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Folegandros: an arid island but full of beauty

The island of Folegandros (32 sq km, 670 inhabitants) is part of the archipelago of the Cyclades islands, is located in the southern part of the archipelago. South-east of the island of Milos, west of Sikinos and just north-west of Santorini. Inhabited since the third millennium BC, in Roman times the island was probably a place of exile. Folegandros was a Venetian possession between 1207 and 1566.

The island is very small and is made up of three small villages. The capital Chora, located in the center near the east coast, the port of Karavostassis, located along the east coast but in the southern part of the island. While the village of Ano Meria is located in the interior of the northern part of Folegandros.

The island is hilly and in its central part it rises up to 416 meters high with Mount Agios Eleftherios. The cliffs dominate the eastern mountainous part, while the western part is less rugged and formed by hills. In this area ancient terrace crops are visible. There are some beautiful beaches on the island which are often difficult to reach, some of which can only be reached by sea.

BEAUTIFUL BEACHES AND CHARACTERISTIC VILLAGES

The three main villages are all worth visiting. The main port of the island, Karavostasis, has in its surroundings some beautiful beaches. Including above all those of Livadi, Vitsentzou and Vardia, while further south is the beach of Katergo. Hora (Chora), the capital of Folegandros is a historic town with a medieval town center (Kastro) dating back to the 13th century. A short walk from the inhabited center leads to the church of Panagia which dominates the town from above. It is a single-nave white church with several domes.

In the central part of the island there are the bays of Angali, and Agios Nikolaos with relative beaches. In the north of the island, the beaches of Livadaki, Ampeli and Agios Georgios are easier to reach by sea. While in the village of Ano Meria, there is a small museum dedicated to Folklore.

Along the north-east coast of the island is the Chrysospilia cave, a marine cave located about 30 meters above sea level and over 300 meters deep. The cave is made up of two main chambers which are connected to each other by a corridor. In the first chamber there was a cistern from the Roman era, while the second chamber is covered with stalactites. What makes this cave special are the over 400 names and inscriptions from the ancient period (4th century BC) engraved on its walls.

HOW TO GET TO FOLEGANDROS

FERRIES: The island of Folegandros is served by ferries that connect it with the port of Piraeus (4 hours by fast ferry) and with most of the nearby islands including Santorini (30 minutes by ferry), Milos, Naxos, Sifnos and Ios.

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