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AEGEAN ISLANDS

Archaeological sites

Just 500 meters behind the hospital of Pothia, there is the famous Cave of the Nymphs or cave of the Seven Virgins, an ancient religious centre. According to the relevant legend, it is the place where once seven girls turned to, in order to hide from the pirates, but in the end they could not get away. Neolithic tools, as well as offerings dedicated to the Nymphs were found in the cave.

At Vathis, there is the cave Daskalio, where prehistoric findings- Neolithic tools, flywheels and ceramics from the Middle and the Late Minoan Period (2000-1400 BC) were discovered. The cave was used by the residents for the island’s defense, since it is located near the entrance of the port, just 5 minutes by boat.  The problem is that there is no easy access.

At Vathis, in the area where the church of Agios Ioannis is located, there is a group of caves that are carved on the slopes of the hills Klastani and Tsiggoura. Among them, there is evidence of primitive residence, as well as evidence of smoke on the roof. There is difficult access here as well. In the greater area of Vathis, outside the location called Metohi, there is the small church of the Archangel Michael. The church rests on an ancient wall, which dates back to the 7th century BC.

The area of Damos (Damos=Municipality) is located north to the central road that leads from Pothea to the area Elies. In the narrow surface between the ravines of Drapeti (to the west) and Sikomeria (to the east) there was an ancient settlement, which flourished from the Early Hellenistic until the Late Roman times. The recent excavations revealed a cobblestone scaled street with residences, workshops, carved wells and a great number of findings. On the northern side of the settlement, the part of the isodomic wall protecting it is visible. Ancient carved tombs have been found outside the wall. On the eastern part of the settlement, at a close distance, there is a rectangular chamber tomb, which is carved inside the rock. Furthermore, at a close distance there is a double two-storey underground tomb. There are also tombs in the southern peripheries of Damos that date back to the Hellenistic times. In the mid 20th century, tombs with gold grave goods (land Skoni) and other tombs with various clay and copper objects, such as a handle of copper urn with a presentation showing the seizure of Orithyia by Voreas, were found near the small church of Prophet Elias.

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