Visited in 2005, 2006, 2007,
2009 (2X), 2011, 2012, 2013,
2014, 2015 and 2016

Walking, hiking and trekking on ANDROS

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GENERAL INFORMATION

LINKS ANDROS

THE PATHS AND WALLS OF ANDROS

BOATS ANDROS
   - Superferry II
   - Fast Ferries Andros
   - Theologos

   - Artemis

MAPS

WALKS

(last update on the 2nd August 2016)

*** = very beautiful

**** = exceptional

N = new in 2014
NN = new in 2015
NNN = new in 2016

1. Agia Triáda - Zagorá and back

2. Agia Triáda - Aládou - Sasá - Moní Panachrántou - Messariá

3. Agios Nikólaos - Achla and back ****

4. Aïdónia - Ráchi - Agios Ioánnis and back ***

5. Aladinoú - Kouréli - Sasá - Aladinoú

6. Aladinoú - Sasá - Moní Panachrántou - Pétrias - Fállika - Aladinoú ***  NN

7. Alamaniá - Piskopió - Rogó - Ormos Korthíou ***

8. Ano Aprovátou - Ano Pitrofós and back ****

9. Ano Aprovátou - Ano Pitrofós - Strapouriés ****

10. Chóra ***

11. Chóra - Apíkia - Evrousés - Strapouriés - Mesathoúri - Ypsiloú- Chóra ****  NNN

12. Chóra - Apíkia - Pithára - Chóra ***

13. Chóra - Apíkia - Steniés - beach Giália - Chóra ***

14. Chóra - Apíkia - Vourkotí - Apíkia - Chóra ****

15. Chóra - Lámyra - Ménites and back ****

16. Chóra - Lámyra - Ménites - Messariá - Lámyra - Chóra ****

17. Chóra - Lámyra - Ménites -  Messariá - Moní Panachrántou - Messariá - Lámyra - Chóra ****

18. Chóra - Lámyra - Strapouriés - Ménites - Lámyra - Chóra ***

19. Chóra - Livádia - Chóra  NNN

20. Chóra - Livádia - Petriás - Moní Panachrántou and back ***  NNN

21. Chóra - Sinetí - Dipotámata-valley and back ***

22. Chóra - Sinetí - Dipotámata-valley - Kochílou - Ormos Korthíou ****

23. Chóra - Vrachnoú - Pétrias - Fállika - Aladinoú - Vakóni ****  N

24. Fállika - Moní Panachrántou and back ***

25. Gávrio - tower of Agios Pétros - Gávrio  NNN

24. Messariá - Ménites - Lámyra - Chóra ***

25. Messariá - Ménites - Lámyra - Messariá ***

26. Messariá - Moní Panachrántou - Messariá ***

27. Ormos Korthíou - Kochýlou - Paleókastro and back ****

28. Ormos Korthíou - Panagía and back

29. Ormos Korthíou - Tis Griás to Pídima and back

30. Ormos Korthíou - Rogó - Lardiá - Mésa Vouní - Exo Vouní ***

31. Ormos Korthíou - Rogó - Lardiá - Mésa Vouní and back **** 

32. Paleópolis - Agia Eleoúsa - beach of Paleópolis  NN

33. Piskopió - Alamaniá and back

34. Strapouriés - Ano Pitrofós - Paleópolis ****

35. Vakóni - Aladinoú - Fállika - Pétrias - Vrachnoú - Chóra ****  N

36. Vourkotí - monastery of Agios Nikólaos - Apíkia - Chóra ***

37. Vourkotí - Profítis Ilías - Agii Saránta and back ***

38. Vourkotí - Profítis Ilías - Arni - Katákilos - Káto Katákilos - Batsí ****

 

 

 

Andros is the most northern island of the Cycladic isles. The islands of Kéa, Kýthnos, Sérifos and Sífnos can be seen as a natural continuation in the sea of the peninsula of Attika; in the same way, the nearby islands of Andros, Tínos and Mýkonos can be seen as the foothills of the mountain ridge of the island of Evia (Euboia). Andros is separated from Evia by a narrow strait (Kafiréa or Cavo d' Oro), but the strait (or ‘stenó’) between Andros and Tínos is even narrower. Andros (385 km²) is the second biggest island of the Cyclades, after Náxos (448 km²), but before Páros (195 km²) and Tinos (195 km²).

