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SIFNOS


This description provides information of ancient sites, seaside resorts, churches, monasteries, landscapes and small towns and villages. Additional details can be found in various books printed on Greece, such as the 'Blue Guide to Greece.' The names of places conform to the accented Greek pronounciation which would be the one a traveller would face upon a potential visit.

For a general map of the Kyklades, click here!(55K).

To go back to the Kyklades main page, click here!


Editor's note: Following description is based on text written by ALEXANDRA KOFINIOTI-ANTONAKAKI.

S ifnos, a lovely sundrenched island in the Aegean sea is one of the six islands of the western Cyclades. It has a surface area of 89 square kiliometers and a population (in wintertime) of 2.000 people.

There are no lakes, or rivers but plenty of water streaming from the mountains.

The first inhabitants of Sifnos were the Karés and the Phoenicians who called it «Akys» or «Meropia». Later it was called «Minoa» by the Minoans who settled there. The Ionians followed and in ancient times, Sifnos was famous for the wealth, stemming from its gold and silver mines and the quarries of Sifnos stone. It enjoyed great prosperity in Classical times, as can be seen from its Thesauri, dedicated to Apollo at Delphi.

The highest mountain is Prophet Elia (648 meter/2000 feet). This mountain as are all Prophet Elia mountains in Greece, is a Christian monument usually adorned by a smal chapel.

Sifnos, has a wonderful and crystal-clear sea. There are many sports to partake such as swimming, water ski-ing, jet ski-ing, surfing).

This island has many paved roads linking the various villages and making it easy to get around.

Arriving by sea (there is no airport), the steamer takes about 5 hours from Piraeus to cover the distance of 76 miles.

Apollonia (it took the name from ancient god Apollóna) or Stavri, there is a museum designed in the Sifnos tradition. All the island's villages are white as are all the chapels. Sifnos has 365 churches and chapels which sprout all over the island like white mushrooms from the gray carpet of the island's terrain.

The monastery of Hrissóstomos in Kato Petali was built in 1650. It was for nuns until 1834 when King Othon closed it with a royal decree. When it was re-opened it was a Greek School.

Some of the churches include Panagia Kohí in Artemonas whose icon was found buried under rocks in a street corner, Panagia Poulati was built in 1871 on the foundations of an old church, and the monasteries such as that of St Symeon, of Profitis Elias Psilos, Vrissi (which has an interesting little Byzantine museum) and that of our Lady «Hryssopigi». All the churches and monasteries date from between the 8th and 16th century.


KAMARES
This is the port of Sifnos. It is about 5 kiliometres outside the main city. It has a lovely big beach and many hotels and rooms for rent. There is port police here, travel agencies, bars and many restaurants offering fresh fish and other topical delicacies.

APOLLONIA (STAVRI)
Apollonia is the capital of Sifnos. Here you can find banks, restaurants, mini bars and shops for cloths and very nice ancient-style Greek jewellery. There is plenty of night life here, as in all the Cyclades.

EXAMBELA
In this village there are two roads, walking on which, you can have a wonderful afternoon walk. Here you will find a beautiful white house, and many houses with big or small gardens in their yards. Here is also the birthplace of the one of a grate Greeks poets, Aristomenis Provelengios(1850-1936) and outside of village, visitors can see his house.

FAROS
It is a small picturesque fishing village. Heere we can find three wonderful beach (Fasolou, Glyfo, Faros) and three or four small restaurants.

HRYSSOPIGI
H ere you will find a lovely view of all the nearby Cyclades islands. The monastery of Panagia Hryssopigi was built here in 1650 on the foundation of an old church, situated on a small peninsula. Icons have been found from a ship which sunk one night with stormy, heavy sea. Panagia Hryssopigi is the patron saint of Sifnos and its history is connected with many traditions and legends. The monastery is found between two beaches. Here the view of the full moon in August is a very beautiful sight.

PLATIS YALOS
T he longest beach on the island is found here and it is very good for kids. Here you can find many restaurants with local delicacies, a mini market, two large hotels, offering beautiful views and shops selling ceramics all made locally.

VATHI
A n interesting place to visit with a nice beach. You can either get here by car or by small boat from Kamares (cost is DRA 500). There is much natural beauty, small restaurants, rooms for rent with view, and mini market.

ARTEMONAS T he village of nobility. Here you see big houses with big gardens in an Alexandria (Egypt) style. There are also churches dating to the 16th century.

CASTRO I i is built on a sheer cliff on the east side of the island overlooking the sea, and has been inhabited since prehistoric times. There are also ruins of an old venetian castle and the archaeological museum. Castro was the capital of Sifnos until 1836.

HERRONISSOS
I t is another traditional fish village situated on the north part of the island. There is a small beach here. It's well-known for the handmade ceramics produced here. By car, before arriving here following the agricultural road of the area, we go past two settlements called Troullaki and Diavrouha.


ANTHOUSA APOLLONIA 31 431
SIFNOS APOLLONIA 31 624
BOULIS KAMARES 32 122
KIKI KAMARES 32 329
MYRTO KAMARES 32 055
PLATYS GIALOS PLATYS GIALOS 71 324 - 71 224
ALEXANDROS PLATYS GIALOS 32 331
BENAKIS PLATYS GIALOS 71 334
FLORA CHRYSSOPIGI 31 778 - 71 278
PETALI PANO PETALI 31 341
TROULOU ELENI APOLLONIA 31 341
KOMI KATERINA APOLLONIA 31 091
DIAREMES APOSTOLOS KAMARES 31 719
LOUKI KATERINA FAROS 71 485 - 31 973

GENERAL INFORMATION
AREA CODE + 0284
POLICE 31 210
PORT POLICE 31 617
CENTER OF HEALTH 31 315
POST 31329
TELEPHONE 31 215
TOURISM OFFICCE 31 977
RADIO TAXI 31 216 - 31 719 - 31 347
RENT A CAR 31 641 - 32 383 - 32 237
AEGEAN THESAURUS TRAVEL 31 145 - 31 727
SIFNOS RENT-A-CAR (recommended) (0284) 31661

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