Samos is located just 10 miles away from Ikaria, while it is only one mile away from the Turkish coast. The maximum length of the island from W.To E.Is 26 miles and the maximum width from N. To S. Is 11 miles and the maximum altitude is 1443 m. (Top of Mount Kerketeus). The perimeter of its coastline amounts to 86 nautical miles and the total surface is 477 square kilometers.
It is the birthplace of the great mathematician Pythagoras, the astronomer and mathematician Aristarchus, the philosopher Epicurus and for many people, of Aesop. The island has a large tourist traffic during the summer period. Of all the Greek islands, Samos is located closest to Turkey, from which it is separated by the Strait of Mycale (or Samos Strait, in ancient times), which at the height of the Poseidon has a width of around 750 meters (Greek territorial waters) . The island, which has a population of 33.814 inhabitants (2001) has the capital Samos (or Vathy) , with 6236 inhabitants and its second biggest city is Karlovassi with 5,740. Other major cities are the AnoVathy (2025), The old capital of the island,Chora, Pythagorio (1,327) Mytilinioi (2.340) Marathokampos (1,329), Kokkari (973 inhabitants) and Koumaradaioi. In Samos you will see the pit Tunnel, which is an underground cistern and one of the most substantial technical work of antiquity, described by Herodotus.
The tunnel, with a length of 1036 meters, was opened simultaneously from both sides of the mountain and the two tunnels met around the middle, with admirable precision. Another substantial sight of Samos is the Heraion. In ancient times, the temple of Hera, the Heraion was the largest in Greece according to Herodotus. The ruins of the temple are located near the modern Heraion, which is a coastal tourist resort.
Samos is the island that provides either quiet family vacation, or relaxing holidays full of adventures. It is a paradise also for energetic tourists, especially for climbers, as there are opportunities to enjoy this activity throughout the island. The best place to do that is on the west side, where you will find the mountain Kerkis. The highest peak is Vigla, which is 4,700 feet high and it is the highest peak in the eastern Aegean. Samos is also famous for another activity, caving. In the past there were more than 70 caves in the island, some of them are now gone, but there are still many caves to explore.
If you are an experienced caver just ask any of the locals and they will show you the right direction. Of course there are tours that you can join, to simply visit the most well-known caves. One of the most challenging, but adventurous things to do in Samos is to visit Potamiwaterfalls inKarlovassi. It seems simple to walk along the path from the beach River, but about 500 meters along the route you must pass through water. It is quite shallow but the ground beneath your feet is marshy and since there are slippery rocks it is better to wear shoes. The experience is truly worthwhile once you reach the beautiful waterfall.
There are endless opportunities to have fun and experience realadventure in Samos, as there is a wide range of water sports you can take part. Diving is popular in the Aegean Sea as it offers beautiful underwaterexloring areas. If you prefer to stay above water, you can sail around the island, go sea kayaking, windsurf or kitesurf. Samos is a great place for windsurfing, due to summer Meltemi winds. There is a great windsurfing center in Kokkari on the north coast, where the wind is blowing from the left side of the coast where you will find the appropriate conditions for a free-ride.