posted in: Ancient sites | 1

It all began with Stafilos, who was probably a Cretan prince, sent to Skopelos by king Minos in the 16th century BC. He is believed to have been the son of Dionysos and Ariadni, brother to Oinopion, Thoas and Peparethos. Only Peparethos joined him in the colonisation of Skopelos and gave the island its name, which fell into disuse in the 2nd century AD. They brought with them vines and olive trees.

In 1936, contents of a rich grave were found by chance in the neck of the headland between the beaches now known as Stafilos and Valanio. They included a gold sword handle, the biggest ever to be found in Greece, plus many artefacts, including a double edged axe, the symbol of the Minoans. They can be found in the National Museum in Athens. It isn’t certain that the grave was that of Stafilos himself but it was undoubtedly that of royalty, as only a leader would have had such precious funeral offerings.

Believe it or not, there are the remains of a Mycenean wall at the end of Stafilos beach (1600-1100BC).

The remains of Roman defence walls can be found at Kastro (castle) Milos, *Panormos, Kanaka Laka and Loutraki (ancient Selinus). There’s also a very interesting looking wall next to the road to Moutero. It’s mentioned by archaeologist Diamantis Sampson, but no details documented.

Temples: Asclepius the demi-god, Artimis/Diana goddess of hunting (within the walls of private Episcope monastery), Eefastos/Vulcan god of fire and metal (Ag Konstantinos), Athene/Minerva, goddess of wisdom and war (Raches) to name but a few. Others existed, their remains having been recycled into the walls of the Christian churches that took their place.

Sarcophagi were also upcycled where possible and used in the building of Christian churches (eg. Ag Michalis Sinadon, *Panagia Eleftherotria). A complete sarcophagus is literally sticking out of the wall in the house of family Kosma. Even older are tombs honed into the rockface at Sendoukia, Aloupi, Alikias and Mavraki, Glossa.

*Roman Baths/Loutra at Katakalou, Loutraki.

A network of beacons/Phryctoria were built on hill-tops across the island, each visible to the next. A prearranged semaphore was used to convey messages. Ruins can be found at Mavrangi, Helenico, Cape Prionos, Mavraki, and Panormos. There must have been others in the Palouki area but none have been documented.

October news

posted in: 2020, Ancient sites | 0

Another busy month. Firstly Ariside & Camille arrived from France. We continued reopening the path at the mill and removed vast amounts of foliage. We have done all we can from the plane tree to the watermill aqueduct.

Volunteers Ariside and Camille
the result of nearly two months work
Cleared aqueduct, Michelaki

We then started on, what I have called the Palouki Forest Trail, which runs between the examini (water tank) Ag Triada and Ag Anna junction. This is a beautiful, shady trail which gets the hiker off the dirt road.

Palouki Forest Trail
GPS of clearing Palouki Forest Trails

Vaiva from Lithuania arrived on 26th, in time to celebrate the completion of the PFT.

We then went back and completed a sweet stretch of trail that I used to take years ago but had got completely blocked situated between Ag Iannis Kambos and a lane that takes one eventually to The Watermill. This was a particularly difficult trail to clear due to its narrowness and nowhere to throw the clippings.

Route 12 between Polimistria & Kambos

posted in: 2019, Ancient sites | 0

Since the beginning of September, we have been working on the trail between the Polimistria church Raxes and Petrovrissi Kambos. This trail is now open but between the two points there’s a bulldozed road which cuts across it. Due to lack of any planning by the council, much damaged was done to the trail when grading this road, forcing us to take action to avoid an accident.

The Temple of Athena

With the help of wonderful volunteers Evelyn & Andreas from Belgium, we worked for a week to clear this ancient site to make it attractive and visible to visitors. A sign is being made and will be placed near the road, in front of the Panagia Polimistria church, Pefkias, so that you can find it more easily. We are also in the process of clearing the trail from Kambos which emerges directly opposite the church.