Aegina Island Pictures (Greece, Saronic Islands)

Aegina island pictures depict the island of Aegina located in the center of the Saronic Gulf, surrounded by Agistri, Methana, Troizina, Poros, and the coasts of mainland Attica is the second-largest island in size, population, and development island of Argosaronic. It is a welcoming island that is only 1 hour and 15 minutes away from Piraeus by ferryboat and only 35 minutes by “flying dolphin.” The municipality of Aegina consists of the island of Aegina and a few offshore islets. It is part of the Islands regional unit, the Attica region. The municipality is subdivided into the following five communities Kypseli, Mesagros, Perdika, Vathy. The capital is the town of Aegina, situated at the northwestern end of the island. Due to its proximity to Athens, it is a popular vacation place during the summer months, with several Athenians owning second houses on the island. Aegina island pictures
View of the harbor of Aegina
Aegina attracts many people because of its proximity to Athens, making tourism the most important local economic activity in recent decades.  Moreover, religious tourism is increased due to the famous Saint Nektarios Monastery and archaeological tourism due to the Aphaia temple and the Byzantine monuments.
Aegina island pictures
A romantic ride with a one-horse carriage in Aegina harbor
Aegina island pictures  
The church of Saint Nikolaos is one of the first pictures you get when you reach the island of Aegina by boat. Located in the harbor, it was built in the 17th century.

 

Aegina island pictures (Mythology)

In Greek mythologyAegina was the daughter of the river god Aesopus and the nymph Metope. She bore at least two children: Menoetius by Actor and Aeacus by the god Zeus. When Zeus abducted Aegina, he took her to Oenone, an island close to Attica. Here, Aegina gave birth to Aeacus, who would later become king of Oenone; thenceforth, the island’s name was Aegina. Aegina was the gathering place of Myrmidons; in Aegina, they gathered and trained. Zeus needed an elite army and at first thought that Aegina, which did not have any villagers, was a good place. He changed some ants (Ancient Greek: Myrmigia) into warriors who had six hands and wore black armor. Later, the Myrmidons, commanded by Achilles, were known as the most fearsome fighting unit in Greece.
Aegina island pictures  
Picturesque alley in Aegina
After the division of the Roman Empire in 395, Aegina belonged to the East Roman (Byzantine) Empire. It remained Eastern Roman during the period of crisis of the 7th–8th centuries when Slavic invasions overran most of the Balkans and the Greek mainland. Indeed, according to the Chronicle of Monemvasia, the island served as a refuge for the Corinthians fleeing these incursions.  As evidenced by church construction activity, the island flourished during the early 9th century but suffered greatly from Arab raids originating from Crete. Various hagiographies record a large-scale raid c. 830 that resulted in the flight of much of the population to the Greek mainland. During that time, some of the population sought refuge in the island’s hinterland, establishing the settlement of Palaia Chora.
Neoclassical building  
Neoclassical building in Aigina
According to the 12th-century bishop of Athens, Michael Choniates, the island had become a base for pirates by his time. This is corroborated by Benedict of Peterborough’s graphic account of Greece. In 1191, he stated that many of the islands were uninhabited for fear of pirates and that Aegina, along with Salamis and Makronisos, were their strongholds.  After the dissolution and partition of the Byzantine Empire by the Fourth Crusade in 1204, Aegina was accorded to the Republic of Venice. In the event, it became controlled by the Duchy of Athens. The Catalan Company seized control of Athens, and with it Aegina, in 1317, and in 1425 the island became controlled by the Venetians, when Alioto Caopena, at that time ruler of Aegina, placed himself by treaty under the Republic’s protection to escape the danger of a Turkish raid. The island must then have been fruitful, for one of the conditions by which Venice accorded him protection was that he should supply grain to Venetian colonies. He agreed to surrender the island to Venice if his family became extinct. Antonio II Acciaioli opposed the treaty, for one of his adopted daughters had married the future lord of Aegina, Antonello Caopena.  In 1451, Aegina became Venetian. The islanders welcomed Venetian rule; the claims of Antonello’s uncle Arnà, who had landed in Argolis, were satisfied by a pension. A Venetian governor (rettore) was appointed, who was dependent on the authorities of Nauplia. After Arnà’s death, his son Alioto renewed his claim to the island but was told that the republic was resolved to keep it. He and his family were pensioned, and one of them aided in defense of Aegina against the Turks in 1537, was captured with his family, and died in a Turkish dungeon.  In 1451, Aegina became Venetian. The islanders welcomed Venetian rule; the claims of Antonello’s uncle Arnà, who had landed in Argolis, were satisfied by a pension. A Venetian governor (rettore) was appointed, who was dependent on the authorities of Nauplia. After Arnà’s death, his son Alioto renewed his claim to the island but was told that the republic was resolved to keep it. He and his family were pensioned, and one of them aided in defense of Aegina against the Turks in 1537, was captured with his family, and died in a Turkish dungeon.  In 1463 the Turco-Venetian war began, destined to cost the Venetians Negroponte (Euboea), the island of Lemnos, most of the Cyclades islands, Scuderia, and their colonies in the Morea. Peace was concluded in 1479. Venice still retained Aegina, Lepanto (Naupactus), Nauplia, Monemvasia, ModonNavarinoCoron, and the islands Crete, Mykonos, and Tinos. Aegina remained subject to Nauplia.  During the early part of the Ottoman–Venetian War of 1714–1718, the Ottoman Fleet commanded by Canum Hoca captured Aegina. Ottoman’s rule in Aegina and the Morea was resumed and confirmed by the Treaty of Passarowitz. They retained control of the island except for a brief Russian occupation Orlov Revolt (the early 1770s) until the Greek War of Independence in 1821.  During the Greek War of Independence, Aegina became an administrative center for the Greek revolutionary authorities. Ioannis Kapodistrias was briefly established here.

