Agia Marina is one of the island’s two ports. It’s a small coastal village that has grown over time to be united with Platanos, the island’s oldest inhabited area and capital. Presently, this unified town is the island’s administrative and commercial centre. From a distance it would appear that this small town has spread out over the slopes of two mountains, with homes stretching from the coast to the foothills of Kastro. However, as you approach, the true beauty of this jewel in the Aegean is unravelled before your very eyes. The acquaintance to Agia Marina starts at the port, with the fortress of Bouzi or Bourtzi at its entrance and the towering lighthouse on its edge, to the side pier and the quaint dry dock and the well-preserved historical windmill.
Many traditional one and two-storey homes have been preserved in the capital including many mansions. The town is densely built thus, creating wonderful, narrow alleyways that invite you to wander through and enjoy the area. The nostalgic atmosphere of the old town of Avlaki will take you back in time where you can awe at the majesty of the splendid architecture combined with the serenity of nature itself with the springs of fresh, clean water flowing from the source at Paliaskoupis.
The presence of the old windmill generates respect and stands as a reminder of the importance it has played in the daily routine of people’s lives over time. Town Hall is housed within two neo-classical buildings that dominate the area. The churches of Christ and the Holy Cross are both old and distinguished. The Church of Agia Paraskevi holds historical significance as it used to be the island’s metropolis cathedral. It stands on the edge of this quarter and the stepped pathway leading to the peak of Kastro hill.
The old village has been developed surrounding Agia Paraskevi and beneath the Kastro (Fortress), which during the Ottoman period included the Turkish quarter with Konaki and the baths.
The settlement of Agia Marina is the capital of Leros’ Municipality. Public services are housed in the Italian styled buildings and neo-classic mansions, adding a special ambiance to Agia Marina. When weather conditions are not favourable to use the main port of Lakki, ships moor at Agia Marina. There are many tourist shops, restaurants, cafés and bars. Also, it is ideal for enjoyable and unforgettable night life and entertainment. Two Kindergartens, a Primary School, a Junior high school, the Financial and Revenue Services (DOY), the Cultural Municipal Enterprise a Bank and the Archaeological Museum operate in Agia Marina and are housed in a well-preserved neo-classical building. The Post Office, Telecommunications, the Police Station, a local radio station and a hall for cultural events are all located in the lower level of the Italian styled Customs Office.