This magical, but for most visitors still unfamiliar Cyclades Isles mainly draws Greeks who come to the Panagia Megalochari Orthodox Cathedral (the Virgin Mary) twice a year, on March 25th and August 15th. It is the most important Orthodox temple in Greece, but also an important Roman Catholics center; this mixture of different religions, so unique in Greece, gives the archipelago a special atmosphere.
However, not only a journey on pilgrims is a good opportunity to get to know the wonderful Tinos archipelago with its lovely sandy beach and 40 old towns or, according to the philosophy of Kastoriadis, the "handmade Tínos". It is home to some of the most important carvers of marbles such as Gyzis, Lytras, Chalepas, Filippotis and Sochos, who were the last great figures in the island's sculpting traditions.
The Marble Art Museum in the small hamlet of Pýrgos is also interesting, as is the gallery of Tinian artists next to the Virgin Mary Chr. It'?s a very interesting place. Its unspoilt architectural heritage, its scenic towns, its lovely sandy shores and its tradition ally developed over time.
It is the place for those who love the countryside, for those who love it, for those who love it. Tinos is the place for those who love it. Pýrgos is off the coast, where once stood a Venice fortress ( "pyrgos" in Hellenic means "castle") and is one of the biggest towns on the islands and definitely the center of Tinos marmor.
In Pyrgos, the fountains devoted to the Greek Revolution of 1821, the marbles on the church, the buildings and the two museum show that there is a long history of this work. The School of Art for Marine Art has been supporting this long history since 1955. Agapi is one of the most ancient towns on the mainland, thanks to its arches and beautiful falls over the doorways and window frames.
Tino's highest town is located on the southern slope of the Kechrovouni Mountains, near the church museums, where you can see old symbols, old literature and other sacred objects. The scenery for the classic Tinos cuisine with local meats is stunning. Don't go out of the area before you visit the convent of Kechrovouni (10th century), a large building that looks like a walled town.
You can visit the Pelagia nun's room and a monumental icon collection from the 18th and nineteenth century as well as other important heirs. It' a small town in the centre of the isle, almost concealed in the centre of huge round boulders of rock.
This is one of the most interesting towns because its architectural style is unparalleled on the isle. Though small, the town has two taverns, a souvenir store, a folk theatre, a small open-air theatre and a few surviving wickerworkers who still produce their robust pieces. The small katholic country chapel next to the folk art gallery is also interesting.
It' exactly what one expects from a country chapel! There is a path that meanders down the river to Agapi town. Kalloni A small hamlet of olives and orchards stuffed with artichoke, lemon and veg. Walk to the Basilica of Agios Zacharias. The large porch, embellished with a gravel motif, overlooks the town and the Kolimbithra bath.
KomiThis is the beginning of a fruitful plains that extends down to the ocean. There is a small chapel with a nice place at each of the two entrance points to the town. Steni This farming town is located at the bottom of Tsiknias, the highest peak on Tinos. There is a wood carving iconostas and symbols from the seventeenth and eighteenth century in the temple of St. Anthony.
YsterniaThe small hamlet of Ysternia lies on a precipitous hillside high above Ysternia Bay, between Kardiani and Pyrgos. Besides the breathtaking view you can also see many marbles decorations on buildings, cathedrals and the beautiful squares, as this is another home for master marquetry carvers with a long history of craft.
Falatados It is a town with a rich past dating back to the fourteenth century, where farming and livestock farming still plays a part. Visiting the Basilica of Agios Ioannis, you will be able to see the marble decorations. You can have a cup of tea and try tasty home-made sweets in the scenic arcade next to the town.
Once you have visited the wonderful backcountry of the Isle of Tinos, get undressed, put on your swimsuits and swimwear and drive to the magnificent Tinos beach! Fortunately, the isle is full of interesting, nice and important sights.