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Abandoned town of Kastro in Skiathos, Greece
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Join Date: Feb 2009
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Default Abandoned town of Kastro in Skiathos, Greece - 18-04-2011, 19:12

Have been really busy painting and decorating rather than anything else on this holiday, but managed to get to this place on Sunday, unfortunately as the UK was basking in the sunshine, we were plummeted down to single figures and the strongest winds to hit the island in about 10 years. With rain and wind and not very much clothing, I didn't quite manage to get the best pics, but it was a nice walk all the same.

Bit of history taken from books:

The Kastro was founded in the 14th Century about 1369. Because of the many pirates in the area the people of Skiathos deserted the Byzantine town of Skiathos, which was located where the town is today, and built the medieval fortress, the Kastro. Since the fortress could not be approached by sea and the only entrance was by the wooden drawbridge, the fortress ensured relative safety for the residents. The Kastro was more of a natural fortress rather than a man made one. The three sides of the fortress facing the sea were reinforced with relatively small walls, while the point at which the Kastro connects to land is reinforced with wide walls. At the entrance, there was a huge cauldron which the residents which the residents would fill with boiling oil. If the residents were attacked they would pour hot oil on the invaders. There was also a tower which housed cannon. The small houses in the fortress were built very close to each other. It is said that there were 400 houses while the population of the fortress ranged from 500 - 1500 people. There were also about 20 churches in the four parishes, water tanks, baths, and the Kagkelaria, which housed the authorities of the island. The Turkish headquarters and the mosque were built during the Ottoman Occupation. There were also two defence towers and small fire towers.

In 1829 the people of Skiathos deserted the fortress and returned to the old Byzantine town, which is where the towns is located today. When the residents left, not only did they take their personal belongings but also any building materials they could use again. The Kastro was totally abandoned. Of the about 20 churches and 500 houses, only two parish churches, the Church of the Nativity, and the Church of the St. Nicholas have survived over the years. The other churches, the Church dedicated to St. Vasilios and the other dedicated to St. Marina, the Turkish headquarters, and the hot oil cauldron as well as the walls around the fortress, have been repaired while the cannon slits in the wall on the north are in good condition.
First views of the Kastro, had second thoughts at this point with the wind, really didn't want to take the trip.

View down to the beach, have actually visited on a previous occasion by boat, it was very calm and provided a lovely place to swim.

Very close to the edge.

Where the cauldron of hot oil would have been poured onto invaders.

Wild seas.

The noise was quite unreal with the wind and the waves.

Rang the bell, wasn't sure who was supposed to turn up, but rang it loud and strong!

Remains of the wooden drawbridge, possible not the best shot, it really was very narrow and the drop each side was straight down the rocks into the sea. All that remains are the stonework structures, currently shored up by wood and scaf. to keep it from falling apart.

One of the 'looked after' churches, has been in a not bad condition for a long time, the art on the walls in reasonably good condition.

Someone often visits and provides fresh candles for people to light.

Broken stone cross on the remains of an old alter.

Remains of an older church not looked after.

Hanging remains.

The Mosque, build when the Turkish were in power. Actually looks like a face from the main part of the island. Would have ventured in, but it's right on the edge and it was REALLY windy.

A much sunnier day, not my pic

I am a serious fan, I have the kaleidoscope
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