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Mytilene is one of the oldest towns in the world: the area was already inhabited in the tenth century BC. Originally it was located on a small island in front of the east coast of Lesbos from which it was separated by the narrow Euripus Strait that connected the northern, old harbor with the southern, new harbor. That strait was later filled as a result of which the island was connected to the main island.
Mytilene has over 25,000 inhabitants.
Mytilene is located on the east coast of Lesbos. The town is surrounded by farmland. South of Mytilene are hills. The port lies directly opposite the west coast of Turkey.
The island Lesbos produces vast amounts of ouzo (more than fifteen companies produce the drink). The agricultural production consists of olives, figs and grains. There are as many as 11 million olive trees on the island which cover almost half the surface. Part of the olives is turned into olive oil that is shipped via Mytilene's harbor. There are also tanneries and soap factories. Tourism is of major importance to local economy.
Mytilene's airport is situated eight kilometers south of the city center. The airport is officially called Odysseas Elytis Airport and is easily reachable by rental car. From the center you follow the coastal road (Eleftheriou Venizelu) which leads directly to the airport. The route to the airport is clearly signposted.
Mytilene has good public bus transportation. Most busses are regional: they run to other places on Lesbos, but also have some stops in the city. At midday (between 11.00 and 13.00) busses often don't run. Out of season the frequency decreases considerably.
The main roads on Lesbos are extremely well maintained. If you want to move inland, we recommend a 4-wheel drive. The sometimes unpaved roads can be winding and twisting. Give due consideration to the unexpected: people, animals and carts in the middle of the road. Drive carefully because spurting stones can damage the bottom of your rental car.
Mytilene has a reasonable supply of accommodation, but most hotels and holiday resorts on Lesbos are found in the tourist centers, such as Molyvos in the north and Eressos in the west. If you are looking for a quiet stay, there are many possibilities to rent a small house. These are sometimes very remote making a rental car a necessity.
For more information about Mytilene we recommend Google and the following sources: