Exploring the Northern Cyclades
5th May 2016
Following on from last week’s blog, which focussed on the Southern Cyclades itineraries, this week’s blog from Star Clippers will focus on the Northern Cyclades itineraries. Located in the southern region of the Aegean Sea, this archipelago consists of 2,200 islands, of which, only 33 are inhabited.
Both the Northern and Southern Cyclades itineraries sail out of Athens before docking in a range of Turkish destinations and Greek islands. Over the course of seven nights, you will have the opportunity to visit fascinating landmarks, charming cities and beautiful beaches. This week, we take a closer look at some of the island destinations you can experience during this very special itinerary.
After getting a taste of Greece in Athens and soaking up the sun in the Turkish port of Kusadasi, the Star Clipper will reach the first Greek island destination of Patmos. This Dodecanese Island is also known as ‘The Island of Revelation’ and became particularly well known after Freidrich Holderlin’s 1802 poem “Patmos”.
As well as its beaches, this small island is also regarded for its abundance of Eastern Orthodox churches. In 1999, the islands historical centre, along with the Monastery of Saint John the Theologian and the Cave of the Apocalypse, were given UNESCO World Heritage status. It is thought that Patmos was where St John the Theologian wrote both his gospel and the Book of Apocalypse and these three sites each provide an insight into his life.
Amorgos is one of two Cyclades island destinations you will visit over the course of this seven-night cruise. The island is renowned for its beaches and nightlife scene, which attracts visitors from across Europe and beyond. Many of these beaches are ideal for snorkelling, especially considering you can weave in and out of the boulders that have fallen from the cliffs.
Speaking of cliffs, the island’s most distinctive and impressive landmark is undoubtedly the Monastery of Chozoviotissa. This mesmerising, glistening white structure was built into the side of the cliff and the view from the terrace will take your breath away. Today, this 50-room monastery is only home to a few monks, but they may be among the luckiest on earth.
Mykonos is one of the most well-known and cosmopolitan of the Greek islands and is also the second Cyclades Island visited during this itinerary. Like the other two islands mentioned above, Mykonos is home to some beautiful beaches but there are many more on offer depending on which part of the island you are visiting.
Culturally, Mykonos Town is well worth a visit. Although it may be one of the busiest towns in the Aegean and is now home to a wide range of stylish bars and restaurants, it has managed to maintain its traditional Cycladic architectural style due to strict building regulations.
The small nearby island of Delos is also worth visiting if you get the chance. This uninhabited island is said to be the birthplace of Apollo and was once the site of the Delian games. Many of the venues remain on the island today, which has played a helping hand in obtaining UNESCO World Heritage status.
As well as exotic islands of the East and West Mediterranean, Star Clippers can also take you to a range of stunning islands in the Caribbean and Far East Asia. Unlike other cruise lines, Star Clippers provide an opportunity to elegantly sail across the seas of the world in peace and tranquility.