Kythnos churches and village

Before leaving Kythnos, Kathy and Chris took me to see a couple of churches and one of the villages on the west side of the island. The churches tended to be small and modest, which I prefer over the gaudy (Gaudí?) churches usually seen in Western Europe.

The first church we visited is called Panagia Stratolatissa. Chris thinks the correct translation into English is “Virgin Who Walks” rather than the alternate translation of “Virgin with an Army”.

Two naves Charming interior Beautiful chandelier

The church had recently celebrated Virgin Mary’s feast day on 15 August, so the white outline paintings had been freshly renewed.

A darling flower A funny-looking rooster fish

The second church we looked at was Agios Konstatinos. Its view of the desert landscape of Kythnos is panoramic. By the road, they’ve outlined imaginary blocks on the shoulder.

Even deserts have their charm Roadside art

This church is smaller than Panagia Statolatissa, but it’s quite charming, too. Its chandelier features a double-headed eagle, and you can see traditional crocheted curtains in the windows.

White-washed building Golden eagle Simple and clean

Our final stop before heading to the port was the village Dryopida, named after the Dryopes, who were the first settlers of Kythnos.

Village from afar

It is different from other Greek villages in that they have sloped roofs rather than flat ones.

Za roof

Cars can’t fit in the narrow passageways. The best way to navigate the village is on foot. You’ll also see white outlines painted around groupings of flat stones on the ground. Kathy told me that they were historically used to increase visibility of the walkways since there wasn’t any electricity to power street lamps at night.

Example of a village passageway

But you’ll still see the white outlined paintings in various places.

A real bird A more abstract rendering

Certain plants seem to grow here quite nicely despite the hot weather.

White, blue, and magenta

This series of staircases reminded me of M. C. Escher.

Where are the upside-down people?

If you look, you’ll see little details, such as this little blue window and what is used in doorways instead of screens.

Nice window frame Lacy door covering

What a lovely village! I didn’t have time, but there’s also a cave called Katafyki that you can tour: it was used as a place of refuge for the residents starting when pirates sailed the Aegean Sea.

Written on August 20, 2016