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Samos

Travel Guide Europe Greece North Aegean Samos

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Introduction

Samos is an island in the North Aegean Sea, north of Patmos and south of Chios and close to the coastline of Turkey near Kusadasi.

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Cities

  • Vathi is the island's main city and lies on the northeast Samos. Here lives approximately 12,000 inhabitants. From the harbor depart small and large boats to other Greek islands and to Athens and Turkey.
  • Karlovassi is the second largest city, it lies in a valley between Kerkis mountain in west and Karvouni mountain in the east. The area has approximately 6,000 inhabitants and is a lively commercial center where people from all over the island come for shopping.
  • Pythagorion on the south coast near the airport, is an established resort town, which consists of many hotels, restaurants and bars. From the harbor boats are leaving to other nearby Greek islands and Turkey.

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Sights and Activities

  • nightingale valley - A lush oasis on the north side of Samos where the nightingale is said to sing early in the morning. Not only the nightingale, but also other small birds thrive here.
  • St John Monastery - St Johns monastery sits like a crown up on the mountain and resembles a Byzantine castle. The monastery is situated above the town of Chora and was founded in 1088
  • Cave of the Apocalypse - On the way up to St John's monastery lies the holy cave. It is said that St John lived here for two years when he was sent to the island in exile. Here he was to have heard God's voice and written the work Johannes apocalypse, the last book in the Bible, perhaps better known as Johannes Revelation.
  • Mansion Simantiri - An old manor house built in 1625 by artisans from Smyrna, now used as a folklore museum. You will find furniture and paintings from the 1700s.
  • Artemis Temple "Tavropolio" - Artemis temple was built in the sixth century BC It was built to honor the goddess Artemis, the hunting, forest and wild animal goddess. The pier below the Temple was an important staging post for travel on to minor Asia. Today you see only parts of the floor and pillars from the ancient temple.
  • Drakano fortress - Drakano Fortress has one of the best preserved examples of Athenian military guard towers from the Hellenistic period. Drakano and its forts were built at Alexander the Great's time in the 300-BC The tower served as a vantage point for boat traffic in the Aegean Sea between Ikaria and Samos.

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Weather

Samos has a Mediterranean climate with dry and warm summers, and mild but wet winters. Temperatures during summer are mostly around 30 °C with balmy nights. Winters see highs of around 15 °C. Most of the annual 750mm of rain falls from November to March.

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Getting There

By Plane

Samos International Airport (SMI) offers a wide range of flights. Destinations are mainly served seasonal (April to October) and include Athens, Berlin, Düsseldorf, Hamburg, Frankfurt, Munich, Stuttgart, Zürich, Vienna, Milan, Verona, Brussels, Rhodes, Thessaloniki, Heraklion, London, Manchester and Amsterdam. Only Greek destinations have year-round flights.

By Boat

Vathi is the main port and the other two ports are Karlovassi and Pithagorion. Ferries from Piraeus and and the Cyclades usually stop at both Vathi and Karlovassi. There's an overnight ferry, from Piraeus, Syros, Mykonos and Ikaria. Hydrofoils to the Dodecanese islands depart regularly from both Vathi and Pithagorion and there are also connections with all the islands of the North Aegean and the Dodecanese islands once a week through the shipping route from Alexandroupoli to Rhodes. Finally, there are also connections to Kusadasi in Turkey taking around 2 hours and costing € 35 one-way. Ferries depart at 8:30am and 5:30Ppm. During low season, there are fewer connections.

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Sleep

PropertyAddressTypePopularity
Aria Hotel8, Ioannou Lekati Street, Vathi - SamosHotel-
Paradise Hotel - Samos21 Kanari Str., Samos TownHotel-
Samaina Inn HotelPort of Karlovassi, Samos IslandHotel-
Samaina MaisonettesPort of Karlovassi, Samos IslandHotel-
Samos HotelThem. Sofouli Street 11 North AegeanHotel93
Virginia HotelVlamaris 39 Vlamaris str. 3Hotel-
Stratos HotelPythagorion SamosHotel-
Samos Bay HotelGagou BeachHOTEL-
Karras Star IkariaAvlakiHotel-
Hotel MeropeDimarhou Kiriakou Karlovasi SamosHOTEL60
Proteas Blu Resort-SamosPythagorio City, Samos IslandHOTEL-
Sirene Beach Hotel - IxiaKritika, Ixia BeachHOTEL-
Emily hotelGrammou & November 11thApartment-

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Keep Connected

Internet

Internet access is widely available throughout the country. Almost all hotels provide internet access, either free or paid. Local coffee shops usually offer free Wi-Fi access, as many other public places do. Feel free to ask for the password, if the network is locked. Internet cafes however tend to be expensive, about €1.5-2 per hour.

Phone

See also: International Telephone Calls

The cheapest way to call someone abroad is to use a pre-paid calling card and call from a land line anywhere (also from your hotel room). Pre-paid calling cards are sold in many shops and kiosks. The calling card is not much more than a phone number and a pin code, which you dial prior to dialing the usual phone number. If you want to call internationally, ask for an international calling card. For one euro you can call for about 45 minutes, so buy a card in the cheapest value (which is about €3). Calling someone for half an hour is cheaper than sending one email from an internet café. Cards expire usually 90 days after first use. You can also use this pre-paid calling card at public phone boxes, which are widely available.

Mobile phones are prevalent in Greek's communication, and if you need to talk with your co-travelers it is advised that you buy a local prepaid plan instead of using roaming, as it is far cheaper. There are at least three mobile carriers, Cosmote, Wind and Vodafone all of which require by law presenting some form of identification in order to activate your prepaid plan. Choose whichever has better reception in your area, keeping in mind that GSM 900, GSM 1800 and UMTS 2100 bands are supported. Data usage is cheap, costing about €3 per 100 MB. Ask the mobile carrier for more information.

Post

Hellenic Post is the Greek postal service. On their website you find more information about options to send letters, postcards and parcels and there is a search function regarding post offices and post boxes. It also has information on services like paying bills, transferring money, financial products etc. Greek post codes are five digits long and are usually written as follows; 123 45. The first three digits are used to identify the city, municipality or prefecture, for example the digits between 100 and 180 relate to the city of Athens. The last two digits identify a street or part of a street. Most post offices are open Monday to Friday from 07:30-14:00, although the largers ones usually have longer opening hours. For sending packages, you can also use international courier services like DHL, UPS or TNT.

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This is version 18. Last edited at 14:12 on Sep 17, 14 by Utrecht. 5 articles link to this page.

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