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Patmos

Called Jerusalem of the Aegean, Patmos is the island of ascetic austerity. It is made of rock and bays and surrounded by seagull-islands. Here in a cave St John wrote the Apocalypse -- one of the most beautiful texts ever written. The whole island is suggestively dominated by the monastery, dedicated to the memory of St John and encircled by medieval ramparts.

Boats anchor at the port, Scala, with its whitewashed houses and narrow lanes. Then we shall go up the asphalt road to reach Chora. Here we see the most beautiful houses in the whole island. Fronts with vaulted entrances. Windows with images. Inside there are wooden partitions, carved and decorated with flowers and birds. From the windows one sees white terraces and endless orange groves. Mansions, simple village houses, Byzantine churches, all climb up to the Holy Monastery of the Theologian on the top of the hill. This castle of God, built in the 11th century, contains priceless religious relics, rare manuscripts, icons, jewellery and embroidery.

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