Insignia visited the Greek Island of Patmos recently and docked in this gorgeous bay at the port village of Skala. As with many of the Greek islands, Patmos offers beautiful panoramic views from the high cliffs surrounding the bay. One of the most popular shore excursions in this port includes a visit to the Cave of St. John. According to Christian tradition, St. John resided here during his time on Patmos, and it was here that he wrote the Book of the Apocalypse.

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Patmos 4Just south of Skala lies the village of Chora, the capitol of Patmos. While exploring the town, guests discovered the rich history and varied architectural and cultural influences that have shaped Patmos over thousands of years. Whether welcomed or not, Greeks, Romans, Turks, and Italians have all contributed to the fabric of the island.

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The town of Chora was built up around the Monastery of St. John, which is perched high on a cliff overlooking the island.

Patmos 5This monastery was the Byzantine Empire’s most significant contribution to the island and was fortified to repel outside threats from pirates and other rogue forces. Today the monastery houses the Theological School of Patmos, which was founded in 1713, as well as five chapels and museum artifacts dating back hundreds of years.

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After the visit to the monastery, the excursion group was welcomed at a local taverna where they enjoyed some traditional Greek food and drink. It was a beautiful day to explore the treasures of Patmos, and a stroll along one of the sandy beaches finished the day on the perfect note as the group headed back to the ship.

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