Nestled quietly in the region of East Macedonia, Komotini is one of the most popular cultural centers in the northeastern part of Greece. It is a bustling locale with over 66,000 residents that boasts of a myriad of archaeological sites dating back to the 2nd century AD. Today, Komotini is home to many Muslims of Turkish and Romani descent, as well as Greek and Armenian refugees and those of other origins, making the town a multilingual paradise.
Some interesting facts about Komotini
- Komotini’s current settlement has been traced back to the year 1207. Tsar Kaloyan of Bulgaria destroyed the original settlement.
- Komotini is home to Democritus University, which attracts a large number of students from around the world.
- One of Komotini’s main tourist attractions is the Old Commercial Center, where tourists can find traditional Greek shops and different workshops, most of which are no longer found anywhere else in the country.
- Komotini once had a sizable community of Sephardic Jews that settled there during the 15th and 16th centuries. Its numbers were reduced noticeably during WW2 when 863 of them were sent to extermination camps, mainly to Treblinka.
- Komotini is located between two rivers, Boklutzas and Trelohimaros, and started out as a Byzantine fortress built by Theodosius.
- In 2011, Komotini merged with 3 other municipalities due to political and governmental reform.
- Komotini is considered an environmentally conscious location thanks to its power plant powered by natural gas.
- Komotini has seen the birth of many notable personalities, including Aigeiros.
- Komotini, the former Minister of Defense and Petros Mantalos, a football player for the Greek National Team.
- Komotini became part of Bulgaria after the Second Balkan War but was returned to Greece at the end of World War 1.
- Komotini’s Central Park features two memorials, one for the heroes of WW2, which is known as “The Sword” thanks to its design, and the other for the victims of the Holocaust, created in 2004.