Βαθμολογία Χρηστών:
Βαθμολογία Google:


The semi-mountainous settlement of Emporeios is located on the northeastern side of Nisyros, at a distance of 8 km southeast of Mandraki and 4 km south of the settlement of Paloi, which is considered as its seaport. The picturesque village, built at an altitude of about 330 meters, literally hangs from the caldera rim and offers a breathtaking view of the volcano valley to the south. Invisible from the sea, it was a safe refuge, especially during the time of piracy, occupying a strategic position that othe fertile valley of Lakki in the southwest and the sea passage from Cnidus to the Cyclades in the north.

These reasons prompted the Knights of the Order of St. John to build the castle of Emporeio or Pantoniki at the highest point of the area, in the 14th century, in the same location of an earlier Byzantine fortress. It is a typical fortified settlement, where the tall houses that surrounds the settlement, one attached to the other, along with the fortification wall provide a strong and protective enclosure. The exterior facades of the houses are plain, without projections, while their small openings were also used as battlements. The roofs of the houses were flat, while the rainwater coming from the roofs was collected into cisterns.

The settlement was gradually developed on the slope of the mountain around the medieval nucleus, in a layour similar to a castle. The stone-built houses share their long sides, a fact that provides antiseismic structural stability. The buildings are usually high and bulky two-storey with small openings for more security and privacy. Βalconies, which are so familiar at Mandraki, are uncommon here. Open-air interior courtyards are located in the central part of the first floor, with arched perimeter openings. The typically flat Cycladic-type roofs, with low barriers, serve the collection of rainwater in underground tanks. This is a common characteristic for a Nisyrian dwelling, due to the severe shortage of water in the island. However, the morphological element of a structural arch at the bottom floor appears only at Emporeios and it is uknown at other Nisyrian settlements, while arched passageways in the form of galleries are sometimes created in the alleys.

Local architecture follows the steep slopes of the ground and the stone-paved uphill streets with the steps in interrelation with the layout of groups of stepped houses across the street. The narrow streets offer shade and protection from the wind and they end up in the enclosed square of Emporeios, which is surrounded by houses and the central church dedicated to the Birth of the Virgin (1870).

The houses of the settlement are facing east, following the general rule of the Aegean settlements, which is also applied in Nisyros. This ensures protection from the strong west wind and increased exposure to the sun. As a result the thick stone walls absorb the heat during the day and release it inside the house during the cold winter nights. The architecture of Emporeios is plain, fully integrated with the natural environment and functional in the human scale and the needs of the inhabitants.

Nowadays, several houses of Emporeios remain demolished, due to the devastating
earthquake of 1933, which affected this village more than any other sites on the island. The natural disaster was the cause of mass migration of the inhabitants. As a result, a large part of the village was deserted. However, despite the ruined condition of some neighbourhoods, the village remains a unique residential complex with individual, traditional architectural elements, which demonstrate even today that it was a prosperous major village. Nowadays, the ever-increasing restorations and resettlements of houses adopt specific building restrictions with respect to the traditional character of Emporeios, as it has been declared a place of special architectural value and is protected by both the Ministry of Culture and the Ministry of Environment.

Emporeio, Nisyros, postal code 85303

Means of access:
By car, afterwards on foot

Disabled access:

Opening hours:

Entry fees:


Access Map

Virtual Tour

Voice Tour

Photo Gallery


Kentris, S. I. 1982, «Εκκλησίες και ξωκλήσια της Νισύρου», Νισυριακά 8, 83. , Economakis, R. 2001. Nisyros. History and Architecture of an Aegean Island. Athens: Melissa. (pp. 38-44, 114-149), Economakis, R.. 2001, “Η νισυριακή κατοικία”, στο Νίσυρος. Το νησί του Πολυβώτη, Επτά ημέρες – ένθετο Καθημερινής (Αθήνα 22. 7. 2001), 15-17., Economakis, R.. 2001, “Παραδοσιακοί οικισμοί”, στο Νίσυρος. Το νησί του Πολυβώτη, Επτά ημέρες – ένθετο Καθημερινής (Αθήνα 22. 7. 2001), 18-19., Apostolou, Μ. 2005, «Η Νίσυρος και η σημασία της για τους Ελληνικούς παραδοσιακούς οικισμούς», Νισυριακά 16, 177-181. , Orsaris, S. 2012, Οι τοιχογραφημένοι ναοί της Νισύρου , 62 (αδημοσίευτη διπλωματική εργασία). Θεσσαλονίκη. , Kentris, S. I. 2013, «Οι Ενοριακοί ναοί της Νισύρου», Νισυριακά 20, 226-228.
Scroll to Top