Total Pageviews

Tuesday, July 06, 2010

SAMOS: The Island of Pythagoras

It's been some years since I last visited Samos Island, and that time it was only a day visit en route to Kusadasi Turkey. I'd visited once before during the time I lived in Greece in the 1980's and always wanted to return for a longer stay. I was heading there last summer with my sister and niece, from Naxos, but we mis-read the time for the ferry's departure and missed the boat -- ended up on Santorini instead. This time I won't miss the boat, because I've been looking forward to a return visit to this beautiful island.

Samos is the island of Pythagoras and the goddess Hera. The island is famous for its sweet wine. It's part of the Eaaster Aegean island group, close to the Asia Minor coast so there is boat service across to Turkey, mainly to the resort town of Kusadasi -- another place I've visited several times and hope to return to this trip.

The name "Samos" is from Phoenician, meaning "rise by the shore". It was a centre for Ionian culture in classical antiquity, renowned for its wine and red pottery. By the 7th C BC it was one of the leading commerce centres in Greece, leading their vast trading of textiles. It was a bitter rival of Miletus in Asia Minor and war broke out. This resulted in the creation of the Samian naval innovation of the trireme.

One of the major archaeological sites is the temple of Hera. It was connected to the city by a Holy Road (Hiera Odos) which was decorated with statues and votive offerings. The temple was built near the mouth of a river and for centuries it was the main place of worship on the island. Not much of it remains, other than one lone pillar.

My travel writer friend Inka and I plan to stop off on Samos for a day or two en route back to Turkey. There's a resort and village on the island where there is a folklore museum. My friend and I are hoping we can afford to splurge for at least a night's stay at the Doryssa Seaside Resort.

One of the amazing archaeological sites on the island is this amazing tunnel that was constructed in the 6th C BC under Mt Kaslis, to build an aqueduct to supply the city with fresh water. This is the earliest tunnel in history to be dug from both ends. It has a length of one kilometre and is now regarded one of the masterpieces of ancient engineering. Named the Pythagorion, it is now part of UNESCO World Heritage Site

Add to <span class=Technorati Favorites" src="">
Posted by Picasa


Wynn Bexton said...

Whoever it is who keeps leaving messages in Chinese on my blog sites, stop! I will only delete them.

Wynn Bexton said...

I will report your blogs if you persist in posting them here.

Wynn Bexton said...

I have reported this as spam. Quit doing it!

Play Free Online Poker said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.