Lesvos Island is the third largest island following of Greeece, following Crete and Evia. It belongs to the Northeastern Aegean group of islands. The landscape is uneven as due to the big mountains visible on the island. It is rumored to have almost 11 million olive trees clinging to these mountain slopes.
It is believed to produce half of the world's ouzo and is famous for the fiery taste of its local liqueur made from aniseed. The island also has a rich traditional heritage and is the home of the famous female poet of Greece Sappho, philosophers like Epicurus, painters like Theophilos and the very famous Noble prize winning poet of the 20th century Odysseus Elytis. It is no wonder that such literary figures must have got their inspiration for their talented works from the beautiful panoramic natural surroundings among which they had been brought up from their childhood.
The landscape of Lesvos is significant for the interesting and intriguing geological data and remains of fossils that have been unearthed. The island's lush green vegetation, budding flowers, pristine beaches, therapeutic hot springs and a variety of animal species, especially birds, creates a lovely atmosphere. For hikers and bird watchers, the olive groves in the southern part of the region is the main attraction as you are bound to come across different species of singing birds.
Archaeological excavations showed that a well organized and developed civilization inhabited the island during both the Neolithic and the Bronze Age. The Pelasgians and Achaeans both had establishments on this island. The island became renowned for its philosophical and artistic endeavours during 7th century B.C. The naval power of the island was also at its height at this time. After many conquests the centuries that followed, with the Turkish conquest being the worst, the island became independent on 8th November 1912. The historical personality behind this was Admiral Koundouriotis and his brave fleet.
The Treaty of Lausanne was signed in 1923 as to mark the integration of Lesvos with the other Greek islands. But the realization of its freedom was yet to come. The German occupancy of the island lasted till the end of World War II and finally for the first time the island felt its true independence on 10th September, 1944.
The cultural and traditional supremacy that the island is believed to have was probably due to the civilizations that occupied and flourished on this island. One such relevant fact that come forefront is the year 1922, when Greek refugees from Turkey thronged the island. They not only settled here but brought along with them new economical and cultural concepts that slowly gained popularity with the natives as well.
Apart from a rich history, Lesvos also has a gorgeous natural landscape. Charming mountainous and seaside villages dot Lesvos island and the most popular are Petra, Kalloni, Mytilene and Molyvos. The best fresh fish is found in the taverns along the waterfront of Kalloni. Beaches on Lesvos can be sandy or pebbled, isolate or popular, but all of them have crystal water.