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Travel Guide Paros Island Cyclades Greece
The islands of the Cyclades hide a surprise for each traveller: the rural Cycladic architecture, the originality and charm which have given the Cyclades fame beyond the borders of Greece. All the buildings are ingeniously, thoughtfully adapted to the daily requirements of its residents and contribute to the frugal beauty of the Cycladic landscape. The economic use of building materials, limited internal space, the resourcefulness that was necessary for survival under the harsh conditions result in our admiration today. The adaptation of buildings to the surface level variations that avoided large excavations, as well as the exploitation of the more favourable geographical situations for protection from the winds of the Aegean and the cold, unite the architecture with its surroundings and become one with nature.
A visitor walking in a traditional settlement of the Cyclades has the impression that he is in a labyrinth and is surrounded by a fascinating setting for a film. Countless labyrinths of narrow paved alleys and the whitewashed facades of the erratically built houses and churches dazzle under the Aegean light. Their small dimensions with architectural harmony and small size compose pictures that are unique in the world.
The Cycladic houses are one or two storied with a stone exterior staircase, frugally built without decoration and few openings, in an enchanting, colourful opposition of white walls with brightly coloured doors, windows and balconies usually the deep blue of the sea. The roof is level or vaulted.
The interior of a typical Cycladic house is usually separated into two unequal sections. Furniture ties in with the architecture of the house, even inset in the walls, cabinets, chests, iconostases, carved, wooden trunks compose the unique image of the aesthetic whole.
The main characteristics of Cycladic settlements are the stone, usually whitewashed, windmills that testify silently to the labours of its residents in times past.