Vacations in Syros (Cyclades - Greece)
Syros: The duchess of Cyclades
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Vacations in Syros island - Syros, The duchess of Cyclades
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Information On Syros
Syros belongs to Cyclades and is in fact the capital of the region, while being located at about the center of the island complex. It is a small island, the 11th largest of Cyclades, but also the most densely populated island of Greece.
Syros has a long history and it is no coincidence that is is the administrative and cultural center of Cyclades. Here the first hospital of Greece was founded in 1823 and the first Highschool in 1833. The wealth the island had is apparent when visiting the Vaporia district where the ship owners had built their mansions.
The capital of Syros is Ermoupoli which is the most well-preserved town in Greece. As soon as the ferry reaches the harbor you can see it built amphitheatrically with the two hills, on top of the one standing the catholic church of Agios Georgios and on top of the other the orthodox church of Anastasi. This is exactly how the population of Syros is divided, half catholic and half orthodox. At the south edge of the harbor lies the historical industrial zone of the city with the shipyard seen from a distance.
Syros is an island with high-quality tourism and little nightlife. It is an island with intense aristocratic beauty and has been justly called the duchess of Cyclades. It may not have many and large beaches, but it certainly a distinct island offering something unique in order to make your vacations memorable.
On Syros there are important annual cultural festivals like Ermoupolia and Vikelia. Ermoupolia are held at the end of the summer and include exhibitions, shows, concerts, sailing races, etc. Vikelia are 3-day aquatic contests devoted to the local Dimitrios Vikelas who was initiator of the revival of the Olympic Games and first President of Olympic Committee.
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Beaches Of Syros
Syros is not known for its beaches as they are neither many nor anything special, although they are clean with plenty of shade from trees and/or umbrellas. Most of them and the more easily accessible are found at the south part of the island which is the more developed one.
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Travel To Syros
Syros is connected with Piraeus via everyday ferries with a trip duration of 2,5 hours with the high-speed ferry up to 4 hours with the older ships. An interesting alternative is traveling by ferry from Lavrio or Rafina port which takes almost 5 hours to reach Syros but the ticket is considerably cheaper. There is also an airport on the island with almost daily flights from Athens, only half an hour long.
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Transportation On Syros (Car Rentals)
Public transportation on Syros is rather good, with buses departing every one hour and passing from the most central points of the island. The road network stretches mainly to the south part of the island and it is in good condition.
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Accommodation On Syros (Hotels, Apartments, Guesthouses, Rooms to let)
Syros does not have large hotel units. Most of the accommodation is focused in Ermoupoli where it is worth staying in order to enjoy your nights out, but unfortunately there is no descent beach in walking range. There are however several seaside settlement with many rooms to let, mainly Galissas with is the most important resort of Syros, Kini, Azolimnos, Finikas, Poseidonia, Megas Gialos and Vari.
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Food & Drink On Syros
The traditional cuisine of Syros includes delicacies like Marathopita, skordoloukaniko (garlic-sausage), Louza and various recipes with local capers. Naturally there is plenty of fresh fish and sea-food.
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What To Buy On Syros
Before leaving Syros you have to buy some loukoumakia and halvadopita which are the most famous traditional products of the island. Halvadopita is made with honey and almond, while the loukoumia of Syros are made with water, sugar and starch, and come in various flavors like mastic, rose and vanilla. Finally you can get some excellent local cheese varieties like the spicy kopanisti (spread cheese) and the famous cheese of Syros San Mihali, a light-yellow hard cheese.
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Attractions On Syros
The central square of Ermoupoli is the meeting point and the pride of Syros.
Do walk in Ano Syros for the spectacular view, its numerous attractions and the picturesque alleys.
One of the oldest museums in Greece as it was founded in 1834, and it is housed in 4 rooms of the City Hall in Ermoupoli.
It operates on Syros since 1982 in a two-storey building near the metropolitan church of Metamorfosi.
Near to the Markos Vamvakaris square, in Ano Syros, lie the bust and house of Markos Vamvakaris which has been turned into a museum.
It is unique in its kind in Cyclades, with an aquarium, local boats, fishing equipment, and more.
It is housed in a two storey neoclassical building in Ermoupoli, along with the Public Library and the Museum of Cycladic Art Copies.
The gallery hosts temporary exhibitions and part of the collection of the Gallery with works of modern Greek artists like Alekos Fasianos.
It operates in a building of 1888 which once hosted a color workshop, and it presents the industrial history of Syros.
A famous attraction of Syros, the theatre is also called Little Scala of Milan.
The Catholic Metropolis of Agios Georgios in Ano Syros is an impressive basilica of the 13th century.
One of its oldest churches in Syros hosting the icon of Kimisi Theotokou painted by the famous El Greko.
The magnificent temple is in Vaporia, the most aristocratic neighborhood of Ermoupoli, with a splendid interior.
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Alternative Islands To Syros
Syros is not what you are looking for? Then one of the following nearby islands might interest you:
Tinos (16 klm from Syros)
Andros (20 klm from Syros)
Mykonos (30 klm from Syros)
Kythnos (33 klm from Syros)
Paros (34 klm from Syros)
Serifos (36 klm from Syros)
Antiparos (39 klm from Syros)
Sifnos (41 klm from Syros)
Naxos (48 klm from Syros)
Kea (Tzia) (49 klm from Syros)
Kimolos (64 klm from Syros)
Ios (72 klm from Syros)
Iraklia (73 klm from Syros)
Koufonisia (75 klm from Syros)
Schinoussa (75 klm from Syros)
Sikinos (76 klm from Syros)
Milos (77 klm from Syros)
Donoussa (78 klm from Syros)
Folegandros (78 klm from Syros)
Amorgos (95 klm from Syros)
Santorini (107 klm from Syros)
Anafi (132 klm from Syros)
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Islands Connected To Syros
There is a ferry from Syros to the following islands:
Amorgos (direct connection to Syros)
Astypalaia (direct connection to Syros)
Donoussa (direct connection to Syros)
Fournoi (direct connection to Syros)
Ikaria (direct connection to Syros)
Iraklia (direct connection to Syros)
Kos (direct connection to Syros)
Koufonisia (direct connection to Syros)
Kythnos (direct connection to Syros)
Leros (direct connection to Syros)
Mykonos (direct connection to Syros)
Naxos (direct connection to Syros)
Paros (direct connection to Syros)
Patmos (direct connection to Syros)
Rhodes (direct connection to Syros)
Samos (direct connection to Syros)
Schinoussa (direct connection to Syros)
Tinos (direct connection to Syros)
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