From the famous Cyclades to the most remote islets, whitewashed churches blend in beautifully with the picturesque landscapes. Here is a small list compiling some of the most stunning sacred places on Greece’s islands!
Monastery of Agios Ioannis Theologos, Patmos
The Monastery of Saint John is one of the most important religious sites in Greece, located on the holy island of Patmos. It is built next to the cave where Saint John wrote the Book of Apocalypse (Revelation).
Seven Martyrs, Sifnos
Sifnos is said to be home to 336 churches. Located in a picturesque setting, the Church of the Seven Martyrs is situated near the small village of Kastro, on top of an islet. Its white and blue dome stands out against the crystal blue waters of the sea.
Panagia Ekatotapiliani, Paros
The Church of 100 Doors is situated in Parikia and is said to be one of the earliest Byzantine churches in Greece, built in the middle of the 4th century. Legend has it that the church has 99 visible doors, with the hidden, locked 100th door set to appear and open only when Constantinople becomes Greek again.
Panagia Megalochari, Tinos
Located on the island of Tinos, this is one of the holiest sites in Greece, as Panagia (Virgin Mary) is said to have visited the island and Panagia Megalochori is said to be the protector of the country. It was constructed on top of a hill where people found the icon of the Virgin Mary, believed to be the source of miracles.
Panagia Hozoviotissa, Amorgos
This is one of the most important Byzantine monuments in the Aegean standing on the slopes of Amorgos island. This impressive 11th-century structure built into the face of a cliff is 300 meters above the sea, where a miraculous icon of the Virgin, patron saint of the island, was found.
Agios Isidoros, Chios
Located on a bay with a small pebbly beach, it’s without a doubt one of the most photographed places on the island. The chapel was built on the ruins of an Early Christian temple, and the interior filled with mosaic floors holds the holy relics of Agios Isidoros.
Agios Ioannis, Skopelos
Perched atop a cliff near the village of Glossa, pilgrims have to climb 106 steps to reach it, but they are always rewarded for their efforts; the impressive vistas from the church are worth every single step.
Panagia Tsambika, Rhodes
Known for the many miracles in helping couples conceive, thousands of pilgrims walk up 300 steep steps to visit the Holy Monastery of Panagia Tsambika. Perched at an altitude of some 240 m, it offers some truly spectacular views of the coast.
Agia Sofia, Kythira
Agia Sofia is situated inside a cave overlooking wild landscapes and the Aegean Sea. Amongst other holy items you will find fresco icons from the 13th century.
Panagia Kalamiotissa, Anafi
Perched atop the promontory of Kalamos, which is connected to the rest of Anafi by a narrow stretch of land; the church was built in the 19th Century with many ruins from a temple dedicated to the god Apollo.
Panagia Makrini, Samos
Panagia Makrini was built during the 10th century as part of a larger monastery and bones from previous ascetic monks were also found here. Visiting this site involves an easy hike through a lush forest and caves surrounded by turquoise.
Agios Spyridonas, Santorini
The famous worldwide postcard of a white church with a blue dome belongs to the church of Agios Spyridonas and just behind it is another blue-domed church, Anastasios (Resurrection).
Agia Paraportiani, Mykonos
Paraportiani lies behind Little Venice and the famous windmills, this stunning church is one of the most photographed places in the Cyclades.
Panagia Tourliani, Milos
Dedicated to the Virgin Mary it’s located in Klimatovouni, a hill above the area of Klima- boasting old icons and courtyards overlooking the bay of Adamantas.
Panagia Chrysopigi, Sifnos
This famous church was built in 1615 as a home to an icon of Zoodochos Pigi (the life-giving spring, that is the Virgin Mary) that was salvaged from the sea by fishermen.
Koimisi Tis Theotokou, Folegandros
Built into the side of a steep hillside overlooking the main town of the island, the church is famous for its icon of Panagia, which was brought over from Constantinople and is said to perform miracles.
Panagia Kakaviotissa, Limnos
This “roofless” church, sits on top of a cave in which it’s nestled, in a crag on Mt Kakavos, 4 kilometers from Myrina. The church dates back at least to 1305 when it became a branch of the Great Lavra Monastery of Mount Athos.
Agios Stefanos, Syros
According to tradition, the church of Agios Stefanos was built by a fisherman named Stephanos from the nearby village of Galissa, who was threatened by a huge octopus that was pulling him to the sea. He made a vow to Agios Stephanos to save him and so he built the chapel in this secluded crag in his honour.
Panagia tou Charou, Leipsoi
This church is located on the hillside southeast of the capital of Leipsoi, a small island located south of Samos. It is home to the only icon in which the Virgin Mary is not holding Jesus Christ as a child, but rather after his crucifixion.
Kyra Panagia, Karpathos
The church stands out for its red dome and is located on the southeastern side of the island. It was built in traditional style with whitewashed walls and features a small terrace that offers amazing views of the Aegean Sea and to the bay of Kyra Panagia.
Cover image @ansharimages