Built before 1000AD the Panachrantos Monastery is one of the most important landmarks on Andros. Its construction was funded by Nikephoros Phokas, the Byzantine emperor himself, after he visited Andros to pray on his way to Crete. Apart from the annual local celebrations in July and August, it is an attraction for visitors all year round, from all parts of the world, due to the important religious artifacts it is home to.
On the ascent towards the Andros Byzantine Monastery, past the stone built “Stihiomeni” bridge, as we climb higher and higher, the views of Andros town become ever so amazing. Reaching our destination, completing a 750 meter vertical ascent we will visit the monastery and have a look around its buildings and chapels. We will also refill our bottles with fresh spring water from the monastery. The nature around us is fantastic throughout the route, with wild flowers, herbs and trees growing plentiful around the water sources.
We will head back to Andros town on a different trail, through the stone relics of Petrias village, deserted during the 1930s standing to this day as a ghost village, victim to the harshness of nature and time. The village of Vrachnou is our next destination, before we head down to the beach of Paraporti. We will go right across Andros town and its pedestrian center, its museums and art galleries, as we reach our starting point.
Andros Byzantine Monastery tour is a private tour so you will choose the pace that suits you, especially during the uphill parts of the route, so it might get a bit slower than usual. You should also know that although the difficulty is considered moderate, some parts of these trails are quite uneven, so a bit more difficult. It would be wise to have the ability to carry some water with you especially in the summer months as it can get very hot. You can always top up your run with a cool swim at the beach where our route ends.