Aegina island pictures (RELIGIOUS MONUMENTS)

The imposing Monastery of Saint Nektarios, along with the oversized holy temple, is about 6 km from the city of Aegina. Saint Nektarios of Aegina  (1 October 1846–8 November 1920, a recent saint of the Greek Orthodox Church) Metropolitan of Pentapolis and Wonderworker of Aegina, was officially recognized as a Saint by the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople in 1961. His Feast Day is celebrated every year on 9 November.
Aegina island pictures  
The Holy Monastery of Saint Nektarios
 
St. Nektarios died on November 8, 1920, at the age of 74. His body was taken to the Holy Trinity Convent, where he was buried by his best friend St Savvas of Kalymnos, who later painted the first icon of St. Nectarios. The funeral of St. Nectarios was attended by multitudes of people from all parts of Greece and Egypt.  The monastery houses the Saint’s grave, while his sacred relics are kept in the church of the monastery. Thousands of pilgrims visited the monastery of Saint Nektarios throughout the year.

Palaiochora

Continuing the road to Saint Nektarios,  and a few kilometers further, we meet the hill of Palaiochora, located on the hill behind and sloping from the Monastery of Saint Nektarios. This old city resembles Mistra with many churches and ruins of houses. The Aeginites built Palaiochora to guard against the raids of the Saracens pirates and, for many centuries, became the capital of the island. Οnce had 366 churches (one for each day of the year) and 800 houses. Today, only 38 royal churches are preserved, some of which are in good standing, worth visiting for their history and the frescoes preserved to this day. We mention some of them such as Episkopi – Saint Dionysios (vaulted basilica with magnificent frescoes built into the rock. Here you will see the cell in which he lived for 1576-1579 and the locals’ affectionate inscription of love for Saint Dionysios), Metamorphosis (all the frescoes and iconostasis are preserved) and Saint Kiriaki (double basilica with exquisite frescoes that constituted the center of Palaiochora from the 17th century until 1830).

