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Kea is a small Cycladic island that has been known in the modern world when the brother of the Titanic, the Britannica, sank off its coast in 1916. The island itself is a lovely little corner of paradise, and is still an authentic place to visit. The island is mountainous, is divided into two green valleys planted with olive trees, vineyards, fruit trees and cypresses. The highest mountain, Profitis Elias, rises to 568 meters.

There are a few tavernas and cafes, and the pace of life is slow and comfortable. Kea is a great alternative for those who want to get away from the crowded islands. The islanders live mainly from agriculture, livestock and fisheries. Kea was once called “the island of the water,” Ydroussa, and it is believed that the name is related to the nymphs who lived here according to Greek mythology. The island was so beautiful that the jealous gods sent a lion to ravage the land and persecute the nymphs. Nymphs fled, and the island went dry. Keos, then asked for help the son of Apollo, Aristeus, who built a temple in honor of Zeus (the highest deity), who sent the rain. This pleased him tribute, and nymphs and waters were back, and gave Kea fertile soil and good harvests.

If you are looking for an island with few tourists in the summer, then Kea is for you. When you disembark at the port of Korissia , you realize how it is far from the charged atmosphere of Mykonos , Ios and Santorini. If you are looking for a peaceful holiday, away from the crowds, there is no doubt, Kea will seduce you. Very close to the continent, it attracts mainly Greeks and especially the Athenians, more or less famous, who built elegant villas and large stone mills. The main port of the island (Korissia) extends along the sea is considered one of the safest natural harbors in the Mediterranean. In 1930, a beautiful kouros (Greek archaic statue of a naked young man) size was discovered at the base of the hill of Aghia Triada. Today it is exposed in the Archaeological Museum of Athens.
The port of Kea is distinguished by its houses with red tile roofs.

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  • You can see the famous Lion of Kea, or Lionda. This is a huge sculpture in the rock dating from the fifth century before Christ. 3 m wide and long new, this monumental lion seems to watch over the city.
  • At Ioulis there are also some churches. This village (the only one on the island) is quiet and it’s nice to get lost in its streets.
  • The Archaeological Museum, which is located 20 meters to the right on entering the village, contains some interesting objects of Cycladic period.
  • Kea is dotted with chapels, windmills and monasteries. The most important is the monastery of Panagia Kastriani. According to local tradition, shepherds have discovered in 1700 an icon of the Virgin Mary on the hill of Kastri and decided to build on the site of the discovery a monastery to house the icon that is said to be miraculous. The result is a surprising beauty with two blue and white churches that stand knew the cliff. The first church was built in 1708 and houses the icon of the Madonna while the second chapel, built in 1910, contains paintings of Christ and icons.
  • The remains of temples Karthea (which is remarkable by footpaths) are inevitable and you can swim in the often deserted bay.

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  • For those who like hiking, Kea is ideal. The island has no less than 12 paths, accessible by all. Beautiful ballads guarantees.
  • Beaches: Kea offers numerous sand beaches. The water is crystal clear.
  • Nightlife: there’s not really nightlife to Kea. Ioulis (or chora), voulkari and korissia (port) seem to be the best places to go have a drink, even if the three locations offer mostly cafes and taverns rather than bars.
  • Kitchen: There are some excellent local specialties to savor in the taverns. Sausage, the “Paspala”(plat de porc), cheese and wine in the country.
  • Shopping: There are not lots of souvenir shops on Kea, pasteli (prepared with grains of sesame and honey sweetness), or local honey are takeaway.

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[toggle title=”About Kea” open=”no”]Area: 131 km ²
Population: 1800 inhabitants
ATM: Yes
Highest peak: Prophitis Elias, 568 m
Airport: No
Care center: Yes
Price level: medium+

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