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  • Writer's pictureAlexandros Vrailas

OSIA METHODIA Tribute and Moments of Trip

Trip: 27 June 2021. From Milos to Kimolos, with the OSIA METHODIA of Kimolos Link.

The landing craft OSIA METHODIA was ordered built in 2019 in Greece, for the Greek company Kimolos Link. She was inserted on the Milos-Kimolos line on the Cyclades, where her company has been based since 2006.

The Milos-Kimolos line is one of the many small local services found on the Cyclades, on which only a select number of small landing craft operate on a short-distance trip usually connecting a large island with a smaller and less populated one. Examples include the Paros-Antiparos line and the Santorini-Thirassia line. The Milos-Kimolos line is no exception, and hence daily ferry connections occur between the far larger and more touristic Milos with the more quiet and remote Kimolos. The landing craft however does not depart from the port of Adamantas in Milos, which is the island's main port. It instead leaves from the port of Apollonia, which is a beautiful coastal village located on the Northeastern part of Milos. The service was performed for many years with traditional small wooden boats, until a landing craft was first introduced in 1999. This was the veteran landing craft NISSOS KIMOLOS of Karamitsos Ferry Lines, which stayed there for five years before she left in 2004 in order to serve the Megara-Salamina line. She was replaced by the slightly larger landing craft LEFKAS of Antiparos NE, which had previously operated on the Ionian Sea under West Ferry from 1983 to 1996 before having a spell on the Paros-Antiparos line. The latter operated there for two years, before seeing her service being taken over by the far larger PANAGIA FANEROMENI, which had been bought by the newly-established Kimolos Link. This ship, built in 1993, had also previously been operating on the Paros-Antiparos line under Madalena I Shipping. Her entry to service was very successful, and she went on to have a 13-year-long spell before her company deemed that it was time to order a larger and more modern landing craft. To that end, the OSIA METHODIA was built and completed in 2019. Upon her introduction, the PANAGIA FANEROMENI was sold to Guinea-Bissau-based company Consulmar Bissau and was renamed BIJAGÓS I. She has since been serving the Bissau-Enxudé-Bubaque line on the Bijagós Archipelago.

With the history of both the vessel and her line described in depth, I can now speak about my trip with her. Indeed, this was my fourth trip for the 2021 summer season, which began in late June as I had completed my undergraduate studies at Warwick. As I was waiting to begin my Master's degree at City, University of London, I had three free months to stay in Greece, and it was the opportunity for me to perform several trips to different islands. Therefore, this year was undoubtedly my most productive in terms of traveling and photographing ships of the Greek coastal service, in fact I took almost 4,000 pictures of more than 170 different ships! The first days of my summer stay in Greece saw me in Milos and Kimolos, in which I traveled with my brother and my two best friends from my university. Before reaching Milos, I went alongside my brother to Aegina on 21 June 2021 in order to collect various items from our house. We went there with the PHIVOS of Nova Ferries and returned with the APOLLON HELLAS of 2way Ferries. Two days later, we headed from Piraeus to Milos with the SPEEDRUNNER III of Aegean Speed Lines, on which I had already traveled on 29 July 2017, while sailing from Sifnos to Piraeus. Unfortunately, all pictures that I took during all these trips were lost forever as I lost my camera in Milos. As I was unable to find a replacement camera in the island, I was forced to take pictures with my iPhone, and most of them were, unfortunately, of underwhelming quality. As such, many pictures in this post fail to match the usual standards of the pictures found in this website.

After having spent four days in Milos, we then headed to Kimolos from the port of Apollonia, where we waited for the OSIA METHODIA. By traveling onboard her, it marked my first trip with a landing craft on the Cyclades since 27 July 2018, when I had traveled with the AGIOS NIKOLAOS of Agia Marina I NE from Antiparos to Paros. It was also my first-ever trip to Kimolos and my first-ever trip between two islands of the Western Cyclades.

The OSIA METHODIA seen arriving to the port of Apollonia in Milos, after having left Kimolos.

The OSIA METHODIA seen as she is heading towards the picturesque port of Apollonia in Milos. This was already her third season on the Milos-Kimolos line.

The OSIA METHODIA seen arriving in Apollonia in Milos. She is named after Osia Methodia (the equivalent of Saint Methodia), who was born in Kimolos and became revered by its residents. For that reason, the well-known Ventouris family, which originates from Kimolos and operated four different companies between 1980 and 2017, had three ferries which were named after her. These were the AGIA METHODIA of AK Ventouris (now the TAXIARCHIS of NEL Lines), along with the METHODIA (once the great KYKLADES of Agapitos Lines and later the EXPRESS DANAE of Agapitos Express Ferries and Minoan Flying Dolphins/Hellas Flying Dolphins) and the METHODIA II (formerly the KIMOLOS of Ventouris Ferries and Ventouris Sea Lines) of Ventours Lines, all of which had these names during the mid 1990s.

