For a long time every pilgrim had to go to the town of Karyes to get final permission to stay on the holy mountain. Nowadays the Athos passport is given in Ouranoupolis on the morning of departure. This picture of Karyes is taken in 1942 with the “medieval” looking houses in front and much newer Russian buildings up the slope. Today these buildings are in ruins.
In 1966 A. Costas made this street scene in the mainstreet of Karyes. With on the right shops and at the end of the street the place where since 1963 the bus from Dafni turns. The photo is from the book Mount Athos by John Julius Norwich.
Seven years later (1973) Wim Oudshoorn from the Netherlands made this picture from almost the same angle as Costas did. The road is in an even worse state and the cypresses grew a little longer.
The mainstreet of Karyes in the other direction with the Protaton on the right. Photo also by Wim Oudshoorn shot in 1973. The same muleteer with his six mules as in the previous photo.
This last image again by Wim Oudshoorn who was in the company of his highschool teacher Herman Hissink and schoolmate Gerard Koolschijn and went several times to Athos in the 70ties. The photo is presumely taken in the small hotel in the Karyes Mainstreet which was located above the cafe. I slept in this minus 1 star hotel in 1997 because the Kutloumousiou monastery refused us . Nowadays the cafe has moved to the other side of mainstreet and there is no hotelfacility anymore in Karyes. It is unclair who these men are, they look like workers maybe blacksmiths with their aprons.
Herman Voogd (thanks to Wim Oudshoorn for using his photos)
The restaurant in the last image looks more like the one I saw in 1980. This second restaurant, now gone, was situated opposite to the Protaton, where the street starts that leads to the bakery. It had very simple interiour, with a fireplace to cook food and to make Greek coffee, and it was dark inside, like in a Harry Potter movie. I remember seeing a Syromahki drinking his beer, hit away in a corner of the restaurant…… (the map of Zwerger was hanging on the wall, with many corrections on it made with pen by pilgrims).