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Kambos

Description

At the eastern parts of the island, just a few kms south by the city of Chios, extends an overgrown with citrus trees area, known as the valley of Kambos. Rich subterranean water masses, deriving from the neighbouring hills, make Kambos an endless garden ideal for citrus trees cultivation. Kambos area consists of a unique fine aesthetic residential complex, a perfect combination for agriculture activities and residency combined. Kambos is composed by roughly two hundred estates that are surrounded by tall elaborate walls. Due to it's special historic interest, the Ministry of Culture has characterised Kambos as a historic traditional settlement.

Kambos was established both by locals and foreign aristocrats during the Genoese occupation of the 14th century after the initiative taken by Maona, the genoese commercial scheme that was benefiting by imposing monopoly onto the mastiha commerce. It was then that the first towers were built amidst the plane of Kambos.

It's conquest by the Ottomans on 1566 didn't influence negatively Kambos. The economic life passes on to the control of rich local merchants, thanks to whom Chios town became to be considered the Venezia of the east during the nineteenth century. Rich merchants, owned their secondary mansions-villas mostly in the area Kambos.

The slaughter of 1822 wiped out everything and every activity was disrupted. Around 1860 occurs a major change: with the import of tangerines from India, the Choremis family launches the cultivation of citrus trees in Chios. But then again, the earthquake of 1881 demolishes most of the Kambos's towers. During the 20th century many properties change hands and new estates start to appear at the edges of Kambos area. All of the the dispersed urban class's mansions have begun repairing constructions and are known to have flourished.

At the beginning of the 20th century all new residencies were built mostly on top of the already existing ones. They are big, built by the same type of stone and their style is influenced by the neoclassicism. Invaluable for the physiognomy of the settlement of Kambos are all those parts that are surrounding the houses: the heavy arch gates, elaborate pebble yards, pergolas, wells, cisterns and  surrounding walls all built by the same type of stone, fuse even today harmonicly. So until nowadays, at a great extent, the special physiognomy of Kambos, consists an architectural, urban planning, even ecological unity with great historical and aesthetic value

Streets of Kambos are narrow and surrounded by the tall walls of the mansions. The arch gates with the heavy wooden doors lead to the main yard. The yard is usualy made by pebbles containing high trees and flowers, while mostly in the main yard can be found the cistern and the well. A typical Kambos's mansion is two story, with big stone staircase and one of it's sides is contacting the road. Ground floor serves as a warehouse, while the usable spaces are on the first floor, where the view is not disrupted by the trees. The most characteristic specimen of Kambos's mansions is the famous Ktima Argenti.

Many of the restored mansions are used as guesthouses, since the area show sgreat touristic interest not only during the summer months but also during the spring, when the whole area scents by the blossomed citrus trees.

Kambos offers an abundance of hotels, guesthouses, rooms to let, furnished apartments and studios for the accomodation of the visitors.

 

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Characteristics

Access: Bus, Car, Motorcycle
Distance from the city: 0-10km

Sights in the area

Businesses in the area

Map

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