Who is writing here?

Ursula Kastanias

Yessu! I’m Ursula: Swiss-Greek. Ikaria is paradise for me! I have been living and working here with my Greek family since 1986.

I'll show you Ikaria as I experience it

I have put together all the information about the island for you so that you too can feel like you are in paradise!

Like all travelers, I once found myself in this country with a head full of question marks… everything was exciting, interesting, but foreign. I knew that the first thing I had to do was learn the language! The language opened many doors for me. And so I was able to begin to familiarize myself with Greek culture, temperament and the Ikarian attitude to life.

Ursula und Pantelis Kastanias

I’ve spent more than half my life in Ikaria, so let’s be honest: I feel at home here! I feel accepted and included. I grew into the community and became a part of it. I now also have a Greek passport and I can choose whether I go through life as a Swiss or a Greek.

I travel to Switzerland often and enjoy it, but it’s always short stays. I take my children with me because I think it is important that they are at home in both cultures, know the language and know that they have family in both countries. But I can’t change it: after a short time I’m drawn back to Ikaria. I long for the light and the sea, for the sun, for the smell of fresh figs, for the warmth of the people, for the simplicity of our life here!

In 2011 I started “Ursula's Ikaria”.

In the middle of the crisis to support schools

I would like to support Ikaria directly with my donation projects for heating oil for the schools and support for the hospital!

There are also many Ikarians who have a small family business but do not have access to the German language and therefore do not really have access to their German-speaking visitors and customers. I want to be your mouthpiece!

On the other hand, many visitors are afraid to travel to Ikaria because the usual travel information on the internet is, to say the least, diffuse and contradictory and makes the journey seem very complicated. I would like to make the way to Ikaria easier with Ursula’s Ikaria.

Ikaria needs you!

Every euro you spend in a tavern or guesthouse benefits this family directly! We don't hear much about the crisis anymore, but it is still present everywhere.
Ursula und Pantelis´ Laden

Together with my husband Pantelis and our two children, we live and manage the 300-year-old family farm. This is also where our “liquid gold”, our special fine olive oil, is made, which you can buy in small quantities directly from us or in Switzerland. You can read exciting reports about how we harvest our olives or how I pickle my olives.

You can find us in our shop in Christos – Raches. Just ask about Ursula and Pantelis, everyone knows us! You can read here what the village is all about and why it is special for the whole of Greece. Christos – Raches is always worth a trip!

Das ultimative Ikaria T-Shirt

The ultimate Ikaria T-shirt, designed by my daughter Selina Kastanias. You can find the Ikarian Evolution shirts alongside many other cool Ikaria souvenirs, shirts, hoodies, ceramics, natural soaps and handmade silver jewelry in our shop. But we also ship them all over the world…

Staying curious is what makes life really exciting!

Because I enjoy being out in the wilderness, I helped with reconnaissance, signposting and maintaining the hiking trails in Westikaria. I have also translated the accompanying hiking guide into German. I used to do a lot of hiking guiding. I know my way around well and enjoy roaming the mountains in search of medicinal plants and wild herbs or hunting for fresh mushrooms.

In 1997 I completed my training as a life and grief companion (today we call that a coach!) at the Int. Institute for Applied Human Research with Dr. Jorgos Canacakis made. I was also his long-term employee. That’s where I learned my craft in dealing with groups!

Ursula mit ihrer Tanzgruppe mit traditionellen Kostümen

I have been dancing the traditional Greek folk dance at Lykeio Ellinidon since 2000 and am also a founding member of the offshoot L.E.-Ikaria. And because I can never get enough of Greek dance, I often do further training with recognized Greek dance teachers. Every year I organize dance holidays in Ikaria and workshops in Switzerland.

In 2002 I met Peter and Emily Hess. Fascinated by the Peter Hess sound massage, I quickly completed the training and have been working as an assistant in the intensive training in Ikaria ever since.

Ursula Kastanias Werner Van Gent
Peter Hess und Ursula Kastanias
Ursula tanzt

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