The Monastery of Evaggelismos (='the Annunciation') in Mounde is a real gem in Ikaria! It is located near the village Kastanies in Raches, in a green setting, which includes an artificial wetland with a small dam on the river Myrsonas, in the positition 'Vathes'. The monastery is dedicated to the Annunciation and is called Mounde or Monte. According to tradition, a family from Chios, named Mounde, gave financial support for the restoration of the monastery, so the monastery was named after them. Another tradition, says that the name Monte comes from the Italian word '' il Monte'', ie mountain, as the Italian conquerors called it, during the Italian-Greek war, because it is located in a mountain setting.
This is a nunnery, built around 1460 AD, after a dream of an Ikarian believer, who followed the instructions of Virgin Mary and digged the earth to find the image of the Immaculate Conception. At that location, the first monastery was built. Later, a widening of the monastery took place and two other chapels were created, dedicated to the Synaxis of the Twelve Apostles and to the other to the Annunciation. Each small chapel has its own altar and its own main entrance.
Inside the monastery, one can find numerous murals and old icons.The central wooden iconostasis of the monastery is remarkable. Architecturally, the church was designated as a three-aisled basilica. During the period 1947-1949 civil war, the monastery served as a sanatorium, treating over 120 political exiles tuberculous. The remains of some of them, are found in the courtyard of the monastery. Today, there is only one nun who lives there.
Sacraments: Divine Service,in commemoration of political exiles, organized by local authorities every August. The monastery Evaggelistrias Mounde celebrates on March 25th, June 30th and August 15th.
Leaving the village Kastanies and going towards to Maratho, above the main road, you can see on the monastery. Access is only by private car, taxi or on foot.