Since the Koufonissia have been known since prehistoric times, there are many versions on how they got their name.
Some say it came from “Koufos Limen”, meaning a safe haven, some others from the many caves and sedimentary rock around the island, which makes it look hollow (koufo).
You can choose between the two versions whichever you deem more appropriate. The fact that the Koufonissia have been inhabited since prehistoric times is proved by the archaeological finds excavated at times on both islands and Keros.
Kato Koufonissi and Keros are now archaeological sites and human activity is restricted there.
Finds include Cycladic vessels, objects from the Hellenistic and Roman periods, early Christian relics and marble “thorakia” (panels that filled the gap between the marble altar columns in early Christian churches).
Many of these finds can now be seen in the Archaeological Museum of Naxos and the churches of St George and St Nicholas on Pano Koufonissi.