Andros is mountainous and it is criss-crossed with a number of mountain ridges. All of these ridges run parallel to one another from southwest to northeast. Between the ridges there are deep valleys and sometimes steep gorges. The highest summits are the Kouvára (with the Profítis Ilías at 997 m) and the Pétalo (990 m), in the centre of the island, between the towns of Ano Aprovátou and Vourkotí. Because of this relief the north-south connections on the island are rather difficult. Except for the main coastal road, most of the roads thus run into the valleys, from the southwest of the island to the northeast.

Andros is a unique island for a number of different reasons. First of all, in comparison with many of the other Cycladic isles, there is a lot of water – and this thanks to the relative high amount of rainfall and the multitude of sources. As a result, some of the valleys are remarkably green. Especially the pine tree dominates the landscape (for instance in the neighbourhood of Ménites). There are also lots of remnants of watermills in the valleys of the Dipotámata (between the towns of Exo Vouní and Sinetí), in the valley of the Mégalo Révma (in the north), etc.

The second remarkable characteristic is the architecture of some of the villages, which is not really Cycladic. Andros is a very wealthy island and this is partly the result of generations of ship owners. The villages of Chóra and Steniés are therefore striking because of the large and wealthy houses. The red roofs resemble the Italian cities and also some Greek islands such as the island of Sími near Rhódos.

Striking is also the large amount of villages on this island – about sixty. Only on the slopes of the large valley of the Megálos Potamós, which flows into the sea near Chóra, you can count about twenty villages. Usually, these villages do not really have a centre – they are dispersed midst the bushes and trees and this makes it sometimes very difficult to orient.

With regard to its touristy reputation, Andros is not really well-known among foreigners. On the other hand, though, the island is a favourite destination for people from Athens. Situated at a distance of only 2-3 hours from their busy city, many of them have a country house at Andros.

Gávrio, the small harbour on the west coast, is very quiet, except in summer. There are only a couple of restaurants and cafés – and a very pretty camping. Quite strange about Andros as well, is that it can only be reached from the harbour of Rafína; from Rafina there are frequent connections with Tínos and Mýkonos, via Andros – sometimes even further on with the islands of Páros and Náxos. Connecting with the other Cycladic isles is rather difficult – there is only the Artemis: this boat guarantees, on Wednesday, a connection with Sýros and Sérifos/Sífnos/Kímolos/Mílos.

The only spot on the island of Andros that is really touristically exploited is the coastal town of Batsí: there is a nice beach, but the harbour is small and not very picturesque. A few modern hotels are a blot on the coastline and in the town itself there are even three pizzerias and two Illy-cafés close to each other. This is the place to be for tourists only looking for the beach and some nightlife. 

Chóra (sometimes also called Andros), on the east side of the island, is really a whole world of difference. This town is very picturesque, situated on a protruding rock, between the beaches of Nimborió and Parapórti. The long, central street, with marble pavement is a pedestrian area. It runs between beautiful, large houses and along a couple of pleasant squares with peaceful restaurants and many zacharoplastía (pastry shops). This street goes all the way to the summit of the protruding rock, with remnants of the Venetian kástro, established in 1207 by Marino Dandolo. Especially in spring and autumn Chóra is a haven of peace; it is mostly frequented by Greeks and it is really a wonderful place to hang out.

When looking at the other small villages, it is difficult to make a choice. Very nice is the green village of Ménites, with marvellous wells decorated with lion heads; there is Apíkia with the famous Sáriza-well and the small waterfall of Pithára; there is the beautiful village of Sinetí, at the end of the Dipotámata-gorge, remarkable because of its water mills; there is also the agrarian and highly situated village of Vourkotí, with its terraces, etcetera.

On an archaeological level, there are two interesting sites at Andros. The archaeological site of Zagorá was situated on a plateau, protected on three sides in a natural manner. In the geometrical period (10th – 8th centuries BC), a prosperous settlement was established on this spot. When looking at the remnants, especially the 110-metres-long defensive wall is remarkable – this wall used to be 7 metres high!
In the plain underneath the current day village of Paleópolis, there is also an archaeological site. Over here, remnants were found of the former capital of Andros, founded in the 6th – 7th centuries BC. Part of it disappeared in the sea during the heavy earthquake in the 4th century AD.
There are remnants of an agora and a defensive wall. When looking into the water – especially when standing on an elevation -, you can clearly see the remainders of a kind of a breakwater. The remnants of the geometric period from Zagorá and the findings from Paleópolis – with especially the beautiful statue of Hermes, which is a copy from the 1st century BC of a bronze statue made by Praxiteles – can be found in the beautiful Archaeological Museum of Chóra. There is also a Museum of Contemporary Art, containing mainly Greek artists; amongst others there are many sculptures from the Andriotic artist Michális Tómbros. In summer this museum is also well-known because of its international exhibitions, for instance of Picasso, Matisse, Klee, Rodin, Moore, etc.

