NEA FOKEA HALKIDIKI info
Tuesday, August 04, 2020
The beautiful seaside village of Nea Fokea with the well-preserved Byzantine tower of Agios Pavlos, the small picturesque harbor, the beautiful beaches and the crystal clear seas, is a pole of attraction for visitors of all ages. It has more than 2000 permanent residents and in summer-time it exceeds the 10,000 and is 78 km away from Thessaloniki. It is one of the newest villages of Kassandra, because it was founded in 1924 by refugees from Asia Minor. On October 2, 1924, the residents of the refugee settlement of Metochi Agios Pavlos petitioned the general administration to name the village Nea Fokea in honor of their "abandoned most historic" homeland in Asia Minor. In 1928 the refugee settlement was officially formed into a community with Nikolaos Paschalis as its first president. The first houses were the shacks and the buildings of the Agio Oros. In 1925 the Greek state, with the help of the rehabilitation service for the refugees, built 215 houses and the first water supply network that ended up in 8 concrete fountains in various parts of the village like the one, that has survives throughout the years, at the edge of the square.
The first couple of years, they would cultivate wherever they could find the last piece of land in order to survive. A little later, the Greek state will cede several areas of land that will eventually be given back to the refugees, while the lands of the Agio Oros shares, will be cultivated and will be officially expropriated in 1932.
Although it is a new village, it has a long history. The area has been inhabited since ancient times. In historical times, two cities flourished. The Sani colony of the Eretrians, which was built on the west beach and Scythia built in the Gulf of Toroneos. Near the present village of Nea Fokea was the village of Agios Pavlos (it apparently took its name from the Agiasma of Apostolos Pavlos located in the area) which was destroyed between the years 1321 and 1407. That is why the oldest locals of Kassandra even today call it "Nea Fokea" and "Agios Pavlos". In this area the Monastery of Agios Pavlos was gradually developed after 1407, which was of the most remarkable ones. The presence of the Monastery and its rights begin in February 1407 with the publication of the gold bullion of John VII the Palaeologus who was "Despot" (King) of the then semi-autonomous Thessaloniki.
With this "Chrysovoulo", a large part of the revenues of the State from Kassandra was granted to five Monasteries of Agio Oros and one of them was the newly established Monastery of Agios Pavlos (whose owner is Agios Pavlos Xiropotamitis). With other almost modern documents, about what was mentioned above, the Paleochorion (deserted village) Agios Pavlos with the surrounding arable land was granted to the Monastery of Agios Pavlos.
Over the centuries other estates were added to its original core. His dominant building complex was one of the most imposing of its kind in Kassandra. Only two parts of the two large ground floor wards of the 19th century and the church of the 12 Apostles survive, out of the mumerous buildings of the metochi. This church has two construction parts. The eastern half dates back, way before the revolution of 1821, while the western half took place in the middle of the 19th century. All the facilities of the metochi existed around the Tower until 1930.
On the hill of Pyrgos, where today the Tower rises majestically, there was in prehistoric times a remarkable settlement which was probably founded around 5.000 BC. This prehistoric settlement with the most important phases in the Neolithic and the Bronze Age existed for about 3.000 years with successive destructions and rebirths. It is unknown when it was finally abandoned, but it seems that around 1.000 BC it no longer existed.
The Tower is the only one in Halkidiki that is preserved until the ramparts. Its dimensions are of 7x7 meters and a height of 17 meters. We do not know when it was built, although the unsubstantiated opinion prevails that it is a building of 1407. The leader of the revolution in Halkidiki, Emmanuel Papas, had his headquarters in Pyrgos in 1821. Also, the palaeological tower in Nea Fokea was used for the control of the cultivation of olive trees, the production of oil and its transport to Thessaloniki. Precisely, the protection of the city's supply was the reason why the Thessalonians repeatedly asked Venice in 1423 and 1429 to repair the wall of Potidea and to reinforce the defense of the peninsula of Kassandra, in the expansion of the Ottomans.
The small church of the 12 Apostles was built in 1868 in the metochi of Agios Pavlos and it has been preserved to this day. This church was the first parish church of the refugees from Asia Minor who settled in the area in 1924. The building, located on the east side of the hill, was used as a school by the refugees and to this day is known as the "Old School".
The church of Agios Nikolaos (parish church), was built in 1938 by the villagers. The church was given two names for the following reason. The "Fokea of Asia Minor" had 9.000 inhabitants and about 10 temples as well as a bishop. The seat of the diocese was the church of Agia Irini. Among others, the most important was the church of Agios Nikolaos as the Fokians were sailors. When they started to build the church of the village, the people from Nea Fokea of Asia Minor wanted to dedicate it to the memory of the Assumption of the Virgin Mary because in Nea Fokea of Asia Minor there was a church of the Assumption of the Virgin with a miraculous icon of the Virgin Mary. On the contrary, the people of Palea' (old) Fokea, wanted to dedicate it to Agios Nikolaos because as they said "we were sailors, we will be sailors again". Thus, they compromise to name it "Holy Church of Agios Nikolaos and the Assumption of the Virgin".
The village has a remarkable tourist infrastructure, which includes luxury hotels, rooms-for-rent, restaurants, taverns, fish taverns & ouzo taverns, cafes, patisseries, etc. Those who want night entertainment can, in addition to the youth bars, the can also choose for entertainment, centers with live music.
Other attractions are the old fountain in the village square, dedicated to the settlement of 1925, the church of Agios Ioannis in the old metochi of Dionysiou and the pond with the goldfish, which can be found south of the village in the pine forest. Cultural events take place throughout the summer in the top of the tower, which are part of the "Kassandra Festival".
SOURCES - BIBLIOGRAPHY
Tuesday, August 04, 2020
ΚΕΙΜΕΝΑ - ΒΙΒΛΙΟΓΡΑΦΙΑ :
Οικονομολόγος-Αρχαιολόγος (10η Εφορία Βυζαντινών Αρχαιοτήτων)
Περιοδική Έκδοση Πολιτιστικού Συλλόγου Κασσανδρινών Θεσσαλονίκης
Πολιτιστικός και Λαογραφικός Σύλλογος Νέας Φώκαιας
RESEARCH, PHOTOGRAPHY & PHOTO-TEXT EDITING:
Electronic - Website Designer
© Sunspot Web Design 2008-2021 ®
TRANSLATION FROM GREEK:
Sophia Natalia Papadopoulou
Tuesday, August 04, 2020
ΔΗΜΟΣ ΚΑΣΣΑΝΔΡΑΣ: http://www.kassandra.gr/
Πολιτιστικός και Λαογραφικός Σύλλογος Νέας Φώκαιας:
Η ιστορία της Νέας Φώκαιας
(τμημα ΣΤ'1 του δημοτικού σχολείου Νέας Φώκαιας):
Ιώνιο Γυμνάσιο Νέας Φώκαιας
MAPS & WEATHER
BYZANTINE TOWER AGIOS PAVLOS
AGIOS PAVLOS' AGIASMA