NEWS

Mytilene

Mytilene Castle, which was one of the greatest strongholds in the Aegean, is located in an area of 4 hectares and boasts a dense pine forest in its southeastern and southwestern part. Repeatedly besieged and captured in its time, the castle subsequently underwent numerous renovations and saw the erection of new buildings. Today it is divided into three parts: upper, middle and lower. Although restoration was begun gradually in 1938, the 14th Ephorate of Byzantine Antiquities has been unable to make effective progress due to limited funds, and has resorted to showcasing works through the INTERREG III project. «The archaeological site of the Mytilene Fortress is in need of showcasing works, whereas the Lower Castle barely looks like an archaeological site; it is in dire condition and is close to the run-down district of Epano Skala, as little has been done until today to attenuate the image of neglect that it presents,» said Christina Loupou, head of the 14th Ephorate. For 40 years, the only road linking Mytilene with the northeastern part of the island crosses through the archaeological site of the Lower Castle. Traffic on the road produces clouds of dust, creates vibrations that cause the walls to collapse and other severe problems. Overgrown vegetation is also an aesthetic demerit, despite efforts to embellish the area. Proposals for its restoration and management abound, but these need to be implemented so that the island can acquire a single site that is accessible to both inhabitants and visitors.