The sights of Karpathos

The island’s colorful history presents notable themes and cultural features from prehistoric times all the way through the Classical, Roman, Byzantine, and medieval periods.

Many fascinating historical sights await the curious visitor, to include early Christian basilica churches, the Castle and the ancient acropolis at Aperi, ancient Vrukunda and Arcesia, the Mycenean chamber tombs in the city of Karpathos, and the acropolis of Arkasa.  Also noteworthy are the engineering marvels created by the medieval Italians, during their time on the island, including bridges, aqueducts, windmills and the ovens of Olympos. Karpathos offers you a magical journey through time!

Olympos, Karpathos
Olympos is the most renowned village of Karpathos and has been recognized as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. It is located at the northern end of the island, at an altitude of 250m.
The village’s unique cultural identity has been preserved for centuries, as it was isolated from the rest of the island, until just recently. At Olympos, visitors feel as though they have traveled backward in time.The architecture, the traditional costumes, the customs, all remain intact, creating an invaluable and rare authenticity.

At a distance of 10km, you will find Diafani, the seaside haven of Olympos village, with  its little taverns and cafés, while only 2km away  is the beautiful beach of Vananda, with its broad pebbles and  crystal-clear waters.

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Saria Island
The natural environment of northern Karpathos, along with the island of Saria, has been inducted into the protective network of Natura 2000, as the area encompasses a vast and rich habitat for rare species of birds and sea mammals.
The rocky shore caverns are home to the Mediterranean monk seal, whereas the rocks by the sea are the nesting place for Eleonora’s falcons and Audouin’s Gulls, rare species native to the Aegean!

On the island of Saria, you will find a multitude of ancient sites and a beautiful landscape, ideal for hiking and exploration.

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Archaeological Museum of Karpathos
The archaeological Museum of Karpathos is located in the island’s capital, Pigadia. The building complex used to be the island’s Command Headquarters of the Italian occupational forces during WWII.
It now houses a plethora of archaeological finds that date back to 4000 B.C., and continue up to the Byzantine period, as well as findings from a recent excavation of the Minoan/Mycenaean settlement of Pigadia.
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Folklore Museum of Karpathos
The island’s folklore Museum is located in the picturesque village of Menetes. The exhibits present many fascinating aspects of the folk tradition of Karpathos, displaying historical costumes and items of daily use. Handcrafted weavings and fabrics, traditional hand-drawn plates, as well as old photographs, are sure to give you a taste of the past.
Villages of Karpathos
In Karpathos, you will encounter an abundance of picturesque villages and settlements. A mountain range runs along a large part of the island, and because in the past, the island inhabitants were in danger of pirate invasions, they built their villages high up on the mountain slopes.

Olympos, Othos, Menetes, Aperi, Volada, Pyles, Spoa and Mesochori are villages you will meet at high altitudes. Each village preserves its unique identity and invites you to explore it. Picturesque alleys, breathtaking views and small traditional cafés and taverns on the village square, where you can taste the local cuisine, are only a few of the charms of these settlements.

Descending to the seaside, you will find beautiful coastal villages such as Arkasa, Foiniki and Diafani.

Finally, in the island’s port, Pigadia you can enjoy the amenities of the capital. The town hosts many cafés and restaurants where you can  enjoy a coffee or a meal with a variety of plates and fresh fish,  supplied daily by the local fishermen.

The pedestrian street of the town is ideal for an evening walk and for window shopping. And in the alleys of the port you can enjoy the nightlife of Karpathos, as there are many lively bars with roof gardens and a variety of summer clubs!

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