Natural Sponges | Kalymnos
Updated: Apr 8
Natural sponges are one of the most famous traditional products of Greece, and especially the island of Kalymnos with the longest history of sponge-fishing globally.
The sea sponge is a natural living organism found in several colors, shapes and sizes.
Each sponge is different, depending on the environment it lives in and several parameters, namely temperature, depth, light. Natural sponges are the healthiest product to take care of the human body, minding that they do not retain dirt and odors. All these conditions, plus the fact that natural sponges have a long life-time, are the reason that natural sponges are so successful worldwide.
Early Europeans used soft sponges for many purposes, including padding for helmets, portable drinking utensils and municipal water filters. Until the invention of synthetic sponges, they were used as cleaning tools, applicators for paints and ceramic glazes and discreet contraceptives. However, by the mid-20th century, over-fishing brought both the animals and the industry close to extinction.