Kimolos

KimolosKimolos, between Sifnos and Milos, is a beloved destination for those who seek calm vacations, outside the main tourist current, in a magical landscape with fascinating historical but also geological monuments. It has an extent of 36 sq. km, a perimeter of 38 km. and presents a unique variety of rocks, where white colour of “chalk” dominates.
Its form is roughly pentatonal and has varied coasts, others with abrupt sharp rocks and others with windless sandy beaches. It is a generaly mountainous island with highest top that of Palaiokastro (397 m). Its ground is barren and its subsoil is volcanic.
Capital is the Horio or Kimolos, a picturesque Cycladic settlement built in the hinterland of the island, around a Venetian Castle of the 17th century. The settlement includes the Palio Horio and the Neo Horio, and is characterized by its beautiful white houses and its traditional windmills.
Port of Kimolos is the settlement of Psathi, in the eastern coasts of the island, at a distance of 1,5 km from Horio. A characteristic of this settlement are the “sirmata” with their colourful doors-caves in the coast where the fishermen tie up their boats.

History
According to Mythology, Kimolos took its name from its first settler, Kimolos. Later was named Echinousa. It is at least inhabited since the Mycenaean period and a sunken citadel and the necropolis in the region Ellinika have given Mycenaean, Geometric, Archaic as well as Classical discoveries. This city appears to have been inhabited by locals at least up to the first Christian years.
Kimolos is since antiquity known for the excavation of chalk – important source of wealth for the island – as well as for its exceptional figs. On the 3rd century B.C. it circulated its own currency. At the middle ages, Kimolos was occupied by the Venetians and was named Arzantiera. In the duration of the Ottoman and Venetian domination, the island suffered a lot from piracies, due to which, Kimolos was depopulated in the dues of the 18th century.

Kimolos

Hora Kimolos
A picturesque Cycladic settlement built in the hinterland of the island around a Venetian castle of the 17th century. The settlement includes the Palio Horio and the Neo Horio and is strongly characterized by its beautiful houses and its traditional windmills.

Psathi
Harbour of Kimolos is the settlement Psathi, in the eastern coasts of the island, at a distance of 1,5 Km from Horio.Characteristic of the settlement are the “sirmata” with their colourful doors-caves in the coast where fishermen tie up their boats.

Kastro
Kastro is constituted by the settlements of Mesa Kastro and Exo Kastro- marvelous samples of Aegean fortification architecture whire are connected with the “portares”(passages). The western gate of Kastro,the southern lower gate with chronology of 1650 and the eastern upper gate with chronology of 1646 are still preserved. The church of Hristos of the 16th century-oldest in the island,is found in Kastro.

Churches
Kimolos has appreciable churches. Among them the following are included:The church of Hristos, the church of Evaggelistria, the church of Agios Chrysostomos and the church of Panagia Odigitria. Also the churches Agios Nikolaos, Agios Georgios, Agioi Anargyroi, Taxiarches, Agios Spiridon, Agios Ioannis Chrysostomos are some of the rest.

Museums
In the archaeological museum of the island, which is found in the entry of Hora, one can see discoveries from excavations that took place in Ellinika.More concretely in this museum there are vessels and splinters of vessels from the Geometric and Archaic years, utensils from graves and a tomb column from the early 7th century B.C.
The folklore and Naval museum of the island includes many exhibits and a representation of a classic Kimolian house. The museum is found at the pano gate of Kastro and opens from 9.00 until 13.00 each day.

Windmills
The picturesque windmills in Xaplovouni,are definately included to the sights of Kimolos.

The cave of Vromolimni
It is found in the northern side of the island and one can go on foot or with a fishing boat from Psathi, or with a donkey from Hora.

Skiadi
In the north-western part of Kimolos, to the west of the elevation Sklavos, there is an enormous stone that looks like a mushroom that residents call “Skiadi”. A rare monument, not only for Greece but for a global level, a thing that made the place to be characterized as “Geotope” and it is included in the Atlas of Geological Monuments of the Aegean.

