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The range of attractions and sights in Chios is almost endless and is sure to please first-time visitors and returning fans of the island. The many unique specialty museums in Chios are among the top things to do on Chios, so we prepared a list of our favorite museums in Chios.
Chios Maritime Museum: Lighthouse of Culture
A private initiative led to the creation of the Chios Maritime Museum. It was a long-held desire of many Chians to have a display of the maritime culture among the museums in Chios. Its principal objective is to demonstrate the long-standing and intense bond between the sea and Chios through historical and cultural examples.
The museum also aspires to support Chios’s maritime heritage through exhibitions, talks, conferences, and partnerships with related Aegean organizations.
The Chios Maritime Museum is located in the historic palace of the Fathers Anastasius and Maroukos in the city’s heart. His heirs gave the facility to the aforementioned nonprofit organization in 1991 specifically for this use.
This palace was constructed in the 19th century in the neoclassical island style and featured distinctive wall paintings, specific interventions in the interiors, and a distinctive garden. It hosts the exhibits in a serene and genuine setting.
By gathering historical data about the region’s shipping heritage, the Museum’s primary goal is to showcase the maritime culture of Chios. The journal “Nautilus,” which introduces the local and Greek naval histories and the Chios Maritime Museum’s activities, has been published by the Museum for three years.
One of the real knives and handwheel of firefighter Konstantinos Kanaris, as well as ship models of Christopher Columbus’ “Santa Maria” and “Liberty,” as well as other merchant cargo ships, list the Chios Maritime Museums in an exceptional position not only among the museums in Chios but among the museums in Greece.
There is a library with a reading area on the museum level where you can explore the extensive collection.
From November 1st to April 30th, Monday-Saturday 09: 00-13: 00, on Sunday closed.
From May 1st to October 30th, Monday-Saturday, 09: 00-14: 00. It also works on Sundays in August.
For groups, it is possible after the necessary arrangements to open in the afternoon too.
Address: Stefanou Tsouri st. 20, 82100 Chios (Map)
Telephone: +30 22710 44139
Admissions: 2,5€ // Concessionary ticket: 1,5€
Chios Mastic Museum
The Chios Mastic Museum seeks to highlight the fruitful history of the cultivation and handling of mastic, which it blends with the cultural landscape of Chios. It is surrounded by mastic trees and is in complete harmony with the surrounding nature.
In 2014, UNESCO added traditional mastic cultivation to its Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity. The consistency and sustainability of this Chinese product are emphasized.
It is the most modern among the museums in Chios. Through various interactive experiences, visitors to the exhibition will learn about the traditional cultivation of mastic and its history and culture. You can feel and smell mastic, comprehend the architecture, history, and social structure of Mastichochoria, and discover mastic’s cooperative harvesting and processing.
In Chios Mastic Museum, the visitor is brought into contact with the plant and the natural environment in which it thrives through outdoor exhibitions, multimedia applications, documentary films, models, and original pieces of machinery in operation.
Chios Mastic Museum Opening hours:
March 1st – October 15th: 10:00 – 18:00
October 16th – February 28th: 10:00 – 17:00
Closed on: Tuesdays, January 1st, Good Friday (until noon), (Greek Orthodox) Easter Sunday, May 1st, July 22nd (local patronal feast), August 15th, December 25th, and 26th.
Address: Locality of Rachi (Tepeki), in the Pyrgio region of the Municipality of Chios. (Map)
Admission: Standard entrance fee: 4€ // Concessionary ticket: 2€
Days of free admission: May 18th (International Museum Day) – June 5th (World Environment Day) – Last weekend in September (European Heritage Days)
Perivoli Museum in Chios
Of all the museums in Chios, Perivoli is one of the most distinctive. It is where historical recollections, records, and tales about Citrus are kept. It is a vibrant exhibit area at the base of a mansion where you can learn about:
- The process of growing citrus fruits throughout the seasons, as well as the equipment and techniques used
- The customs and techniques used during cultivation, the varietals, and the specific characteristics that make mandarins and other fruits distinctive.
- The Genoese, traders who transported Chian Mandarins and other fruits to marketplaces around the world, producers, caretakers, and, of course, the monarchs of Kampos—all of them played a significant part in the emergence of the distinctive mystique of these fruits
- the huge Kampos area, with its typical houses and surrounding walls, as well as the area’s orchards, well, and other features that have earned the region a unique architectural reputation throughout Europe
- the history of the site through a short film, in which locals explain the causes of the rise and fall of the citrus trade.
The citrus fruits of Chios were a luxury in European markets until the end of the 20th century due to the commercial process that began in the early 15th century to Constantinople and Smyrna, the distinctive packing of commodities and the fruit mapping, and the commercial roads known to date.
Perivoli is situated in an old Kampos mansion, which differentiates it from the rest museums in Chios.
Chios Archaeological Museum
The Chios Archaeological Museum is a structure that exemplifies 1960s design through the red stone from the nearby hamlet of Thymiana and visible concrete and glass panels on the walls.
Its ancient treasures were again displayed in 2000 following renovations and a cutting-edge museum program. “Chios the lone city of Oinopion,” a permanent collection of the Museum’s archaeological treasures, showcases exemplary examples of the island’s art and way of life from the Mycenaean era until the late Roman Empire.
Findings from the excavations of the English School of Archeology at Ag. Galas, Emporio, Dothia, and Fana, Nikolaos Kontoleton in Rizari, and those from the rescue excavations of Epirus, primarily in the city of Chios, are also shown in the exhibition. It also comprises artifacts meticulously preserved by Antonios Stefanou, the outstanding antiquities curator in the 1960s and 1970s, and artifacts that Chios residents customarily donated.
The arcades are the most interesting among the museums in Chios, including architectural components and inscriptions, as well as the restoration of a rare Macedonian tomb discovered in the Frangomachalas region.
Kallimasia Folklore Museum
The Chios Kallimasia Folklore Museum is not an official museum in Chios, but a private initiative by the local to preserve the local culture.
The collection of folklore material that forms the basis of the Chios Kallimasia Folklore Museum began in 1995. The President of the association “Friends of the Folkloric Museum of Kallimasia” and its members started in the basement of a gymnasium. The gymnasium covered a total area of 550 sqm. With the help of fellow villagers, they initially set up the loutrouvio (olive mill) and the rebikario (ouzo distillery).
Then, they built traditional stone spaces for most of the old professions of the island, such as the barberiko (hairdresser), the wax maker, the horseshoe maker, the saddle maker, the butcher, the tailor, the shoemaker, the traditional mini market of the time and a replica of the traditional house and more.
If you are a culture enthusiast, we highly recommend adding it to your Museums in Chios list!
When to visit the museums in Chios
It is best to visit the Museums in Chios in the morning after breakfast. This way, you will save time from driving back and forth, but we will also ensure to make it on time during their opening hours.
When you visit the Chios Mastic Museum, combine it with a short drive to Mavra Volia, the beautiful black pebbles beach.