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The magnificent story of the island of Ios

Ios is a Greek island in the Cyclades group in Aegean Sea. The island is hilly with cliffs down to the sea, located halfway between Naxos and Santorini. It has a length of about 18 km and 10 km wide with an area of 109,024 square kilometers. In 2011 population numbered 2,024 people (3,500 in the 19th century). The island was in several movies such as “Ginger and Cinnamon”, also and scenes of movie “Big Blue” on the beach Manganari.

Port of Ios is located northwest at the head of the port Ormos. From there you can catch a bus or 15 minutes walking along to the village, known as Chora. The houses of Cycladic village are very picturesque and have white paints. It’s full of stairs and narrow paths that make it inaccessible for cars and transport. The main road of the village bustling with tourism, where they huddled establishments such as restaurants, boutiques, bars and discos.

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In Ios also has a few small settlements, a group of scattered houses near the beaches Theodoti, Kalamos, Manganari. Since 1990 the mayor of the island Passos worked on the development of Ios to attract tourists. There was build some roads, all of them paved, with the help of European Community funds. There was created and picturesque amphitheater by German architect Peter Houpt, located at the top of the hill to the village. Unfortunately rarely have a cultural events there.

In the excavation of the hill Skarkos was discovered prehistoric settlement proving that Ios has been inhabited since the beginning of the Cyclades period. Skarkos architecture is preserved in places to a height of almost three meters, most of the buildings there are obviously two cobblestone floors and sanitation. There was found numerous well-preserved pottery, tools and utensils made of metal, stones and bones. Unfortunately, many of these things are still unseen.

According to the legends and ancient tradition people believe that the mother of the great poet Homer was from the island of Ios, who was buried there. Local residents, captivated by this story, show visitors ancient city of Plakotos which is located in the northernmost part of the island – the rock entrance of the tomb of the poet. But there is no hard evidence to associate this case with Homer. The historical origin connects the island with signs of Mycenaean settlements. At the north end of Ios you can see ruined Venetian castle from the 15th century. It is believed that the island has 365 churches and chapels, as are the days of the year.

In 2008 Ios was among six European locations (out of 109 applicants) to cultural heritage because of his outstanding efforts to protect the archaeological object of Skarkos.

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The charming beaches of Vassiliki and Porto Katsiki

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  • Vasiliki

Vasiliki is one of the most famous fishing villages of the Ionian Islands. It situated in the southern part of the island of Lefkada, in a deep bay. The beach is pebbly with a length of about 1.5 km. and the water is crystal clear and pleasant for swimming.

During the summer time Vasiliki is a favorite place for lovers of windsurfing because of the warm south wind, known among surfers as “Eric”. Often there are over a hundred surfers in the bay at any time. In recent years the town has also become a favorite resort because of extreme water sports that continue to promote today.

Small coves in the area give additional charm of the fishing village. Near Vasiliki worth it to see the beautiful long beach Egremni – one of the three most famous beaches of Lefkada, along with the famous beach Kathisma and Porto Katsiki.

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  • Porto Katsiki

Porto Katsiki is located about 40 kilometers southwest of the city of Lefkada. The beach is one of the most visited by tourists and is a narrow strip of sand located below high white cliffs with crystal blue water. It is surrounded by steep cliffs and can be reached after descending 80 steps carved into them. Vassiliki resort is located 30 km. and can be reached by car. Because the road is narrow during the summer months often form long columns of cars traveling to the paradise beach. If you do not drive you can reach by sea with yacht or boat.

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Nafplio – the legendary capital of Greece

Nafplio is located in Argolic Gulf of Peloponnese. The city was the first capital of modern Greece during “Greek War of Independence.” According to an ancient Greek legend, the village was founded by Theseus – legendary ruler of Athens. Nafplio is one of the oldest cities and continues to attract tourists today with its charm and romantic atmosphere. The city existed already in ancient times and was inhabited by Phoenicians, Carians, ancient Egyptians and others. Nowadays it combines unique architecture and culture of the Venetians, Ottomans and Greeks. Over time they have left various architectural traces and the Venetians called it even Naples of the Orient. Over the city was erected and the Venetian fortress Palamidi – a masterpiece of fortification throughout the eastern Mediterranean. In the 16th and 17th centuries Nafplio becomes commercial center of the Peloponnese and something as temporary capital of Greece to the proclamation of the modern Greek capital Athens in 1834. An interesting fact is that it is in Nafplio was crowned first Modern Greek King Otto I, son of Ludwig of Bavaria. For his ascension to the throne contribute great powers at that time – Russia, France and Britain.

