Interesting history of Sarti
Some locals of Sarti told us an interesting story about their small town.
Today, Sarti has about 800 inhabitants during the winter. Their ancestors were banished from Turkey, from Anatolia, from the island of Avşa at the beginning of the twentieth century. In fear of slaughter prior to the attack of Turks, the Greeks sent ships to them and saved them by transporting them all to Athens.
However, they were not told that they are leaving their village forever, and so they left behind everything they had - full shops and houses, not bringing any of their goods with them. A week after arriving to Athens, a group of locals returned to the island of Avşa where they found their houses burnt, destroyed and pillaged. They returned to Athens sad and with bad news. Unhappy with their life in Athens, unaccustomed to a big city, they chose six of them to look for a place in Greece that resembled the village they had left. The bravest and the healthiest went to search for their new home.
After a few months, they found Sarti, a place that was free of population at that time, but also identical in appearance to their home village. Of course, they called it Avşa.
They returned to Athens and brought along all those who believed them and wanted to start a new life. At first, not everybody agreed to come, but they did join them later. Initially, they were poor, without homes or food, they were dying of hunger and illnesses, and the locals of the rich village of Sykia weren't very benevolent towards newcomers and didn't help them. However, monks from the Metochi Monastery accepted them and helped them survive until they got on their feet. They spent two years in the monastery, and during that time, they built small houses on the coast of Sarti, some of which can still be seen in the old part of Sarti today. They were exclusively engaged in fishing.
The Metochi Monastery still represents a great sanctity for all residents of Sarti.
After years of hard life, a small fishing village of Avşa has grown into a tourist town of Sarti, and tourism has significantly contributed to its development and prosperity in which they live today. The monastery is not forgotten, nor is the behavior of Sykia's inhabitants. They did not forget their birthplace, which is visited by many Sarti people once a year, while some of them find visits to the village too painful. Avşa is still very similar to Sarti today. All of this happened around 1922, so there are still a couple of old people in Sarti who remember their arrival here.
When you walk the streets of old Sarti now and see small houses from the old times between modern villas and hotels, we're sure that you will remember these stories and have a different view of the town and its inhabitants.
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