Amorgos is the unpretentious beauty of the Cyclades. It is located in the east of the island complex and seems to embrace the Small Cyclades (Heraklion, Donoussa, Schinoussa, Koufonissi).
Its wild beauty with its rocky landscapes and clear blue waters fascinates travelers and more.
After all, it is no coincidence that Amorgos was introduced to the general public through Luc Besson’s film The Grand Blue (Le Grand Bleu), most of which was filmed on the beach of Agia Anna.
In Agia Anna is the landmark of Amorgos, the hanging monastery of Panagia Hozoviotissa that awe-inspiring anyone who sees it. Amorgos was named one of the leading works of Greek poetry by the poet and lyricist Nikos Gatsos.
Even though he had never visited her, it probably inspired him in a dream. If you are ready to enchant you too, do not hesitate.
Once you reach the main port of the island, Katapola, you will be calmed by the image.
The settlements with the Cycladic houses, the plain that stretches in the background, the churches and the mountain of Minoa, which was one of the ancient cities of Amorgos, will welcome you in the best possible way.
The capital is the town of Amorgos, which deservedly claims the title of the most impressive capital of the Cyclades. Its special architecture, its location in the center of the island, the cramped white houses and the old paved cobbled streets compose a unique image.
Hidden from the prying eyes of pirates who roamed the waters of Amorgos in the past, Chora today is more hospitable than ever.
A walk to the Castle that stands at the highest point of Chora will give you a panoramic view of Amorgos, in the Venetian tower of Gavras there is a museum while a tour of the numerous post-Byzantine churches will not leave you unmoved.
In its alleys you have the opportunity to find taverns to try the local delicacies and a market where you will find small “treasures” to take with you when leaving.
After Chora and after passing the historic monastery of Ai Giorgis Valsamitis (it is worth visiting) you will find yourself in Kato Meria and its villages. Kamari, Ancient Arkesini, the village of Vroutsi and Kolofana offer the tranquility and the contact with the nature that you are so looking for. If you want to enjoy the sea, Kalotaritissa in Kato Meria with its sheltered port and beach is one of the most beautiful destinations of Amorgos. In Kato Meria is Agia Paraskevi, with the popular festival that hosts people from the surrounding islands every year.
In Aegiali, the second port of Amorgos, there are four villages: Tholaria, Lagada, Potamos and the coastal settlement of Ormos. Each one has to offer you something different, but in all you will find picturesque taverns, accommodation and coffee to enjoy your vacation as you like.
Amorgos is an ideal destination for hiking enthusiasts.
Through a network of 8 major routes that connect Chora and Katapola with Aegiali and Kato Meria and 26 shorter routes, you are given the opportunity to admire the Amorgian nature and the landscape by stopping at the sights of the island.
An ideal place to start is Katapola, while if you want to experience a real hiking park, we suggest the routes of Aegiali.
In Amorgos you can find one of the longest crossings of the Cyclades. If you follow the mountain route from the monastery of Panagia Hozoviotissa to Aegiali, get ready to walk on the old paths of the island that survive in their original form and be compensated by the view of the endless blue of Amorgos and its pristine landscape.
Monastery of Panagia Hozoviotissa
In Amorgos you will see an image that will be etched in your memory forever.
A “miracle” 300 meters above the blue waters of the beach of Agia Anna. The Monastery of Panagia Hozoviotissa has been hanging on the steep cliffs for hundreds of years.
The Holy Monastery of Panagia Hozoviotissa was founded in 1088 and is the oldest monastery in the Cyclades and among the oldest in all of Greece.
The icon of the Virgin Mary that was the occasion for the construction of the monastery is said to have come from Hozovo in Palestine and ended up on Amorgos during the iconoclasm.
As in other religious pilgrimages of Orthodoxy, the legend wants the Virgin Mary to indicate to the Amorgians the place where she wanted the Monastery to be built. Until then, everything they built during the day and night was demolished and so the protagonist asked the Virgin Mary for a sign.
The next day his tools and the chisel with the zeppelin were found nailed to a very high and steep rock. Until 1956, the nail was still on the rock while today you can find it in a showcase inside the Monastery.
The Monastery extends to 8 floors with a width of only 5 meters and that is why it is characterized as “The Monastery of one wall”.
You can admire it by swimming in the sea, but we suggest you climb the 300 steps that lead to its entrance to feel its majesty.
Do not worry you will be rewarded with the welcome of the monks who will offer you cooked Amorgian raki, Turkish delights and water to sunbathe!
The Monastery of Hozoviotissa in Amorgos is the coexistence of man, God and the wild primordial nature!
Amorgian gastronomy is sure to satisfy your taste buds. The traditional cuisine is based on the local pure ingredients and the local products that are passionately cultivated and produced by the locals.
Wherever you stand and wherever you are in Amorgos you will find roasted raki, the local drink of the island in various variations.
The aromas of clove, cinnamon and anise will travel you and will remind you forever of Amorgos.
You can try it in combination with snacks and main dishes or for digestion after your meal. Every year on July 26, the celebration of the baked in Katapola is organized, do not miss the opportunity!
One dish that you should definitely taste is the Amorgian Potato. Local braised goat meat with potatoes cooked in earthenware or large cauldrons.
In addition to the restaurants and taverns of the island, if you are on the island on July 25, go through the festival of Agia Paraskevi to eat the best potato of Amorgos and party until the morning.
From the festivities and the joys of the Amorgian people, there is no lack of the pastel that is served in lemon leaves and the xerotigana with local honey and sesame.
If you are curious to see how the Amorgian dishes are prepared, on the first Sunday after the 15th of August, the annual celebration of Pastelios is organized in Loza, the central square of Chora and in the first week of September in Aegiali, the celebration of Xerotiganos.
Finally, we suggest you try the famous fav meatballs, the local cheeses and the Amorgian Kakavia with scorpion, hano, perch and lamp.