Sights & Attractions

Chios: A Jewel in the Aegean

Chios Island is the fifth largest island in Aegean Sea and one of the biggest in Meditteranean Sea. Chios is Situated on the Northern Eastern side of the Aegean Sea.

Chios boasts a centuries-old history, medieval villages, blue sea waters and a complex scenery of mountains and beaches.

The island’s History is influenced by both Hellenic Period, Genoese, Ottoman and Byzantine periods, giving a unique style and architecture aparent in the whole of the island.

Chios, or “Chora” is the island’s main town and it is located in the middle of the island. Chios Town is a picturesque town, with a medieval Castle dating back in the 10th century.


Chios is famous for “Mastiha”, a unique product which has been harvested for at least 2,500 years. Mastiha is cultivated solely in Chios, and it is a product of unique origin. The process of cultivation is complex and it has remained traditional since the early days of its use.

The southern part of Chios is the one that the tree “Skinos” grows. This area has many settlements and villages, called “Mastichochoria” which are fortress-like, which unique built in order to maintain security in the old days when pirates used to raid the Aegean Sea, thus making the villages “private” and “out of sight from the sea”, protected by high walls, baracade doors and fortification to protect the sap from invaders.

The Castle of Chios

Chios Town Castle, a historical gem, stands proudly in the heart of Chios Island. This well-preserved medieval fortress, dating back to the Byzantine era, encapsulates centuries of history within its imposing walls.

Visitors can explore its winding lanes, ancient stone arches, and impressive ramparts, offering panoramic views of the Aegean Sea. The castle’s maze-like streets reveal a rich tapestry of architectural wonders, from churches and mosques to old mansions.

Chios Town Castle is a living testament to the island’s diverse heritage and a must-visit destination for those eager to step back in time and immerse themselves in Chios’s captivating history.

The Ottoman Bath

The Ottoman Bath in Chios Island, an architectural treasure that dates back in the 18th Century, offers a glimpse into the island’s Ottoman heritage. This historic hamam, with its exquisite domed ceilings and ornate details, invites visitors to soak in its rich past. A captivating cultural stop that whispers tales of a bygone era.

The Mastic Museum

The Chios Mastic Museum is a fascinating testament to the island’s unique heritage. Nestled in the heart of Chios, it’s a tribute to the centuries-old tradition of mastic cultivation. This immersive museum takes visitors on a journey through the history, harvesting methods, and various uses of mastic, including its role in cuisine and cosmetics.

The exhibits, housed in a beautifully placed building among Skinos trees, showcase the importance of this natural resin in the local culture and economy. It’s an educational and sensory experience that allows guests to appreciate the island’s precious gift to the world – mastic.

Preserving a Time-Honored Tradition

The Mastic Villages of Chios

In the southern part of Chios, nestled amidst a stunning landscape of rolling hills and fertile valleys, lie the picturesque Mastic Villages, a collection of centuries-old settlements that have become synonymous with the cultivation of mastic, the island’s precious treasure. These villages, including Pyrgi, Mesta, and Olympi, offer visitors a unique window into a tradition that has endured for generations.

The heart of this tradition is the harvesting of mastic, a resin extracted from the bark of the mastic tree (Pistacia lentiscus var. Chia). This labor-intensive process, known as “mastic tears,” is an art that has been passed down through the ages. From July to September, local farmers carefully score the tree’s bark, allowing the resin to ooze out and harden into translucent teardrops. This “liquid gold” not only flavors local cuisine but also finds its way into cosmetics, medicine, and even chewing gum.

The Mastic Villages themselves are a sight to behold. Pyrgi, with its unique geometrically patterned facades, stands out as one of the most famous. Mesta’s medieval architecture and narrow cobblestone streets transport visitors back in time. The villages are a harmonious blend of tradition and natural beauty, where the scent of mastic trees mingles with the aroma of citrus groves.

A visit to these villages is not just an exploration of the cultivation of mastic; it’s a journey through history and culture. The Mastic Villages of Chios encapsulate the island’s rich heritage and offer an opportunity to witness a time-honored tradition that continues to thrive in the modern world.

Nea Moni Monastery

The Nea Moni Monastery on Chios Island is a masterpiece of Byzantine art and a symbol of the island’s rich history. Founded in the 11th century, this UNESCO World Heritage Site boasts stunning mosaics that adorn its interior, depicting religious scenes of unparalleled beauty and significance.

The monastery is a testament to Chios’s cultural heritage and offers visitors a serene and contemplative experience within its historic walls. Surrounded by lush greenery, Nea Moni stands as a reminder of the island’s enduring spiritual and artistic legacy, making it a must-visit destination for history enthusiasts and art lovers alike.

Anavatos Village

Anavatos village, perched high on a rocky hill on Chios Island, is a striking and mysterious place frozen in time. Its stone houses cling to the cliffs, creating a dramatic and picturesque sight.

The village is known for its tumultuous history and architectural uniqueness. It’s a hauntingly beautiful reminder of the island’s past, inviting visitors to explore its cobbled streets and imagine the stories that echo through its narrow alleys.

A visit to Anavatos is a journey into Chios’s rich heritage and an opportunity to connect with the island’s enduring spirit.

Volissos Village

Nestled on the northwestern coast of Chios Island, Volissos village is a tranquil gem with a rich history and captivating charm. Its stone-paved streets wind through traditional houses and lead to a medieval castle that graces the hilltop. Volissos offers a peaceful escape, surrounded by lush landscapes and overlooking the Aegean Sea.

Visitors can savor authentic Greek cuisine in cozy tavernas, explore ancient ruins, and take in breathtaking sunsets.

With its genuine hospitality and unspoiled beauty, Volissos is a haven for those seeking a serene and authentic Greek island experience.

Mesta Village

Mesta, a jewel of Chios Island, is a medieval wonder frozen in time. This labyrinthine village, enclosed by fortified stone walls, is a living museum of Byzantine architecture.

Its narrow alleys wind through charming, interconnected houses adorned with unique geometric designs. Mesta offers an enchanting journey into the island’s past, where every step reveals a new piece of history.

Visitors can explore ancient churches, dine in traditional tavernas, and immerse themselves in the authentic, centuries-old atmosphere of this extraordinary village, making Mesta a must-visit destination for history enthusiasts and cultural explorers.


© Copyright Koin.S.Ep. Diktio Xiakis Filoxenias Politismou & Perivalontos Ypiresies Enimerosis Episkepton k.a.