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Kythira, one of the Ionian Islands lies opposite the eastern tip of the Peloponnese in Greece. It has an area of 284 square kilometers. The rugged terrain is a result of prevailing winds from the surrounding seas which have shaped its shores into steep rocky cliffs with deep bays. The island's architecture is a blend of traditional, Aegean and Venetian elements.

At the start of the second millennium B.C. it was a Minoan colony and in 424 BC it came under the sway of Athens. Over the centuries it knew a succession of conquerors from the Romans to the Byzantines, Venetians and Turks, and it was frequently looted by Barbary pirates. In 1864, the island was reunited with the Greek state.