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Nowadays walk around the Nafplio is a real treat for lovers of cultural and historical attractions. The city is a mix of different cultures and this gives it a cosmopolitan character. At the heart of the old town is the historic Syntagma Square, which is nestled peacefully landmark buildings such as the former Turkish mosque, the building of the first Greek Parliament, Neoclassical building of the National Bank and the three-storey building of the Archaeological Museum. The town is surrounded by the majesty of the three strongholds – Palamidi, Burtzi and Akronafplia. Ramparts form a huge stone complex sealed all great history of the area. The stone streets are so narrow that in some places are hard to walk two people.

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The historic town of Monemvasia

Monemvasia is a small medieval town in Greece, located 97 km. southeast of Sparta. Situated on a small peninsula off the coast of the Peloponnese. Its name derives from the Greek “moni emvasis” which means “one entrance”. The first evidence of village arise in the 6th century when the inhabitants of ancient Laconia sought refuge from the Slavic invaders, who were conquering much of Greece. To this day the city has to scale, which in year 375 was separated from the mainland during the powerful earthquake. In 1971, the mainland and the rock are connected by a bridge. Today you can reach Monemvasia walking down the sidewalk with a small length of about 200 meters.

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During the Byzantine Empire the city became one of the biggest shopping centers of Byzantium with a population of 40,000 people. Like Gibraltar, Monemvasia once controlled seashores between medieval Western Europe and the Levant. Inside the fortified town houses and distinctly Byzantine churches are still habitable and are associated with a long, narrow paved road to the city Gerifa. Wealthy Greeks have restored once rupture ruins and turned them into holiday homes. During the 18th century it underwent known maturity, but a century and a half later is reborn thanks to tourists.

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Out of season Monemvasia is almost deserted and the network of narrow side streets remained lonely. All season there is ferry or boats from Athens. Today many medieval buildings have been restored to their visitors. Some of the more flamboyant facade buildings are converted even in hotels. In ancient and romantic streets were huddled spots for relax and seafood restaurants. They  are a magnet for visitors to the historic town of Monemvasia.

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Magnetic beauty of the islands Meganisi and Fiscardo

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  • Meganisi

Meganisi is a small green paradise in the Greek islands, situated 6.5 km. from the island of Lefkada in the Ionian Sea. Its hilly terrain, rocky beaches and picturesque villages, the island is likened to Ithaca. Meganisi is known as “the island of seafarers” and was inhabited only by residents of three villages. The southern part of the island is not inhabited and is elongated drought-shaped tail. All beaches have crystal clear water, surrounded by uncontaminated green vegetation. Moreover, they are rarely crowded and you will have the opportunity to experience an unforgettable vacation in the sunny paradise. Some of the beaches are accessible only by sea, and to be visited should be taken by boat “Vati”. The other beaches are easily accessible and tourists waiting for their weekends. Nearby is also the largest sea cave Papanikolis that is a magnet for tourists. Meganisi can be reached only by water. Architectural excavations revealed that there was still life in the Neolithic era. Then the village was called with the name Taphos – son of Poseidon and ruler of the region.

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  • Fiscardo

Fiscardo is a peaceful port resort village located in the northern part of the island of Kefalonia in the Ionian Sea. The area is protected by the Greek government because of indescribable natural beauty. Fiscardo is the only island which over the years has acquired Venetian style. The houses around the picturesque harbor are in pastel colors. Because of the influx of tourists has many restaurants, schools scuba diving and other entertainment for every taste. You will be wrong to visit because the village itself is a landmark, ideal for family vacation and relaxation. The beaches in this part of Kefalonia are covered with different sized pebbles. Bays are calm and ideal for swimming and the water is crystal, refreshing and clean. By nightfall Fiscardo has a different picture. Lights, old buildings, cafes, bars and restaurants, all combined together provide a magical Mediterranean atmosphere.

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Scorpios – The Island of aristocrats

Skorpios island is located in the Ionian Sea near the town of Nydri and east of the island of Lefkada. It situated in the west coast of Greece and occupies an area of 2965 acres. It is one of the few private islands, which can be seen helipad, pier for yachts, luxury houses, a chapel, a small pier and breakwater. It can be reached only by water and two of its beaches are public.

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The small island has become widely known as the “island of Onassis” – Greek billionaire in the middle of the 20th century. In 1953, Aristotle Onassis paid $ 1 million for a controlling stake in Societe Des Bains de Mer, which owns the casino in Monte Carlo, hotels, theaters and others. It manage and Greek national airline Olympic Airways. In 1962, Onassis bought the island of Skorpios for 3.5 million Drams as maintenance takes about 1.5 million euros per year. In 1968, billionaire makes wedding on the island with Jacqueline Kennedy, widow of US President John F. Kennedy. After the death in 1975 of Aristotle Onassis, his body was buried on his private island. There are buried and his children – his daughter Christina and his tragically deceased son Alexander.

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In April 2013 in the interest of Ekaterina Rybolovlev – daughter of Russian billionaire Dmitry Rybolovlev multi, signed a contract for 99 years for renting a group of islands off the west coast of Greece, the largest of which is Skorpios. Billionaire Rybolovlev paid the sum of 126 million dollars for the exotic island of Athena Onassis – the granddaughter of Aristotle. In May, the Greek authorities have started investigation about the legitimacy and rights of Rybolovlev for the island of Skorpios – he had to follow the will of Onassis as saying that if his descendants will not be able to spend about 100 thousand dollars a year for maintenance of the island, they have to give the State or the airline Olympic Airways.

Rybolovlev has made a number of charitable contributions for infrastructure on the Greek island of Lefkada. Along with the islands billionaire family has purchased a property with an area of 2 acres in the center of Nydri and a property with an area of 6 acres in Palero. From there they took soil for plantation of Skorpios, where a system of four water probes supplied with water island.

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No matter of the fact the island is private, you can catch a yacht charter and take a look of magnificent beauty and enjoy its charm. It worth!

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Saronic islands – the natural beauty of Greece

What could be better to discover the amazing corners of Saronic islands, lying on luxurious furnishings of a comfortable yacht with a glass of wine in hand? On our AA Charter board you will feel like a real Greek god…

Saronic islands are the part of the largest gulf of the Aegean sea. There is the largest port of Greece – Piraeus. The Islands are Aegina, Hydra and Poros.

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  • Aegina

The island is the largest of the group and has a heart shape. It is located 27 km from Athens. Aegina was the first capital of Greece for 2 years after its liberation from the Ottoman authorities. According to legend the name comes from the nymph Aegina, who was kidnapped from Zeus and brought by him to this island. With the birth of her son Zeus has ruled the island.

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  • Hydra

Hydra is situated near the east coast of the Peloponnese peninsula. Port of Hydra is the largest place on the island, which has a crescent shape. The charm of this paradise lies in the cobbled streets and tidy houses with red tiled roofs and colored doors. People moves with horses, donkeys, mules and bicycles, because there is no motor traffic. It is believed that the island’s name comes not from the mythical monster Hydra (sister of Medusa), but from the Greek word for water. Hydra has a very dry climate and that’s why the people reserves large tubes of water and even keep melted snow from the winter.

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  • Poros

It is a small island, divided into 200-meters sea’s channel in the Peloponnese. It consists of two separate Islands connected by a bridge. It is believed that Poros is an island of the sea God Poseidon. According to archeological findings the island was populated even in the Bronze age. A magnet for tourists is also a small town, which was built amphitheatrically on the slopes of the hill. Poros’s greatest attraction is the clock tower built in 1927.

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Athens – the Sea empire of Ancient Greece

In search of places in Greece and discovery its natural beauties there is no how to skip the cultural and economic development of Athens. The name of the capital comes from the guardian of the city – Greek goddess Athens. The city has become a tourist center offering various destinations. By renting a yacht from AA Charter you will enjoy a memorable vacation in the Greek islands.

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The history of Athens continues to be one of the most important cities for several centuries. It is inhabited at least 7 thousand years without interruption. The oldest traces of people refer to the period of the eleventh Millennium b.c. In Ancient times the settlement became one of the centers of Mycenaean civilization. Therefore the Acropolis was built the fortress, from which are preserved plots of Cyclopean masonry that can be seen today. In the next century the city declined and the Athenians have always believed they are pure Ionians without impurities from invaders.

After 900 b.c. Athens is becoming a leading center of trade and business is experiencing an upswing. The funerals was especially rich during the Iron age. The heyday of the city can be attributed to its Central location also it is a reliable fortress of the Acropolis and its easy access to the sea – an advantage over rivals, as Thebes and Sparta. In the VI century b.c. Athens becomes a significant naval power with a large fleet and help for the rebellion of the Greek cities in Asia Minor against the Persian Empire. In the end Athens along with Sparta managed to win and headed a coalition of Greek cities. Decades after that a large part of Greece was invaded and sacked by the Persians.

