Here they affectionately refer to it as Vathy, this splendid city on the gulf with the islandís most important port. The old city, perched on the hill has conserved all the atmosphere of Samosís history, traditions, silences and intimacy. Strolling under the handsome terracotta roofs time seems to have stood still, preventing progress from cancelling the traces of history. Down beside the sea, in modern Samos, things are very different. Lively and bustling, especially along the port promenade with its cafes, restaurants, hotels and artisan shops which spread out like an amphitheatre. But the traditional meeting place is Pythagorus Square with the legendary monument of the lion which is the symbol of the city. There you will find a café with outdoor tables where you can taste the best galactoboureko - a creamy cake - on the island. If it is culture you are looking for then make your way along the little streets away from the sea, and you will find interesting buildings and museums including the archaeological museum which is considered one of the most important in Greece and contains many local artefacts from various eras. One magnificent find, the statue of Kouros, a local sculpture dating back to the 6th century B.C., is so large Ė around five metres - that it called for the construction of a new wing to the museum.