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Impressions of the Dodekanisos, Greece

The Dodekanisos, literally the archipelago of twelve islands. Twelve islands? There are many more than twelve islands, but those twelve are the most important ones and the most inhabited ones. Although,... even that is a relative thing, with several of those 'most important' islands having only a few hundred people living there permanently. The Dodekanisos is simply a string of islands that are draped across the South Aegean Sea and along the coast of Turkey. Large islands, tiny islands, barren ones and more fertile ones, rough volcanic islands and idyllic ones with sandy beaches and forested hills. But, however different all those islands of the 12+ are, they have one thing in common, their history: in and around 1204, the year of the Fourth Crusade's pillage of Constantinople, they were all brought under control of the Venetians and the Knights Hospitaller, in and around 1522 they all fell to the Ottoman Empire and remained so until the Italo-Turkish War of 1911 and the First World War, after which they became ... no, not Greek, but Italian. Only after the fall of Mussolini and the end of the Second World War the Dodekanisos was finally integrated into Greece. In this report, we ferry our way from Astypalaia to Karpathos, leaving out distant Kastellorizo, because we simply did not get that far. Always leave something for a next time, they say.

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