The Agora (Market)
Public Water Fountain
at the Top of the Agora
Captain’s View is in the Middle
The Local Bakery
the final curve approaching the northern tip of the
island of Lesvos and we are presented with an unforgettable
sight that really does take our breath away. Molyvos
(or Mythimna) could be described as one of the most
picturesque villages in all of Greece, if not the Mediterranean.
Lots of gorgeous
stone houses in the hues of greys, pinks, ochres and
siennas dot the hillside under a spectacular medieval
castle which, during the mid summer months, hosts theatres
and concerts. Many of the houses are built in the old
Turkish style with wooden overhanging upper stories
and shutters painted in the traditional colours of maroon
and dark green.
In the distance
the blue mountains of mainland Turkey (6 miles away)
make a magnificent backdrop to the scenic view of Molyvos.
tapers down to a small but busy fishing harbour, full
of colourful caiques, trawlers and tiny local rowing
boats. Numerous tavernas and cafenions (coffee shops)
are situated on the edge of the waterside.
a two kilometre long pebble (and sand) beach, its own
farms and olive groves, and is close to mountain villages
and other attractive sea side and mountain beauty spots.
There are remnants of every era of Greek civilisation:
from the huge ‘Lesvian polygonal’ stone
walls of the Archaic period, Classical and Roman ruins,
Genoese churches and chapels (and the castle), with
many houses (and fountains) built during the Turkish
occupation which lasted for several centuries until
hills are full of bird life, sheep and goat herds; there
are a few old men on donkeys and younger folk on horses
(Lesvos is a great equestrian island). There are plenty
of walks (and serious mountain treks) through the olive
groves and hillsides covered in wild herbs like thyme
and oregano, to forests of chestnuts and walnuts fed
by clear clean mountain streams. One can read ‘On
Foot in the North of Lesvos’ by Mike Maunder http://www.lesvoswalks.net/
available at ‘The Glaros’ (the seagull),
Birgitt’s shop in the harbour (also available
in selected other shops).
everything you need: plenty of shops for groceries and
souvenirs, cafes and restaurants, a few funky late night
bars, banks, currency exchanges, newsagents, internet
cafés, pharmacies and wheel hire of every kind to suit
every wallet - from pedal bikes, scooters, mopeds and
motorbikes to cars of all sizes, even four wheel drive
vehicles. There are regular buses to nearby undeveloped
coastal villages like Avlaki (with excellent tavernas
on the beach), Eftalou (ditto plus a hot springs centre),
Skala Sikaminia and other resorts and towns like Petra,
with its church high on a rock outcrop, and Kalloni,
with its salt pans populated by pink flamingos.
the name "Molyvos" is a relatively recent one, dating
from during the Byzantine period (312 - 1355). The original
name of Mythimna (indeed, this is still its officially
preferred name) dates back to the 9th or 10th century
BCE, and came from one of the five daughters of Makaras
(Mytilene, Mythimna, Issa, Antissa and Arisvi); Mytilene
gave her name, of course, to Lesvos's main town. For
a comprehensive guide to Molyvos, see http://www.molivos.net/.