INFORMATION ABOUT ANDROS ISLAND
Andros is an island with rich natural beauties and vegetation. It’s located in the northeast side of Cyclades cluster. It is the second largest island after Naxos with 40 km length and 17 km at its longest. Administratively, it is an eparchy comprised of three municipalities: Andros, Korthi, and Hydroussa.
The island allocates natural springs, torrents and a lot of rivers. Because of the plentiful water the vegetation in the island is rich with a variety of trees such as plane trees, walnut trees, and oaks.
For those who love hiking Andros is full of beautiful paths, with streams and small waterfalls, with traditionally cobble-stone pavements that cross the island’s villages bringing the visitors in contact with nature.
The island’s main port is Gavrio, with regular connection with Rafina. Ports at Batsi, Andros Town (Hora), and Korthi offer anchorage for fishing boats and leisure craft.
ANDROS ISLAND HISTORY
The island was likely named after a Cretan general by the name of Andros. It was also known as Lasia, a reference to its verdant landscape, and Hydroussa, a reference to its water resources. In some sources, the island appears as Gavros, a name preserved today in the name of the island’s port, Gavrio.
Archaeological evidence supports the existence of developed settlements on the island since at least the Mycenaean. The island achieved prominence in the Geometric Period (9th-7th centuries B.C.), as suggested by ruins of a settlement at Zagora on the north-western coast near Zaganiari. The island’s size, location, sheltered harbours, dense vegetation, and water attracted settlers’ interest early on and since 3000 B.C. settlements flourished at Strofila and Makroyiali; at Plaka, there’s evidence of settlements from 2000-1500 B.C., while Zagora peaked in 1000 B.C. Ypsili, a settlement near Aprovatou, peaked a little later.
During Classical times, Palaiopolis served as the island’s capital, and the city’s coinage around this time suggests great prosperity. These finds, along with the Hermes of Andros, are exhibited at the Archaeological Museum in Andros Town (Hora).
Andros came under Roman rule, before passing into the hands of the Venetians and then the Ottomans.
The Byzantine churches on the island—two examples are Taxiarhis at Ypsilos at Melida and Koimissis Theotokou at Messaria—date from the 11th century.
In modern times, the island developed its merchant marine sector. Dimitrios Moraitis inaugurated the first route linking Greece to North America in the early 20th century; in 1939 Andros’s shipping registry ranked second, after Piraeus.
The Monastery of Ayia (also known as the monastery of Zoodohos Piyi) near Batsi was founded in the 14th century; foundations for the Moni Ayiou Nikolaou were laid in 1560 and the monastery underwent restorations in the 18th century. The Moni Panachrantou was founded in the mid-17th century. The first established pre-independence revolutionary school was housed in Ayia Triada at Korthi in 1813. The banner of the revolution was raised on the island on May 10, 1821, by Theofilos Kairis and the island actively participated in the struggle for independence.