The land of Serifos in Cyclades has always been rich in minerals, from antiquity to the present. The modern history of the island was inextricably linked to the mining of mainly iron ore. Remnants of this activity, i.e. mining galleries, bridges, cranes, trolleys, are dispersed in various areas in the southwest of the island, such as in Megalo Livadi. Here one can also see the ruined, yet imposing, Main Office building of the old mines. At the hospitable bay with the quiet beach, visitors can admire the sunset and the light falling onto the mines, and at the same time enjoy the traditional revithada (chickpeas soup) or marathokeftedes (fennel balls) in one of the three taverns standing side by side, by the sea.
Serifos is known for the tranquility and the untouched beaches with crystal clear water. At Koutala Bay in the south of the island one can visit three beautiful beaches: Vagia, Ganema and Koutala. Vagia, with its blue and pristine waters is protected by Natura, and in 2019 it became the first smoke-free beach in Greece. Signs on the beach transmit environmental messages in a creative way (“I’m a beach, not a huge ashtray”) and remind of the target of clean beaches with no cigarette butts and preventing marine pollution.
On the way to Chora, after having left behind the settlements of Megalo Livadi and Koutala, it is also worth visiting the ‘White Tower’ (Lefkos Pyrgos), a circular white marble edifice belonging to the Hellenistic Period. Next to it there is the chapel of Saint Charalambos, built with some blocks of the monument itself, thus linking two completely different eras. The spot is ideal for admiring the spectacular views across the south-western part of the island, something to be expected as it was probably an ancient observatory aimed at protecting ancient mines from looters.