The cave of Sykia is located at the south part, 8 miles away from the mediaeval village Olympoi of Chios Island.
More specifically, it is situated at the area Kambia, between the natural port of Fana and Salagonas cove.
The natural entrance of the cave is about 100 m from the street that links Olympoi with the coastal church of Agia Dynami as well as 1.5 km away from the above church.
The area is smooth, with hills and self-sown bushes as well as a natural environment that combines an especially pure and calm island landscape.
The same cave has a remarkable interest and, according to the speleologist G. Avagianos’ opinion, this is one of the most interesting and beautiful caves of Greece. It is consisted of a main chamber with dimensions about 30x30m, which is expanded to an elongate part developed towards a northeast direction. Circumferential of the main chamber, on southwest and south for example, are created “Bays”, which form other smaller chambers.
The cave, today, has a hole for natural entrance created at the south part of the roof of the big chamber. Right under this natural entrance, there is a large block of stone. The floor of the cave, created on the surface of that block, is placed 12.5m in depth from the level of the natural ground at the hole. There is a big block of stone exactly under this natural entrance of the cave; the above surface of that block is 12.50m in depth according to the ground at the place where the hole is.
Circumferential of the block of stone, the floor of the cave is even 5.00m lower, its roof, on the other hand, is about 10.00 – 13.00m in height. By this position, the floor presents a remarkable declivity about 80%. In this way, cave’s floor on the west, north and northeast side of the main chamber perimeter is 30.00 – 35.00 m in depth from the natural entrance. On the other hand, the floor has an ascendant slope on the east.
The decoration of the cave includes very remarkable stalactites and stalagmites (photos 4-11). In some locations, its development is so impressive creating large clusters of columns of several meters in height. Small stalactites cover the greater part of the roof.
The stalactites, which are being developed at limestone’s discontinuities of the roof, they have the greater development. In certain parts of the roof, we can note an absence of stalactite material. According to the geological study, the stalactite decoration here has been detached and fallen and new, small stalactites are created again. In some places, there are also remarkable clusters of stalagmites.
The sides of the cave are covered by limestone decoration. Sometimes, this decoration has reolithic form, but, in other cases, small stalactite complexes are created. Moreover, the development of heccentrites, special complexes of stalactites, is impressive and their creation contravenes the law of gravitation, because they are not developing to an upright direction. The above growth comes from the existence of draught of air in the cave, because of its form and of the natural opening at its roof. We have to note here that the limestone decoration appears burst at many sides. These bursts have been sometimes welded again with posterior silt of limestone material. Moreover, there are certain displacements of stalactite – stalagmite decoration of few centimeters. The decoration of the cave has a white color, though there is definitely a yellow-red tincture.
There are not running waters in the cave and the presence of water is limited in some drops especially during the wet period of the hydrologic year. The ecosystem of the cave does not appear to have impressive features. Concerning the fauna, there are samples of bats, which are detected at the Northeast side of the cave. In the entrance of the cave, the glare helps the creation of flora on its walls and the floor.
The most impressive image in the interior of the cave is the mass of blocks of stone that cover a great surface of its floor. These stones come from the collapse of a part of cave’s roof as well as its sides. Their size varies from some cubic decameters until a few cubic meters. This feature that is strange in a way, will be proved as very useful later, when, at the phase of construction, a part of this material will be used with powerful cement for the stabilization of the parts with doubtful balance (areas A, B, Z) or the reinforcement of the passages (area C, E).
The date of the carbonic materials of the cave shows that its creation became in two phases. The first is located at the A. Jurassic – K. Cretaceous and the second one at the Cenozoic.