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The Island of Sámos - Eastern Aegean
(Images & Information as of September 2004)
How many different shades of green can you think of? Chances are, you'll come across most of them on Samos. It is a remarkably verdant island (lush, even), Black pine on its peaks, Calabrian pine lower down, impressive forests, tall Italian Cypress dotted around the place, as well as olive groves, vineyards and vegetable fields in the lower plains. In the 4th century Menander wrote about Sámos, "Here, even the hens give milk." Perhaps it's that relaxing colour, or maybe the effect of the famous wines, but the Samians certainly give you a very warm welcome. Stone villages hide amoungst the hills, and the vertical, mountainous scale of Sámos makes for some impressive views, as you travel around. The two great mountains - Ampelos and Kerkis - were part of the mainland chain, until Sámos split away from Asia Minor in the Ice Age, leaving just a narrow straight between it and Turkey (which can be visited from Pythagório, by a day-trip to Kusadasi & Ephesus). Pythagoras, Epicurus and Aesop, made their homes on Sámos during Polykrates' time, and he in turn built a temple to Hera and the Efpalínio Órygma tunnel to create a siege-proof water supply (and built with tremendous accuracy).
There was some fire damage in the Southwest about 10 years ago (either from lightning or arson), but although there are still some chared stumps around, nature is reclaiming the slopes. Beaches range from sandy to pebbly and the water is glass-clear. Buses run to the ports (and to some of the villages and resorts in peak season - see timetable here), but apart from taxis you are pretty much expected to hire a car if you want to get around the island.
The links immediately below will take you to a page with images and information on a particular area, during our stay on Sámos we spent most of our time relaxing at Votsalákia and waiting for the Pátmos ferry at Pythagório, but the links at the bottom of the page will take you to other areas which we didn't have time to visit.
Psilí Ámmos (Nr. Pythagório)
Psilí Ámmos (Nr. Votsalákia)
Travelling to Sámos
Accomodation ----------------Also see Samos-Travel
& Regina Travel
Other useful sources of information
TEXNH EDITIONS fold-out Island Road Map and guide. We always make a point of picking up one of their maps on every island that we visit - usually around 2 Euros or less.
Regina Travel - Pythagório
Greek-tourism Sámos site
Samos.be/there (fascinating photo newsletter)
Prefecture of Sámos (history, archeology and culture)
Sámos Island - Diavlos Information Network
Gunn's Travel Pages (nicely personalised site)
Greekislands.com (useful telephone numbers, accomodation, pictures & info')
Samosin - Journey to Sámos
samos.boogolinks (more Samos related links than you can shake a stick at)
RETURN TO GREEK ISLAND INDEX