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Andros: a quiet island full of mountains

The island of Andros (380 sq km, 10,000 inhabitants) is the northernmost island of the Cyclades archipelago, located south-east of Euboea and north-west of the island of Tinos. The island is also the second largest island in the Cyclades after Naxos. The capital of the island is the city of Andros which is located along the east coast. But the port where the ferries dock is the town of Gavrio which is located along the northern part of the west coast. In the valleys of the island they are mainly cultivated olives, vines and citrus.

A WILD ISLAND

Andros is one of the most mountainous Cyclades islands with a steep and rugged coast. The northern part of the island is the wildest part. The whole island is crossed by many ancient paths and mule tracks. Andros is a mountainous and rugged island. In the northern part of the island is Mount Agii Saranda, 718 meters high. The highest peaks of the island are located in the central region and are part of the Kouvara-Petalo mountain group. The highest mountain is Mount Profitis Ilias (997 meters), located in the center of the island. In the southern part of the island are the Gerakones (685 meters) and Tsirovlidi (726 meters) mountain ranges, and finally, in the extreme south, Mount Rachi which reaches 682 meters.

Populated since the seventh century BC. Andros had some importance in the classical era. During this period, the ruins of several inhabited centers scattered throughout the island bear witness to this, including above all the ancient capital Palaiopoli (Paleopolis) located in the center of the western coast. In ancient times the island was a possession of the Kingdom of Pergamum. In the Middle Ages, between 1207 and 1566, it was controlled by the Republic of Venice. Then like the rest of Greece it was controlled by the Ottoman Empire until 1821.

AN ISLAND ATTENDED MAINLY BY LOCAL TOURISM

The coast is mostly steep and rugged, the beaches are not many. The island is mainly a destination for local tourism but in recent years it has opened up to visitors from northern Europe. Among the most beautiful beaches and bays are those of Agios Kyprianos, located just south of Gavros, and the nearby Anerousa, Delavoia and Green Beach, all located south of Batsi. Along the east coast there are other small beaches and coves. Some are accessible only by sea, such as those of Vitali, Zokros, Ahla. In the surroundings of Hora are the beaches of Giala, Nimborio and Paraporti.

The island has some interesting archaeological areas. The main ones are those of Palaeopolis, the ancient capital of the island, and Zagora both located on the west coast. On the island there are also Venetian fortresses, such as that of Mesa Kastro in the town of Andros (Hora), medieval cobbled paths and ancient monasteries. In the city of Hora (Andros) located along the east coast, in addition to the ruins of the Venetian castle, there are neoclassical houses with a Venetian influence, a museum of modern art and a beautiful archaeological museum.

HOW TO GET TO ANDROS

FERRIES: Andros is connected by regular ferries with the port of Rafina (a few km east of Athens). The time taken for the crossing is approximately 2 hours. The island is also connected by ferries with some Cycladic islands such as Tinos, Syros, Naxos, Kea, Kythnos and Mykonos.

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