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Cyclades Islands in Greece

Amorgos Amorgos
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Dilos Dilos
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Naxos Naxos
Paros Paros
Santorini Santorini
Schinousa Schinousa
Serifos Serifos
Sifnos Sifnos
Sikinos Sikinos
Syros Syros
Thirasia Thirasia
Tinos Tinos


Tinos island has the highest religious conscience in all Cyclades. It is the third largest island of Cyclades after Andros and Naxos. It belongs in the northern Cyclades islands and is located southeast of Andros and north-west of Mykonos. The covers an area of 197 sq. km and has 9,701 residents.

The island is comprised of two municipalities and one township or community totalling 52 settlements. The Municipality of Tinos comprises Poli, the traditional villages of Mountados, Karya, Berdemiaros, Triantaros, Dyo Horia, Arnados, Moni Kehrovouniou and the coastal settlements at Skylantro, Ayios Sostis, Ayios Ioannis, Porto, and Lyhnaftia. The Municipality of Exombourgo with headquarters in Xynara includes the traditional settlements of Loutra, Krokos, Sklavohorio, Agapi, Perastra, Komi, Kato Kleisma, Karkado, Aetofolia, Kalloni, Kardiani, Ysternia, Smardakito, Tarambado, Kamps, Hatzirado, Ktikado, Tripotamos, Sberado, Tzado, Kehro, Mesi, Steni, Faltado, Kathlikaro, Myrsini, and Potamia as well as the coastal settlements of Ysternia, Vathi, Kardiani (Yannakis), Ayios Romanos, and Kolimbithra. Also, the Panormos Township comprises Pyrgos and includes the traditional settlements of Plateies, Venardados, Marla, Mamadou and the coastal settlement of Panormos.
Tsiknias is the highest mountain of the island and is located east of the island with a height of 726 m. The architecture of the island is unique. Tinos hallmark is the dovecotes scattered around the island and 1,200 churches and chapels.

The inhabitant’s main activities are agriculture, maritime activities, fishing and tourism. The economy is mainly based on tourism, which peaks during the summer months.

The island is connected by boat with the main ports of Piraeus and Rafina.


The name of Tinos, it’s associated with the Phoenician word Tannoti which means snake, it was also called Ofiousa which means filled with snakes. Local tradition holds that the snakes were killed by Poseidon.

The first inhabitants were Pelasgians and later settled by the Ionians, Athenians, Macedonians, Ptolemies, and Romans. Settlements located on the island from the Neolithic era and later in Geometric and Archaic periods.

In 480 BC shortly before the Battle of Salamis Tinos trireme of Panaitios united with the Greek fleet and the crew of transferring information about the naval battle against the Persians. The island’s name is inscribed on a tripod votive at the Oracle of Delphi.  

During the Byzantine times, the island received repeated attacks of Saracen raids. In 1204, after the fall of Constantinople from the crusaders, the island passes under Venetian dominion, and was initially ruled by the Gyzi dynasty (1207-1390). Later in 1715, is under the administration of the Republic of San Marco. The long presence of the Venetians played an important role in the island’s social and cultural traditions. Under Venice, the island served as a refugee for persecuted Greeks, offering stability and relative security, while the Venetian influence can be seen in a distinct form of feudalism that evolved on the island.
In 1715 the island falls into the hands of Turks but there presence and influence was minimal. Virtually self-administered during the period, the island developed its trade and crafts industry and effectively emerged as the financial capital of the Cyclades. The island was virtually the economic capital of Cyclades and was called "Little Paris". The art of marble sculpting, flourished, and Tinos is becoming a major centre in Greece. These crafts remain part of the island’s cultural and economic heritage to this date.  

The period of Russian rule in Tinos lasted from 1770 until the 1774, but the influence of the churches architecture (Royal rate) is obvious.

On March 31, 1821, the first tower in all Cyclades raises the banner of the Greek Revolution.

On January 30, 1823 a vision of Ayia Pelayia, a local nun, led to the discovery of the icon of the Virgin that is believed to possess miraculous powers. The discovery of the icon of the Virgin gradually established Tinos as an important centre of the Orthodox faith.

On August 15, 1940 the Italians sunk the ship «Elli» in the harbour of Tinos. During the Italian and German rules, the residents suffer from hunger. The contribution of the island in the resistance against invaders was great.
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