturesque village of North Chios, located about 36 kilometers away from the city of Chios.

Kardamyla is a village of northeast Chios, located 30 kilometers away from the city, of about 2000 people. It is built at the same spot as the ancient city Kardamyli, hence its name. This ancient city is mentioned by Thucydides (Greek historian).

Lagada is located in the northeast part of Chios island and 17 kilometers away from the city. Sitting amphitheatrically on a hillside, it is a village of about 2000 people. Most of them are sailors or fishermen.

Armolia is a village of south Chios located on a valley 22 kilometers away from the city of Chios. There are about 500 people currently living in the village. The nearest villages to Armolia are Kalamoti, Pyrgi and Vessa.

Anavatos is an impressive medieval village located at the center of Chios island. It is 20 kilometers away from the main city and is built on a sheer hill 400 meters high. The village is accessible from its north part only.