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Ithaca is the smallest in size and population island of Ionian Islands, but famous worldwide for the "homeland", where reigned the resourceful "Odysseus" by Homer.
It is an island of tradition, history and culture. Of rare beauty, of characteristic contrast in wildlife and nature, as well as the changing of the landscape.
Its capital is Vathi, a picturesque town with a quirky cove that closes in the arms of the Lazaretto Island.
Lazaretto Island located in the Gulf of Ithaca harbor. Today in the packed pine island is the church of the Transfiguration .The past few years; it is amongst the most popular destinations in the Ionian for couples who choose Lazaretto as a very romantic destination to get married.
Anogi Is the oldest village on Ithaca. In the village of Anogi are scattered huge boulders called “menhirs”. The “Araklis”, is the greatest, it has a height of 8 meters and the strangest of these oddly shaped stone blocks. From Anogi you can reach the mountain Niritos, the highest of Ithaca and there are also several caves to explore.
The church of Anogi is dedicated to the Dormition of Virgin Mary and is built at an altitude of 500 meters. It is considered as one of the oldest and most important churches in the Balkans and it has been declared a protected monument. It is a large and was designed in the form of a basilica. Its aid partially built 700 years ago.
Iera Moni Katharon is the most important monastery of Ithaca. It works from the 17th century. Iera Moni Katharon is built opposite of the bay of the harbor of Ithaca, so that the steeple is visible from every part from the south of the island.
Kioni is a traditional village with a picturesque harbor, many summer visitors to Ithaki dock their yachts. The entrance of the bay is dominated by three ruined windmills. It offers breathtaking views and beautiful beaches like Plakoutses. Built in the 16th century, many of its houses have survived since then. Its traditional characteristic architecture has survived over the years and through the devastating earthquake that shook the Ionian Islands in 1953.
Stavros is the second biggest village on Ithaca. It was built in the 16th century and its main attractions are the archeological museum and the bust of Odysseus which can be found at the central square. At a short distance from the village of Stavros lies the ancient Settlement of Pilikata. It is believed that the palace of Odysseus was situated on this hill.
Cave of the Nymphs: Often the cave is called by the name Marmarospilia. There are two entrances, from what is said one is for the gods and the other for people. In the cave, there are wonderful stalactites. In this cave is speculated that Odysseus hid the treasures given to him by the Phaeacians, at the way back to Ithaca.
Navaland Folklore Museum, Vathi, tel.: +30 26740 33 398
Opening hours of the museum: until June 30, 09:00 - 13:00 (except Sundays and Mondays) and July - August: 09:30 – 13:30 (except Mondays).
Archeological Museum of Vathi, tel.: +30 26740 32 200
Opening hours of the museum: Tuesday – Sunday 08:30 – 15:30
Archeological Museum of Stavros, tel.: +30 26740 23 955
Days Open: Daily except Mondays, 08:30 - 15:00
Ithaca is a real green island, with pebbled, pure white beaches and unique turquoise waters at its shores. The trees almost reach the sea, creating a uniquely beautiful setting that combines the wild and the peace. Some of the most famous beaches are: Sarakino, Filiatro Gidaki, Afales, Aspros Gialos Kourvoulia, City, Loutsa, Graves, Right, etc.
In Ithaca, deep under water, you’ll find Poseidon’s beautiful valleys, caves and reefs, perfect for scuba diving. If you’re lucky you may come face to face with one of the Mediterranean monk seals (monachus monachus) that take refuge on the island’s rocky shores.