16 Aug Island of Tinos
The island of Tinos is located in the Northern Cyclades close to the islands Andros, Mykonos, Syros and Delos. It is about 60 nautical miles away from the port of Rafina and about 80 nautical miles from the port of Piraeus.
From the International Airport of Athens Eleftherios Venizelos to the ports:
Rafina is about half an hour away and can be reached by bus or taxi; driving should take about half an hour.
Piraeus is further away and can be reached by train and underground in an hour or so.
Travelling from the port of Rafina to Tinos:
There are two types of boats travelling to Tinos: the ferry boat (roughly 4 hours) and the sea jet (roughly 2 hours)
Travelling from the port of Piraeus to Tinos:
There are two types of boats travelling to Tinos: the ferry boat (roughly 4 1/2 hours) and the sea jet (roughly 3 hours)
Alternative ways to reach the island of Tinos:
By car in this case it is sure that you don’t need any directions …
Via Mykonos by airplane; easyjet flies to Mykonos, which is half an hour away by boat from Tinos, during the summer months. Check the details at easyjet.com. There are also various other charter flights that might be convenient.
A little geography
Tinos is the third largest island of the Cyclades following Andros and Naxos and lays in the northern part of the Cyclades.
It is a mountainous island with the highest peak of 726m belonging to the mountain Tsiknias. At the center of Tinos one can find the rock of Exombourgo (641m) where the capital of the island once laid. The total area of the island is about 194sq.km whereas the total length of the coastline about 114km. There are roughly 10.000 inhabitants living in the 40 or so villages of the island.
Due to the rocky nature of the island, the Tinians built hundreds perhaps even thousands of dry stone walls to contain the soil so that they could do their cultivation. These walls are very characteristic of the island and can be seen from afar. Characteristic fauna of the island are the cedar trees, myrtle trees, oak trees, sage, mountain tea, wild mint, oregano, thyme, capers, mushroom and other.
Another characteristic of the island are the 80 or so windmills and the approximately 1000 dovecotes which are scattered all over the island.
… and history
Tinos is mentioned by various ancient Greek writers such as Aenesidemos in his work “Teniaka”, Aristotle in his work “Politeia Tenion”, Homer in his work “Odyssey” and many others.
In the ancient times the island was the last stop of the pilgrims en route to the island of Delos. Here they would purify themselves in the Holy waters of the Temple of Poseidon before going to the Sanctuary of Apollo in Delos.
After the Roman conquest of Greece the island remained under the Roman and later Byzantine Empires until 1204 when it was sold to the Ghisi brothers of Venetian origin. For the next five centuries the island prospered under mostly Venetian rule until the year 1715 when the Ottoman army conquered it and ruled Tinos for about a century. Liberation and annexation to Greece came after the Greek Revolution of 1821.
As a result of the rule of the island by the Italians for almost 500 years a large part of the population is Catholic. Many villages are predominantly Catholic with churches and buildings characteristic of the Italian architecture.
A village worth mentioning is Pyrgos in the northern part of the island. It is the birthplace of very famous Greek painters and marble sculptors of the 19th century with international radiance. Among them are:
G. Chalepas, D. Philippotes, N. Lytras, L. Doukas, I. Boulgares, L. Sochos, A. Sochos, J. Gaites, G. Barlamos and other.