All my life I’ve wanted to visit Greece and indulge my passion for ancient history, archaeology and mythology. When my husband first broached the subject of marking our 40th anniversary with a vacation, it came to mind immediately. Thus, we embarked on the trip of a lifetime! Come along for the ride.
This is a continuing series. See other chapters HERE.
Part IV: Ancient Olympia, Gulf of Corinth & Nafpaktos
Sept. 11, 2013
[Day Two of Four, Classical Greece Bus Tour]
Day Two Itinerary:
In the morning visit the archaeological site with the Sanctuary of Olympian Zeus, the ancient stadium and the archaeological museum. Then drive on through the plains of Ilia and Achaia and over the magnificent cable stayed bridge which crosses the Corinthian Bay from Rion to Antirion. Pass by the picturesque towns of Nafpaktos (Lepanto) and Itea, arrive in Delphi. Dinner and overnight stay.
Here we were, at the site of the Ancient Olympics; another one of those “pinch me” moments!
The Olympics began in 776 BC and, just like the modern version, were held every four years, until Emperor Theodosius I ended them in 394 AD.
As you can see by the map, it’s a sprawling site with many points of interest.
At this point, we doubled back towards the entrance.
After spending all morning at the site, we took a tour of the Olympia Museum.
A few highlights:
We stopped for a late lunch at this point and were happy to get some rest!
Our journey continued, towards the Gulf of Corinth, where we crossed the The Rio-Antirrio bridge, (official name; the Charilaos Trikoupis Bridge, after the inventor). Completed in 2004, it is the world’s longest multi-span, cable-stayed bridge and crosses the the Gulf near Patras, linking the town of Rion in the Pelopponese area to Antirrio on mainland Greece by road. (Ferry boat had been the only option until then.)
Our final rest break before Delphi was a charming little town, (and they are ALL incredibly so!), called Nafpaktos, aka Naupactus or Lepanto.
Still almost 100 km (63 miles) until our final destination for the night, (Delphi), and we were all ready to crash.
It was a good kind of tired though and looking back at these photos now, my mind is blown all over again!
What a trip!
Coming up: Delphi; home of the famous Oracle and Kalambaka.
What’s YOUR dream destination?