Kalispera Greece Sikinos.


Temple of Episkopi in Sikinos

Episkopi is the most peculiar and interesting monument on Sikinos. It was long believed that it was built as a temple dedicated to Apollo Pythios in 300 BC. Today's interpretation is another, and they think they know that Episkopi originally was built as a Roman mausoleum.

An earthquake in the 17th century destroyed parts of the buildings and instead of rebuilding the mausoleum, a Christian Orthodox Church was built. The church functioned continuously until 1940 when it was closed due to an increasing state of disrepair.


The temple and church Episkopi at Sikinos in Greece.

Episkopi is a good place to meditate.s


It's easy to be sitting on the church's worn doorsteps and think about life. If you bring a picnic and a book you can easily spend a whole day here. Contemplative places like this certainly do not grow on trees.


Episkopi church on Sikinos in the Cyclades.



The church has thus been closed since 1940 and has fallen into even more disrepair since the closure In all honesty, I must say that Episkopi is not much to see. However, the surroundings are very beautiful and the place where the church stands is mysteriously silent and colossal meditative.


The Episkopi Church of Sikinos.

The back side of Episkopi.


In recent years, a lot has happened in Episkopi. Read about it further with.

The Swedish author Karin Boye once wrote that "it is not the destination that is important, but the journey to get there". Anyone who do not have peace to sit and stare, or are completely uninterested in old buildings, may take her wise motto literally, since the walk to Episkopi is very scenic and I would recommend anyone to walk there.


Hike to Episkopi on Sikinos.

On a hike to Episkopi.


There are two ways to Episkopi, the paved road, or the old donkey path that runs parallel to the road. Whichever you choose, you start your walk at the bus stop outside Kastro. Of course it is nicest and more beautiful to walk by the old donkey path, which starts after about 30 minutes walk along the asphalt road. There is a sign.


Read more about hiking on Sikinos here »


Old stone walls and vineyards at Sikinos in Greece.

During the hike you pass lots of old stone walls and vineyards.


From Episkopi on Sikinos you have a nice view of Folegandros.

Episkopi is under the red arrow. The island on the right is Folegandros.


It is believed that it was at Episkopi that Sikino's "capital" Agia Marina was located in antiquity.

It is believed that it was here that Sikinos "capital" Agia Marina was located in ancient times.


It takes about an hour to walk along the road, and one and half hours if you choose the donkey path. There is no taverna along the way so bring water.

The door to Episkopi.

The door to Episkopi. What is hidden behind it?


Since 2017, archaeologists have been investigating the site where Episkopi is located. One of the biggest breakthroughs made since the project started was the discovery of a grave belonging to a woman. (It was the summer of 2018.) On the grave was an inscription with the Greek name Neiko. She was buried with her jewellery, but her hands were placed behind her lower back and she had evidence of an injury to her mouth.

The tomb was also buried in a hidden location, possibly in an attempt to protect it from looters. But archaeologists also discovered sulphur and tar on her chest, leading to the possibility that she may have undergone some sort of "exorcism" and was buried in such a way that her demons stayed in the grave with her.


The magnificent Episkopi temple on Sikinos.

The magnificent "temple" Episkopi.


Neiko's fate is not the biggest mystery surrounding Episkopi, as the entire mausoleum is a mystery to archaeologists. A poor island with little in the way of agricultural production and even less in maritime trade, Sikinos was a place of exile in antiquity. So, who had the money to build such a monument? Was it a rich exile or someone from another country?


Episkopi means bishop in Greek.

Episkopi means bishop in Greek.


The shape of the building is similar to funerary monuments discovered in Asia Minor and other parts of the Roman Empire, but it is still too early to draw conclusions, the archaeologists say. The monument itself has revealed a wealth of valuable evidence, from inscriptions to murals and sculptures, but more research is needed for archaeologists to uncover the secrets of Neiko and Episkopi.


Don't miss the Episkopi temple and church when you travel to Sikinos in the Cyclades.

Don't miss this amazing place when you travel to Sikinos.


The byzantologist Dimitrios Athanasoulis (who is leading the work) believes that the new discoveries, and the upcoming explorations, will help shape a new identity for Sikinos, which will perhaps upgrade the island to a high-end tourist destination.


On June 30, 2022, Episkopi was given the status of one of the European World Heritage Sites by the European Heritage Awards.

The peculiar building Episkopi.




On June 30, 2022, Episkopi was given the status of one of the European World Heritage Sites by the European Heritage Awards. Read more on their website.


Mickey Mouse on the island of Sikinos in Greece.

We met this guy in Episkopi a few years ago. We assumed he was from a later date. :-D



Don't miss the Monastery of Zoodochos Pigi when you travel to the island of Sikinos in Greece.

Don't miss the Monastery of Zoodochos Pigi, which you can read about here »


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