The Cycladic Sisters, Mykonos, Delos and Rhenia, each with her own
personality, are among Greece's most precious treasures.
called alternatively "Great Delos" and "Big Delos," is four times the size of
its sister island and separated from it by a small strait. Rhenia is really two
sections connected by a narrow isthmus. It is the ancient burial ground for
warriors who died on Delos and whose bones were then transferred to its land,
many years ago. One can see grave markers and burial stones on its rocky
terrain. It is a popular belief that the island is "haunted" by the ghosts of
the warriors buried there. Uninhabited, the island has no plumbing, electricity,
or telephones and by Greek law, no one is allowed to live on Rhenia or build a
permanent home there.
On the island one can find four solitary,
sandy beaches named Glyfada, Stena, Lia and Ambelia, which are protected by two
coves. The sea has a very beautiful blue/green colour that changes as you
approach the shore.
Some tourists come to the island during the day for
the experience of being almost alone on an uninhabited island, but there are
only a few who seek this experience. At times, parties will be held on the
island and notices will appear in Mykonos announcing the event; all the
available boats will be chartered and people will descend on the island with
sleeping bags, party all night, and hope that the winds, (the Meltemi), will
permit them to return the next day. But these parties have been discouraged by
the officials in Mykonos because of the obvious danger.
come to Rhenia to fish and enjoy the total calmness. They also bring their sheep
and goats here to graze and concrete huts are scattered around the island to
provide temporary shelter in the event of storms.
It would be
almost impossible for the ordinary tourist to go to this island alone at night,
and it is most likely forbidden, but the island can be visited during the day.
Very few tourists know about the island or have an interest in going there on a
day's excursion, so, if you plan it correctly, it is possible to be the only
person on one of its four pristine, sandy beaches.