Why is the Beautiful Delos Island Empty of Inhabitants?

The beautiful Delos Island or Dilos Island is a very small island in the centre of the Cyclades ring of islands in the Aegean Sea. It covers 3.43 square kilometres and there are only 14 inhabitants in this island. This could be very strange, but no wonder, it is not a normal island.

Few kilometres off the southwestern coast of the Greek Mykonos Island, east of the beautiful Syros Island and south of the beautiful Tinos Island, the beautiful Delos Island or Dilos absorbs touristy attractions from Mykonos and other islands in the neighbourhood in the Cyclades.

However, there is no tourism industry in the island. Delos Travel is in Hora, Mykonos plus other travel and accommodations in Mykonos. So, visitors come to it from Mykonos and different places and leave to Mykonos and those places again.

The importance of the beautiful Delos Island is not because it is the best tourists' destination, or it is rich, large and populous island, but because of that, the beautiful Delos Island or Dilos is one of the most important archaeological sites in Greece and the first important archaeological site in the Cyclades.

The beautiful Delos Island or Dilos Island was a holy sanctuary and a shrine for centuries. The white marble ruins of temples in the island reflect the ancient Greek culture.

In the Greek mythology, Delos was the birthplace of Apollo and Artemis. Therefore, it is a field of extensive and continuous excavation.

Leto the titan goddess, daughter of the Titans Coeus and Phoebe in the legend spoke to it in that rich literature to be the birthplace of Apollo and give him a temple. As the history has produced many artefacts among other findings, the island has rich archaeological sites.

The French School at Athens runs extensive and continuous excavations through which they found columns with phallus at the Stoivadeion, the Delos Lions and other monuments.

The Lions and many artefacts are at the Archaeological Museum of Delos and the Archaeological Museum of Athens.

As there are not inhabitants in the beautiful Delos Island or Dilos Island, some visitors may see it as an island of ghosts and they may even see them walking all the night if they slept there, and then anticipate that all the Greek myths will evolve in their head and throw them back million years in history.

Restlessly, people flock to the beautiful Island of Delos for this reason from inside Greece and from other different places in the world that may even be more beautiful than Delos.

The needs for flights to the island are different and the island has what it takes to attract flights to it, but to land in Mykonos and from there visitors arrive by boats.

Permanent population will be a question in the heads of visitors when they arrive to the beautiful Delos Island. Where are those people? Where are the villages? Where are the farms... the olive groves, the gardens, the restaurants, the hotels, the beaches, etc...?

Normal travellers to the beautiful Delos Island will probably indulge in such questions. But that would not be the interest of other visitors such as scholars and other knowledgeable people.

The questions in their minds would be such as, where are the birth room of Artemis and the birth room of her twin Apollo?... or where had she first walked? Where she slept? From where did she call her father?

From here, they may get back through history, live it again, display it in their minds and come up with good insights to talk about, write about or to complete their researches and scholarships. This task will be their joy to fulfil their professional careers.

Not a way from this attraction, the beautiful Delos Island positions itself deep in the Greek history and flavour with it on the Aegean Sea, even before the Hellenistic period. Read brief history of the beautiful Delos Island at the end of the article.

How Do People Arrive There?

Daily excursion boats run between Hora in Mykonos Island to the beautiful Delos Island. There are boats from Platys Gialos as well. They take around 25-30 minutes on the sea. Excursion boats departure and arrival are available on the boards of the ports in the two islands.

The boats dock on the harbour at south of the tranquil Sacred Harbour. From here travellers explore the archaeological sites of Dilos. Many finds in Dilos are in the National Archaeological Museum in Athens, but there are collections on the site itself, as you can see through the posters on this page.

The collections on the beautiful Dilos Island include finds of the Terrace of the Lions, the rock at Mount Kythnos at the southeast of the harbour, with good views to the other islands from the top and the Theatre Quarter.

The Theatre Quarter lies at the path to Mount Kythnos and where the wealthiest families of Delos once built their houses. The houses have peristyle courtyards and those have colourful mosaics presenting beautiful pieces of art.

They include also the House of Dionysos or Dionysus, the god of wine on its depicting mosaic riding a panther, the House of Cleopatra where the headless status of her were found, the House of the Trident and the House the Mask with another mosaic of Dionysos with the panther.

There is a mosaic in the House of the Dolphins. The theatre if from the 300 BC with its remains including its large cistern once provided most the town by water, plus the houses of the wealthy with their own cisterns.

Up to the mountains are the sanctuaries of the Foreign Gods with the Shrine to the Samothracian Great Gods, the Kabeiroi or the twins Dardanos and Aeton in the place where they worshiped.

There is Sanctuary of the Syrian Gods with the remains of a theatre flashing back to the times the audience watched ritual orgies and a shrine place where ancient people worshiped Egyptian deities as Serapis and Isis.

At the northeast of the harbour, is the Sanctuary of Apollo with his temples and the Terrace of the Lions carved from marble and offered as gifts from the beautiful Naxos Island to the beautiful Delos Island in the 7th century BC to guard the sacred land.

The Sacred Lake is at the northeast of this place. This area was drained in 1925 to prevent the malaria mosquitoes from breeding in the place where the legend says Leto gave birth to Apollo and Artemis.

People first inhabited the beautiful Delos Island or Dilos in the third millennium BC. Naxians donated many of the shrines and temples in that time to the beautiful Delos Island or Dilos.

The Athenians used the beautiful Delos Island or Dilos as a base to control the other beautiful Aegean Sea islands and the sea routes.

They gained strong control of the beautiful Delos Island or Dilos on the 5th century BC and then began an alliance known as the Delian League in 478 BC to keep the treasury in the beautiful Delos Island or Dilos.

There was a decree that no one has rights to live in the island, marry, give birth to children and die and the native Delian found themselves oppressed and suffered expulsions after that.

The power of the beautiful Delos Island or Dilos rose to its height during the Hellenistic period and Delos became one of three religious centres in Greece.

The island witnessed a flourishing period as its commerce grows and the inhabitants became wealthy merchants, bankers and mariners including Egyptians and Syrians and those built temples to the gods of their homelands.

In 167 BC, the Roman liberated the port of the beautiful Delos Island or Dilos and the slave market witnessed its flourishing times where 100,000 slaves were sold in a single day and the numbers kept around that figure for a while.

The deterioration came after that during the 3rd century when the beautiful Island of Delos or Dilos lost its glimmering days and pirates looted many of its treasures.

In the modern times and until today, people consider the beautiful Delos Island or Dilos the circular ring of the Cyclades.

In addition to the beautiful Delos Island or Dilos, you may also be interested in the beautiful Astypalea Island, the beautiful Greek Islands or the beautiful Patmos Island.

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Millionaire Match offers dating services for locals in the surrounding areas of the beautiful Island of Delos or Dilos!

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