Palaia Phocaea, almost united now with Anavyssos, is more than a refugee settlement that was built after 1922 and developed into a Community. It is the final stop of a nation that starting from the Greek mainland 3,000 years ago, reached the coasts of Asia Minor and founded one of the greatest cities of Ionia.
Crossing the Mediterranean Sea, that nation managed to reach Corsica, Southern France and the Iberian peninsula, and establish great colonies.
The Phocians made history as great navigators and traders, and shared the fate of the Greeks from Asia Minor, when they were uprooted from their homeland, initially in 1914 and then in 1922, dispersed all over Greece; many of the Phocian refugees ended up settling here. The Phocians’ uprooting and their settlement in their new homeland was the reason behind one of the most important novels of the last century, “Serenity” by Elias Venezis, which was published in 1939. Phocian families with the native Sarakatsani made their new homeland. Over time, more people came to Palaia Phocaea, bought land and built houses. They loved the place, and contributed to the development of the area.
This way, settlements like Thymari, Katafygi, ATE and Ormos tis Katafygis (Shelter Bay) were established. The impressive indented seafront of Phocaea, the first glimpse of the temple of Poseidon at this magical road curve, the inland of Phocaea around Pyrgaki, comparable to the magnificent Scottish highlands, the wonderful hiking trail from the beach to Prophet Elias at the National Park of Sounion, the picturesque harbor with its small theater and walkway, fresh fish at the fish taverns by the sea, are among the highlights that all modern visitors of Palaia Phocaea should see. Today, the total population of Palaia Phocaea amounts to 3,400 residents.