The island of the mathematician Pythagoras, as Samos is known, is large, green and diverse. It lies between mainland Turkey and Ikaria island, north of the Dodecanese group. The island has three ports, two in the north - Vathy and Karlovassi, and one in the south - Pythagorio. Ferries are available from/to neighbor islands, to Piraeus port and Kusadasi, Turkey.
Samos is predominantly mountainous and hilly, with many beaches along the coast. This combination of mountain and seaside holiday attracts many people yearly and the island is well prepared for the tourists, with a vast number of hotels and beach facilities. The island capital Vathy is the largest settlement but the most popular resorts are Karlovassi, Pythagorio and Marathokampos which is the common name of three small settlements with long beach strips. Most of the island beaches are with small pebbles (and thus the saturated blue color of the water) but there are some sandy as well, like Psili Ammos on the south coast. The most scenic are Megalo Seitani and Potami in the northwest.
On Samos there are two sites that are included in the UNESCO World Heritage list - the Temple of Hera (Heraion) and Pythagoreion, ruins of the ancient town of Samos. The Pythagoreion consists of Roman monuments and a facility known as the Tunnel of Eupalinos. It is a tunnel with a length of approximately 1 km, built in 6 century and used as an aqueduct. Today it is open to visitors. Another interesting sight on Samos is the Monastery of Panagia Spilliani with an old church built deep in a big cave. Nature lovers can visit the gorge near Potami with its waterfalls which have formed small lakes between rocks.