The OSIA METHODIA seen in Apollonia in Milos. She became the fourth ferry to be deployed on the Milos-Kimolos line since 1999.

The OSIA METHODIA seen as she is about to dock in the port of Apollonia in Milos. She became the successor of the PANAGIA FANEROMENI, which operated on the line for 13 years, so far the longest spell done by a landing craft. The OSIA METHODIA was a worthy replacement due to her lager size and larger garage, as well as having a wider accommodation superstructure.

The OSIA METHODIA seen right before she docked in the port of Apollonia in Milos.

The OSIA METHODIA now seen docking in the port of Apollonia in Milos. Just a few minutes after she had unloaded her passenger and vehicles, we were able to embark onboard her.

A view of the accommodation superstructure of the ship, as seen from the alley which leads the passengers towards the staircases. Like all landing craft, the bridge is at the front section of the accommodation superstructure.

The front section of the ship's garage, where passengers and cars enter and leave.

The indoor lounge area of the OSIA METHODIA, which features modern navy blue lounges as well as a few sets of black tables. The passengers pay their tickets at the small pursuer's office found right next to this area.

A view of the outdoor deck, located towards the stern section. It features multiples plastic white and blue chairs attached to the floor.

Another view of the outdoor deck located in the stern section. There, one can notice the Greek flag that is proudly flying onboard the ship.

Towards 14:30, the OSIA METHODIA started sailing from Apollonia in Milos in order to head to Kimolos. The trip lasts only 30 minutes, and is usually very calm as traffic to Kimolos is not as voluminous as that of other islands of the Cyclades.

At around 15:00, and after 30 very enjoyable minutes along a comfortable trip, we reached the small port of Kimolos, which is in the coastal village of Psathi. There, we were greeted by the small passenger boat KAPETAN YIANGOS of Matoudiakis Tours, which is known for performing one-day cruises around Milos and also stopping by Kimolos.

The KAPETAN YIANGOS seen in Kimolos. Built in 1981 in Greece, she first operated as a tour boat in Poros on the Saronic Gulf, before joining Mathioudakis Tours in 1984. She has since been operating on her very popular service around Milos and Kimolos, thereby providing a memorable experience to many visitors of the two Western Cyclades islands.

The veteran small passenger boat KAPETAN YIANGOS seen resting in Kimolos, where she usually spends the afternoon before serving the Western beaches of Milos and returning back to the port of Adamantas.

The bow of the KAPETAN YIANGOS, which is one of many wooden passenger boats serving the Cyclades. Along with the OSIA METHODIA, she is one of the only two ships serving both Milos and Kimolos on a daily basis during the summer.

The beautiful KAPETAN YIANGOS seen resting in Kimolos.

The KAPETAN YIANGOS seen in Kimolos as we are preparing to dock right next to her.

Upon disembarkation, I once again took a better picture of the KAPETAN YIANGOS. The writing on both sides of her hull, over the blue stripe, states 'Around Milos and Kimolos' in Greek.

After our short trip was completed, I was able to take a picture of both the KAPETAN YIANGOS and the OSIA METHODIA together in the port of Kimolos.

Another view of the KAPETAN YIANGOS and of the OSIA METHODIA together in Kimolos.

One last view of the OSIA METHODIA in Kimolos, where we went on to stay until 1 July. As part of our return trip to Athens, we once again traveled onboard her in order to first go back to Milos, where we then once again embarked onboard the SPEEDRUNNER III which took us back to Piraeus.

And this concludes my first Blog post covering the 2021 summer season. It was a short trip on a very local service on the Cyclades. Nevertheless, it was a nice experience and I was happy to travel onboard a relatively new vessel, which provides crucial service all year round to the small island of Kimolos. My stay there was unique, and I truly enjoyed it with my brother and my two friends. The OSIA METHODIA performs her job very efficiently, and is without a doubt a vessel that satisfies the requirements of the Milos-Kimolos line, and serves as the much-appreciated bridge between Kimolos and the larger Milos on a daily basis, including during the winter season. She carries on the great work provided by Kimolos Link as well as the successful service previously covered by her predecessor, the PANAGIA FANEROMENI.

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