Aegina Island Pictures (Metropolis)

The metropolis of Aegina is located in the center of Aegina and was built in 1806. It is the first cathedral of Free Greece. It is a church dedicated to the Virgin’s Assumption, Saint Dionysius, and Saint John the Theologian.
Aegina island pictures  
The metropolis of Aegina
On January 11, 1828, the Aegean υποδέχτηκαν received the governor of Kapodistrias at the Cathedral, and a few days later, on January 28, the oath of office of Kapodistrias as the first Governor of the Greek State took place. There are many historical relics in the Cathedral, a marble iconostasis, frescoes, wall paintings, and the wooden stables of Governor Ioannis Kapodistrias, which is still preserved across the Despotic Throne.

Aegina island pictures (ARCHAEOLOGICAL SITES – Museums)

Aegina island pictures (Archaeological Museum)

The Aegina Archaeological Museum is located in Kolona Aegina. It was founded in 1828 or 1829 by Ioannis Kapodistrias, and it is housed in a privately owned building donated by Bavarian archaeologists. It has been housed in Kolona since 1981. It hosts ancient jewelry, pottery, sculpture, coins, weapons, and bronze statues with important vessels.
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The cape took the name “Kolona” from Venetian sailors, who used the columns of the Doric temple of Apollo as a guide. There successively developed a highly significant fortified Prehistoric settlement at the site, the Archaic-Hellenistic acropolis, the sanctuary of Apollo, and then a Byzantine settlement.
Archaeological site of Kolona  
The archaeological site of Kolona
Today the building housing the Museum has three rooms, mainly exhibiting findings from the temple of Athena Aphaia, the statue of Hercules, coming from the temple of Apollo, and the Aegina Sphinx, which comes from the same area. (Sanctuary of Apollo in the island of Kolona on the island) and was discovered during excavations in the area of Kolona in 1903.
At the entrance of the port stands the Kolona the only remain of the Doric temple of Apollo (6th c. BC)  
At the port, entrance stands the Kolona, the only remain of the Doric temple of Apollo.
The Museum also represents a pre-Hellenic two-story dwelling, the copper foundry, pottery, archaeological finds from the 7th to the 5th BC. Century, as well as fragments of the pediments of the temples of Athena Aphaia and Apollo.  Also exhibited are vessels from the Cyclades and Crete – an example of the strong trade links between these areas and Aegina – objects of daily life and tools.
The ruins of the Temple of Apollo.  
The ruins of the Temple of Apollo.
The ruins of the Temple of Apollo.  
The archaeological site of Kolona
The Museum is open all year round (in the winter from 08: 30- 15: 00 and in the summer from 09: 00 to 16: 00), and is closed on Monday week.
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Aegina island pictures (Temple of Aphaia)

The Temple of Aphaia is located within a sanctuary complex dedicated to the goddess Aphaia on the Greek island of Aigina, which lies in the Saronic Gulf. Formerly known as the Temple of Jupiter Panhellenius, the great Doric temple is now recognized as dedicated to the mother-goddess Aphaia. It was a favorite of neoclassical and romantic artists such as J. M. W. Turner. It stands on a c. 160 m peak on the eastern side of the island approximately 13 km east by road from the main port. Aphaia was a greek goddess who was worshipped exclusively at this sanctuary. The extant temple of c. 500 BC was built over the remains of an earlier temple of c. 570 BC, which was destroyed by fire c. 510 BC. The elements of this destroyed temple were buried in the infill for the larger, flat terrace of the later temple and are thus well preserved. Abundant traces of paint remain on many of these buried fragments. There may have been another temple in the 7th century BC, also located on the same site, but it is thought to have been much smaller and simpler in terms of both plan and execution. Significant quantities of Late Bronze Age figurines have been discovered at the site, including proportionally large numbers of female figurines (kourotrophoi), indicating – perhaps – that cult activity at the site was continuous from the 14th century BC, suggesting a Minoan connection for the cult. The last temple is an unusual plan and is also significant for its pedimental sculptures, which are thought to illustrate the change from Archaic to Early Classical technique. These sculptures are on display in Munich’s Glyptothek, with several fragments located in the museums at Aegina and on the site itself.

