The Mytilini Fortress on the Lesbos Island

The Mytilini Fortress on the Lesbos Island

The Mytilini Fortress on the Lesbos Island ©thomas_gruber/Flick

The green island of Lesbos or Mytilene is a resort not as much frequented as the rest of the islands. The Lesbos Island is called by the Greeks the Emerald Isle because of the variety and abundance of local flora. The deep green  appearance is multiplied by the olives, that are more than 11 million in number and covering about 40% of the island of Lesbos.

The Island of Lesbos certainly is not as famous as the Greek island of Crete, for example, but that does not prevent it being billed as one of the most beautiful and authentic islands in the world.

 

The surface of the volcanic island is about 80 km, on its territory being located the place of gods in the Greek mythology – Mount Olympus. The mountain is famous for the special species of plants and animals, being declared a biological reserve by the UNESCO. Therefor a trip to the Island of Lesbos comes in a package with a visit to the home of Zeus.

The Fortress of the Lesbos Island

The Fortress of the Lesbos Island ©John & Mel Kots/Flick

The location of the fortress

The Mytilini Fortress, surrounded by pine trees, is situated atop a hill near the Mytilini port. The fortress, with a history takes us back to the ages that passed a long time ago. It is considered to be one of the most important and largest fortress in the Mediterranean.

The construction of the fortress

Being built as a Sanctuary of the goddess Demeter, the construction of the fortress began in the Byzantine period (about 438-565 years d.Hr ), when on the territory of the Empire were started building structures for a possible military defense. The material used in the construction of the fortress was taken from old buildings that were in disrepair, including the demolition of the old Mytilini theater.

The Turkish baths in the Mytilini Fortress

The Turkish baths in the Mytilini Fortress ©Sean Wallis/Flick

The structure of the fortress

The shape of the Mytilini Fortress that is visible today was consolidated when the Genoese Gattilusio family was in charge, emphasising the renovation and the reconstruction of the walls. Over the years, the fort was attacked by many people who were in the process of territorial expansion, which led to the destruction of parts of it. Today, the fort is a tourist attraction. In its interior you can visit the underground galleries where women and children sought refuge during the war, and a tank with a capacity of 4000 m3 and an Islamic school built in the Ottoman period.

The Mytilini Fortress on the Lesbos Island

The Mytilini Fortress on the Lesbos Island ©thomas_gruber/Flick

When visiting the Fort of Mytilini you will be impressed by observing its rigid structure, and the many events that are held inside of the fortress during the summer. From here you can also see the spectacular landscapes in the distance, as the fortress is situated at height.

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