what to see and what to do in “The jewel of the Cyclades with over 90 beaches”

Kythnos, one of the Cycladic islands closest to Athens, is the land of simplicity, hospitality and sustainability. Well developed from a tourist point of view, thanks to its 90 beaches, the island has managed to preserve the look of its picturesque and white villages and the millennial traditions. Let us find out what to do and what to see in Kythnos, the earthly paradise of the Aegean Sea.

Kythnos Greece: travel guide

Located between Kea and Serifos, Kythnos is one of the Aegean islands closest to the port of Piraeus, which is 3 hours away. Its name, which is translated into Italian as “Citno”, derives from the presence of the thermal springs in the Gulf of Loutra.

Kythnos’ tourist offer is really complete: In addition to the beaches, they can be done excursions to discover the characteristic villages, gods monuments cultural heritage and the remains of the ancient civilization of the island. You can continue by allowing yourself a day at the spa, exploring the famous caves, hiking the trails. And still diving into the beautiful sea blue, experience kayaking adventures and fishing.


Kythnos: history

The history about Kythnos it starts from afar because the island began to be frequented in the late Mesolithic. It was an important and prosperous outpost to stop Roman expansion into Greece. During the reign of Macedonian King Philip V, the Romans actually tried to occupy Kythnos, but in vain, after a long siege, they were forced to leave the island because of its mighty fortresses.

With the siege of Constantinople in 1204, which ended with the victory of the Crusaders, Kythnos it fell into the hands of the Venetians who took over the government. Residents are said to have sent the icon of the Virgin of Nicopoi to Venice, which had been transported from Constantinople to Kythnos and is now honored as the victor Madonna Nicopeia, in the Church of San Marco.

Kythnos villages

How to get to Kythnos

The island is well connected to the mainland and the fastest and cheapest way to get to Kythnos is ferryas there is no airport or heliport in its territory.

Merihas, The port of Kythnos, is connected to Piraeus and Lavrion by daily ferries. The trip lasts from one and a half to three hours depending on the ship’s speed and weather. Kythnos also has a ferry connection with the ports of Andros, Ios, Kea, Kimolos, Milos, Naxos, Paros, Serifos, Sikinos, Sifnos, Syros, Folegandros.


Kythnos: attractions and sights

Kythnos is well developed from a tourist point of view along the coasts, but if you are looking for the most authentic spirit on the island, then the hinterland is for you. Far from the beaches there is actually one nature wild and unspoiled, interrupted only by the few, small villages where time seems to have stopped. Bucolic landscapes and slow paced villages are ideal for relaxing holidays in complete calm.

After this quick introduction, let’s take a closer look what to do and what to see in Kythnos, attractions and places of interest that must not be missed for any reason.


Countries – Kythnos

Kythnos has two main settlements, the village Chora, also called Messaria and Dryopida. The two villages are characterized by their winding and often stepped streets, too narrow for car traffic. Both very picturesque, they have different architectural styles. Chora is arranged as an amphitheater around a hill and offers the white houses with flat roofs, typical of the Cyclades.

Dryopida it rises in a protected valley far from the sea and has the typical white houses, but your roofs are sloping and covered with red tiles. At the northeastern end of the island lies the village Loutraa sparsely populated city, but famous for its thermal springs with healing properties, known since Roman times.


Churches & Monasteries – Kythnos

On the island of Kythnos, besides churches of the two main villages there are about 130 between chapels and old monasteries. In Chora are important places of worship where ancient icons are honored, the Holy Trinity, Agios Savvas, Agios Nikolaos. In the village of Dryopida, the church of Agios Minas is remarkable, which preserves magnificent icons carved in wood.

There Our Lady of the Church of the Canal, located along the southeast coast of the island, is one of the most important places of worship in the Cyclades due to its reputation as a miraculous place. According to tradition, the icon of the Virgin Mary was found by fishermen in the narrow canal between Kythnos and Serifos. A great feast is celebrated in August with the procession and representation of the discovery of the Virgin Mary icon.


Museums – Kythnos

That Chora Folklore Museum exhibits a collection of folklore objects inside a traditional house in the city’s “Piatsa”. That Dryopida Folklore Museum it is housed in an old house located behind the church of Agios Apostolos and exhibits agricultural implements, traditional costumes and old household furniture. On the walls are engravings of Kythnos.

That Kythno Church and Byzantine Museum it is located in a space specially created in the church of Agios Georgios in Dryopida and houses various ecclesiastical finds from the Byzantine era and several icons dating back to different eras.


Archaeological Sites – Kythnos

The oldest and most important place on the island is Vryokastroin Mandraki Bay, where many finds have been made that testify to the frequency of the territory from the tenth century BC. to the seventh century. Classically, the sealed handles of commercial amphorae and the underwater remains of the old port.

The findings came to light archeological site “Maroula” of Loutr’s thermal baths tell us that the island was inhabited during the Mesolithic period (9,000 – 8,000 BC). Excavations have returned the ruins of archeological circular houses, tombs and a human skeleton where flint, quartz and obsidian stone tools were found. This is the only outdoor archeological site that can be traced to the Mesolithic in all of Greece.


Baths and caves – Kythnos

That Kythnos thermal baths they are located in the suggestive bay of Loutra, on the northeast side of the island, and are the only ones present in all the Cyclades. The first source is of salt water and is located inside the hydrotherapy center, which at reasonable prices allows visitors to immerse themselves in the marble tubs. The second source is located 50 meters from the first, is free and has healing properties for rheumatic diseases, rheumatic diseases and gynecological diseases.

In Kythnos there is one of the largest caves in Greece, the Katafiki Cave to Dryopida. This natural cave, first explored around 1830, housed an iron mine until 1939 and has now become a ‘attraction tourist. Its name is derived from the Greek word for refuge (katafigio), as it was used as a refuge to escape from pirates. Inside there are wonderful stalactites and stones.


Excursions – Kythnos

THAT trails of Kythnos allows you to know the true soul of the island by combining picturesque settlements, beaches, archeological sites, Byzantine churches, caves and windmills. The island has a rich network of hiking trails, some of which are perfectly signposted. The routes vary in difficulty due to the terrain. It is preferable to meet them during the spring and fall when the climate becomes milder.

Between excursions more famously we point out: path 1, which from the castle of Oria, with the ruins of the settlement destroyed in 1570, leads to the Mesolithic site of Maroula. Path 2 leads to Lefke’s beach, which runs through the village of Dryopida. Finally, trail 6, which leads to the remains of the island’s ancient capital, Vryokastro, with stunning views of the beach in Kolona.

hiking-Kythnos trails

Kythno photos and photos

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