Visions from the old days when Chora was the main settlement and down at Patitiri waterfront only these few buildings existed.
These pictures were taken in 1958.
Browsing through the uncounted travel websites of Alonnisos I became sadly aware that there is hardly any trace of traditional life, of anything genuine or unexplored to be found on Alonnisos any more. The decades of development had left their grave marks: I do not ask if the island is now regarded more beautiful as compared with the old days when the photographs of the 4 "Old Alonnisos" articles were captured. My memory is certainly keeping images of a world gone by for ever. Tourism was not even thought of - the now world - famous Koukounaries Beach on Skiathos had remained hidden and untouched and was only accessible on mule back.
We found a place to stay at Patitiri in the central building (our blankets on the balcony). On board a wooden freighter (pérama) carrying a cargo of potatoes, my travel companion Wilfried ("Pietsch") Weigand and myself had arrived from Skyros. Our destination: the so called "Deserted Islands" further out towards the open Aegean Sea, to study the reptile fauna of this hitherto largely unexplored archipelago. It was our second journey, in March 1958. Pietsch vanished in the following year in a thunderstorm on Lake Garda, after a third trip to the Northern Sporades. No trace was left behind. He had been an ever cheerful and inspiring companion. I was travelling at the time by ozean-liner to Sydney and then on to the jungle of New Guinea, not to return home for another 8 months.
Half a century has passed since. The modern town of Patitiri grew rapidly after the earthqake of 1965, when the former center of Chora in the interior of Alonnisos was abandoned and people moved down to the coast. At the turn of the millenium the population had almost reached the 1.700 residents mark.