Greece is well known for its amazing cultural heritage and numerous historical sites, which is why it is no surprise that Mykonos is rich in fantastic historic buildings, and one of the most beautiful and astonishing is the monastery of Panagia Tourliani. If you plan to visit it, here’s everything you should know about it.
When planning a vacation on Mykonos, the majority of people look forward to relaxing on stunning beaches and trying incredible local cuisine in some of the best restaurants on the island.
However, you should also add visiting the most important historical sites and monuments to your list of things to do this summer. One of the places you must visit while on your Greek holiday is the stunning monastery of Panagia Tourliani.
This monastery was founded in the 16th century, precisely 1542, on the foundations of an even older church. It is dedicated to one of the most important Christian holidays – the assumption of the Virgin Mary.
It was founded by a group of monks from the cloister of Katapoliani on the island of Paros. Throughout centuries this place has been a significant site for pilgrimage and an integral part of the local community’s life and customs.
The abbey got its name after the miraculous icon of the Virgin Mary, which was found floating in the Aegean Sea around the region of Tourlos. In the paragraphs below, you can read more about this special icon.
Cycladic islands are most famous for their stunning and unique architecture, which is nowhere to be found except in this specific area in the Aegean Sea. The majority of churches that are located on these islands are built in a similar architectural style and have the same characteristics. However, the architecture of this specific abbey is a little bit different from all the other churches and popular attractions you will see around this destination.
The architecture of this authentic abbey is quite impressive. Its present shape is the result of certain reconstruction and conservation projects which have been done during the 18th century. But, it has kept a major part of its original look.
Its marvelous architecture is an impressive combination of local Cycladic style and Byzantine craftsmanship. From the outside, it has quite a monumental appearance with the tall bell tower placed on its side, and its floor plan is designed in post-Byzantine style. In the cloister’s yard, an impressive marble fountain with gorgeous sculptural decorations and wood carvings can be found.
The decorations in marble are typical products of Cycladic tradition and craftsmanship, while the wood carvings and numerous icons inside the church were brought from Florence and belong to Renaissance artists.
Besides functioning as a temple, this abbey also has a museum within its complex. Even though it is not one of the most popular museums on the island, it is definitely worth visiting. Join one of the guided museum tours. You will get to see some fascinating exhibits such as vestments, post-Byzantine and Renaissance icons, artistic ecclesiastical gems, and even the cloister’s first bell that has been kept inside for centuries.
In the museum, you will also find a very significant icon of the Virgin Mary, which is believed to be miraculous. People from every part of Greece come here to pray in front of this magnificent icon.
This stunning Greek temple can be found in Ano Mera, one of the few towns on the island, which is located in its central area. This small town resembles a typical Greek village, and it is a perfect spot for a day trip. The temple is located around 7 kilometers from Chora – also known as the main town, where all the most popular attractions are located.
There are a few ways you can get to this famous historical site, but the first thing you need to do is to get to this town. Depending on which part of the island you’re coming from, you can figure out what is the best way to get there. Getting a taxi or perhaps renting a private car is always an option, but organizing a private driver is always the easiest and most time-efficient way to travel.
However, if you wish to be more adventurous, you can hop on a bus. If your hotel or Mykonos villa is located in Chora, you can catch a bus at the Fabrika station. The ride from Chora to this town shouldn’t take more than 20 minutes.
If visiting this incredible religious complex is on your list of the best places to visit, you might want to consider spending an entire day in Ano Mera and exploring its beautiful surroundings. This place is the second largest town here but still maintains a village vibe.
It is a quiet place and much different from Chora, which is known for being the best town for partying with lots of new and exciting clubs and bars. Places you should definitely visit while on tour around this town are:
If you feel like taking a swim after a long day of exploring the village, the two closest options would be Ftelia Beach on the northern side and Kalo Livadi on the southern – also known as some of the most beautiful and interesting beaches in this part of Greece.
If you think that the previously mentioned town could be the perfect place for your holiday, we can offer you some Mykonos villas for rental in this area. The Ace VIP team specializes in luxury holidays, and we can organize anything you need for your picture-perfect vacation. Whether it’s a new luxury yacht you are looking for or perhaps some exclusive cars for rental – our unparalleled concierge services will be available to you on demand. Contact us today, and let’s start planning your dream vacation.