The island got its name from the nymph Astypalaea who was Europa’s sister and Poseidon’s wife. During antiquity it was also known as “Ichthyoessa”, due to the abundance of fish that swam in its waters, as well as “Theon Trapeza” (Gods’ Table) due to the abundance of produce and game on the island.
In fact, the hares on the island were so many that the islanders resorted to the oracle of Delphi to seek advice on how to rid the island of this small animal that caused such damage to their crops. Pythia told them the obvious: “get hounds and hunt them”. The people of Astypalaia seem to have religiously followed the advice and so, today, you won’t find many hares on the island, but you can enjoy amazing hiking routes that end on some of the most amazing beaches of the Aegean.
more at travel.gr