Have you visited the catacombs beneath Agia Magdalini in Skopelos?
Moni Pithariou is devoted to the Archangels and is located in a beautiful ravine in the hills close to Eressos. The name of the monastery is taken from the shape of the ravine which resembles a jar (Πιθάρι – Pithari in Greek). A dam has been built across the ravine, forming a large lake.
There is little historical data about the foundation of the monastery which has resulted in much debate among researchers. An Ottoman record of the tax affairs of the region dated 1548 suggests an already established monastery. The monastery is further mentioned in a 1709 ledger which records the tax as 107 kilos of olive oil. Continue reading
South of Mytilene airport the road stays close to the coast, with wide views across the sea to Turkey on your left and hills covered with thick vegetation rising on the right to the ridge that runs northwards along the centre of the peninsula. As it heads for the end of the peninsula the road turns inland and eventually arrives at a junction. If you keep to the right you will head back north along the Gulf of Gera towards Loutra. However, if you take the left-hand junction at this point the road narrows down to a dead-end at pine trees overlooking a jaw-dropping view of the bay at Agios Ermogenis.
Below you is a beautiful cove with clear turquoise waters, a rocky shore, a white church and vivid blue paint details on adjacent buildings that create a scene reminiscent of the Cyclades. There are two small south-facing beaches, separated by a rocky outcrop. You can park at the roadside under the trees, or drive down a short dirt track to a car park and here is a fish taverna with a shady terrace overlooking the glistening sea and a small fishing jetty. The iconic little church is a short walk away and its walls provide a shady picnic spot as well as further panoramic views. It is worth a look inside – there are modern paintings of saints and a fresco on the interior of the high dome.
This is a popular beach spot for locals from Mytilene at weekends, but catch it mid-week out of season and you may have the place to yourself. This has to be one of the scenic highlight locations of the whole island.