Mesta Village

Mesta Mesta

Mesta, where the Medieval Castle suites are, is one of the best-preserved medieval villages in the south of Chios, where the mastiha trees grow. The village was established by the merging of smaller Byzantine settlements (14th-15th century) during the period the Genoese dominated Chios.

The architectural structure of Mesta, similar to the structure dominating all the villages in the south, "mastihohoria" as they are called, are based on the high central tower around which the village spreads out. The houses, joined to each other, form unities of zones. The distance between these zones shapes the village alleys. The last zone, the furthest from the central tower, the joined external walls of the houses form a fortress wall where two gates allow the entrance to the village. This wall surrounding the village, still visible in Mesta, has the shape of an irregular pentagon with small circular towers on the corners.

The central defensive tower inside Mesta was pulled down in 1858 so that "Great Archangel", a three-aisled basilica, could take its place. It is one of the biggest churches on Chios and one of the best samples of popular art. Parts of the base of the tower can still be seen around the church. Inside the old "Great Archangel" (15th century) there is an amazing wood–carved screen dating back to the 18th century and is one of the oldest remnants in the village. The fortress-architectural structure of Mesta like the structure of the other villages in the south was developed by the Genoese to protect mastiha, the precious product of the region unique in the world.