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Mytilene

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Mytilene (Μυτιλήνη; also written Mitilini) is the main port and capital of Lesvos.

Understand

Mytilene is one of the oldest cities in the world, probably inhabited since the 10th century BC. Ancient Mytilene was an islet, just to the east off the coast of Lesvos, where now the medieval castle stands, separated from the larger island by the channel of Euripus, which connected the north harbour (also called the "old harbour") and the south harbour (also called the "new harbour"). The channel was later filled, thereby joining the islet to the larger island. The south harbour is the main harbour, protected by a long pier; it has an outer part containing the marina and commercial port on one side and the ferry port at the other side, with inbetween an almost circular small inner harbour whose waterfront is formed by P. Kountouriotou street (Π. Κουντουριώτου).

Get in

See Lesvos.

Get around

Mytilene is not very large (about 30,000 inhabitants) and lies partly on a flat ground although the western side of town is on a hill that rises to the ancient theatre; a good way to explore the city is by walking.

See

Information can be obtained from the municipal Tourist Information Office, Sappho Square (also known as Sapfous Square, at the north side – the middle section – of the inner harbour), +30 22510 44165.

  • The medieval (Genovese) castle.
  • The "old" Archaeological Museum, located at Argiri Eftalioti street 7, close to the statue of liberty at the main harbour. (The museum may be temporarily closed.) Open 08:30–15:30, closed Mondays.

Do

  • Just walk around and enjoy the architecture, combining many styles from different periods. There are even Byzantine and Ottoman archaeological remnants around the medieval castle and elsewhere.
  • Don't miss the Agora (center market place). The New Archaeological Museum presents a fine collection of sculpture, pottery and mosaic panels; most of it is labeled in English as well as Greek. The church operates a small but well organized Byzantine museum across from the fine baroque church of Hagios Therapon, a local saint.

Buy

Eat

Several taverns can be found on the pedestrian-only pier at the far south side of the inner south harbour (as it were the continuation of Kountouriotou street lining the inner harbour, officially called Christouyennon 1944 street). Another row of taverns is found at the north harbour, lining the stretch of Navmachios Ellis boulevard between Ermou and Mikras Asias streets.

  • Φανάρι (Fanari), (the second restaurant as you enter the pier), +30 22510 46417 (), [1]. A fish tavern offering traditional Greek cuisine in a relaxed atmosphere. An excellent and inexpensive taverna near the North Harbour at the end of Ermou Street is Castro; George, the owner, is a talented magician as well as a pleasant host and speaks some English. A cheap fast food outlet on the main harbour front is Goody's (the Greek equivalent of Macdonald's but better).

Drink

Sleep

Get out

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