Kithira
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Kithira, also spelled Kythera, is an island of Greece, historically part of the Ionian Islands. It lies opposite the eastern tip of the Peloponnese peninsula. The rugged terrain is a result of prevailing winds from the surrounding seas which have shaped its shores into steep rocky cliffs with deep bays. For many centuries, while naval travel was the only means for transportation, the island possessed a strategic location. Since ancient times, until the mid 19th century, Kithira had been a crossroads of merchants, sailors, and conquerors. The island is home to numerous beaches of varying type and size, though due to the island's rugged and mountainous terrain, only about half of them are accessible by road. At the start of the second millennium BC it was a Minoan colony and in 424 BC it came under the sway of Athens. The island's primary airport is the Kithira Island National Airport, located in the region between the village of Friligiannika and Diakofti, about 8 km from the capital. The airport was revamped and extended at the turn of the 21st century, largely by private funds provided by the local population. (Pause for advertisement): Book deals on hotels in the best locations at your travel destinations. Make hotel reservations. Reserve hotel rooms and suites. Find lodging and accommodations to suit your tastes. Look up hotel deals at AirGorilla and HotelGorilla.com (end of ad). The island is served by Olympic Airlines flights. In Ancient Greek Mythology, Kithira was considered to be the island of celestial Aphrodite, the Goddess of love, (cf. Cyprus, the island of Aphrodite, the Goddess of Love). Over the centuries it knew a succession of conquerors from the Romans to the Byzantines, Venetians and Turks, and it was frequently looted by Barbary pirates. Kytherians still talk about the destruction and looting of Paliochora by Barbarossa, it has become an intrinsic part of the Kytherian folklore, yet one can easily accept the stories of locals by noticing the number of monasteries embedded in the rocky hillsides to avoid destruction by the pirates. Kithira Island National Airport is an airport in Kithira, Greece (IATA: KIT). The airport was renovated in 1998 and the terminal and control tower were rebuilt. Olympic Air operates on average 5-6 flights per week, while charter flights are common in the summer. Travel to Kithira by airplane is considered the most reliable method of transportation to the island since it is less affected by the strong winds that prevent ferry boat transit.
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