Amorgos, is an island with vast natural beauty and deep blue beaches. It is located in the south-eastern side of Cyclades and abstains 136 nautical miles from Peiraeus Port. It’s the natural gateway and link between the Cyclades and the Dodecanese islands. Amorgos allocates two natural harbors, Katapola in the centre of the island and Aegiali in the northern end. Most of the coasts are rocky and lead abruptly into the sea.

Aigiali is known for its steep mountainous terrain. There, there is the island’s highest peak ,Krikellos, of 821 m. altitude. In the center of the island, we have Profitis Ilias of 698 meters altitude and Aspro Vouno (or Vouno or Korakas, of 528 meters altitude. Among these mountainous areas small valleys and plains lay between these three peaks harbour settlements like Kolofanas on the west, Katapola in the center, Aegiali in the north, as well as smaller ones like Kamari, Arkessini, and Agios Pavlos.

The largest part of the island is covered with rock formations that come from the ancient times and the limestone, which between them cover most of the land. The island’s current shape is roughly 700,000 years old and was set with the sinking of large sections of its interior and the formation of its mountain masses. The flora here is similar to the rest of the islands of Cyclades. It is sparse, mostly shrubs with mastic shrubs, kermes oak, broom, and phrygana beyond the fertile plains at Katapola, Kato Meria, and Aegiali that are thick with olive groves and other fruit-bearing trees. Vines, top quality vegetables, and some cereals are cultivated in terraced fields throughout the island. The more the island lacks in size and in the density of its vegetation, the richest the diversity of endemic flora is, especially rare herbs with therapeutic attributes.

The island is protected from the cooling northerly winds, or meltemia in August because of the nature of the ground and its morphology. Aegiali is quite warm during the summer months.

Amorgos is connected with Piraeus, Dodekanisa and Cyclades with many itineraries, mainly during the summer months. The island has transportation with a lot of bus itineraries mainly during the summer period.


Amorgos was known in antiquity as Pagali, Psychia, Karkissia, and Melania. According to ancient geographers and lexicographers the island constituted three cities, Arkessini (located in place Kastri), Minoa (located in place Moudalia in Katapola) and Aegiali (located in Vigla at Tholaria).

Important archaeological discoveries that have been found, testify that the island was first inhabited during the 5th millennium. Excavations on the island discovered the background of a Cycladic Culture and the relation of Amorgos with Naxos, Paros and other remote islands.

The Cycladic culture flourishes in the island during the 3rd millennium B.C. and leaves indelible traces with the familiar marble figurines. There are also signs of Minoan influence. The island was subsequently colonized by Miletus and Naxos and became a member of the first Athenian League or Athenian Confederacy. In the third and second centuries B.C., the island found itself under the dominion of the Macedonians, the Ptolemies, the Samians, the Rhodians, and the Romans. Hellenistic worship rituals predominate through the fourth century A.D. when ancient temples are converted to Christian places of worship.

Later, raids by Saracen pirates force the population to retreat inland and barricade themselves inside settlements at Kastro, Kastri, and in the 23 watchtowers of the island.
The icon of the Virgin Hozoviotissa arrived on the island from Palestine during the Iconomachy, the period when icons were rejected as encouraging idolatry. Extensive renovations to the monastery in 1088 were made under the Byzantine Emperor Alexis Comnenus.

Many architectural vestiges from the Venetian era have been found on the island. Some of them are the Gavras tower (o pyrgos tou Gavra), Kato Lakkos, and the stone-paved Lozes.

During the Turkish rule, Amorgos reaches its economic peak and experiences an ecclesiastic renaissance. In 1822, following the Greek independence revolt, the island becomes the seat of an eparchy of the nascent Modern Greek state. In 1829, one of the first Greek schools is established with funds from the Monastery of Panayia Hozoviotissa.

After World War II the population of Amorgos decreases due to a large number of islanders migrate to urban areas or abroad.
The last 20 years have seen rapid growth in tourism.

They say that the best time to hike is in spring and fall. That the summer is very hot and the best option is to relax on the beach or swim in the cool sea. But you can let the crowds squash into the beaches, go to bed early one night, and the next day you can set the alarm clock to wake you up at 05:00 in the morning. Put on your hiking shoes, take your backpack with the necessary supplies for the mountain excursion, and go see the dawn on Krikelos, the highest mountain of Amorgos. Or from the top of Profitis Ilias north of Chora. Or from path 1 after Hozoviotissa.

