Getting it ready

When you see elderly Greek women walk in the streets you might think they are enjoying their free time now that the grandchildren have grown up etc. No, many of them have a busy life because they take care of churches that are scattered all over the villages. Who do you think lights the candles in the morning and afternoon. Who sweeps the floors, who makes sure that in the winter there are carpets on the marble floor. All these women help to keep the churches clean and tidy. When there is a special ceremony in the churches like a name day, a baptism, one of the things they will also do is wash and iron all the special embroidered pieces of cotton and later decorate the church with it. Next week there is a special ceremony in the Agios Michael church in Skopelos town. I caught the lady who washes and irons the pieces. What she is holding is the second lot that goes into the church. Some pieces are already in place.


Skopelos has a lot of places where you have access to the sea but there are also many places where the rocks make it almost impossible to get close to the water. This is the Stafylos coastline. Amazing !!

Doctors coming

The wall of the Vakratsa has been plastered. For many years tree roots were pushing the wall towards the street. A very dangerous situation. This is how it looked before.

Unfortunately only the Vakratsa museum will be open this summer. The folklore museum has a problem with the electricity. It is a shame visitors can’t see the inside of this wonderful museum.

Power cuts

Tomorrow 16/5 power cuts will take place between 08.00-14.00 hours in Loutraki, Glossa, Klima, Skopelos and Stafylos. Thursday the 17th between 06.00-08.00 hours there will be a power cut on the whole island.

Two “modern” wooden shipwrecks found on Skopelos
written by Kimon Papadimitriou (Dr Ing Rural & Surveying Engineering – PADI IDC Staff Instructor).

Skopelos, the bigger one of Sporades islands, is becoming a new destination for the scuba community. The limitations for the protection of underwater archaeological sites at most of the popular bays of the island (Agnontas, Panormos and Stafylos), in combination with the lack of services for recreational diving till 2014, have kept the field rather unexplored. After the establishment of Skopelos Dive Center, the coast line has been investigated in order to find potential dive sites. Since then, eighteen locations have being used for the performance of scuba activities. Additionally, new locations are surveyed every year (during scout diving) for broadening the thematic spectrum of services to divers.

Diving sites at Skopelos (map composition by K. Papadimitriou)

In this context, last year (autumn 2017), two modern shipwrecks have been found , still waiting to uncover their history. Even after a few decades, those “time capsules” are hiding particular features of our civilization. It is characteristic that up to the 80’s, wooden ships ruled everyday activities at the islands. Many of those activities (e.g. fishing, commerce, transportation) have been unchanged through the ages. After the introduction and domination of other materials in ship construction, wooden ships are becoming a “memorial” of our maritime heritage.

Overview of wooden shipwreck (photos and orthomosaic by A. Ktistis)

The two located wrecks are not mentioned on marine charts, are submerged at depths around 30m and they have not been identified yet. The first one is found at the bay of Agnontas. It is located on a sandy bottom with gentle slope and its shape, dimensions and part of the cargo are evident. The second vessel is scattered over a rocky steep bottom, close to the bay of Kanapitsa.

According to the above initial data, some interesting perspectives ask for awareness or specialized training activities related to the Underwater Cultural Heritage (UCH). According to UNESCO, in-situ preservation and promotion are the priorities for the protection of UCH, targeting mainly the diving public. Moreover, the contribution of divers with specialized training in combination with the capabilities for 3D digital recording and representations, allow the contribution of a wider – non diving – public. The two specific wrecks, although they have not been characterized yet as modern monuments, are evidence of a past era that is exposed to the diving visitors of Skopelos.

During the access of wrecks underwater, particular procedures have to be followed in order to assure the safety of divers and to preserve any findings in-situ. Data recording for representation purposes and possible identification of unknown wrecked vessels requires additional knowledge and skills. Divers that are visiting the area can attend specialized training courses on such matters. PADI Underwater Survey Diver and Wreck Detective are typical examples of that kind of training that Skopelos Dive Center can provide.

The diving team that discovered the two wrecks consists of Kostas Danis (Electrical Engineer – PADI OW Scuba Instructor), Anastasios Ktistis (Mechanical Engineer – PADI OW Scuba Instructor), Vasilis Voukalis (Economist – PADI OW Scuba Instructor), Angelos Maglis (Civil Engineer – PADI OW Scuba Instructor) and Kimon Papadimitriou (Dr Ing Rural & Surveying Engineering – PADI IDC Staff Instructor).

The Skopelos Dive center is located at the beginning of the road to the monasteries between two car rental places. There is a beautiful outside area where you can talk with the instructors and have a drink. Telephone: (0030) 6940448000 info@sporadesdiving.gr and http://www.sporadesdiving.gr

These wonderful hollyhocks we saw near Glossa. There are not planted in a garden but they stand on the side of a road. These photographs don’t show how beautiful these flowers are but fortunately we can all enjoy them when we take a drive up to Glossa.

I am not a real fan of special days to celebrate an occasion but Mother’s day is an exception. I admire all mothers who manage to hold numerous balls in the air every day so their children are safe and fed and loved. I admire mothers that have a house that is a place the family members wants to return to. I admire mother’s who manage to combine work with all the other tasks they have and still stay sane. Happy mother’s day!!!