Sights KARYSTOS (Town) EVIA - GTP - Greek Travel Pages

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Castles, fortresses & fortifications

Red Castle - Karistos

  This is the most remarkable medieval fortification in the whole Evia. It dominates the whole area on a hill among the villages of Miloi, Kalivia and Grampia. It ws built immediately after the Frankish occupation in the 1204, to house Ravano Dalle Carceri. A whole city was gradually built round the castle as the inhabitants of the area were in the habit of living near the castle so as to be safe from pirates and any other kind of invasion.
  During the Middle Ages, it changed hands many times (Venetians, Franks, Byzantium) and in the summer of 1470 it fell into the hands of the Turks. A short time before the revolution of 1821, the Turks built walls around the town which spread outside the castle.
  During the revolution there were many bloody battles in this area. After the liberation, the town was abandoned because the inhabitants of Karistos sought access to the sea.
  From the historic castle of Karistos we can still see the foundation, some towers and ramparts, its remarkable domed reservoirs and the ruins of Turkish baths.
  The Romans called the castle Castelo Rosso, meaning the Red Castle because of its red stone walls.
  Its walls are high and impressive. The main gate is facing south and is invisible from the outside. To the west of the main gate, one can find the ruins of a one-time imposing two-storey building which was probably the dwelling place of the Lord of the castle. To the north, east and south-west, the walls end in square, polygonal or round ramparts.
  On the northern side of the castle, there is the inner fortress, the last defence line of the castle. Inside the fortress the church of Prophet Ilias was built and under the church floor, the Large reservoir of the fortress is hidden. Finally, near the church of Prophet Ilias one can find the ruins of an austere-looking church which was probably the church of Saint John of the Franks.
This text is cited May 2003 from the Prefecture of Evia tourist pamphlet (1997).

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