Patmos Island Walk

Ariel of Hamble
Jim and Valerie SHURVELL
Wed 6 Oct 2021 13:25

Wednesday 9th June, 2021.

We decided to have a walk and take the bus to the Monastery of

John for the views which are breathtaking. We were sad to see t

are very few visitors and lots of the little shops were still closed

we have been in the monastery before we walked to the three

windmills to look over the harbour and the beaches of Meloi.

Patmos is the island of Apocalypse and has a history dating bac

years with the writing of the Holy Book of Apocalypse and then

founding of the Monastery of Patmos.  The UNESCO has desig

Patmos a World Heritage Monument because of the holy writin

the architecture of the traditional settlement of the Chora. 

Patmos was inhabited in prehistoric times by the Kares.  Later it

colonised by the Dorians and subsequently by the Ionians.  The

Patmos is believed to have come from the name of the mountain

 in Karia, Asia Minor, Latmos from where the first inhabitants o

island came following an invitation by the goddess Artemis. It i

that Orestes, pursued by the Erinyes for killing his mother

Clytemnestra took shelter in Patmos while passing by with the

Argives.  The walls of the monastery date back to the 6th and 4th

centuries BC and various findings reveal the existence of an acr

in which it is believed there were temples to the gods Apollo an

Dionysus as well as a hippodrome.

Accordingly to findings mainly on church walls, social and cult

life in Patmos flourished during these times. Patmain Artemis in

form of the Lady of Ephesus is regarded at the patron goddess o

island and her temple is located in Hora on the ruins of which th

great Monastery of St John the Theologian was built by St.


Following the occupation of the island by the Romans Patmos f

into decline. Most of the inhabitants left and the island was used

the Romans as a place of exile.

In 95 AD the beloved disciple of Christ, John was exiled to Pat

the Emperor Domitian. I don’t think their years were quite like

This began the post-Christian history of Patmos. In the 11th cent

the monk Christodoulous of Latrinos and the building of the

Monastery of St. John brought change to the island. The first lib

in the Monastery was established. Settlements sprang up in the

northern part of the island. By 13th century houses were built ne

Monastery. The fall of Constantinople to the Turks in 1453 brou

about changes to Patmos, Hora and the Monastery. Walls were

to protect the civilians from pirates. The rich of Constantinople

transferred its culture and trade to the island and children studie

cities in the west.  60 educated monks restored power to the

Monastery.  Large expensive houses were built, decorated with

furniture and embroidery.

After the Turkish-Venetian wars Patmos became popular with t

from Europe who passed throught the islands harbour. Towns w

built and more people lived on the island together with approxi

100 monks in over 100 churches. 

Now the Monastery welcomes paying visitors to survive and mo

people run bakeries, supermarkets or fish. It is a much smaller

community but still a very pretty island with many beaches.

We walked to the three windmills and met a very nice American

minister who was travelling through Greece on a sabbatical afte

work during the problems with Covid in his home town of Kans

the loss of six ministers in his own area. 

The views from the windmills are breath taking and we are bles

with marvellous weather at present especially for sailing.

We took the bus down to the port and did some shopping before

walking back to Ariel. We had a great meal in the evening over

looking the one pontoon marina with a lovely sunset.