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Pythagorion on Samos
Pythagorion (1,270 inhabitants) is in my opinion the nicest (and largest) tourist resort on Samos. Although tourism dominates, there is also a true Greek everyday life. In the alleys behind the harbour promenade where many tourists are staying, also Greeks still have their homes, and you find old men selling fish and vegetables and in the shops older women are sitting waiting for the customers to arrive.
Pythagorion. The breakwater where the mathematician Pythagoras stands statue on the left.
Pythagorion offers a wonderful mix of old and new, there are many historical monuments, and ancient pillars and columns are lying here, there, and everywhere. If you are interested in history, I can recommend a visit to the relatively newly opened Archaeological Museum. Excavations are ongoing just outside the museum.
Talking of interesting sights, there are two very fascinating ones just above Pythagorion: the Monastery of Panagia Spiliani and the, to say the least, strange Tunnel of Eupalinos.
Along the main street of Pythagorion there are many shops, fast food places, taxis and ATMs.
But it may possibly not be the Greek everyday life and the sights that attract tourists to Pythagorion, probably it is the cosy harbour promenade that runs along the entire horseshoe shaped bay that attracts. Personally, I am childishly fond of harbour promenades, I can sit for hours over a cup of coffee or a beer and watch the world go by.
The harbour promenade in Pythagorion in the evening.
I have visited a countless number of harbour promenades during my many trips to Greece, many are pleasant, but not many are as pleasant as the one in Pythagorion. It is both charming, touristy and cosy at the same time, here are lots of tavernas and bars, along the quay the big luxury boats lie beside sailboats, excursion boats and fishing boats. Ferries to, inter alia, Leros, Lipsi and Patmos departs from the pier (also a breakwater) at the far end. The statue of the mathematician Pythagoras - the actual emblem of Pythagorion - stands on the other pier (or breakwater).
Pythagorion in the evening.
The nightlife in Pythagorion is quiet, although there are clubs that open late and close early. Almost all tourists, and many Greeks for that matter, start the evening with a drink or a glass of wine at one of the many bars on the harbour promenade. The bar we think is nicest is Gregory's bar (turn right if you are coming via the main street).
Some of the tavernas along the harbour promenade are nothing but tourist traps, go for the gut feeling when choosing a taverna and try to ignore all the tiresome barkers. There are some tavernas on the harbour promenade that stand out among the crowd, one of these is Restaurant Elia, located quite close to the breakwater where Pythagoras stands statue. Here, the Swedish-speaking owner Michalis cooks fantastic food. Ever since Michalis opened, there have been long queues for the restaurant. Reserve a table.
Restaurant Elia on the harbour promenade in Pythagorion.
The best restaurants are located in the alleys, if there are many Greeks in a taverna, it usually guarantees good food and low prices. In my opinion, the absolute best taverna in Pythagorion is Esperides. They serve incredibly good Greek food, (just the thought of the food makes my mouth water), add fantastic service and reasonable prices and you have the perfect taverna. Esperides is located on a cross street to the right of the main street, if you are coming from the harbour promenade. Feel free to book a table.
Restaurant Esperides in Pythagorion.
Further up in the same alley as Esperides lies Restaurant Irodion, also a very good taverna. Here, too, there are usually a lot of people so I recommend you to reserve a table, even if it is boring to have to do it on your holiday.
Remataki beach is the best beach in Pythagorion.
A third restaurant I would like to recommend is Taverna Maritza near the stately church of the Transfiguration of the Christ. Behind the church are the remains of the Castle of Logothetis from where you have a nice view of Potokaki beach. Taverna Maritsa is a family-owned taverna that specializes in seafood, but they also offers other dishes. They fish every day with their fishing boats that are found at the end of the harbour promenade (see picture below).
Many people appreciate having a glass of Samos' sweet wine or a glass of beer on the harbour promenade.
There are two small beaches in Pythagorion itself, but most people choose to go to Potokaki beach, located next to the airport a few kilometres outside the village. The best of the beaches in Pythagorion is Remataki beach at the far left of the village, if you have your nose to the water. As I said, the beach is very small, and it is usually crowded. Many people choose to spend the day here, and I can to some extent understand them, because it is located at a close distance, and there are many tavernas to choose from when it's time to have lunch. In my opinion, the best restaurant along the beach is Faros at the far end.
Taverna Maritza's fishing boats at the harbour promenade.
The other beach is called Tarsanas. It is located on the other side of the harbour promenade and is not much to write home about. Large pebbles and high waves make it difficult to get into the water.
Finally, I would like to recommend a walloping party that takes place every year on the 5th of August. Then there is a fireworks and boat burner party in Pythagorion's harbour. Read about the party here »
ACCOMMODATION IN PYTHAGORION
Most of Pythagorion's package travellers will find themselves at Potokaki beach, but there are also many hotels in Pythagorion itself. If you travel independently, you have many accommodation options to choose from.
Potokaki beach is located a few kilometres west of Pythagorion.