The seal Monachus- Monachus, the endemic blue lizard Podarcis milensis and the endemic red viper Macrovipera schwizeiri( formerly known as Vibera lebetina) are the distinguished species of the local fauna and testify for the island’s unique natural environment.In addition, falcons(gadinelia), thalassokorakes, partridges,gulls,wild pigeons,”strouthiomorfa”and a number of endemic birds, constitute the permanent winged residents of the island. Herons, swans and other migrating species as “valtokirkoi”,”ammosfyrichtes”, various species of “skalidron”(Calidris sp.), “leptoramfoglaroi’ etc. they are hosted until late in spring in the hydro biotope in Aliki.
Rare sea urchins, corals, lobsters, decorate the sea bottom while many species of fish find shelter in the underwater meadows of posidonia. The presence of marine turtles in waters and sandy beaches is also frequent.
Altough a brought species, the prickly pear is so much well adapted in Kimolos that you will find it everywhere.in August perhaps you will have the occasion of trying some of the largest and most tasty prickly pears of Greece.
In the natural vegetation of the island, common and rare Mediterranean species(more than 400 recorded) are included.Among them many aromatic and pharmaceutical plants.
Myrtles, thymes,cedars,vermicelli,sand lilies, bushes, capers, tamarisks, wild honeysuckle and canes, that along with olive trees, fig trees and vines paint a landscape much more green than one would expect from a Cycladic island.
How to arrive: Conventional ferry boats from Piraeus bring you to the island, or by plane using the airport of neighbouring Milos, with which Kimolos is connected daily by ferry boat and fishing boats.

Port Authority of Milos: Tel. 0030 22870 21370/22445
Port Authority of Piraeus, Tel. 0030 210 4226000-4, 0030 210 4593140, 0030 210 4593150
Port Authority of Rafina, Tel. 0030 22940 22300
Olympic Airlines: Tel. 0030 22870 22380
Milos Airport: Tel. 0030 22870 22381

Local transport:
Transport takes place with buses, taxi, rented cars and motorcycles( rented from Milos), as well as fishing boats or water taxi that execute itineraries towards the most distant beaches and the surrounding islets.

For more information:
ΤΑXΙ: Tel. 0030 6945464093, 0030 2287051552

Useful telephones:
POLICE Tel. 0030 22870 51205
TOURIST POLICE Tel. 0030 22870 23360/ 51332
PORT AUTHORITY Tel. 0030 22870 51218
MUNICIPAL AUTHORITY (COMMUNITY) Tel. 0030 22870 51222

Official website: www.kimolos.gr

Polyaigos
At a small distance from Kimolos(1 naval mile) we find the uninhabited island of Polyaigos with an extent of roughly half of Kimolos. It is the most well maintained geological island of the Aegean. Its vegetation(mostly bushes) is untouched and with its animal wealth, renders it a particularly important scientific and ecological place. It has been included in the program Natura 2000.
Polyaigos has an intense ground with a small plain in the centre. In past times there was a small settlement and excavation of heavy spar took place.
There is the church of Koimisis Theotokou which belonged to the deserted now monastery that was founded in 1622.
In the island you can enjoy your swim in Pano and in Kato Mersini, at “Panagias t’ aulaki’ and “Ammoura”
See the lighthouse, the Diamantospilia cave and the rocky island Kalogeroi and if you are lucky, some wild goats.

Beaches
The sunny beaches of Kimolos combine rocky landscape with thin sand and pebble. The beaches of Aliki, Mponatsas and Kalamitsi have all long sandy beaches with thin sand and are ideal for all kinds of weather. The beaches of Agios Giorgis with the white sand, Leivadaki, Klima, Rema and Psathi that is the harbour are offered for swimming and sunbathing.
There are also other beaches on the north and on the west of the island such as Soufi, Monastiria and the bay of Athinia, the castle in the west and the island opposite from Psathi, Polyaigos, which are approached only by sea. Appreciable is the beach Ellinika in the west, where a necropolis and splinters of vessels of the Geometric years were found and are kept in the museum of Kimolos.

Local products / recipes
Distinguished products of local delicatessen are: Xino (soft fresh cheese), kimouliatiko manouri, honey, rusks with schoinokoko and prickly pears.
The dishes of Kimolos are a challenge for visitors. Various island tastes are prepared in a unique way from pure materials.
The traditional table of Kimolos includes “kolokythenia”, the tasty “ladenia” (dogh in the baking pan, with plenty of oil, tomato and onions), eggs with potatoes and onions, the local manouri cheese and the “sour” cheese, while particular tasty experiences offer the barnacles with rice and the mullets with capers. Rusks with schinokokko, the tomato paste and local honey are exceptional. The local salad with xino (soft fresh cheese with sour flavour) and local capers is a revelation.
Accompany them with the local “roditi”, the dry wine of the island.

Sources: www.cyclades-tour.gr, www.travelcyclades.com