PENINSULA KASSANDRA CHALKIDIKI Tourist, Archaeological & Cultural Guide
KASSANDRINO - MOLA KALYVA
Tuesday, August 04, 2020
In the center of the Kassandra peninsula, in a green valley with a beautiful pine-covered horizon, spreads the village of Kassandrino. A traditional village with 100 houses and 250 permanent residents. It is a very old village, which, according to one version, took its name from neighboring Kassandria, because its stockbreeders had their winter corrals there. The windless, calm and beautiful valley, located in the village, was inhabited in antiquity and in Byzantine times. This fact is testified by the remains of buildings and the church of the Holy Trinity (old catacomb) with magnificent frescoes. The village was systematically destroyed by the Ottomans, in the ruin of Kassandra in 1821.
It began to be rebuilt after 1826 by those who survived and returned to their place. The first community was founded in 1918 and originally consisted of Polychrono and Kriopigi (Pazarakia). The church of the village of Kimisi tis Theotokou was built in the 1950s from hewn local stone. It celebrates on the 15th of August. At a distance of 3 km SE of the village, in a magical location with age-old aria trees, is built the beautiful church of Agios Georgios. Every year in the memory of the Saint (April 23) a traditional festival is organized.
The village has cosmopolitan taverns with delicious appetizers, supermarkets, coffee bars, bakery. The most important products of the village are the oil and the honey of excellent quality. Kassandrino was, is and will be an earthly little paradise. Visit it and enjoy magical routes in its picturesque alleys. Let your senses lead you to another era, when everything was simpler and more beautiful.
South of Kassandrino, at a distance of 6 km from it, near the sea, is the settlement of Mola Kalyva, which belongs to the community of Kassandrino.
According to one version, it was named after a guard held by the monks in the area. His name was Molas and he lived in a hut (kalyva in Greek), in Mola the hut was called by the locals. This is how the name Mola Kalyva remained. The settlement has hotels, taverns, clubs, bars, rooms to let, supermarkets, etc. Mola Kalyva with its calm paradise landscape, dry climate, endless beach, is offered for lovers of peace and natural beauty. A beach that combines the crystal clear Aegean Sea with the beauty of the green landscape.
In the area of Mola Kalyva in the 60's there was Daliani (as in Siviri) for fishing usually of cephalopods! The so-called Thynneio, commonly Daliani, is a kind of fishing system, exclusively professional, that has a refugee origin (although in areas of Northern Greece, eg in the area of Ierissos it is witnessed from the Byzantine era until recently and is found more in the Thermaic Gulf, on the beaches of Thessaloniki but also in Preveza and the Amvrakikos Gulf as well as on the beaches of Rodopi, where it was transferred from Asia Minor in 1922. The name of this system-tool comes from the ancient Greek name of the tuna which was called. The word "Daliani" is of Turkish origin, from Dalyan, and means a kind of net and fishing, it is a coastal installation similar to those of fish farms, but much simpler, It is a permanent fish trap, consisting of nets attached to huge stakes that, depending on the depth of the shore where they are installed, reach up to 10 meters. Usually the passage of large migratory fish is chosen as their place of installation.
The existence of the village in Kassandra with the name "Kassandrino", can only raise questions about the origin of the name. It should be considered unlikely that it was so named by its inhabitants and I consider that it is a name that was "imposed" by outside-Kassandrian agents.
The area of the village appears in the late history of Kassandra with the metochi of Agia Anastasia, which, with an area of about twenty thousand (20,000) acres, occupied until the 1950s, the largest and best part of the community boundaries of Kassandrino. Knowing that the "Anastasitiko" metochi was the only one that the Monastery of Agia Anastasia had on the Kassandra peninsula, we must consider for sure that the Administration of the Monastery called it, apart from the martyred "metochi of Kassandra" (1796), and "Kassandrino", a name that should have been transferred to the later settlement.
The metochi is mentioned as the property of the Monastery as early as 1568, as a wintering place for buffaloes and sheep. The monastery was founded in 1522, so we conclude that the metochi came into its possession between the years 1522 and 1568, but we do not know the previous owner of the area.
Before referring to the village, let us mention a few more information about the metochi, as recorded in 1974 and 1975, when the metochi complex was already in ruins. The church of Agia Anastasia had been renovated (in 1965) and on the repaired south wall two old stones with the inscriptions were reused: ΔΙΜΙΤΡ/ΙΟΥ ΑΝΒΟ (Greek), one, and 1965 + 1899 the other. The east wall is of the old temple. The floor of the temple and the sanctuary is paved with mosaic in geometric shapes, with sea pebbles (19th century).
The icons of the iconostasis (Pantocrator and Theotokos) are works of 1833, apparently from a laboratory of Galatista. The icon of Saints Anastasia and Theonas (kept in house of Kassandrino) was painted on December 20, 1831, by Athanasios of Galatia. Two large bronze manuals from "pafla" were then in the temple.
Around the church there were two sections of marble columns (1.57 and 1.78 m), apparently from an ancient building in the area. In an adjacent ruined building, above its entrance, there was the inscription in Greek with year 1837.
The oldest nominal reference we know about Kassandrino is only from 1823, when the village is recorded with the other burned villages of Kassandra, due to its participation in the Revolution. In 1862 it had only twelve houses and in 1867 it built the church, which was demolished in the middle of the 20th century to build in its place the unexpected and beautiful, present-day parish church. The icons and some books and utensils are left from the old temple.
Before 1867, it seems that the cemetery church of the Holy Trinity also functioned as a parish church and so we have an indication of the age of the village. Inside the church is recorded with frescoes of the 17th century, which, for the most part, are whitewashed. Of the icons of the iconostasis, the icon of the Holy Trinity is remarkable, painted (by a Galatian painter) in 1834, obviously a work of the 17th or 18th century.
In the courtyard of the church is kept an unusual stone cross, with the inscription "May 2, 1887". It is the only cross of its kind in Halkidiki and we have the opinion that it comes from Koulakia (today Halastra) and is associated with one of the fugitives in Kassandra, after the destruction of Koulakia by the great flood of Axios (early decade 1880).
The well-known population development of the village is as follows:
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