Our neighbor Skyros

Skyros on the horizon

Skyros on the horizon


Skyros is mere 60km away but in winter it might as well be an island in the Ionian Sea. The summer connection to Skopelos via the F/B Achilleas connects these two Northern Sporades three times per week making a 2 or 3 day tour possible for people traveling in either direction. The only access to Skyros in winter is via the selfsame Achilleas out of Kymi Evvia. Mid-winter access of Skyros from Skopelos (without F/B Proteus to Mantoudi) requires a boat to Volos, a bus to Chalkida, a bus to Kymi and the ferry to Skyros.

Within the Church of Greece Skyros and Skopelos are linked as they share the same Chalkida (link) based Bishop (Metropolitan). Volos, the center of much of the civil organization of the Northern Sporades, has nothing to do with the island within the Church structure. Volos and the rest of Magnesias is presided over by the “Metropolis of Demetrias (link) and Almyros”.

Due to atmospheric conditions Skyros is invisible to Skopelitan eyes most of the year and “out of sight, out of mind”. Once in a while we are reminded of Skyros’s individuality especially with the arrival of the Achilleas which is owned by the Skyrians. No giant shipping conglomerate (like the Italian Grimaldi Group (link) which owns Hellenic Seaways) has a piece of it. Skyros also exports their hand-built ceramics which are decorated in their unique “Skyrian style”. These are manufactured in many small family workshops around the island.

I won’t mention Skyros’s ancient and now world famous Apokreas tradition of the goatskin clad, bell bonging “Geroi”.

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2 thoughts on “Our neighbor Skyros

  1. ….and the English poet Rupert Brooke who

    ‘…developed sepsis from an infected mosquito bite. He died at 4:46 pm on 23 April 1915, on the French hospital ship, the Duguay-Trouin (named after the famous 17th century privateer, René Duguay-Trouin), moored in a bay off the Greek island of Skyros in the Aegean Sea, while on his way to the landing at Gallipoli. As the expeditionary force had orders to depart immediately, Brooke was buried at 11 pm in an olive grove on Skyros.[1][2][17] The site was chosen by his close friend, William Denis Browne, who wrote of Brooke’s death:[18]

    I sat with Rupert. At 4 o’clock he became weaker, and at 4.46 he died, with the sun shining all round his cabin, and the cool sea-breeze blowing through the door and the shaded windows. No one could have wished for a quieter or a calmer end than in that lovely bay, shielded by the mountains and fragrant with sage and thyme.

  2. Thanks, S
    a friend, an expatriated American living for years on Skyros, was for some time responsible for the upkeep of the Brooke gravesite. What were her exact responsibilities I don’t know. The grave is on the dry and barren “Cycladic” end of the island in the south.

    The northern end of Skyros has the vegetative character of the Sporades but the island’s architecture is generally “flat-roofed” Cycladic. Go figure.

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