Ever wonder what it’s like to walk among ancient ruins? You can do just that in Olympia, Greece! I’m missing adventure in the great wide somewhere right now so I’m writing about some of my favorite places I went before I started The Rose Table. I visited Olympia back in 2009 while studying abroad in Greece. Here’s part three of my Throwback Travel Series!
Olympia is in the western part of the Greek Peloponnese, about a four hour drive from Athens. Olympia is best known for having founded the Olympic Games. Today, you can find the ruins of not only the temples, but also the remains of the structures used for the original Olympic games. Pretty cool!
In its heyday, the ancient city of Olympia was famous even outside of Greece. Athletes from all over traveled to Olympia to compete in the Olympic Games, which were held every four years starting in 776 B.C. as part of the Festival of Zeus. The games took place until the 4th century B.C. when Theodosius I abolished pagan festivals, thus ending the Festival of Zeus. Theodosius II had the temples destroyed. The ruins were discovered in the early 1800s and Olympia became a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1989.
In addition to exploring the ruins, you can also step back in time with the Archaeological Museum at Olympia. This is one of the most famous museums in Greece, and is definitely worth a visit if you love ancient history! Here you can find ancient helmets, statues, Hermes and the Infant Dionysus (quite a famous statue!), plus parts of the original Temple of Zeus, which was one of the largest temples in Greece at the time. Tickets cost $10-$15, which includes admission to both the museum and the archaeological site. You can get additional information about visiting Olympia here.
Want more Greece? Read about Nafplio, Mycenae, and Epidaurus!
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Keep dreaming of adventure,
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