Kayakoy: A Greek village – ghost in the depths of Turkey

It was abandoned by the Greek population and never inhabited again. The reason for the village of Livissi (Turkish: Kayaköy) now consists of hundreds of stone buildings without roofs and two churches on the tops of a mountainside in its depths. Specifically, the Greek village – ghost is located 8 km south of the seaside town of Fetiye (Macri), where Greeks of Asia Minor lived until 1923. The rocky area where Livisi is located was already inhabited by early archaic times and according to some historical sources is located near the location of the city then called Karmylissos. The village was divided into three districts-nories, the upper neighborhood (with the church of Taxiarch and the pebbled square of Stumbus, the cafes and the Arrenagogy), the middle neighborhood (with the church of Agia Anna- “Messi Panagia” and the Parthenagy-“lower school”) as well as the lower neighborhood with Panagia Pyrgiotissa-“below Panagia”. Other neighborhoods were Ai Parascay, Kamara, Oruja, Alama, Kunusata, Purtin, Fournari, Vounarin, Leea of Mr. Old Man, Skylaruda, Hanin, Vourvouris, Dry Gardens and Stavrin. The increased religious feeling of the Greek settlement resulted in a total of 21 churches and chapels being erected within the village, but also in the wider area. In fact, the church of Agia Anna is considered the oldest of the village and was called Old Panagia. However, the Greek element was slowly beginning to fade, when several families were displaced to the east, due to persecution. The persecutions of the inhabitants of Livisi, as well as neighboring Makri, were part of the wider plan of the Turks to evacuate the coast from the Greek inhabitants. Persecutions in the area began in 1914 with the confinement of residents in Makri. In 1916 many families were taken to Denizli, after a six-day march. In 1917 other residents were taken to the villages of Hurutum, Aji Payam and Stefani, also near Denizli. In 1919 the men aged 13–70 were exiled and in 1921 the remaining 480 in Iconium, Caesarea and finally, after a 55-day hike, in Hamitier, Syria, where they remained until November 1922. The refugees from the area of Makri settled in Attica by establishing the Municipality of Nea Makris, while the residents from Livisi established New Levisis (New Livissi), belonging to the community of Markopoulos. Also Libyans settled in Boeotia (Saint George Amfissa), Fokida (Itea) and Evia (Faracla). At the same time, after the unsuccessful war operations of the Asia Minor Campaign, Livisi was completely abandoned under the people’s exchange agreement signed by the Greek and Turkish government in 1923. According to popular tradition, finally, the Turks refused to settle in Livisi, resulting in, after a devastating earthquake in 1957, the houses becoming ruins.