Written by Missy Johnston
Patmos, Greece, has been inhabited since around 3000 B.C. Though the island figures predominantly in Greek legends, including the tale of the goddess Artemis convincing Zeus to raise the sunken island up out of the sea, Patmos is most interesting because of its Christian religious history.
Due to a fascinating period in 95 AD, Patmos has become known as the “Holy Island” and is now ruled by Christian monks. The sheer mystical significance of the place is enough to compel many to include Patmos in a yacht charter itinerary of the Greek Dodecanese Islands. And if the fascinating history and lore aren’t enough, the island’s beauty, culture, and architecture are known all over the world.
Here is what to see and do on Patmos when visiting on a luxury yacht charter in Greece.
The Cave of The Apocalypse
With a name like that, how could visitors pass it up?
The Cave of the Apocalypse is the spot where John the Baptist is said to have received his visions from the Lord, emanating from a triple rock crevice—representing the Holy Trinity. After, John lived in the cave while writing what would become the book of Revelation in the Bible.
Surrounding the cave is a monastery, within which is a mosaic detailing each of Saint John’s visions. Tours are available to the rocky spot where John slept, including the rock he used as a pillow. The triple crevice is still on display as well, so it is literally possible to see the place where John is said to have received all the Lord’s revelations.
Saint John Monastery
Towering above the Chora, the Monastery of Saint John serves as the primary center of religious worship on the island today. Constructed in 1088, the monastery is a compound of several buildings including ten different chapels. The library is filled with thousands of historical documents surrounding Saint John’s history on Patmos, and nearly a thousand handwritten ancient codices.
Both the Ecclesiastical Museum and the Folklore Museum on Patmos delight visitors who love history.
The Ecclesiastical Museum is located within the Monastery of Saint John. It features items from the Byzantine era, important manuscripts, and many religious objects.
The Folklore Museum is located in a section of the Simantiri family mansion in Chora. Museum tours include the opportunity to see photographs, furniture, and art dating back to the 14th century.
It is said that there is a church or chapel on Patmos for every day of the year. This is a delightful island in the Dodecanese Islands of Greece to visit on a Greek yacht charter.