Neochori - An Off-the-beaten-track Destination with Amazing Views
- An old carved tap in "Boros" of Lesvos An old carved tap in "Boros" of Lesvos
- Hard to read carving on the tap Hard to read carving on the tap
- Paved street with traditional cafe in Neochori Paved street with traditional cafe in Neochori
- The church of Agia Eleni in Neochori of Lesvos The church of Agia Eleni in Neochori of Lesvos
Neochori is located 15 kilometers northwest of Plomari. It is a remote, superbly picturesque village.
Boros (the original ‘Neochori’) came to existence in 1650, when a number of Merina residents relocated to the area and a settlement was gradually established. The village was named after the many springs present in the area, its name of Boros being retained until 1957. In 1926, the village name was altered to ‘Voros’, which in 1957 was discarded in favor of ‘Neochori’ (meaning ‘new village’).
Neochori is set in a lusciously green landscape of olive groves, farm holdings and numerous running streams. Its stone-built houses are built on a steep mountain side and the lower end of the village is traversed by the river Prionas (also called ‘Kaliamas’).
If you have a car, it is worth heading out to locations like Neochori, where the package-holiday groups scarcely tread. You are unlikely to find English speakers here but the locals are welcoming and the village exceptionally scenic.
The Primary School of Neochori is housed in a beautiful 1930’s building a little outside the village. Hidden among olive trees, the school boasts a grand entrance pediment and a number of stone arches.
Neochori boasts a number of beautiful churches. The temple of Agioi Konstantinos kai Eleni (Saints Constantine and Helen) was built in 1951 and acts as the main village church. Located in the vista of Vigla, the church of Agia Aikaterini (Saint Catherine) is a three-tiered basilica constructed in 1841. The church was torn down due to safety concerns and completely rebuilt in the year 2001.
The olive press of the Maragelli brothers was established in 1909. The stone-built structure was in use until 1965, when operation was deemed uneconomical. In 1986, the former Borough of Neochori purchased the site in order to convert it into a museum and the roof and exterior were repaired and restored. The interior of the old olive press remains intact. Located at the entrance to the village, the Olive Museum of Neochori is an important architectural monument. Visit here to learn more about the traditional industrial architecture of Lesvos and catch a glimpse of the inner structure of the press exactly the way it appeared on its first day of operation.
Like any other village of Lesvos, Neochori too has been exposed to the culture of the East and this is evident in a variety of local dishes. ‘Zerdes’ is a Turkish dessert traditionally shared out on the occasion of a wedding or christening. A rice pudding flavored with mastic and cinnamon, Zerdes was popular with residents of the Eastern Aegean and is still prepared by traditional Neochorian housewives. If you come to Neochori, ask if you can have a taste of this traditional celebratory treat. Its flavor and delicate aroma will convey you to a bygone era when celebrations lasted for days and children jostled to the front of the line to lay their hands on their own slice of Zerdes.