Music (and some ouzo too)
Try listening to Lesvos folk music.It is quite different from original Greek music.It utilizes brass wind instruments played with an oriental style-quite a combination!You may have to by a CD if you don't have the chance to attend a local festival.
As for festivities you'll find plenty of them,from the ouzo and octopus feast (last of July,first days of August),where you can drink as much as you like for free(did i mentioned that Mytelene produces Greece's best ouzo?),to cultural events.The 'heart' of ouzo production in Mytelene is the village Plomari,one of the most piqturesque places of the island.
I had the chance to attend some of the summer events in Eressos,like theater,shadow theater, concerts.And even a photography exhibition in Ayassos.Lesbians are men of culture you know!
PS. One should taste and choose between at least 12 local ouzo brands before deciding one's favorite.
- Castles and Palaces
- Wine Tasting
Museum of Ouzo
If you visit Plomari, be sure to check the Museum of Ouzo. Barbayiannis is one of the 2-3 traditional ouzo distilleries of the islands, and their ouzo is 100% distilled (not all ouzo is distilled 100%, many are as much as 20%, which is the limit by the greek law). Be sure to taste other good ouzo too, like Pitsiladi, Giannatsi and Dimino.
WRB - the perfect trio
Yes... I'm sure. There is nothing better to celebrate sunny afternoon - after swimming, driving across island, visiting monuments - than find nice bar or taverna and ask for WRB: watermelon (juicy and cooled), small bottle of aromatic Retsina and very very sweet and delicious piece of Baklava - pastry made of Middle East phyllo paste filled with nuts (almonds, walnuts, pistachios) and sweetened with sugar syrup or honey.
juicy Watermelon, sweet Baklava and dry Retsina create perfect mix of tastes, aromas and feelings. I don't think it's possible to describe this meal more accurately. Just try it to make your own opinion. I'm sure You will not be dissapointed :)
The WRB on the photo I tasted in Eftalou (north of Molivos) waiting for the bus in tavern called.... it' shouldn't be suprise :).... Eftalou. It was tremendously delicious :))))
- Wine Tasting
- Food and Dining
“Summer of Lesvos” - Ouzo Feast in Mytilene
Every summer the municipality of Mytilene organizes a series of cultural events named the “Summer of Lesvos”.
Among these, the first week of August, the famous “Ouzo Festival” takes place; local ouzo producers offer their products free of charge. Local hotels, taverns, restaurants and other tourism facilities offer all necessary support that will allow only the most generous hospitality and entertainment gor the visitors.
In the small villages just outside the city, like Aghia Marina, Taxiarhes (Kagiani), Vareia, Panagiouda taverns offer all sorts of local treats and specialties.
Mytilene Municipality 22510 28501
Cultural Development of Mytilene 22510 23644
The Most Significant Religious Fetes in Lesvos
The most significant fetes are as follows:
• the fete of Archangel Michael in Mandamados, on the Sunday of the Myrrh-bearing Women,
• the fete of Saint-Ignatius in the Leimonos Monastery which is located in the region of Kalloni,
• a fete dedicated to the Dormition of the Virgin, in Agiassos on 15 August and
• the fete of Aghios Charalambos in Aghia Paraskevi, Napi and Mandamados.
Custom of the tree trunk
At Perama in Lesvos, St. Panteleamon is honoured in a unique way: on his feast day, 27th July, the villagers place the longest tree trunk they can find on the quay. The Greek flag is attached to the end that extends out to sea and the rest of the log is covered in grease. It is then that the competition to find the first person to walk along the log and grab the flag begins. It is great fun watching the villagers, some who are not the most coordinated, try to achieve their goal!
Reunion Fest at Kalloni
In August 16th, in the town of Kalloni, at its main square, takes place the Fest of Reunion, dedicated the the people of Kalloni living abroad. A lot of local food is served, a lot of folk music, many people dancing and a great fun. Don't miss it.
Sardines Fest at Skala Kallonis
At the beggining of August in Skala Kallonis takes place the Sardines Fest. All the tavernas bake sardines and the air is full of their smell. Sardines, in combination with ouzo is a great meze. You will be lucky if you manage to catch this fest.
The Agiasos Carnival is known for its originality and its stinging satire, expressed in the local dialect. Its fame has gone beyond the borders of Lesvos and has been established, at the national level, as one of the most important folk events. The Agiasos Carnival is deeply rooted in the ancient Greek cultural creation and tradition.
Wooden Carved Artifacts in Agiasos
Agiasos is famous for its marvellous handmade pottery and for its wood carving art. The craftsmen who carved the wooden iconostasis of the Church of the Virgin in 1812 were Greek from Asia Minor, whereas their apprentices were from Agiasos and very smartly inherited their art: the Sentoukades (chest makers) families, since some of their members used to make sentoukia (chests). Many houses in Agiasos are decorated with old carved furniture (mostly chests). During the post-war period, since 1950 this art has been carried on mainly by Dimitris Kamaros, whose grandfather had been a wood-carver himself. His handicrafts have become renowned not only in the island, but all over Greece and abroad. Almost all toady’s carvers have been taught by him. Each of them has developed its own personality and style and they all make splendid works. Usually, when you order a custom made piece, you may have to wait for over a month in order to prepare it just as you wish.
In the past, the island of Lesbos was one of the most important pottery centres in Greece. Despite the fact that today there are few ceramics kilns, the inhabitants of Mytilene use the clay to create real works of art. There are pottery workshops, known as “tsoukaladika” or “koumaradika”, mainly in Mantamados, Agiassos and Mytilene. Pottery crafts are exhibited in various halls on the entire island.
The old, historic olive press of the village of Mantamados has been restored and proclaimed industrial monument. Every year, the village hosts the Pan-Lesbian Pottery Exhibition which attracts artists not only from all corners of the island but also from the Asia Minor coast.
Traditional Wedding in Lesbos Island
If you ever have the opportunity of coming across a traditional Lesbian wedding you will be very lucky indeed. On the day of the wedding the bride gets ready to the sounds of traditional music . According to custom, a sweetbread is cut in a symbolic fashion on top of the bride’s head before she goes to church. The musicians escort the couple to the church and traditional dances are held at the celebration afterwards, whilst amygdalota (almond cakes) and baklava are handed out to the guests. The revelry last well into the night.
The local bakery
There are two excellent bakeries that I know of in Skala Kalloni, one is near the bus stop and had amazing cookies, the other is just across the harbour. The one across the harbour looks like it could be in a fairy tale. The gnarled wood for burning the furnace is stacked outside. The pies and chocolate croissants are mouthwatering. Do try the spinach pies or the cheese pies. A great meal if you just want to stay on the beach for the day. Quaint!
The picture is from www.lesvosIsland.com
Nicos the fireman
The guy on the left of the picture is Nicos. He sometimes works at the fish taverna Mimi as a waiter, but his regular job is fireman. His wife Despina runs a small appartment block above their home just around the corner of the square on the road to Kerami..
When you drive through the woods of Lesvos you can see pavilions dotted about. They look like music stands! This is where the firemen are at hand to be able to deal with any fires. The woods can get very dry and the fir trees burn (resin) very easily.
So be careful with cigarettes!
Just along the harbourfront in the village centre is the shop of the boatbuilder Panagiotis Psaradellis. He is one of the most well known craftsmen of the village he is the master boat builder of the village. He can be seen working there daily, either restoring an old traditional caique or building a new one. he is just a few houses down from the little bakery.
See website of matt barrett on lesvos for more: