Area: 41 sq. Km
is almost circular. There is the caldera of an extinct
volcano, which diameter is 4 km, in the interior. The vulcanic
activity is only just dormant, since there are hot sulphurous
springs still rising from the earth. On the hill above the
village Mandraki (with about 1.000 inhabitants) is the ancient
Acropolis (relatively well preserved walls) and the ruins of a
castle of the Knights. Near by is the subterranean Monastery
Panagia Spilani (1600) with a valuable library.
still goes on between those who believe that there was an
ancient greek city on Saria called Nissyros, and those who
oppose it claiming there is not enough evidence supporting the
existence of any ancient city during the antiquity on the
ancient greek habitation on the island however can still be
seen at the Palatia area as well as at the area of Argos.
Ancient graves have also been excavated, and the island does
not seem to be an exhausted place for treasure hunting. It is
a common secret that yatchts with divers come to the ilsand
even during the winter, plundering land and sea, taking away
the last archeological evidence that might one day lead to the
unveiling of Saria's archeological secrets.
Saria today has two inhabitants (two shepherds). Most of the
land belongs to Elympites (inhabitants of the Elympos village
on Karpathos). In older times they used to bring their flocks
from Karpathos to Saria by swimming the narrow (100m) and not
so deep strait (1,5m) bettween the two islands.
Elympites shepherds migratory routes are today walked by
hikers only. Except for the strait passage which they cross by
a tourist boat, tourists come to Saria to see the Palatia
(which means palaces in greek).
built in about the 9th and 10th centuries C.E. by the pirates
who raided the mediterranean. They are weird structures of an
architecture unusual to the area. Similar structures are to be
found in Caria in Asia Minor.
of Agia Sophia, at the anchorage near the Palatia, does not
catch anyone's attention. But the Elympites have a lot of
impressive descriptions and stories to tell about its glorious
past they are proud of. They say in the chapel's place once
stood a rich big church which had one hundred gates and one
hundred bells, that were later stolen little by little by the
part of this legendary old church is still to be seen today.
Just to the east of the chapel, are laying three rows of the
seat-steps of the church's apse, where the clergy used to be
sitting in early byzantine basilicas.
>> Dodecanese Islands : Astypalea,
Halki, Kalymnos, Karpathos,
Leros, Lipsi, Nisyros, Patmos, Rhodes, Symi,