Although the largest part of the coast is obviously rocky, there are also some really beautiful beaches on Andros, mainly on the west coast in the neighbourhood of Gávrio and Batsí. Nevertheless, the most pleasant and also the most quiet beaches are the ones on the east and the southeast coasts. I am referring here to the beaches to the north and the south of Chóra: Nimborió (very pleasant for children) and Parapórti, the beaches of Giália and of Kórthi and the lonely beaches of Achla, Léfka and Agios Ioánnis – these beaches can only be reached on foot! 

But of course, the most interesting aspect of Andros is the opportunity to make many wonderful hikes. Especially in the south-eastern part of the island there is an entire network of trails. Many of them are marvellously paved (real 'kalderimi's'), often running between beautiful walls. These walls are built in a typical Andriotic fashion, alternating between small rocks and large, vertical plates (see "The paths and walls of Andros"). Even more striking is that, over the last couple of years, an almost unique effort has been undertaken - taking Cycladic standards into consideration -, to signpost a number of these trails. This has not always been done in a consequent and perfect manner, but these signs are still a great help to the inexperienced hiker. An advantage is also that almost all of the hikes depart from or arrive in Chóra – which turns this town into an ideal operating base for the hiker on Andros.

In addition, a lot of material can be found on Andros and its hikes: besides the websites (see "Links Andros"), there is the very beautiful publication "Odiporikó stin Andro" ("Hiking on Andros"). According to my knowledge, this publication only exists in Greek and it is quite difficult to find. This book contains beautiful pictures and the descriptions of about twelve hiking trajectories. In the bookshops and souvenir shops of Chóra you can also find the marvellous CD-rom “Sta Paliá Patímata - On the old trails" by Vasílis and Mína Kokótis. This CD-rom is in Greek and English, it contains lots of pictures and background information and it also gives you the detailed and very personal description of twelve (mainly the same) hikes.

And of course, there is also the hiking map published by Anávasi. It gives nearly all the monopátia of the island – and you can buy it on the island.
In spring 2009 also a hiking map within the series of Terrain Maps was published; it gives you almost the same trails as the Anávasi map and on the back of the map you find 11 suggested hikes.

Finally, in August 2014 was published a very good and complete hiking map by Andros Routes and Anávasi: it gives also the new hikes, as the hike [18], and also some walks in the north-western part of the island - see also
 http://www.androsroutes.gr/en/ 
An enthusiast group of volunteers takes care of the way marking and the maintenance of the paths. They published also an interesting walking guide "Hiking on Andros". 

When looking at all of the hiking combinations, the following six are almost a must:
1. Chóra - Ipsiloú - Lámyra - Ménites - Messariá - Moní Panachrántou (nicely signposted by means of the number 1)
2. Ano Aprovátou - Pitrofós - Strapouriés - Lámyra - Chóra (very well signposted by means of the number 9 till Strapouriés
, and later by [10] and [1])
3. Chóra - Sinetí - Dipotámata-vallei - Kochílou - Kórthi (fairly well signposted by means of the number 3)
4. Chóra - Apíkia - Vourkotí (fairly well signposted by means of the number 2)
5. Agios Nikólaos - Achla and back (signposted by means of the number 6)
6. Vourkotí - Profítis Ilías - Agii Saránta or Vourkotí - Arni - Katákilos - Batsí (
in the beginning signposted by means of the number 12).


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The little port of Gávrio

The seaside resort of Batsí

 Panoramic view on Chóra

The beautiful position of Chóra

The Hermes in the Archeological Museum of Chóra

The Sáriza-well in Apíkia

The  Stichioméni-bridge near Messariá

The wells in Ménites

One of the most green spots in Andros: the valley of Ménites



The monopáti in the Dipotámata-valley

The little Pithára-waterfall in Apíkia



The signposted  monopáti to Vourkotí



The typical walls of  Andros



The fortified monastery of Panachrántou



Enjoy life on Andros...