The morning dew on the path, the clear horizon, the mountain air with the scents of the earth, the peace and beauty of the desert landscape, is the coolest “shower” for your soul and mind! And then, when the sun rises high and the heat gets hot, you too can go for a dip in the cool sea!

In beautiful Amorgos, many paths have been preserved, some of them ancient, some others cobbled, most of them in excellent condition because they are still used by the local landowners and breeders. A few years ago, the South Aegean Region selected some of them and created a network of 12 marked hiking trails, which we present to you below with their official numbering. The design of this network is very good, with routes of all degrees of difficulty, short and long, relaxing and “hard”, for all categories of hikers. The problem is that the signaling materials have suffered a lot of damage and in many places they have been lost. But with a good hiking map, and a mood for exploration and adventure, you will enjoy enchanting hikes in one of the most beautiful island landscapes of the Aegean!

Route 1: Chora – Chozoviotissa Monastery – Asfontylitis – Lagada (Length of the route: 14.3 km. Walking time: 6 hours. Total ascent: 900 m.)

This is the longest, most difficult, but also the most popular hiking route in Amorgos. It is not circular, but at its end it is easy to find means of transport (taxi or bus to return to Chora. It passes by the most famous attraction of the island, the Monastery of Hozoviotissa, and crosses the central mountainous backbone of Amorgos from Chora to Lagada, offering an excellent view. It is a fordable and well-trodden trail, and combined with rudimentary signage, you won’t have any trouble following it.

Route 1A: Chora-Profitis Ilias-Hotel (Route length: 3.1 km. Walking time: 1 hour and 30 minutes. Total ascent: 258 m.)

An impressive hike up the wild north side of Profitis Ilias peak, with excellent views to the north. Its starting point is next to the primary school, on the eastern side of Chora. A branch of the route, 600 meters long, brings you to the top of Profitis Ilias with the chapel of the same name, a point with a breathtaking panoramic view! From the end of the route, in the Hotel area, a wonderful option to return to Chora is to follow the section of Route 1 towards the Monastery of Hozoviotissa.

Route 2: Chora-Katapola (Length of the route: 3.3 km. Walking time: 1 hour. Total ascent: 25 m.)

Beautiful, relaxing downhill route that connects Chora with Katapola. Its first section, 2.2 km long, is a beautiful old cobbled path carved into the southern slope of the Fonias ravine, passing old farmhouses and estates.

Route 3: Minoa-Arkesini-Vroutsi-Rahoula (Route length: 14.3 km. Walking time: 5-6 hours. Total ascent: 740 m.)

Extremely interesting day hike for strong hikers, which allows you to visit some of the most important archaeological sites of Amorgos, stop at old chapels to rest, see threshing floors, windmills, fountains, well-built terraces and old agricultural settlements. Route 3 ends at the ancient tower at Rahula, but it’s worth continuing your hike on the west and north to the wonderful beach of Kato Kampos where you can reward yourself with a swim in the crystal clear waters, but you have to take care of the return with a friend of yours who will come to pick you up from there with their vehicle.

Route 4: Aegiali-Lagada-Tholaria-Chochlakas (Route length: 8.2 km. Walking time: 4 hours. Total ascent: 558 m.)

Very beautiful circular hiking route that goes around the plain of Aegiali, passing the picturesque villages of Lagada and Tholaria, old chapels, founts and old estates. Many of its branches are on old cobblestones. A “tail”-branch of this route follows the northern coast of the bay of Aegiali and goes to the beaches of Levrosos, Psili Ammos and Chochlakas, if you want to enjoy swimming in deserted and quiet beaches.

Route 5: Lagada-Stavros (Route length: 4.9 km. Travel time: 2 hours and 30 minutes. Total ascent: 550 m.)

Perhaps the most beautiful hiking route in Amorgos. Its first part to the chapel of Agia Varvara, 2.5 km long, climbs the northern slope of Krikellos, following the green ravine between Krikellos and Skopos peak. A little further down you will come across the impressive monastery of Agios Ioannis the Theologos (which is deserted and locked) and from there onwards the path continues on the steep north-eastern slope of Krikellos, in a wild landscape that takes your breath away. The chapel of the Cross (also locked) is the end of this route. Do not proceed to the east, the slope is extremely dangerous and very steep.

