The third largest of the Greek Islands, Lesvos (Lesbos) is a place preferred by tourists who want to experience real Greece. A unique Petrified Forrest, medieval castles, lovely beaches, museums, traditional villages, hot springs…all unaffected by the mass tourism and yet so welcoming.
Lesbos residents = Lesbians?
The word “lesbian” originated from Sappho, a lyric poet who lived in Lesbos. Some believed that she was actually a lesbian (true to what the generic meaning of the word is). However, research has proven she got a family and took her own life for a man.
>>read more about Lesbos vs. Lesbians – who’s the real Lesbian?
Located in the northern Aegean Sea, Lesvos (Lesbos) is the third largest Greek island and the eighth largest island in the Mediterranean Sea.
How to get to Lesvos
The best way to get to Lesvos is by Ferry. The island’s harbor, Mytilini, is connected daily with Piraeus (Athens). Several days a week, ferries connect Lesvos to Kavala, Lemnos, Syros and Thessaloniki.
The climate is Mediterranean which makes Lesvos one of the sunniest Greek Islands. Winters are mild and damp, snow is rare. Summer is hot and sunny.
>>more information on Weather in Greece
The Petrified Forest
Declared a Protected Natural Monument, the Petrified Forest contains fossilized plants, remains of the sub-tropical forest which existed on Lesvos 20-15 million years ago. The forest is located in the southwestern part of the island, between Eressos and Sigri.
It formed during Late Oligocene to Lower-Middle Miocene, due to intense volcanic activity. The products of the volcanic activity covered the vegetation and then the fossilization process took place due to right conditions.
The castle of Mytilini is located on the north side of Mytilini city. It’s the largest castle in the eastern Mediterranean. Build during the time of Justinian, used and rebuild by Romans, Venetians, Byzantines and Turks, currently the castle is home to a lot of events during the summer.
The second largest castle on the island is the castle of Molyvos. Built in Byzantines times, currently it’s used to host concerts and other events during the summer.
Beaches and Baths
There are many beaches on the island of Lesvos, which cater for any taste. Some are busy with activity while others are deserted even during summer time.
- Skala Eressos is the best beach on Lesvos. It’s a great place for the families with kids.
- The town beach of Molyvos offers calm waters and sandy beach, as well as a great view of the castle.
- The beaches of Eftalou are covered with pebbles. They are located right near the hot springs.
- The beach at Baloutsas is very wild and hidden. Dare to find the way only if you’ve got a jeep, otherwise you will break your car. It’s located between Anaxos and Skalahori.
- The beach at Campo Antissa is usually empty and of the most secluded beaches on the island. It’s rocky but also has a stretch of soft sand. Here you can find a turtle pond too.
- The beach at Skala Kaloni offers umbrellas, cafes, restaurants, a pretty touristy beach. But you can spend your day with a pelican.
- The beach of Vatera stretches over 7 km (4.34 miles) and although some hotels have been built here, you can find your solitude here.
Spend an entire day at the spas and thermal baths, enjoying the healing springs of Eftalou, Skala Thermi, Thermi on Yera, Karini and Polichnitos (the hottest spring in Europe).
Other things to do
Lesvos is a very big island and is recommended to spend at least a week here in order to experience the true beauty of the place.
If you like to have an active vacation, a very good idea is to rent a bike and cycle around the island, enjoying its flora and fauna while visiting some of the monasteries or traditional villages.