Patmos is an island famous for its rich history and religious past. Widely known as the «Island of the Apocalypse», it lies northeast of the Aegean and forms part of the Dodecanese islands, while being one the greatest religious sites of Christianity. The island had been almost abandoned during the Byzantine times, until it was given by Byzantine Emperor Alexios I Komnenos to a monk named Christodoulos, who started constructing the monastery in 1088. The island’s two main settlements are Skala, where the commercial port is and Chora, built around the imposing Monastery, tempting you to wander around its narrow white alleys.
The Lady of the Aegean is ideal for sightseeing, boasting several religious and other sites. Chora, besides the Monastery, also features the famous Patmian Windmills, the «Simantiri» mansion, which you will find as soon as you start wandering around the quaint alleys of Chora, numerous churches and chapels, and the ruins of the house of Emmanuel Xanthos, co-founder of «Filiki Eteria» (Society of Friends), a Greek conspiratorial organization against the Ottoman Empire. Other significant landmarks are the Monastery of «Evaggelismos», its nuns leading an exemplary ascetic life and the famous «Kalikatsou», also known as the Grikos rock. Skala is also home to the Baptistry, where St. John was said to baptize the Patmians.
The island offers an impressive variety of beaches, for utter relaxation. Explorers who love small secluded heavens should visit Psili Ammos (Greek for fine sand), one of the island’s most beautiful beaches, or Didimes (Greek for twins). For those who prefer more comfort, the organized beach of Kampos, Agriolivadi, and cosmopolitan Grikos bay will become their favorite destinations. In Lampi beach, visitors may find the famous colorful pebbles and the beaches of Meloi, Vagia and Livadi Geranou, with their tamarisk trees offering natural shade, are ideal for those who seek true island beauty.