The island of Leros is known for its relaxing atmosphere and the family beaches. Most sightseeing on this small island of Dodecanese is restricted to nice villages, beaches and some interesting places to visit. The most characteristic spots of Leros are the traditional windmill in Agia Marina and the Medieval Castle on top of the hill above Pandeli village. Do not also miss the War Museum in Lakki, housed in a true World War II tunnel and the seaside village of Alinda, with the organized beach and the night bars. From the ports of Lakki and Agia Marina depart excursion boats to close islands, such as Leros and Lipsi.
The Castle of Pandeli is a strong Medieval fortress overlooking the capital of Leros. It is also known as the Castle of our Lady, which means the Castle of the Virgin Mary
Over the years, this Byzantine fortress, that survives well till today, has become the trademark of the island. The Castle gives a great view to the above mountainous landscape, the sea and the villages of Leros island.
The Castle of Pandeli was probably built in the 10th century on the site if an ancient acropolis and, at the end of the 11th century, it was donated from the Byzantine Emperor Alexius I to the Monastery of Agios Ioannis Theologos. During the Frankish times, the Castle was reinforced by the Knights of Saint John and was used to protect the island and its inhabitants from invasions. In the centuries that followed, the Castle served as a lookout post for the Turkish, Italian and German conquerors of the island. As a result, it suffered a lot of damage.
Today, three circuit walls of the castle are preserved and a church of our Lady stands on the west side of the castle. The church has a magnificent icon and fine wall paintings can be admired. To go to the Castle, you have to climb up a rough road or 400 steps from Pandeli.
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