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Naxos History

naxos castleNaxos is the largest island of Cyclades. According to the Greek mythology, the first inhabitants came from Thraki and brought with them the worship of Dionysos.

On this island, Theseus -returning from Crete where he killed Miinotaurus- abandoned Ariadni on the seashore while she fall asleep. The numerous ancient monuments stand as a witness of the island's development. During the Byzantine period, Naxos became the permanent target of Aegean Pirates and as a result the inhabitants abandoned the seashore territories and withdrawed on the mountainous hinterland in order to protect their lives.

In 1207 a.c. the island was conquered by the Turks until its liberation followed by its rejoice with Greece in 1832.naxos old town

Arriving at the harbor of Naxos, the traveler can see the ruins of Apollo's ancient temple, which the inhabitants call Portara (6th century b.c.). In Chora there is also the Archaeological Museum of the island, with a big collection of Cycladic idols, jewellery, statues etc.

In the village Melanes there is an uncompleted, huge statue (Kouros). Another one is near the village of Apollonas, where there are also ruins of an ancient stone-pit of Marble.

Near the village Sangri there is another ancient temple devoted to Goddess Dimitra, as well as the ancient Dilio (another temple of Apollo).

naxos townAt the top of the mountain Zeus (Zas) there is a cave, where according to the Greek mythology Zeus (the god Jupiter) was born.

Chora is the capital of Naxos, a picturesque town constructed around the Venetian Castle, standing as a characteristic example of the traditional Cycladic architecture: narrow little roads, series of arches and stone curred steps. Another castle of the island is the ancient and medieval castle of Apano Meria, between the villages of Potamia and Chalki.

Also there are several towers in Naxos, built in the hinterland of the island by the Venetians, in purpose to protect the people from the Pirates: Tower of Chimaros, Belonia, Barotsi, Aperathou.