PYRGOS

PYRGOS

Medieval Santorini comes to life in this lovely village that was characterized as a “protected monument” in 1995. Pyrgos is 7.5 km east of Fira. Famous for its Venetian casteli (castle) and the Good Friday custom involving thousands of lit tin cans, the village is a significant tourist destination outside the Caldera. In Pyrgos there are boutique hotels, luxury villas to rent, cafes, gourmet restaurants, taverns, shops, mini market, bakery, gift shops, gas station and many more. In order to really appreciate the unique atmosphere of Pyrgos, we suggest that you take a walk along the cobblestone narrow streets and go up to the Casteli to enjoy the unobstructed view over the top. The Casteli of Pyrgos, or New Pyrgos, at the foot of Mesa Vouno (Inner Mountain), was one of the five castles built in the 15th century by the Venetians. The structure of the fortified village looked like the one of Skaros in Imerovigli. There was the hub, originally with a tower at its centre, then a church; later a defensive perimeter was formed around it from house walls thick enough to withstand raids. According to records, the original tower was demolished in 1735 to be replaced by the monastery of Aghios Georgios (Saint George). The sole entrance to the castle was bolted at night or in case of danger. The houses had two or three storeys, and ground floors were partly built and partly rock-hewn. Alleys among them were very narrow. As time went by, a neighbourhood the locals called Xeporto (meaning outside the door of the Casteli) was built outside the defensive perimeter.
WALKING AROUND

WALKING AROUND

Walking is a great way to explore both the newest part of the village and the medieval hub. Cycladic houses blend harmoniously with the manors and the few surviving old stores. From the top of the Casteli, the view over the interior of the island is exceptional. Quite a few churches have been built inside the Casteli. The largest –and one of the most significant on the island– is Eisodia tis Theotokou (Presentation of the Virgin Mary) dating back to the 17th century, and one of the oldest is Theotokaki (11th century). A rare small icon of Virgin Mary on her bed, with sheets and pillow, is kept in a locked closet on the chancel screen. At the church of Aghia Triada (Holy Trinity), there is an ecclesiastical museum. Some of the other churches are: Metamorphosi Sotira (Metamorphosis of Jesus), Aghios Ioannis Theologos (Saint John the Theologist), Aghia Theodosia, and the rock-hewn church of Aghios Nikolaos Kisiras (Saint Nicholas) –all built during the 16th and 17th centuries. In 1660, the church of Aghia Ekaterini (Saint Catherine) was built, in 1680, Aghios Georgios (Saint George), and in 1690, Aghios Dimitrios and Taxiarhis Mihail (Archangel Michael). Pyrgos was damaged by the 1956 earthquake; however, some of its churches –estimated to be 33 in total– have been restored. Traditional Pyrgos buildings, dating back to 1895, have been refurbished to create "Santorini of the past”, an interesting representation of the old Santorini.
PYRGOS ECCLESIASTICAL COLLECTION

PYRGOS ECCLESIASTICAL COLLECTION

Aghia Triada (Holy Trinity), who once was a katholikon of a small monastery for women, was ruined and, in the early 1970s, only the northern wall and part of the sanctuary still survived. In 1975 it was restored to house the Pyrgos collection of church relics. It includes holy icons by Cretan and local painters, wood carvings and metalworks, pottery, embroidered items, vestments, liturgical books, and other ecclesiastical objects dated mainly from the 17th and 18th centuries. Significant exhibits include the icon of Aghios Georgios (16th c.), the icon of the Holy Communion, two more icons by the known painter Victor and a Cretan artist. Tel. +30 22860 31812
PROPHET ELIAS

PROPHET ELIAS

In the years between 1711 and 1724, at an altitude of 567 m. above Pyrgos, the male monastery of Profitis (Prophet) Elias was built. The view from this point is fantastic. Few monks live here, and access to females has been allowed since 1853. Apart from the katholikon (main church), you may also visit a museum exhibiting folk and ecclesiastical artifacts, such as traditional tools and furniture, chalices, crosses, and holy relics. In the evening of Holy Saturday, don’t miss the chance to go up to the monastery: Celebrations are traditional, and electricity is not being used.
THE EPITAPH IN PYRGOS

THE EPITAPH IN PYRGOS

The Epitaph (the icon of dead Jesus) procession around Pyrgos on the evening of Good Friday is a ceremony you will never forget. Drop by early to have a cup of coffee at the coffee houses of the village. When time comes, thousands of tins filled with petrol-soaked tow are lit at the Casteli, and the sight is quite extraordinary. The procession goes through the entire village, and the chants of the priests and the locals chanting hymns are deeply emotive. (For detailed information please visit the official web site of the Municipality of Thira )
* Download the iPad application Santorini Pyrgos from the App Store. The application includes detailed information about the medieval castle and the village and it was financed by all the enterprises based in Pyrgos.

Beaches near Pyrgos

  • Kamari
    Visitors from all over the world, umbrellas and sun loungers, sea sports, hotels, cafés and restaurants, beach bars, gift shops: this beach -one of the largest in the Cyclades-, seems to have it all! The black, thin sand feels hot under your feet and the view to the impressive Mesa Vouno, where the Ancient Thira was built, soothes the eyes as you swim. In the evening, when the lights come on, the coastal road becomes an endless stream of people.
  • Kokkini (red) beach
    This fiery beach is a real attraction of the island! The view of the red, almost vertical, volcanic rocks and the small, reddish pebbles will leave you breathless. This volcanic scenery is dotted by white umbrellas and the figures of people coming here with their colorful clothes and accessories to marvel at the wild landscape, take a swim, or rent a canoe or sea bicycle and enjoy the view from the water. Bringing any supplies with you will not be necessary, since there are two small canteens. You can go by boat from Akrotiri, Kamari, or Perissa.
  • Perissa
    This beach is situated in the shadow of the imposing Mesa Vouno, which separates it from Kamari beach. It features fine black sand, sun beds, umbrellas. There are also taverns, cafes, a water park and a diving centre. Early in the morning, trekking fans will climb up the path to this mountain and search for the small church of Profitis (Prophet) EIias to enjoy the breathtaking view.
  • Perivolos
    This is one of the most cosmopolitan beaches of the island. It has black sand and crystal-clear waters. A string of beach bars provide their guests with dreamy beds, rags and large pillows laying on the sand. Apart from coffee, you will find drinks, snacks and food. Young visitors enjoy the loud music and the parties organized on the beach. There are also water sports centres, beach volley courts, restaurants, taverns, café-bars, hotels. An interesting feature is the impressive old tomato-processing plant. In the south part of Perivolos, you will find the quiet beach of Aghios Georgios.
  • Vlyhada
    The white volcanic rocks of Vlyhada have amazing shapes and they are really impressive. The beach has thin, dark sand and small pebbles. It’s really long, so there is room for everyone and it rarely looks crowded. In the middle of the beach, in Eros beach, you will find Theros Wave Bar, member of our Loyalty Club, and one of the best beach bars in the Mediterranean. The impressive chimneys you will notice in the small fishing port of Vlychada, belong to Nomikos tomato-processing plant –today Santorini Arts Factory. Above the small port there are a few taverns serving fresh fish.

Contact Us

Pyrgos - Santorini / Tel.: +30 22860 82285 / Mob.: +30 6986 813190 / E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.