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Armacao Hotel, Porto de Galinhas
Armacao Hotel right on the breathtakingly beautiful sandy beach in Porto de Galinhas in the Pernambuco region of Brazil. A 4 star Porto de Galinhas hotel close to the stunning natural swimming pools in the Porto de Galinhas fishing village. ...
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Roca Nivaria Hotel, Adeje
Roca Nivaria Hotel is in the area of in Playa Paraiso in Adeje on the west coast of Tenerife, Spain. A 5 star Adeje hotel amidst lush and extensive gardens with subtropical plants, fountains, waterfalls and pools with breathtaking views of the Ocean. ...
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Amara Singapore
Situated in the hub of the bustling business, shopping and entertainment districts of Singapore, The Amara Singapore Hotel a stones throw away from the legendary Singapore Chinatown and within walking distance of Orchard Road, Marina Square, Suntec City and The Esplanade. ...
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You are in:  Top  →  Europe  →  GREECE  →  N. E. Aegean Islands  →  IKARIA


Ikaria is a majestic island of the Eastern Aegean Sea and home of the mythical Ikaros.

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Here you will find wild beauty, breathtaking panoramas, clean mountain air,Therapeutic hot springs, truly unspoiled seas and friendly people. A rarity amongst the islands, Ikaria has remained true to herself and to the ways of her people - the Ikarians.

Icaria, in classical antiquity, is a member of the Anatolian Sporades, and is part of the same mountain range, which connected Samos to Asia Minor. Icaria has nearly an unbroken coastline and is without adequate ports. The sea around Icaria, the Icarian Pelagos, was known to Homer (Iliad 2. 145) as one of the most turbulent areas of the Aegean. The Icarian Sea is especially tempestuous in July and August during the meltemi season because the island, situated without a protective barrier to the north, has no buffer from these northeasterly gales known as Etesian in antiquity.

The sources for the history of ancient Icaria consist of random references in ancient authors such as Thucydides, Herodotus, Strabo, Pausanias, Athenaeus, Pliny, and a handful of inscriptions. Eparchides, a native of Oenoe, wrote a history of Icaria about 350 BC. We assume that he provided a capsule history of the island, but the main purpose of his work seems to have been to promote Icarian wine. Only several fragments of Eparchides' history survive.

Sometime in the 6th century BC the island was absorbed by Samos and became part of Polycrates Sea Empire. It was perhaps at this time that the temple of Artemis at Nas, on the corner of the island was built. It seems that Nas was a sacred spot to the pre-Greek inhabitants of the Aegean, and an important port in the Aegean, the last stop before testing the dangerous Icarian Pelasgian. It was an appropriate place for sailors to make sacrifices to Artemis, who among other functions, was a patron of seafarers.

Therma, apparently did not share in the great wine industry, and apparently had little to do with Oenoe. There are no records that the two Icarian cities had much contact. This division is reflected in the modern period when in 1912 the two sections of the island almost went to war with one another to determine the site of the capital. Therma's prosperity seems to have been based on its thermal springs, which even then were considered highly beneficial.

Daedalus was a highly respected and talented Athenian artisan descendent from the royal family of Cecrops, the mythical first king of Athens. He was known for his skill as an architect, sculpture, and inventor, and he produced many famous works. Despite his self-confidence, Daedalus once committed a crime of envy against Talus, his nephew and apprentice. Talus, who seemed destined to become as great an artisan as his uncle Daedalus, was inspired one day to invent the saw after having seen the way a snake used its jaws. Daedalus, momentarily stricken with jealousy, threw Talus off of the Acropolis. For this crime, Daedalus was exiled to Crete and placed in the service of King Minos, where he eventually had a son, Icarus, with the beautiful Naucrate, a mistress-slave of the King. Minos called Daedalus to build the famous Labyrinth in order to imprison the dreaded Minotaur. The Minotaur was a monster with the head of a bull and the body of a man. He was the son of Pasiphae, the wife of Minos, and a bull that Poseidon had sent to Minos as a gift. Minos was shamed by the birth of this horrible creature and resolved to imprison the Minotaur in the Labyrinth where it fed on humans, which were taken as "tribute" by Minos and sacrificed to the Minotaur in memory of his fallen son Androgeos.

Theseus, the heroic King of Athens, volunteered himself to be sent to the Minotaur in the hopes of killing the beast and ending the "human tribute" that his city was forced to pay Minos. When Theseus arrived to Crete, Ariadne, Minos's daughter fell in love with him and wished to help him survive the Minotaur. Daedalus revealed the mystery of the Labyrinth to Ariadne who in turn advised Theseus, thus enabling him to slay the Minotaur and from the Labyrinth. When Minos found out what Daedalus had done he was so enraged that he imprisoned Daedalus and Icarus in the Labyrinth themselves. Daedalus conceived to escape from the Labyrinth with Icarus from Crete by constructing wings and then flying to safety. He built the wings from feathers and wax, and before the two set off he warned Icarus not to fly too low lest his wings touch the waves and get wet and not too high lest the sun melt the wax. But the young Icarus, overwhelmed by the thrill of flying, did not heed his father's warning, and flew too close to the sun whereupon the wax in his wings melted and he fell into the sea. Daedalus escaped to Sicily and Icarus' body was carried ashore by the current to an island then without a name. Heracles came across the body and recognized it, giving it burial where today there still stands a small rock promontory jutting out into the Aegean Sea, and naming the island and the sea around it after the fallen Icarus. Ancient Therma Built during the Hellenistic Period, the ruined walls of Roman baths situated at Ancient Therma are all that remain of the once prosperous Ikarian city that thrived as a result of the visitors who came to bath in its therapeutic hot mineral springs. Ancient Therma ceased to exist after a devastating earthquake hit the city circa 205 BC. Via snorkeling one can still see the underwater remains of the city where it slid into the sea just offshore from the Roman baths. Access to the site is via a footpath marked with green leading from the back of the Agriolycos Pension in Therma. There is a cave on this path that was used as a hiding spot by Ikarians in past times of danger. Walking further along the path brings one to a place on the coast where the hot mineral water flows into the sea, affording the opportunity to bath in it. All in all a worth while excursion.

The sixth century BC temple of Artemis at Nas was built by the Ikarians to honor the mother goddess Artemis, patroness of sailors and protector of hunters and wild animals. Nas was probably the first settled area of Ikaria and throughout antiquity its safe anchorage was an important staging point for sea traffic sailing to Asia Minor. Around 1830 local Ikarian villagers melted down most of the temple's stone blocks in order to build a church.Legend has it that the ancient temple's statue of Artemis is buried somewhere in the river. Snorkelling just off the coast one can see the massive columns of the temple. The pier of the ancient port and the floor of the sanctuary still survive, as does the beautiful setting and beach.

Archeological museum of Agios Kirikos Located in the capital of Ikaria, the Agios Kirikos Archeological Museum contains over 200 items dating as far back as the Classical Period. Items include column fragments, well preserved amphorae, clay vessels, tools, weapons, personal items and the impressive fifth century BC funerary stele pictured on the left. Open daily from 10:00 am to 3:00 pm except Monday and Thursday.

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