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The most important city after this period again recovers and there begins a Golden age of Athens, who laid the foundations of Western civilization. During this prosperous period was creating the greatest playwrights – Aeschylus, Sophocles and Euripides, the philosopher Socrates, the doctor Hippocrates, and the historians Herodotus and Thucydides. The city begins the reconstruction of the Acropolis including the Parthenon temple, led by Pericles. Athens builds and new own sea Empire –called Delian Maritime Union. At the end of V-th century b.c. Athens was defeated by its rival Sparta and dealing a political blow.

There is also huge interest from the Macedonian Kingdom for the big cities in Greece. The army of king Philip II put an end to the independence of Athens and Thebes in 338 b.c. Powerful shock applied and also and the Roman Republic in 146 b.c. The fortifications of the city was destroyed for many years. Under the rule of the Romans Athens continued to be an important cultural centre, famous by its schools. In the second century the Emperor Hadrian began the construction of public buildings and an aqueduct that is used in this days.

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Cyclades – the island garlands of the Aegean sea

Feel the magic of Cyclades islands by renting some of our sailing luxury yachts. The Cyclades are located in the Central area of the Aegean sea in Greece. They are group of more than 200 Islands, located off the North-West to South-East. The larger Islands are well-known resorts such as Santorini, Mykonos, Milos, Paros, Sifnos and many more.

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  • Santorini

Santorini as the resort began to develop in 1960. It continues to be a great tourist center until today. On the island can feel domestic Greek style combined with modern luxury. The beaches are surrounded by crystal clear water and the most famous among them are Red, White, Black beach and the beach of lovers.

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  • Mykonos

There is nothing more beautiful and cozy place from Mykonos! The symbols of the island is Petros the pelican and the windmills. The main city Hora has a specific architecture. The houses are white, cobourne, the streets are narrow and colored with white paint.

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  • Milos

This is the South-West island, located to the North of the sea of Crete island. Here is the famous statue of Aphrodite “Venus de Milo” (now in the Louvre). The statues of the sea God  Poseidon and the God of music and arts – Apollon are also in there. This is one of the reasons Milos to acquire its well-deserved popularity, attracting every summer tourists from around the world.

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  • Paros

This island is located in the heart of the Aegean sea and were first inhabited by the Achaean Greeks. This Greeks are also mentioned in epic poem “The Iliad” as allies of the Trojans. In the year 1100 b.c. here settled the ancient Greek tribes – Ionians. The historical Paros is popular with a fine-grained white marble, which attracts tourists until today.

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  • Sifnos

It is located in the Western part of Cyclades islands and has a wedge-shaped, which is due to the old name “Akis”. The main town is Apollonia, which is filled with long hills. Here are some of the best masters of ceramics, who inspires the curious tourists. The island is popular with divine products as figs, cheese, capers, wine, honey, sweet almonds, copper cakes, pastels and perfectly handmade fabrics and ceramics.

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Historical mysteries of Marina Alimos

Marina Alimos is the epicenter of all the major yacht clubs in Greece. From here begins the rediscovery of new and unknown lands, familiarizing with new tradition of local people and consideration of their peculiar cultural attractions. This can become a challenge for anyone wishing to merge with new worlds in ancient Greek history and legends. By hiring one of our luxury yachts from AA-Charter guarantee you a memorable holiday in the middle of Greek waters. Learn the story of Marina Alimos and be irresistible travelers with one of our catamarans.

Alimos is a municipality in southern Athens, established in 1968 and includes villages such as the seaside town Kalamaki. The old name is Euonymeia and medieval name is Trachones. It situated on the coast of the Saronic Gulf near downtown Athens. The region shows some of the earliest urban settlements in Europe, dating from the Neolithic period and the Bronze Age. Proof of this are the great archaeological excavations that include forts, Mycenaean workshops, Paleochristian and Byzantine churches. In classical antiquity Alimos had been fishing town on the outskirts of the city-state Athens and it is one of the largest divisions of historical Attica. Proof of its development during this period are the remains of the amphitheater Ano Kalamaki, which were quite unusual shape of the ancient world – with a rectangular design. Some of the earliest and best preserved examples of Athenian geometric ceramics are as collections in museums, including two large vases exhibited in the Museum of art in New York “Metropolitan”.

At its peak Ano Kalamaki was one of the most densely populated communities of ancient Athens during the 5th and 4th centuries BC. At that time it had its acropolis, theater and religious holidays. Some residents even played a major role in Athenian politics and public life – in the trial of Socrates and the expeditions of Peloponnesia war.

The most significant historical background remains the historian Thucydides, who was born in Alimos. Through his “History of Peloponnesia war” he tells of the war between Sparta and Athens in 411 BC where Thucydides has been named “the father of scientific history”. Thucydides became a major figure and emblem of Alimos where today is built bust of him.