All photographs on this Blog are copyrighted © by the photographer, whose permission is required for any usage. Contact me by E-mail

03/06/2010

Mykonos (Μύκονος) Windmills, Cyclades, Greece


This photo was taken in Mykonos, a Greek island, part of the Cyclades, lying between Tinos, Syros, Paros and Naxos. It spans an area of 105.183 km2 and rises at an elevation of 341 m at its highest point. The island is composed primarily of granite. It has little natural fresh water and relies on the desalination of sea water in order to meet its needs. There are 9,320 inhabitants most of whom live in the largest town, Mykonos, also known as Chora (i.e. the Town in Greek, a common denomination in Greece when the name of the island itself is the same as the name of the principal town), which lies on the west coast.
It is believed that the island was named after a local hero, who is considered an offspring of the god Apollo and was worshipped locally in antiquity.
The windmills of Mykonos are the trademark of the whole island. They can be seen from every point of Chora village and they are the first thing to see when the ship gets close to the harbour, as they stand on a hill overlooking the area.
There are 16 windmills today on Mykonos. Most of them were built by the Venetians in the 16th century and till the early 20th century, they were used to grind the wheat. They were an important source of income for the inhabitants and supported a lot the economy of Mykonos in difficult times. With the evolution of economy, their use gradually declined till they stop working in the middle of the 20th century.
Their architecture is similar. They all have round shape, white colour and a pointed roof. Such windmills are found in almost all Cyclades islands. One of these windmills has been transformed today into a museum. The view from this site is excellent. You can see the whole village of Chora and the harbour, while the best time to visit is during the sunset.

No comments: