Discretely nestled in the hills of Chios just a few kilometers west of the island’s capital town of Chora, Anavatos is hardly a household word to Greek tourists, even those who have been to Chios.
And that’s exactly the way the town’s builders wanted it.
But it wasn’t tourists they were trying to keep at bey, it was pirates.
The homes were built in some a way, camouflaged into the mountainous countryside, that made them virtually undetectable from afar centuries ago.
But where the pirates were fooled, the Ottomans were not, and amid the slaughters of 1822, most of its residents either perished or fled.
Nowadays, accounts differ about how many people live there – though few dispute the population is under 10.
A coffee shop exists atop the short hike from the last bit of road on which a car can travel, to greet tourists with a snack, a cold drink, or a caffeine-rich frappe for a little extra zip to hike to the top – where an overlook post (for pirates) still exists.
If you really, really, really want to get away from it all, few places will provide you with the seclusion of Anavatos.