is the closest Saronic Gulf island to the Peloponnese and the 4th closest
to Piraeus and Athens (29 mi.). A small island, it has 23 sq. mi. of land
mass and 43 km. of coast. There are about 4000 inhabitants.
rolling hills and greenery provide a nice contrast to the stark barrenness
of its Cycladic Greek island cousins. Poros is a a less trendy island
than Hydra. You're likely to find real Greeks, lower prices and less fanfare.
Due to its popularity,
accommodations on the weekend are more expensive.
proximity to the Peloponnese make it an ideal jump off point. Many of
the most famous Peloponnesian sites in Greece may be visited easily starting
from Poros: Epidavros, Mycenae, Troezen, Tyrins, Argos and Ancient Corinth.
Just to the east of nearby mainland Galatas is the Lemonodassos a unique hillside grove-forest of over 30,000 lemon and orange trees.
Car rental from Poros is a good choice for such excursions.
Or rent a car in Athens–at most a 4 hour drive away. If you already have a vehicle you can drive
to Galatas on the Peloponnese and leave your car on the mainland or ferry
it across. Separated from the Greek mainland by 400 meters, it is only
a 5 minute boat ride to Poros.
The name Poros itself actually
means 'passage' and refers to the channel (canal photo right) between the island and the Peloponnese.
Etymologically speaking it is probably related the source of the English words
porous and pore.
is actually two islands: Sephaeria (or Sferia) and Kalavria linked by a very
small canal or isthmus. Kalavria, the larger island
has the smaller population, sandy beaches and more greenery.
cyprus, olive and pine trees offer shade. Sephaeria,
the location of Poros Town, is actually a volcanic out-cropping and forms Poros' southern tip.
Little Sephaeria popped out of the ocean in a volcanic bubble during the eruptions at Methana on the mainland. Kalavria is a much older island.
Islanders usually bathe at Alyki or the coves of Askeli and Monastiri all of which
are reachable by bus. Those with boats may find many secluded coves and
unvisited beaches along the islands shores.
Town is the main community center of the island and its main harbor. A blue clock-tower dominates
the skyline and is the island's landmark. The
town itself is built around the harbor basin and rises into the surrounding
hills as is common on so many Greek islands. You can find
marvelous vistas and good hiking by climbing the narrow streets toward
the back of Poros Town.
Northwest of the causeway and Poros Town is the National Naval Academy. Sometimes you can see an old battleship at anchor there.
Drinking and Dining
Many hotels have their
own restaurants. The 3 Brothers Tavern and the 7 Brothers Tavern both offer
authentic Greek cuisine at reasonable prices and of good quality.
Many taverns line the limani and all serve good food and have excellent views
of the harbor and Peloponnese across the strait. Hoist a few at the hot spot Coconuts if you're looking for late night bar activity.
See our greece hotels for a complete look at accommodations available on this island.
ancient times Poros was sacred to Poseidon and a major temple was located 12 km north of Poros town
at Vayonia. Built circa 500 BC, little remains today of what was probably
a magnificent structure except for a few walls and one Doric column. The
site (Palatia) however, offers a unique view of the open sea and to Troizinai
opposite on the mainland.
tradition makes Poros as the birthplace of Theseus and history names it
as the spot where the famous Athenian and orator Demosthenes died.
Demosthenes sought refuge and committed suicide within the Temple of Poseidon. He was actively opposed to Phillip of Macedon and his son Alexander
the Great's domination of the Athenian city-state.
Demosthenes poisoned himself rather than surrender to the Macedonians. You can see the ruins of the 6th Century Temple of Poseidon near the center of Kalavria.
the 7th Century BC Poros was the center of the 7 island amphictyony
(maritime confederation) of Kalavreia which preceded the Delian league
centered at Delos island Cyclades just off Mykonos.
Visit the Poros Archeological Museum (above left) Open 6 days, closed Mondays 8:30 - 15:00 tel: 22980-23276
played an active part in the Greek War of Independence and was home
to the first official Naval Dockyard in 1830.
main historical attraction of the island is the Monastery
of Zoodoghos Pigis or 'Virgin of the life giving spirit' situated
7 km NE of Poros town. The l8th Century monastery is built around the island's only spring. Its deeply wooded grounds overlook Askeli bay.
It's noted for its finely carved wooden iconostasis. Within the grounds lies
its cemetery, where fighters of the War of
Independence against the Turks are interred. You can also see the grave of a British philhellene who
gave his life in the struggle. Don't miss the archeological
museum in Poros Town.
Many islanders trace their roots back to Albanian forebears.