At an altitude of 289 meters, 58 km away from the city, there is a small village of about 400 inhabitants, Laerma. Rumor has it that the name of the village comes from the ancient municipality of Ladarma, which belonged to the city-state of Lindia. Another version of the story supports the view that the name of the village derives from the words “lardeon” and “ladas“, which mean a place full of water, deer and vegetation -as it is.
This traditional village, ideal for hiking, is situated in one of the largest plots of greenery on the island, and its inhabitants are mainly engaged in farming. It is the perfect place for people who love gastronomy, as well as for nature lovers, as they will discover rare species of flora and fauna.
However, one of the main reasons for visiting Laerma is the Monastery of Taxiarchis Michail [Archangel Michael] in Tharri, the largest Byzantine monastery on the island, located just a few kilometers south of the village. There’s been a lot of stories about how the monastery was built. The church is decorated with religious paintings that date back from the 12th to the 17th century AD and is built in a lush environment where the protected species “Paeonia white” grows. This plant is always found at high altitude and is quite common around the monastery and in the neighboring areas of Prophitis Elias [Prophet Elijah], Archangelos and Arnitha.
It is also worth visiting the artificial lake Gadoura, located a few kilometers northeast of the village. A lake created to solve the island’s irrigation problem in an environment rich in flora and fauna, which has attracted many migratory birds; a must for all those who love nature. The village is also suitable for lovers of sport and adventure, as it offers a variety of activities such as archery, horse riding and hiking, along with exploring and guiding both in the village and around the dam. You will also be able to taste delicious traditional dishes and local wine.