A cave for short people
Kids and short people, if not claustrophobic of course, will have more fun than others in the relatively unknown Aladinou Cave, near the Aladinou village of middle Andros.
The cave is not very big and the stalactites /-gmites are not too impressive, but the available spaces for exploring it are rather short, hence kids move around more easily (they should not venture out of sight unsupervised, though!).
For safety and comfort the cave-man(ager) provides helmets and torches.
As in most caves, on hot summer days a visit there can be refreshing. The nearby Aladinou village is pretty (see Andros' prettiest arched bridge there) though it doesn't feature (to my knowledge) a cafe or restaurant or other refreshment point.
In summer 2011 the opening hours were 11am to 5pm on certain days. Please make sure to update info before you go there.
It is a five-minute drive from the town (Chora) of Andros and a bit more than half an hour from Gavrio port. Closest villages along the main island route are Vakoni and Mesaria, there is a slip road off the Mesaria bypass.
- Hiking and Walking
- Road Trip
- Family Travel
While I was searching in depth information about Andros, I learned that in the northern part of Andros ten villages were populated by Arvanites. At the same time, I learned that Arvanites were of Albanian origin (mostly Christian orthodox) and were commissioned by the Byzantines to settle in regions that had been depopulated for various reasons. These migrations occurred during the XIVth to the 17th century. Though culturally assimilated to ethnic Greeks, they mostly kept their language, Arvanite, until very recently and all spoke the two languages. Arvanite is a distinct dialect from Tosk, the Albanian language spoken in Southern Albania. During the past 10-15 years, Arvanite language has been abandoned by the younger generation. In many areas of eastern continental Greece, Arvanites were the majority of the population and many villages were completely Arvanites.
Several Greek heroes of the war of independence were Arvanites. Among others, I will mention Botzaris, defender of Missolonghi (a metro station in Paris is named after him), the Bouboulina, a woman that lead her own troops and took Nafplion, Monemvasia and Pylos, etc… Several Prime Ministers of Greece were Arvanites.
More on Arvanites on the following link:
More on the recent evolution of the language (in French)
- Arts and Culture
Ahla, a beautiful beach
I was shocked the first time I saw this beach! After a hard drive for about 10km of dirt road (the jeep did his job!) we saw this picturesque golden sand line next to blue green waters. Nothing around but the small church Saint Nicholas where some romantic couple choose to get married. If you have a car it's really worth try visit this beach.
From Hora drive northwest to Apoikia and from there to Bourkoti village (13km from Hora). There you have to turn into the dirt road that will lead you to the beach.
Ateni is somehow a discontiguous village (there is everywhere a church, even at the smallest villages. It is said that churches -and donkeys- are more than people in cycladic islands, it seems to be true!). There are also many other such villages in Andros, all of them worth a visit!
- Religious Travel