Traditional Architecture

The architecture in every place is moulded according to the special and local historic, social, economic and environmental conditions. Especially in Thrace with the richness of the cultural elements that still survive in our days, the architecture acquires many expressions and a single aesthetic, not only in its form but also in the materials that are used in order to construct a building. Apart from a really classic distinction between mountainous and coastal styles, in the area we can surely note all the characteristics of the continental as well as the island architecture.

A very characteristic example is the built-up area in the Xora(the capital city) of Samothraki, which is constructed amphitheatrically sidelong the mountain, protected both at sight but also in an essential way by the pirates of the Aegean Sea. There exists a fortress, remain of the dominion of Gattilusi during the 15th century.

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The style of the Xora of Samothraki reminds of the ancient built-up areas of the Mediterranean Sea.

Traces of the architecture of the islands can be seen also in the coastal parts of Thrace in the towns of Makri and Maroneia. There exists a pharos, of French style, in Alexandroupoli, “koukoulospita” (special cocoon places) in.

Metaxades and Soufli, special constructions created in Metaxades and Petrota, and of course the famous “tekke” (places where people used to go and smoke) in Roussa. All these traditional constructions create a very special and unique atmosphere in the region of Evros.

A great number of mansions constructed in the wealthy years of the Ottoman Empire, still exist in Komotini and Xanthi, and reflect the economic flourishing of the communities during that period. There are two different kinds of mansions: one built-up according to the traditional Architecture, and they are older in date, and those that were built according to the European rhythms, such as the baroque or neoclassical European style, which were recently built.

In the city of Xanthi we can find the old tobacco warehouses. The mosques or the old building of the railway station etc.

Very interesting is also the architecture in the mountainous Rodop. Especially in Stavroupoli but also in the villages of the Pomacs. Where the roofs of the houses are covered with slate and create a unique result, though during the recent years modern creations deteriorate the traditional beauty.

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