Unlike nearby Delphi, the history of Galaxidi tends more toward the modern. That's not to say it doesn't have a long past—settlements here date back to 3,000 BC—but much of it was wiped out during the War of Independence (1821–32), when the village was destroyed three times in almost as many years by the Ottomans. Galaxidi's strategic position on the coast meant its armed boats could escort Greek ships into the Corinthian Gulf, but by 1825 it had been burnt to the ground and abandoned. After the war, Galaxidi was rebuilt and it gradually began to prosper again. By 1870—thanks to shipbuilding and a thriving mercantile economy—it was launching up to 20 ships a year, and some 6,000 people lived in the area. With the invention of steamships, however, it slipped into decline, and its population dwindled with it. What remains is a remarkably intact snapshot of its 19th-century heyday, as seen in the old sea captains' homes that dot the village, often transformed into pretty boutique stays and restaurants. The Old Town is classified a historical monument and undergoes continual renovation and restoration. It all makes Galaxidi a terribly appealing destination, and one yet to be sanitized or overrun like many of the villages you'll find on the islands. It remains relatively undiscovered, except by the yacht crowd who dwell in the harbor, and a scenic base for trips to Delphi as you rise out of a flat sea of amfissa olive trees and up into the mountains above.


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