Kythera and Antikythera, two islands with a long history through the centuries have a great amount of archaeological – historical sites and findings to enrich the visitor’s experience.
History and culture lovers can take a tour at the cavern of Chousti, located in Diakofti at Kythera, where archaeological excavations have brought to light findings dating from 5000 BC. Another option would be to follow the slightly harder path to the hill of Paleokastro where lies the island’s ancient capital. The space includes the church of Agioi Anargyroi (Saint Cosmas and Saint Damian), built in the place of the ancient sanctuary of the Dioscuri, Castor and Polydeuces. Further up, around the church of Agios Georgios (Saint. George) on the Mountain, recent excavation has located a sanctuary dating from the geometric years.
In Paleopoli, after contacting the Archaeological Museum staff for information, the visitor can see numerous tholos tombs of the Minoan era, as well as the remaining part of the Castle that kept watch over the port of Skandias until the early Byzantine years (7th century). On the way to Avlemonas, but also on Archimandritou Mormori str. and on the road to Diakofti, one can still see the ancient quarries known for their characteristic way of cutting.
Visitors can only be impressed by the Castles of Kythera. Paleochora, a Byzantine city dedicated to Agios Dimitrios (Saint. Demetrius) stands imperious, just the way the infamous pirate Hayreddin Barbarossa left it after destroying it in 1537. At the Castle of Milopotamos don’t miss the chance to visit the Byzantine churches, while the Castle at Chora - recently conserved and reconstructed – provides an amazing view to the island of Antikythera and even Crete! Another well maintained and easy to access site would be the fort of Avlemonas, used in the period of Venetian rule to guard the new port that occurred after the silting of the one at Skandia.
In recent years archaeologists are methodically researching the area of Aegila in Antikythera, a walled city of 300 square meters dating from the 4th century BC whose citizens were mainly occupied with the hijacking of ships passing the Aegean Sea to the west.
During the months of July, August and September visitors both in Chousti and Aegila can be toured around the excavation sites by archeologists and help voluntarily if they wish to