Greece Naxos Island Naxos Sightseeing Archaeological Sites and Historical Information Naxos, Greece – Naxos Museums & Attractions
Naxos Sightseeing Guide - Information about Archaeological Sites, Attractions, Museums and Churches in Naxos GreeceNaxos Island has a long and rich history, as it was always an island of strategic and commercial interest for many different nations, making it today a sightseeing jewel of the Cyclades Islands Cluster. The influence of the various rulers is apparent in the sheer abundance and variety of historical sites. While on Naxos Island, we suggest you visit the following sites and monuments:THE PORTARAAt the entrance of Naxos Port stands the Portara, the Gate to the Temple of Apollo. It is the trademark attraction of the island, built in the 6th century BC. It is believed that the temple was never completed and that parts of it were taken to build other structures, but that the gates, which still stand were too big to transport. The view from the Portara during sunset is breathtaking.THE ANCIENT MYCENAEAN CITYThe Mycenaean city is located in the area of Grotta, in Naxos Town. Some ruins still stand, while part of the city is under water. According to recent findings, the agora of the ancient city stood in the area.THE CASTLEThe Castle in Naxos Town was built by Marco Sanudo, in the 13th century, during the Venetian Rule of the island. It is considered an excellent specimen of medieval architecture, with 3 gates, 12 towers and a watch tower. Some of these have been destroyed, but much of the original structure still stands, such as the Trani Porta and the Paraporti Gates, and the Glezos Tower. A stroll inside the castle is a must. Throughout the castle area there are narrow alleyways, Venetian manors, the house of Marcos Sanudos and the 16th century Catholic Church.THE TOWER OF BELLONIAA few kilometers from Naxos Town is the village of Galanado. Here visitors can see the Tower of Bellonia. It was the residence of the Venetian sovereign of the area. The crest of the Bellonia family still exists on the outer wall of the tower. The panoramic view of Naxos Town from the tower is amazing.THE KOUROS OF APOLLOThe Kouros of Apollo is located in the Kastraki region, near the village of Apollonas. The unfinished statue of 10,45 meters long was built in the 6th century BC and is now lying on the ground.THE KOUROS IN FLERIOAnother unfinished Kouros is situated in the village of Melanes, inland Naxos. It dates back to the 7th century BC and is 6,40 meters long.THE MYCENAEAN TOMBSIn the Eggares region, near the area of Aplomata, you can visit the remains of Mycenaean Tombs.THE TOWERS IN MELANESThe village of Melanes has several very impressive towers. The Venetian Marcos Sanudos built his summer hometower here. Visitors can also see the towers of Mavrogenis, De Marie and Frangopoulos.THE SANCTUARY OF DEMETRA & APOLLOThe sanctuary of the Olympian goddess Demetra and god Apollo is located in the area of Gyroula, near the village of Sagri. It was made of white marble in the 6th century BC and was a major center of worship for more than 3 centuries. Restoration of the site has been completed and it is open to the public.THE IRIA ANCIENT SITEThe 4 temples of Dionysus, in the area of Livadi, are believed to have been built in the 9th – 8th centuries BC and are evidence of the leading role of Naxos Island in Greek architecture and sculpture. It is one of the finest archaeological sites on Naxos Island.THE WINDMILLS AND CASTLES IN SAGRIIn the village of Sagri, near the center of Naxos, there are three very well-preserved windmills and several Venetian castles definitely worth visiting.THE 17TH CENTURY ZEVGOLI CASTLEThe Zevgoli Castle is located in the village of Apirathos, in central Naxos. The castle was built in the 17th century, perched on a rock at the entrance of the village.THE OLD EMERY MINESIn the village of Koronos, on the northeastern side of Naxos, visitors can see the old emery mines and the overhead railway that was once used to transport the mineral to the port of Moutsouna.THE TOWER OF CHIMARROSThe Tower of Chimarros is located in Filoti, a very scenic village in the center of Naxos Island. It was built in the 4th – 3rd centuries BC, during the Hellenistic Period and is a circular, marble structure standing at a height of approximately 15 meters.THE CAVE OF ZA IN FILOTIThe Cave of Za dedicated to Zeus, has a collection of rare stalagmites that are worth seeing during your vacation on Naxos. Several prehistoric objects have also been found in the cave, proving that the cave has been in use since Prehistoric Times.THE ARCHAEOLOGICAL MUSEUM IN CHORAThe Archaeological Museum in Naxos Town (Chora) displays a variety of objects from the Bronze Age, the Mycenaean Period, the Hellenistic Period and the Byzantine Era, such as jewelry, pottery, marble idols, mosaic flooring, Kouros statues etc. It is a sightseeing must during you stay on Naxos Island.THE METROPOLIS MUSEUMThe Metropolis Museum in Naxos Town (Chora) is located underground and has a wonderful display of Mycenaean city ruins, such as houses, workshops and walls, as well as family graves from the Geometric Period.THE ARCHAEOLOGICAL MUSEUM IN APIRATHOSThe Archaeological Museum in Apirathos has a large collection of Prehistoric objects that come from the various archaeological digs and sites in Naxos, including ceramics, idols, plaques and other small relics.THE GEOLOGICAL MUSEUM – THE MUSEUM OF NATURAL HISTORYBoth the Geological Museum and the Museum of Natural History are located in Apirathos. The Geological Museum includes an excellent collection of fossils, minerals and rocks. The Museum of Natural History exhibits a variety of flora and fauna such as plants, sea creatures, sponges etc.THE FOLKLORE MUSEUMThe Folklore Museum in Apirathos contains a collection of objects of everyday life that belonged to the inhabitants of Naxos, including whole rooms (a workshop, a kitchen and a bedroom) as well as weavings and tools.THE CHURCHESThroughout Naxos there are many beautiful churches, several of which contain features of great historical value. Some of the most significant are:The Panagia Vlacherniotissa Church, with its wood carved screen and precious icons in Naxos Town.The Zoodochou Pigis Cathedral, with its marble screen in Naxos Town.The Panagia Drosiani Church in the village of Moni with its exquisite early Christian Era frescos.The Panagia Protothoni Church, which is the largest Byzantine Church on the island.The Byzantine Church of Kalogritissa in the cave on Agios Profitis Hill in Sagri.The Panagia Tripodiotissa Church in Tripodes, with its rare icons and wood carved screen.
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