I am always happy to report when money is invested in the restoration and preservation of ancient monuments. Cheimarros Tower is a fine example.

The Cheimarros Tower on Naxos (Credit: GTP)

The tower of Cheimarros is a point of reference for Naxos, the largest island in the Cyclades island group in the Aegean. It's 15 meters tall and was built at the end of the 4th century BC for defence purposes. It was made of local white marble without a binding agent and with great skill that indicated the high quality of stone carving in the classical antiquity.

The strong defensive character of the tower is verified by its height and the presence of only one window at a height of 10 meters off the ground. The tower was built with a double wall; the exterior wall is built by big local marble plinths, while the interior is built by stones of different size with connectors in between. The walls are connected at regular intervals by side-arch bricks, which stand out unrefined, exceeding the interior face. The gap between the two faces is filled up with a mixture of clay and boulder. In the interior of the building there is the ground floor and three further floors connected with a marvellous marble staircase. It is estimated that along with the roof the initial height of the tower was 18m but its shape isn’t certain. Finally, the tower is fenced with a 35 meter long wall.

The tower is a well-know tourist attraction and it's well known amongst the residents, who even have a local folk song for it:
"o kardia mou pou se tharrou, san ton pyrgo tou Cheimarrou"
"Oh my heart, you take courage, like the Tower of Cheimarros"

The Cheimarros Tower was declared archaeological site in 2011 along with two adjacent Byzantine churches, a part of an ancient road and part of the Tower's fencing wall. The tower will be restored following the approval of the Central Archaeological Council.