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Skiathos Arcitecture

Apart from the Kastro most of the houses on the Island of Skiathos were originally built near the sea, around the Skiathos Town area. In general this was due to the fact that most local families were involved in fishing, shipping, or ma ratine commerce of one form or another.
The older houses of Skiathos, are generally no more than two stories high and built of stone. Within the town most of the houses are built close together, separated by small alleyways and steps.
Whilst the design of the early buildings closely follow the styles to be found in the villages on the nearby mainland around Pilio,( a mountain at the southeastern part of Thessaly ) in keeping with most of the Greek islands the houses are normally painted white. The main reason being to reflect the suns rays during the day and aiding cooling of the buildings during the hot summers. In keeping with custom, many of the window frames shutters and doorways are painted blue.




Skiathos Arcitecture

Many experts believe that inside the Bourtzi there was a church, known as the church of Agios Georgios, (the guardian deity of the Venetians). This being the case, the Bourtzi was most likely referred to as the Kastelli tou Agiou Georgiou (The Castle of Saint George).
To the north of the island are the ruins of the Kastro, perhaps the most interesting historical area on the island, it was built as a fortified retreat, to escape the pirate raids of the 14th and 15th century. Today the what remains of the once capital of Skiathos are largely overgrown ruins, two churches survive intact, along some icons and frescoes. Sections of the protective wall and main gate of the old fort, still exists, as well as a section of the mosque which is till visible from a distance. At the entrance the drawbridge has been replace by steep concrete steps and scaffolding.





Skiathos Arcitecture

It is worth noting that the original material used to achieve the white colour was asbestos or lyme and not white paint, it was also used for many other purposes, such as making the edges of pavements and painting tree trunks (to kill pests). The blue colour was originally applied to church roofs as an indication that the building was a church and was 'tax free'.