Polichnitos, situated in the serene southwest of Lesvos, captivates visitors with its historic charm and natural wonders. This picturesque village, framed by rolling hills and graced by neoclassical architecture, invites exploration of its rich cultural heritage and rejuvenating hot springs.

Embrace the beauty of nature

Travel to Polichnitos

Nestled in the southwestern embrace of Lesvos, the village of Polichnitos beckons travelers with its rich history, traditional charm, and a tapestry of natural wonders. Approximately 45km from the capital city of Mytilene, this hidden gem unveils a world of captivating stories, thermal springs, and breathtaking landscapes.

Polichnitos, a name derived from “Polla ihni,” meaning “many traces,” narrates a tale of survival against Saracen pirates. Fearing coastal attacks, small villages sought refuge inland, leading to the birth of Polichnitos. Today, this village stands as a protected settlement area, offering a glimpse into the traditional architecture of Lesvos.

As you wander through Polichnitos, the echoes of history resonate in neoclassical mansions, old shops, and traditional houses. The church of Saint George, adorned with a steeple of carved stone, stands as a testament to the village’s enduring spirit. At the entrance, an old olive oil factory with a towering chimney becomes a landmark, hosting a yearly nest of storks, adding a touch of wildlife to the village.

Natural Retreats

Polichnitos extends its embrace to nature enthusiasts, boasting the warmest hot spring in Europe. With temperatures ranging from 67°C to 92°C, these therapeutic waters flow through volcanic rocks, offering a rejuvenating experience. The nearby village of Lisvori shares in this natural bounty and is renowned for producing the sweetest chickpeas, aniseed for ouzo, and aromatic olive oil.

Venture outside Polichnitos to Skala Polichnitou or Nifida, where the expansive sandy beaches invite relaxation. Here, seaside fish taverns and cafes provide the perfect backdrop for a day by the Aegean Sea.

Archaeological Marvels

The region surrounding Polichnitos holds archaeological significance, with ongoing excavations at the Rodafnidia site. Collaborating with universities and research institutions, these excavations unravel prehistoric activities spanning over 500,000 years. Lower Palaeolithic cores, tools, and Large Cutting Tools unveil a fascinating early Palaeolithic world.

Villages and Marvels Beyond

The journey from Polichnitos unveils neighboring treasures. Vrissa, once devastated by an earthquake, is gradually rebuilding. Vatera, a seaside tourist resort with the largest sandy beach on the island, invites visitors to savor water sports, boat excursions, and the charm of seaside establishments.

Vasilika, known as the “Royal Villages,” showcases the Monastery of Damandriou, an old basilica church adorned with frescoes dating back to the 16th century. Stavros, with churches dedicated to Saint Bartholomeo, Saint Paraskevi, and Saint Theraponta, preserves its agricultural and livestock traditions.

Skala Polichnitou: A Hidden Gem

Skala Polichnitou, a picturesque fishing harbor turned tourist resort, invites exploration. The beach of Skala Polichnitos, lining the Gulf of Kalloni, offers a serene retreat with its crystal-clear waters and charming fish taverns.

Thermal Springs Extravaganza

Polichnitos boasts the hottest mineral springs in Europe, ranging from 60°C to 90°C. The Polichnitos Thermal Springs, surrounded by boiling rivers and vibrant hues, offer a unique bathing experience. The bathhouse, a relic from the Turkish Occupation, retains its original pools, providing a comforting escape.

Near Lisvori, the Thermal Springs “Agios Ioannis” beckon with a domed semi-circular bathing pool and steam baths. Both springs, among the hottest in Europe, showcase Lesvos as a destination where natural beauty and therapeutic waters converge.

Polichnitos, a haven of history and natural wonders, invites intrepid travelers to uncover its secrets. From ancient excavations to therapeutic springs and serene beaches, this village on Lesvos weaves a tapestry of experiences, beckoning those who seek a harmonious blend of culture and nature. As you traverse its cobbled streets and bask in the warmth of its springs, Polichnitos whispers stories of resilience and timeless beauty, inviting you to be part of its enduring narrative.