Rína—a corruption of ‘Aghia Irini'—is a tiny harbour, crowded with small fishing boats, perfectly out of sight of the open sea, and protected by its long narrow inlet, Vathys. In this safe haven a large Early Christian community— known then as Helleniká—flourished from the 4th to 7th centuries and covered primarily the north-facing slope to the south of the harbour. The ruins of churches and houses are everywhere on the hillside. Immediately above the water on the south side, is the Early Christian church of the Anástasis—its original size deducible from the position of the retaining wall to the south. The church's unusual dedication to the Resurrection is interesting in light of the fact that, from where it stands, the sun is seen to rise over the water at the entrance of the inlet for a substantial period of the year around the equinoxes. Above the church is a cave-like ledge which was cut into the rock, probably in Antiquity. Further above, was the church of Aghios Giorgios: the mediaeval chapel on its site preserves vestiges of wall-painting. From here, the dense remains of the main settlement are visible on the hillside to the west, with the vaulted arch of Aghia Sophia conspicuous in the middle. Across the harbour to the north, reached by steps behind the busy boat-yard, is Aghia Irini, where a tiny chapel and a rose garden have been built on the north side of the site of a large, apsed basilica of the 5th century, with another ruined basilica, of unknown dedication, beyond to the east. A few pieces of rectangular masonry cut and dressed in typical Hellenistic fashion suggest the pre-existence here of what was perhaps a 4th century BC fort or watch-tower.
Info: McGilchrist's Greek Islands
(From McGilchrist’s Greek Islands, © Nigel McGilchrist 2010, excerpted with his gracious permission. Click for the books)