Below the mountains Samos hides an abundance of natural caves and ancient mines. There are more than 70 discovered caves on the island, with many more still thought to exist. Locals pass along myths about caves you could enter from sea cliffs only to emerge at ancient sites, or another favourite: the undiscovered cave that hides Polykrates' gold, for which many islanders are still looking.
A visit to the caves requires a guide and speleological equipment to navigate their massive chambers and small spaces. Fortunately Samos has a wide variety of caves, so anyone - from the novice to advanced cavers - can find appropriate ones to explore. Some shallow caves can even be visited "on foot" and are often found to have small chapels inside.
The best time to visit Samos for land activities like hiking and climbing is spring and fall, when the weather is sunny and mild (September through mid-December) and the flowers blooming (March through June). Summer months are ideal for cavers, who escape the often oppressive heat in the natural coolness of the caves.