In the northeastern part of Kithira lies Paleochora. This has been the former capital of the island, under the name of Agios Dimitrios. It is built on the foot of a hill and bears medieval characteristics. It is no wonder why it has been called Mystras of Kithira, since the Monemvasians were the ones who constructed the castle. The exact place where Paleochora is found is the joining of two canyons, with a gorge stretching ahead. Due to the fortifications, nobody can see it from the sea and this has acted as protection against pirates. And for many years, such defensive walls have played their part and offered security to the locals.
However, the fierce pirate Barbarossa managed to destroy Paleochora back in 1537. According to the myth, those who visit the castle at night can still hear the screams of the women from that horrible moment on the island’s history. Ever since its destruction, Paleochora has never been built or inhabited again to reach its former glory. The locals considered it a cursed place where misfortune lies. But the truth is that the premises are truly breathtaking. If you decide to climb up the hill and reach the castle on foot, you will be compensated by the magnificent surroundings.
On site, you can see some Byzantine churches, like that of Agia Varvara or Santa Barbara. It is a well preserved medieval monument, filled with treasures that depict the life of past centuries in Kithira. And besides the significant historic value of Paleochora, the natural bliss all around is self-explanatory as a reason why you should visit this attraction. In fact, from Paleochora one may reach the beach nearby and enjoy the stunning views from above and below on the same day. A truly remarkable experience not to be missed in Kithira!