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Aigianis3Rahes constitute an extensive hilly region of the north-northwestern Ikaria. This region consists in successive hillsides which extend almost from sea level to the mountain tops of the “Atheras” mountain (1033m.). On the mountain, there are four plains; Pezi, Erifi, Ammoudia and Zizokampos. These plains retain rain water and stoke a lot of torrents, the biggest of which are Halari, Harakas and Mirsonas. These “rivers” (called so by the Ikarians), don’t go dry during the summer and have also carved steep gorges on the mountains. Among them, there are several small valleys, which are sheltered from the weather and almost invisible from the sea. It is in these valleys that one can find the fields and houses of the locals, scattered all over the area, whereas the churches and squares are built higher, on balcony-like rocky plateaus. The area is surrounded by forests, which offer their green shade to this labyrinthine geophysical formation.

Christos is the biggest village of the region; it is the center of the Municipal District (ex-Community) of Raches and is located at an altitude of approximately 420m. In the center of the village -which is a pedestrian zone- there are a lot of shops, restaurants, pubs and cafés. “Ai Giannis”, the settlement of Christos where the “Musical Yards” seminar takes place, is quite close to Christos’ square. You may choose to go there by car, driving through a winding dirt road, or on foot, as the picturesque footpath which starts from the church of Christos is quite easy to follow and only 1km long. After Ai Giannis, this path continues-yet becomes more rough- towards the Halari Canyon, whose entrance is quite close to the settlement.

Aigianis2Christos Rahon is 17km away from Evdilos, the northern port of Ikaria, and 57km from Agios Kirikos, the capital and southern port of the island. The nearest beaches to Rahes that you can visit while here are Livadi (it is next to Armenistis, the most popular settlement of the northern side during summer), Mesahti (this beach is close to the village Yaliskari) and Nas (it is the beach where the Halari river flows into the sea).

In Rahes there is no regular bus transportation. However, the distances from one settlement/village to the other are not long, the locals try to make matters easier by giving a lift to hitchhikers, whereas the relaxed pace of life and a walk in nature for sure reward the fatigue.

Prices on the island range from modest to low. Ikaria, in spite of its newly acquired fame because of the longevity of its inhabitants etc, remains a tranquil, natural place which has not been seriously damaged by massive tourism tendencies.

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