The area of Platrithias lies 20km from Vathy and only 3km from Stavros village and it has been inhabited since the ancient years. I n the middle Ages due to the presence of pirates population moved to the mountains.
The area had plenty of water, fertile land and quick access to the bays of Afales and Frikes so it attracted many people to reside.
In the 16th century people from the village of Exogi moved down to this area and cultivated the land. There is only about 400 people living the are now but during the last century the population was over 1,000. At the hill of Taxiarchon, a monastery existed until the end of the 19th century, but only the church exists today.
West of Platrithas the Melanidros (blackwater) spring flows, having therapeutical quality, it is believed that the water from this spring restored Homer’s sight. According to Homer, Ulysses was living in this beautiful fertile area just before the War of Troy. Several excavations have been executed in this area with the ruins of buildings and graves from the Mycenaean period discovered.
From the central point of Platrithias, a dirt road going north passes through the habitation of Kolieri, only 1 km. away, built on the west coast of Aphales bay. Here, Doctor S. Vrettos has turned his house into a small folklore museum, with household utensils, tools, furniture, and various other objects gathered from all over Ithaca.
After Kolieri the road ends at the small almost uninhabited settlements of Kalamos and Agios Elias. At this very beautiful site flows the main spring of Ithaca irrigating the area which reaches Aphales bay. Another dirt road 1 km. from Platrithias, leads to the excellent, wide Beaches of Aphales, the northern and largest bay of the island.
On the way to Frikes we pass by the small villages of Agii Saranda, Mesovouno and Lachos, surrounded by trees and beautiful gardens of the small valley. Several houses with traditional architecture have been saved from the earthquakes in this area.
In Platrithias and its surrounding settlements, there are quite a few rooms to let, food stores and coffeehouses. On the 15th of August, when the Church Panaghia Melanidros celebrates, there is a festival with food, song and dance that takes place in the square of Platrithias.