Traditional settlement


Kampos is a lowland area, a valley of great history lying on the eastern side of the island. This is a place full of citrus orchards, old mansions and a dense, complex network of narrow roads. Crossed by two streams, Kampos is one of the most fertile areas of the island. High walls built with colored stone of Thymiana villlage protect both gardens and mansions of great historic value. The architecture of the mansions was developed from  the early Genoese period on the 14th to early 19th century.

Bearing the symbols of each family, the magnificent wooden gates protect within them acres of land full of orange, lemon and tangerine trees; hence pleasant scents float around the air especially during spring season. Kampos combines dwelling and workplace in a charming environment. The pebbled or paved courtyards are decorated with pine, cypress and walnut trees and they are surrounded by wells with round wheels on top called Maggani, cisterns and ponds where the garden is watered from.

Mansions of two or three stories are constructed with huge doors, arched windows, arcades of marble pillars and small arched balconies. Kampos has been declared protected historic site by the Ministry of Culture. Most of the buildings are preserved in ruins because of the damage the place suffered during the Massacre of Chios and the great earthquake of 1881. Many mansions can be visited such as Argentiko, Mavrokodatiko, Citrus and Riziko. The best way to wander and admire the beauty of Kampos is on foot, by bicycle or by motorbike.

Mansion and Garden The house is located next to the road and the entrance is allowed through its courtyard. The high walls which form a fence separating the mansion and its garden from the road, give room to the courtyard entrance. The gate bears the unique characteristic of each family crest. Entering, the first thing to be seen is the pebbled or paved courtyard, always cool in the shade of trees. The yard has always been the reception hall as well as the place where daily life was spent. Here it is where the staircase of the mansion, the well with the wheel on top called Magganos, the cistern and the entrance to the garden lie.

Magganos The well is located in the courtyard in a specially designed area in circle shape. This is a large structure with four pillars that hold the round wheel on top of the well. A series of buckets held in chains is based on the wheel. A donkey would turn around the Magganos moving the wheel and filling its buckets with water from the well. Through time, the traditional donkey use was replaced by electric power.

Cisterns The square cistern close to Magganos, filled with water through underground pipes enables the trees to be watered. Plants and vines decorate the columns of its four corners and at the base of the pillars there are troughs serving washing purposes. There is often a raised patio seating next to the cistern.

Orchard gate A gate separates the courtyard from the garden and cobblestone paths branch out in all cultivation's. In the vast garden, flowers, plants, numerous trees and the constant sound of water accompany everyone standing there.

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