Temple of Zeus Hellanios

The Temple of Zeus Hellanios, near the village of Pachia Rachi, is a 13th-century Byzantine church built on the ruins of the ancient temple to Zeus Hellanios, built in the 4th century BC. The staircase leading up to the church, some of the original walls, and loose stones from the earlier temple remain.

Historical and Folklore Museum of Aegina

Housed in a neoclassic building of 1828, the donation of Polymnia Irioti. On the first floor, there is the Aeginetian house with antique furniture, paintings, urban traditional costumes, ornaments, manuscripts, documents, and the library of Panagi Irioti.
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The ground floor houses the Fisherman house, a domed with fishing equipment sponges, diving boats, fishing boat replicas, and the village house with contemporary everyday items, textile items, agricultural tools, and pistachio nut processing equipment.

Tower of Markellos

According to tradition, the tower was built around 1802 by Spyros Markellos, a member of the Greek Parliament and one of Aegina’s leaders during the Greek War of Independence (1821-1829). However, the architectural style of the building could lead to the conclusion that it was, in fact, build around the end of the 17th century forming part of the fortifications erected by Francesco Morozini during the period of the second Venetian occupation of Aegina (1687-1715).
The Venetian era Markellos tower  
The Venetian era Markellos tower
In 1826-1827 the tower served as a state building where government meetings were held. During Ioannis Kapodistrias, Aegina was the first capital city of modern Greece (1828-1829). The tower housed the state offices of various members of the Cabinet and the temporary Governor of Aegina Andreas Giannitsis.
Aegina island pictures  
Οne of the first pictures the visitor will see in Aegina is a huge anchor. The anchor of Aegina was submerged in the port of Aegina.
Monument of the American Philhellenic Samuel Gridley Howe in Aegina.  
Monument of the American Philhellenic Samuel Gridley Howe in Aegina.
Dr. Samuel Gridley Howe, the humanitarian doctor who offered his medical services and fought alongside the fighters of the Greek Revolution of 1821.
Aegina island pictures
Aegina island pictures
   

Aegina island pictures (Food Delicacies)

The famous pistachios of Aegina

In 1896 physician Nicholas Peroglou began the systematic cultivation of pistachio, which soon became popular with the inhabitants of the island. Since the 1950s, pistachio cultivation has largely displaced the rest of the agricultural activity due to its large profits and the phylloxera that threatened the vines. It is estimated that its pistachios cover 29,000 acres while the total production reaches 2,700 tons per year. In the last few years, in mid-September, the Fistiki Fest Festival is organized every year with the name “Fistiki Fest.”
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So do not miss the famous pistachios of Aegina, either fresh or roasted, whether salted or not used in halva nougat pies or spoon sweets.
  
pistachios of Aegina
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Aegina Island Pictures (BEACHES)

Famous beaches of the island are Agia Marina, Marathon, Perdika, and Souvala.  The sandy Agia Marina within 15klm from the port is the most famous and organized beach on the island with beach bars and taverns. It is the busiest spot for Aegina. The crystal waters, the vast sandy beach with the pine forest attract large numbers of tourists.
Aegina island pictures  
Picturesque taverns near the beach
Perdika is a small traditional fishing village with a wonderful view of the little island of Moni. Souvala is a coastal village and port. It is a tourist center of the Aigina thanks to its beautiful beach and medicinal springs. Also, Aiginitissa is a closed bay with eucalyptus trees.  Kolona is the municipal beach of the town.  You can also enjoy swimming in Panagitsa, in the waters of Faros, or on the beaches of Mikros Marathonas and Megalos Marathonas with their shallow and crystal clear waters.     LINKS https://www.lonelyplanet.com/greece/aegina https://www.forbes.com/sites/laurabegleybloom/2018/05/24/best-of-greece-secret-spots-where-the-locals-go/#1bfd3d9d25b7
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