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Masticulture: Ecotourism Activities in Chios

“…The concept of Masticulture is that the travellers of Chios must be encouraged to actively participate in the activities of a village to gain the opportunity to experience the pure authentic life and culture of Chios…”


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Masticulture is one of the most innovative businesses of Chios Island. Locally owned from Roula and Vassilis, Masticulture is the sole business operating in the field of ecotourism in Chios by providing a wide range of activities related to the island’s environment. More specifically, Masticulture puts together ecotourism packages that has managed to combine hospitality and outdoor activities to all the things related to the culture of Chios, from its customs and traditions to its agricultural labor and production and much more. Due to the avid agricultural sector of Chios, the island has managed to keep intact its rural societies, which continue to be the chief source of employment for many villagers up until today! By this way, Masticulture strives to offer to the travelers of Chios the opportunity to combine their explorations with a discovery tour that enables them to become acquainted with the natural splendor of Chios while experiencing the joy of natural life in the countryside; from gathering nets on a fishing boat to a walk along the old cobblestone paths that lead to the secret mastic fields, it is definite that a tour with Masticulture will be an experience of a lifetime! Whether you prefer to learn more about the traditional agricultural labor methods of Chios or you want to participate in the final production of the mastic products, the wide range of Masticulture’s activities will offer you exactly what you are looking for.

Behind the Scenes of Masticulture

“…Authentic is the key word! Involving locals, who love, protect and conserve the nature, history and tradition of Chios…”


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In 2006, Roula and Vassilis decided to their jobs in the field of information technology in order to settle in their village, medieval Mesta of Chios. Although they left their careers back in Athens, they decided to begin a life with an alternative and fresh perspective on the field of ecotourism. So, they bought mastic fields and olive trees so that they could learn about the mysteries of mastic, the special local produce and ancient traditions of the region that continue to be adamantly carried out today from the residents of Chios. Issues of sustainable and rural development, ecology and organic products as well as the management of water resources, the pollution of land and sea were always of prime interest of Roula and Vassilis. All those things became active motives for the couple in order to take real action on a local level. The enthusiasm and interest expressed by their visitors upon discovering the ancient cultivation practices for the mastic tree was the initial idea of creating a place where people could come to learn about mastic as well as the history, traditions and ways of life, or culture of the land where it is cultivated. By that time, Roula and Vassilis started a research on how mastic could be positioned as a central factor in a plan closely associated with sustainable tourism development. Their research led to the creation of a tourism enterprise, which, functioning in a village of 400 inhabitants can provide (i) support to farmers and fishermen who can contribute to the presentation-touring programmes and will be offered the opportunity to distribute their produce from the place where it is made directly to the consumer, (ii) Support to local stores which can trade local products high in quality and nutritious value, (iii) protection of the environment by developing an increased knowledge and interest amongst local farmers in organic cultivation methods, (iv) the creation of new employment or business opportunities for residents of the remote parts of the island, (v) preservation of the island’s cultural heritage and the re-emergence and boost of folk art, (vi) raising the morale of the rural people through their heartfelt interaction with visitors and (vii) the development of factors that facilitate youths on Chios to remain there and perhaps attract other inhabitants to live on the island. By this way, Masticulture served as the first agency for ecotourism activities on the island of Chios.

Discover the Ecotourism Activities of Masticulture


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Are you ready to experience the authentic spirit of Greece? Masticulture offers a first-hand presentation and hands-on experience of how local agricultural products including mastic, olives and wine are produced. Follow the villagers of Mesta on escapades searching for wild mushrooms!

The Mastic-Mystique Experience is a presentation and contribution program to mastic cultivation. Young farmers guide guests on a walking trip and demonstrate all the stages of mastic tree cultivation in a real mastic grove. During the demonstration, the guests are encouraged to try using the traditional tools and techniques involved in the extraction and harvest of the precious mastic resin from the tree. The program includes a picnic of delicious local foods and wine under the shade of the mastic tress. The Mastic Mystique Experience takes place all year round.

The Squeeze the Juice Out Experience is a walking tour where, together with Mesta’s wine producers, you will have the opportunity to harvest grapes and, after kicking off your shoes, you’ll stomp on them to make must. The Squeeze the Juice Out Experience takes place on September.

The Fig is on Fire Experience is a walking tour where you will have the opportunity to learn more about the production of souma, the local spirit distilled from figs, in the local distilleries of Mesta. The Fig is on Fire Experience takes place from October to November.

The Getting Oiled Up Experience is a fantastic tour where you will have the opportunity to participate in olive picking, and find out how a fungus benefits and olive as well as get to know the secrets of extra virgin oil while watching its production at a local olive press. The Getting Oiled Up Experience takes place from October to November.

The Creating An Organic Garden Experience is an awesome tour where the team of Masticulture provides you with tools, plants and seeds for you to plant your own vegetables using the complimentary crop organic technique. The Creating An Organic Garden Experience takes place from May to June.

The Ouzo Distilleries and Other Small Agricultural Food Factories Experience is special tour where you will have the opportunity to learn about the process of how ordinary food and drinks products we consume every day are made. The Ouzo Distilleries and Other Small Agricultural Food Factories Experience takes place all year round.

Win The Competition Of Mysterious Greece
Submit your details to enter the competition of Mysterious Greece for winning participation for 2 people for the Mastic Mystique Experience!