"Chora of Tinos" Tinos by mindcrime

Tinos Travel Guide: 27 reviews and 96 photos

Tinos town is the capital of Tinos island and the biggest by far town on the island with about 5,400 inhabitants. It is also called Chora, like every capital town in Cyclades islands.

The town houses the port of the island and has connection with the near by islands of Mykonos and Syros but also with Pireaus and Rafina for those who come from Athens.

The truth is that at first glance you get disappointed, I guess some people that have seen Tinos town from the boat on their way to other islands will think “that’s why we don’t know about it, it’s just an ugly town”. Although just beyond the port there are some picturesque small alleys and typical Cycladic houses most part of Tinos town is covered with ugly buildings that don’t fit, most of them were built in the 60s and the result was what we see today. So, you have to scratch the surface before you get excited here.

Most people come here for Evangelistria church that lies on the hill that overlooks the port, they go there for pilgrimage and they get back to the ferry in the afternoon. There are two parallel streets that lead from the port up to the church, both of them are lined with stores selling religious items, candles etc
Those who prefer to overnight are the smart ones as the town has much more to offer. There is a nice Archeological Museum, numerous other churches, the Culturar Foundation of Tinos, many typical greek restaurants with affordable prices, some nice beaches even in walking distance from the town etc And of course you can discover the rest of the island that has some beautiful villages.

It has been inhabited since the ancient times with people settles around the area where Evangelistria church stands today. There are some old remains of the ancient walls that can be seen just north of the church. The town of Tinos was built over the ancient one so we cant really important sites of that era like the temple of Dionysus, the amphitheatre, the agora and the gymnasium, places that we have only read about in ancient descriptions.

There was also the temple of Poseidon at Kionia, you can visit it and see the remains but we went there only to swim on the popular Kionia beach (2km west of the port) which is very popular among those who live in town and don’t want to drive further inside in the island.

During the medieval times people afraid of pirate attacks moved to Exomburgo rock/castle. The town we see today actually established during 18th century when the people abandoned the castle. It was called Chora of Agios Nikolaos then, due to Agios Nikolaos church that still can be visited near the port. The locals were merchants that took that used ships to sell everywhere some local products (wine, figs) but also leather and silk.

After the Greek revoulion against the Ottoman Turks the population increased because many refuges will come from Chios(after the massacre of 1822) and Psara (1824). The next years Syros started to be the main commercial island, people from Tinos towns began to migrate but also people from Tinos villages started to move to Chora.

In 1823 a major historic event was the finding of a Virgin Mary painting that caused the building of Evangelistria church, orthodox Christians started to come and even today the economy of Tinos Town is based on these (thousands) of people that come for pilgrimage to the the Holy painting.

  • Last visit to Tinos: Jul 2012
  • Intro Updated Jul 29, 2012
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Reviews (21)

Comments (1)

  • nickandchris's Profile Photo
    Aug 1, 2012 at 3:41 AM

    Excellent, enjoyed this. It looks as though the island is very good value, especially the rooms!

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