"Limin Mesoyaias" Porto Rafti by mindcrime

Porto Rafti Travel Guide: 3 reviews and 18 photos

Porto Rafti is a typical seaside resort of east past of Attica region, 35km from Athens and 8km east of Markopoulo which is the main town of Mesoyaia municipality.
Most people come here for Avlaki beach (a long beach that spreads along the seaside road), or/and visit the local restaurants/café or later in the night bars and big clubs.

In early 20th century it was just a quiet cove with a small fishermen village consisting of a few houses, most of them were workers at the port (along with others from Markopoulo), It was the port of Markopoulo that was used for the fresh vegetables that were coming from Cyclades islands to feed the Athenians but also with cigarettes from the Cigarette Company of Kavala.

During the 70s started to became a popular seaside resort for the athenians, I came here during the 80s when some relatives started to build their summer houses here.
The last 15 years many Athenian live here permanently due to its close proximity with the airport(17km) and Koropi metro station (10km), it has about 3000 inhabitants but gets thousands of visitors during the summer months.

The town hugs the bay, most of them in the flat area behind the beach but also some hills around that have nice view over the bay. I think it doesn’t worth to be there unless you visit someone, I used to visit some relatives in the 80s.

The area inhabited since early Bronze Age (2600-1800BC) probably where the ancient towns of Prasia (south side) and Steiria (north side) were, this was the port from where the sacred processions left for Delos but also from Steiriaki road that lead through Mesoyaia municipalty to Athens.

It was traditionally the gateway of Attica to North Aegean and Black Sea (Athenians supplied with wheat from there so they always tried to kept under their control the straits of Bosporus and Hellespontus), the same route was used by the Athenians to take the tenders of newly mown wheat from Hyperboreans, first they took them to the temple of Delian Apollo in Prasies and then to Dilos island. The excavations at the area of the temple of Apollo found a head of a marble statue of Apollo (early 5th century BC).

Steiria was the hometown of Thrasybulus(440-388bc), the Athenian general who was responsible for the Athenian hegemony in NE Aegean but also led the democratic resistance against the oligarchic coup of Athens, cooperated with Alcibiades and after Athens’ defeat in Peloponnesian War(431-404BC) led the democratic resistance against the Thirty Tyrants (that Spartans imposed on Athens)

In front of the bay there are three small islands (Rafti, Raftopoula, Praso), Raftopoula is the biggest one, this where they found a giant marble statue of seated figure (other claim it’s a woman). Some historian claim that the statue transferred here during the Middle Ages as a symbol at the entrance of the port. But what I always liked was the fact that locals named the statue “raftis” (tailor) that named the bay. Although we all call it Porto Rafti officially it has the old name Limani Mesoyaias (port of Mesoyaia).

  • Last visit to Porto Rafti: Jul 2013
  • Intro Updated May 9, 2016
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