Lesvos; Guess what it suggests?
Don't think Lesvos is small! There are many places to visit and enjoy. You might even want to hire a car on the island. See a long weekend itinerary here.
Lesvos, third largest of the islands in Greece behind Crete and Evia, is virtually unaffected by the mass tourism killed the vibe. Lesvos Island is still a place where you can find the authentic Greek laid-back lifestyle. A hotspot for those tourist that are looking to have a drink on the side of the sea overlooking idyllic bays and pretty calm beaches.
The name of the island, as well as the towns, derive from ancient Greek kings' sons & daughters. However, the myth is to more associate the name of Lesvos to the island's association with Sappho, the ancient poet who wrote about her love for women; Lesvos - lesbian.
Mytilini is the capital of the Lesvos Island. It is where everything happens in terms of nightlife and where young people gather. Besides a lot of lovely coffee shops, a shopping street, artistic cafes and hip bars, there's even a university. Terraces are full of people and at night time the city comes alive in the area around Sappho Square.
The byzantine church of Agios Therapondas that is just behind the harbor road in the market is my favorite. Supposedly the church sits on top of an ancient temple to Apollo. Built in the 18th century, this church is dedicated to Saint John the Healer. It is a three-aisled basilica of an impressive architecture with neoclassical elements and architectural elements from the Renaissance.
None can beat Santorini when it comes to cute churches but Lesvos has some nice ones too 😍
Yeni Mosque is an important historical monument of the 19th century that is located in the district of Epano Skala, Mytilene Town. This is the largest muslim mosque in Mytilini and it was constructed in the late 19th century to replace another mosque that was damaged by a great earthquake in February 1867. Since then, Yeni Mosque (also known as New Mosque) has undergone many reconstructions. Today it works as an exhibition center hosting many cultural events and art exhibitions that are organized by the municipality of Lesvos.
Molivos is surely the most iconic town of the Lesvos island. Also a good option for accommodation. The tiny little streets leading uphill to the castle are adorned with numerous cute coffee places, souvenirs shops, bakeries and ice cream stalls.
The Fortress of Methymna (Molivos Castle) is built with reddish and brown trachyte on the top of a winding hillside town. Although built by the Byzantines, there are stones here from a previous castle dating from the Trojan War. From the Venetians to the Catalans, to the Genovese and the Ottoman Turks, this castle has seen it all. The tiny little streets leading uphill to the castle are adorned with numerous cute coffee places, souvenirs shops, bakeries and ice cream stalls.
How to get to Lesvos Island?
Apart from airway, you have ferry options. There is a daily ferry to Lesvos from Piraeus port, the main port of Athens. The ferry to Lesvos from Athens takes about 10 hours. In summer, there is also a ferry to Lesvos from Kavala, a mainland port in northern Greece. From Ayvalık, Turkey, take the 1 hour and 15-minute ferry ride to the port city of Mytilini. Ferries also connect Lesvos to Chios, Lemnos, Samos, and Ikaria.
“Blue Eyes” graffiti in the port of Lesvos is the first thing the refugees see when they enter the port. Made by two young Greeks, it's a great capture of how an refugee must feel.
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