Mining Side of Milos

Korfi De Milo

Discover Milos Island
Mining Side

Welcome to the historical dimension of Milos! The island's dramatic landscapes, marked by colourful rocks and unique geological formations, tell a story of rich mineral resources that have shaped the island's history and culture for centuries. These are a testament to the island's long and fascinating history in mining, attracting the attention of various civilizations, from the prehistoric obsidian traders to modern mining companies.

For thousands of years, Milos's mineral wealth, including deposits of sulfur, barite, alum, bentonite, perlite, kaolin, and more, have turned the island into a significant centre of mining activity. Perhaps the most poignant testament to this era is the abandoned sulfur mines at Paliorema, which offer a unique glimpse into the past when sulfur mining was a crucial part of the island's economy and lifestyle.

This mining history page is part of our commitment to providing our guests with a holistic experience of Milos, extending beyond its stunning beaches and inviting waters. Here, you will discover the island's industrial heritage and the impact of mining on its landscape and people, enriching your understanding of Milos's unique charm.


We invite you to explore the minerals that have played a crucial role in Milos's history and have led to its economic flourishing, such as:

Sulphur: Highly prized in ancient Greece for its disinfectant, antiseptic, and religious uses, sulphur was mined extensively. Its historical importance is still visible in the remnants of old mines, particularly at Paliorema.

Porolithos: This unique green volcanic rock was used in large constructions and public buildings, adding a distinctive touch to the island's architecture.

Tracheite: Historically, tracheite was used for creating millstones for grinding grains and harder materials. It was likely also exported to Lavrio for ore sorting.

Kaolin (Kaolinis): Kaolin, a soft white clay, was used by painters for achieving white colour and even in pottery. Today, its quality makes it suitable for the paper and cement industry, with significant deposits in Milos, Lesvos, and Kimolos.

Pumice Stone (Kissiris): Traditionally used for polishing mosaics and leather.

Milos's pumice stone is a testimony to the island's volcanic activity.

Alunite (Alum): Historically, alum found use in the pharmacy as an active drug or drug ingredient, setting Milos apart for its high-quality deposits.

Bentonite: An absorbent clay formed from volcanic ash, bentonite is widely used in numerous industries, from iron ore pelletization to paper production and water treatment.

Perlite: The Perlite of Milos finds extensive use in construction, horticulture, filtration, and as a source of amorphous silicates due to its excellent insulating properties and lightweight nature.

Pozzolans: Named after the town Pozzuoli in Italy, pozzolans are volcanic earths used in hydraulic cements since Roman times. With substantial deposits on Milos and other Aegean islands, they are integral to cement production according to Greek specifications.

Silicates: The microcrystalline silicate of Milos is used in various industries including glassmaking, ceramics, paint, and cement, further enhancing the island's economic wealth.

Barite (Gravity): Known for its high specific gravity, barite is primarily used in the preparation of drilling fluids. Its properties make it useful in a range of industrial applications including glass, tire, paper, and the chemical industry.

Obsidian: This naturally occurring volcanic glass has contributed significantly to the economic development and living standards of the island's inhabitants. Historically used to make sharp-edged tools and weapons, obsidian from Milos was widely traded in the Aegean during prehistoric times. 

Mining Museum

The Mining Museum of Milos in Adamantas offers a comprehensive perspective on the island's mineral wealth, providing detailed insights into the geological specifics of the island. To help you come into direct contact with the magnificent Meleki landscape, the museum has prepared mapped routes that showcase the wealth of the mining past, the present, and the natural environment. Scientists from various disciplines have combined their expertise to offer comprehensive guided tours, providing you with an immersive experience of the island's rich geological heritage.

We invite you to explore and appreciate this unique aspect of our island's story. It's an integral part of Milos's tale that adds depth to its beauty. As always, feel free to contact our team if you have any questions or need assistance in planning your exploration. Welcome to Milos, where history and nature come together to create a unique journey.

Address & Communication

Korfos, Milos Island, Greece 84800