Megalo Livadi on Serifos

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Megalo Livadi is located about 6 kilometres west of Koutalas. Along the way you pass a solitary beach with few or no visitors called Maliadiko beach. The landscape has traces of mining: mine entrances and forgotten machines is visible here, there and everywhere.

Before reaching Megalo Livadi, you drive past Megalo Chorio, Serifos' ancient capital. Megalo means "big" in Greek and Chorio means "village". Megalo Chorio = "The Big Village". The only thing that is left of Megalo Chorio today is a sign, if you are blinking you will miss the place. The name Megalo Livadi is also puzzling. There are three places on Serifos called Livadi: the port of Livadi, the beach of Livadaki and Megalo Livadi where we are now. Megalo Livadi meaning "Big Livadi" is the smallest of the three, Livadaki meaning "Small Livadi" is the second largest and finally, Livadi meaning just Livadi is the largest of the three. Greek logic? Or, Megalo Livadi was the island's largest village once upon a time.

Anyway, Megalo Livadi is a tiny village with a pretty good sandy beach lined with big tamarisk trees and some exotic palms. The palms were certainly planted during Megalo Livadi's heyday when the village was part of the lively and successful mining industry on Serifos. The majority of the buildings from the former mining community are still there, albeit in obvious disrepair. The former office of the mining company, a beautiful neoclassical building, reminiscent of the glory days. The beautiful building is lit by lamps in the evenings. From the office you can follow the old village street with worn workers' homes a bit inland. Imagine how living Megalo Livadi must have been at that time.

The beach in Megalo Livadi.

The beach in Megalo Livadi.

Taverna in  Megalo Livadi..

Taverna in Megalo Livadi.

Just above the farthest part of the beach (left of the office of the mining company) stands a monument to four workers that protested against the bad working conditions in the mines. They would not have done that. All four were shoot dead. The incident occurred on August 21 in 1916. Of course it is not possible today to understand how the conditions were then, but you can get a hint if you go up to the old loading bridge to the left above the beach.

Clear traces of the mining are visible everywhere: pits, forgotten iron ore, a small railway, ore wagons of wood and iron and the loading bridge itself that makes you fantasize about times gone by. In those days it was an income-generating hellhole, today it is a fascinating industrial museum without being a museum.

Perhaps it is just me that is fascinated by old disused industries? We return to the beach instead. The beach in Megalo Livadi is a nice acquaintance when it's not windy, it's great to swim out in the beautiful bay, maybe gaze hungry towards the tavernas whose tables stands in the sand under the shady tamarisk trees and wonder what to eat for lunch.

Mine houses in Serifos.

One of the magnificen old houses in Megalo Livadi.

Megalo Livadi beach. Serifos.

Megalo Livadi is about 16 kilometers from Livadi, and I think it is worth driving to, despite the rather long distance.

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