On Aegina’s main road leading to the inland, 6 km west of Aegina town is found the location Xantos, with a new-built large church and the old renowned monastery of Agios Nektarios. The nunnery is built over the ruins of the Byzantine monastery of Zoodohos Pigi, opposite the medieval city of Paliahora where the miracle-working saint Agia Anastasia lived as a hermit in the 9th century. Agia Triada was erected in 1904 and the foundations were laid by Agios Nektarios himself on 1st January 1906. At that time Agios Nektarios was still director of the Rizzarios School and the foundations were laid with the approval of the Metropolitan bishop, Theoklitos. When Nektarios resigned from his post in the ecclesiastical school he inaugurated his monastery (2nd June 1908) and retired there, where he spent the rest of his life in strict ascetic practice and prayer.
When the Saint died on 8th November, his relics were buried on the right side of the church, under a tall, deep-shaded pine tree. His grave and monastery remains to our days full of votive offerings and they are a place of religious pilgrimage, where thousands of devout believers flock daily to worship and begging his mediation for their physical health and spiritual deliverance.
The archaeological site of Kolona is situated very close to the harbour. On the left of the disembarkation area and reflects the age-long history of the Acropolis of ancient Aegina. Venetian sailors named the hill "Kolona" after the columns (kolon=column) of the ancient temple of Apollo that served as a sign of orientation.
The Temple of Aphaia
The sanctuary of Aphaia is located at the northeastern tip of Aegina, overlooking the headland of Agia Marina, on a pine-clad hill offering a panoramic view over the sea. The site is known to have been a place of worship during prehistoric times (around 1300 BC), when it was associated with a female fertility deity, as we deduce from the finds dating back to prehistoric times (probably from the beginning of 2nd millenium BC). The most prominent of these finds is the statuette of a female figure nursing a baby, which was brought to light through archaeological excavations.
Aphaia named Britomartis daughter of Zeus and Karme and a dear companion of Artemis.. Minos, king of Crete, loved Bitomartis, and to escape his attentions, she jumped into the sea. However, she became entangled in fishing nets. Artemis saved the girl from drowning and turned her into a goddess, venerated by the Cretes with the name Dictinna (translator ‘s note: the Greek word for nets is “dictia”). The Aeginitans believed that Britomartis emerged in Aegina, where she became invisible (translator ‘s note: the Greek word Aphaea means "invisible") and lived in a forest. Thus, she was worshiped with the name Aphaea.
Remarkable is the fact that the distance (44,64 Km.) between the temple of Aphaea in Aegina and Acropolis of Athens is the same as the distance between the temple of Aphaea and the temple of Poseidon in Sounio (cape in Athens).
Vitabroad's Secret Place
Hellenic Wildlife Hospital
At the foot of the hill descending from Lazarides, one comes across the Hellenic Wildlife Hospital
(HWH). This is the first organization in Greece to obtain official permission to possess, treat, transport and release all species of indigenous wildlife. Hundreds of volunteers from Greece and elsewhere have gained an unforgettable experience by taking part in different activities organized by the HWH. All those who are interested in contributing to wildlife protection and maintaining the cleanliness of the facilities can be put up by the HWH, where they may gain an unforgettable experience by working with the animals.