Saturday, September 9, 2017

The Colorful Art Scene of Patmos, Greece

When we think of Patmos, we usually think about the gorgeous crystal beaches of the Aegean sea or the historic and religious destinations, like the Monastery of St. John and the Cave of the Apocalypse. But Patmos is a great travel destination for the traveler that lives in the now, as well. The island is full of shops, nightlife, cafe bars, and a vibrant art scene that often goes unnoticed in guides about the travel spot. Here are some Patmos appeals for the art lovers out there.

Art Galleries in Chora

Chora is the capital of Patmos and a popular destination for several reasons. What tourists often don’t know before they come to Chora is all the art galleries that can be found there. The galleries in Chora are sometimes hidden gems, but you can find them if you know where to look. The big one is the Kapopoulos Fine Arts gallery, which has branches in East Attica, Athens, Cyprus, and of course, Patmos. For something more local, you can visit Andreas Kalatzis’ gallery: an artist’s studio in the open space where art created by Patmos natives or artists inspired by Patmos is on display for all to see.

Chris Cafe at Chris Hotel in Skala

Cafes in Skala

Skala is the port city of Patmos. It’s where you can find the most popular beaches, some of the best Patmos hotels and shops, and some truly colorful cafes. If you want to find a place to enjoy artwork and coffee or cocktails at the same time, try Skala. The Koukoumavla Bar has been described as “the lovechild of Tim Burton and Frida Kahlo opening a coffee house,” and if that doesn’t excite the art lover in you, we don’t know what will. The walls are colored in deep orange and greens and accented by bright, colorful artwork.

There’s also Art Cafe, and the name plainly tells you what to expect. Art cafes walls are covered in quirky, artistic wall hangings, whether paintings, photographs, wreaths, or ceramics. This cafe and bar begs the question: is it named for the art on the walls or is the cafe itself the art? The table decorations and even the chairs all look to be artfully hand-crafted. This cafe also has one of the only rooftop garden seating areas in the city, and the view from there is an absolute dream.

If you’re staying at Chris Hotel in Patmos, Greece, there’s also Chris Cafe, the hotel’s own cafe with stunning waterfront views and the surroundings of the Skala docks. The cafe is open all day, has connection to the hotel’s wifi, and a big screen TV so you won’t miss your favorite shows or games while taking in the view. For an artist seeking inspiration--as well as a warm cup of coffee--Chris Cafe can’t be beat.

Some bells at the Monastery of St. John

Ancient Religious Artwork of the Monastery of St. John

Some artists find inspiration by looking at the past. Some art lovers feel excitement being in the presence of artwork that’s had such a lasting impact for so long. The huge, fortified Monastery of St. John on a hilltop in Chora is itself a work of art, but it also houses paintings that have stood the test of time. Some of the paintings in the main chapel date back to the 17th century, but the oldest paintings in the chapel of The Virgin Mary were created by monks as early as the 12th century. You’ll pass gift shops on your way to and from the monastery if you want to take a memento with you to remember what you saw there.

An idyllic view of a sailboat on the sea at sunset

Finding Inspiration in the World Around You

Artists have found inspiration in the breathtaking beauty of Patmos and the Aegean Sea for centuries. Take a walk around, and you’ll understand why. You can visit the sites of some of your favorite artwork: the shores, the fishing docks, the Cave of the Apocalypse, where St. John received his Revelation. You can find inspiration for your own works in the windmills, narrow alleyways (once used to protect the city from pirates), and beautiful gardens of Chora. Or you could find inspiration from the view of your own Patmos hotel.

Chris Hotel in Patmos, Greece features some of the best views that can be found in Skala. Your balcony can face the sea, the mountains, or the gardens of town. There’s a cafe and bar where you can sip your coffee and look out at the beauty surrounding you. Chris Hotel is closely located to the shops, which will come in handy when you need to stock up on supplies. Even if you’ve never been an artist yourself, the views you see here might just inspire you.

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