You can, however, follow the ridge of Krikellos to the west (there is no clear path, you walk on the bare and sharp rocks, but there are many cuckoos marking the most natural route), climb the highest peak (823 m) in the Chorafakia area, and the other peak (699m.) in the area of Epano Mantra, from there exit to the ruined windmills of Mahos, and from there follow the fordable path to the other chapel of Stavros and descend until you return to Lagada. Important safety warning: the ridge hike can only be done on a day in complete apnea. On a windy day, do not attempt this hike: the gusts of wind up here are so strong that they lift even the stones, and you risk being swept down the cliff that crashes beneath your feet both to the south and to the north.

Route 5a: Panagia Epanochoriani-Monastery of Agios Ioannis Theologos (Route length: 3.6 km. Walking time: 1 hour and 30 minutes. Total ascent: 353 m.)

It is a very interesting alternative route to the Monastery of Agios Ioannis Theologos, crossing a wild and desolate landscape, with excellent views of the north-east coast. It is an old path that served some – now in ruins – agricultural facilities. It is completely unmarked, nor is it cleared of vegetation and stones (the numbering 5a is just a plan), and you will probably find it difficult to follow in places, but with the help of the map of TERRAIN and if you like adventure and exploring off the beaten track, you’ll enjoy it.

Route 6: Katapola-Agios Georgios Varsamitis-Minoa-Katapola (Route length: 5.5 km. Walking time: 2 hours and 30 minutes. Total ascent: 390 m.)

The first leg (700 meters of asphalt and 1,100 meters of dirt road) is uneventful, but after the end of the dirt road there is a nice path that goes uphill smoothly to the old chapel of Agios Georgios Varsamitis, where there is a fount with cool water and many vegetable gardens.

You can return by following the part of the path that goes to the chapel of Agia Marina (also in a green environment) and from there it descends to the pass of Stavros. You continue on the dirt road to ancient Minoa, and from there you return to Katapola following the concrete road to the north, and a final leg of the 500 m long path.

Route 7: Xylokeratidi-Nera-Viglia-Xylokeratidi (Route length: 3.8 km. Walking time: 2 hours. Total ascent: 240 m.)

From the end of the concrete road in Xylokeratidi you follow the dirt road that climbs north towards the Nera area (name and truth, here you will find a fount with cool water). About 400 m. further north, in the area of Peristeria, you will meet the central path that ends west at the chapel of Profitis Ilias on the cape of the same name (route 7a) and east to the area of Viglia, which is the continuation of this route. From Viglia, if you are in the mood and strength for a long circular route, you can follow eastwards the leg of route 8 towards Chora and from there return to Katapola with route 2. Otherwise, complete route 7 by following the right leg of the path that descends to the south, passes the Byzantine chapel of Evangelistria and returns to Xylokeratidi.

Route 7a: Nera-Profitis Ilias (Route length: 2 km. Walking time: 40 minutes. Total ascent: 65 m.)

Interesting addition-detour of Route 7, which crosses a deserted pasture and leads to the chapel of Profitis Ilias just before the cape of the same name, and to the old lighthouse that once operated there (today there is a newer, smaller one)

Route 8: Chora-Richti (Length of the route: 12.8 km. Walking time: 5 hours and 30 minutes. Total ascent: 860 m.)

The first leg of this route, from Chora to the chapel of Agia Varvara (in which you will see ancient architectural members embedded in its walls), is a very beautiful path of 1.4 km. through old estates. The next leg, untilChoridakia area, 3.2 km long, it is a rural road that offers a very nice view to the north.The third and final leg of the route is a wonderful path that crosses the desert landscape and ends in the area of Richti, where you will see the ruins of another ancient tower.

Route 9: Lagada Circular (Length of the route: 4 km. Walking time: 1 hour and 30 minutes. Total ascent: 350 m.)

It’s not exactly circular, it’s a beautiful figure-8 route to the old abandoned windmills on top of Mahos, where you’ll enjoy a magnificent view of the rugged southern shores of Amorgos and the ridge of Krikellos. Do not attempt this hike on windy days, because up here the wind picks up even the rocks