The unique identity of Cycladic islands in Greece is under threat


The proposal of the Hellenic Society for the Environment and Cultural Heritage (ELLET) to the Europa Nostra federation regarding endangered monuments and cultural heritage sites sheds light on the concerning deterioration of the distinctive landscape and identity of the Cycladic islands in the Aegean Sea.

According to, the islands of Sifnos, Serifos, and Folegandros serve as poignant examples of the significant transformations witnessed in the Cyclades region in recent times.

The proposal submitted by ELLET for Europa Nostra’s 7 Most Endangered Program 2024 concerns all of the Cyclades, which, it stressed, are facing a multitude of challenges posed by the surge in tourism development and uncontrolled construction.


“Despite the economic growth achieved, a number of environmental, cultural and social issues are arising, such as the degradation of natural resources, the destruction of cultural heritage, water scarcity, waste management problems and socioeconomic inequalities,” the nomination document stated.

“The islands are at risk of losing their authentic character as rapid tourism development threatens to overshadow their intrinsic beauty,” it added.

ELLET noted that small island destinations of the Cyclades in particular are under considerable pressure from overtourism, in terms of the strain on infrastructure and increasing demand for hospitality.

It stressed that the demand for buildings outside the boundaries of settlements is very high and construction is unprecedented.





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