The low, hilly topography of Patmos affords astonishing panoramic views from many places on the island. From some hilltops, such as at Hora or on top of Profitis Ilias, almost the whole island can be seen.
The landscape is almost ageless: hills and valleys covered in scrub, occasional groups of trees, farmers' fields literally carved from the thin soil, and the cubistic villages of whitewashed houses punctuating the stretches of greens and earth tones. And beyond, the other islands, apparently strewn across the sea by some gigantic hand, and the too-blue-to-be-true Aegean Sea itself seem to stretch on forever. These views, the famous clear Aegean light, the tranquility of the island all conspire to create a very special atmosphere which can make being here very moving.
The sunrises and sunsets, the light of early morning and late afternoon are also obviously affecting. At night, away from the lights of the villages, the starlit sky has been known to inspire even the hardest rogue. Few of us are totally immune to starlight.
Many people with "the eye of faith" ascribe this atmosphere to the island's religious history, because they believe that God chose this as the place for the Revelation of Saint John to be made, or because the centuries of monks' deeds and prayers have somehow accumulated an ernomous credit balance of "good vibes" here. You can decide for yourself.
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© David John