mycenae - nafplio - epidaurus full day



Mycenae

-The Lion Gate
-Grave Circles A and B
-The Cyclopean Walls
-The Royal Palace
-The Treasury of Atreus
-The Mycenean Archaeological Museum
-The Mycenean Village

Nafplio

-Palamidi Castle
-Freedom quare
-Bourtzi
-Constitution Square
-First Hellenic Parlament
-Anastasios of Nafplia church
-St.Spyridon church
-Lunch at one of the many unique traditional tavernas like Vasilis Taverna
-Antica Gelateria di Roma for the best gellato and Italian delights
-Pergamonto for the best 'loukoumades'in Greece (puff balls with honey or chocolate and almond nuts)

Epidaurus

-The Epidaurus amphitheatre
-The Epidaurus Archaeological Museum
-The Asclepius

Mycenae
A Unesco World Heritage Site described by Homer as a city 'rich in gold' was a fortified late Bronze Age city located between two hills on the Argolic plain of the Peloponesse.
The fortified royal residence of King Agamemnon ( leader of the Trojan War ) with mamoth Cyclopean walls dates from between the 14th and the 13th century BCE when the Mycenean civilization was at its peak of power, influence and artistic expression.
Situated on a rocky hill ( 40-50 meters high ) commanding the surrounding plain as far as the sea 15 km away, the site of Mycenae covered 30 000 sq. meters and has always been known throughout history.
Heinrich Schliemann believed in the historical truth of the Homeric stories and interpreted the site accordingly. In 1876 he discovered the magnificent treasures of grave circle A which included ancient shaft graves with their royal skeletons and spectacular graved goods.
Entrance to the acropolis is through the famous Lion Gate a 3 x 3 meter square doorway with an 18-ton lintel topped by two 3 meter high heraldic lions and a column altar. You will be amazed as you explore the acropolis making your way to the top where the royal palace once stood. The large palace structure built around a central hall, or Megaron is typical of Mycenean palaces. Other features included a secondary hall, many private rooms and a workshop complex.
The Treasury of Atreus,a monumental circular building with corbelled roof reaching a height of 135 meters and 14.6 meters in diameter and approached by a long walled and unroofed corridor 36 meters long and 6 meters wide is sure to leave you impressed.
One of the most fascinating museums is the Archaeological Museum at Mycenae. The museum is built next to the citadel at Mycenae. Many objects unearthed in the vicinity are exhibited in its three halls. It provides context to the excavations and is easily visited before ( recommended ) or after a tour of the archaeological site.

Nafplio
One of the most picturesque towns in the area of Argolis as well as one of the most romantic towns all over Greece. Nafplio was the first capital of the newly born Greek State after the 1821 War of Independance between 1823 and 1834.
The town declined during the Roman times and flourished again during the Byzantine times. Frankish Venetians and Turkish conquerors left their mark in the town and strongly influenced its culture architecture and traditions during the centuries.
Follow a dream trail to discover Nafplio's precious gems starting from the medieval Old Town, the narrow cobblestone alleys, the neoclassical well preserved mansions with the beautiful Bougainvillea trees adorning their yards and balconies and the Turkish fountains.
Discover Freedom or Liberty Square depicting the Hellenes gratitude towards the French people for their help with the 1821 Revolution. In the very heart of the town stands Syntagma Square or Constitution Square where you can admire important historic buildings and monuments.You will admire two Turkish mosques, the first a Mutual Learning School and the second was home to the first Greek Parliament. The Archeological Museum and the Municipal Gallery are among the buildings that stand out. The church of Anastasios of Nafplia and St. Spyridon in front of which the First Governor of Hellas Ioannis Kapodistrias was assasinated are well worth a visit. PALAMIDI CASTLE which proudly stands at 216 meters above sea level is absolutely breathtaking. In order to reach it you have to climb all of its 999 steps carved into the rock. Not to worry though....Ancient Greece Tours drives you up the winding roads where you will be spellbound by the magnificent views. Venture into a place drenched in history, where the famous Theodore Kolokotronis had been imprisoned. St. Andrew ( Agios Andreas ) battlement built at the top of the castle by Venetian conquerors offers stunning views to the Argolic gulf and Mycenean plain.
ACRONAFPLIA is the historic rock at the foot of Palamidi hilL. Inhabited since prehistoric times, the peninsula consists of three levels among which stand three independant castles. It was there that the ancient acropolis was situated, fortified with Cyclopean walls.
The famous BOURTZI is the most photographed spot of Nafplio. The Venetian small fortress stands on the rocky islet of Agioi Theodoroi.
Take a romantic stroll around the so called Arvanitia Promenade dominated by the rocky landscape of Acronafplia. Enjoy a leisurely tour around the town , buy some souvenirs and be fascinated with the "komboloyia" displayed everywhere. Enjoy a cup of coffee or a delicious meal in the old town or just enjoy refreshments at the port overlooking amazing Bourtzi.

Epidaurus
The prosperity brought by the Asclepeion enabled Epidaurus to construct civic monuments including the huge theater that delighted Pausanias for its symmetry and beauty . Among all the ancient theaters,Epidaurus theatre is the most beautiful and best preserved. The theater is admired for its exceptional acoustics which permit almost perfect intelligibility of unamplified spoken words from the skene to all 14 000 spectators regardless of their seating.
At Epidaurus,there was held one of the most important festivals of the ancient Greeks, the Asclepieia. They were held once every 4 years and the festive programme included drama,music and sports contests including horse racing. The actors were men only; even the female roles were played by men. Women were allowed to attend the performances but not to take part in them. The actors covered their faces with masks and used their voices and body movements as means of expression.
Epidaurus theater is used again today for dramatic and comic performances. Great actors have performed here among them the Greek soprano Maria Kallas, Isabella Rossellini, Gerard Depardieu and Kevin Spacey.
alongside temples to the older Greek gods such as Apollo. Apollo's son, Asklepios, the god of healing had a shrine there as well as at Epidaurus, the ancient site of miracle healings.


Asclepius
The Asclepeion of Epidaurus was the most celebrated healing center of the Classical World, the place where ill people went in the hope of being cured. To find out the right cure for their ailments they spent a night in the “enkoimeteria” a big sleeping hall. Found in the sanctuary there was a guest house for 160 guestrooms.
The tranquility of nature, the soft and clean lines of the surrounding mountains, the lush vegetation and the mineral springs in the vicinity appeared to be very important in the treatment of patients via the help of the priests.
Patients coming here accepted high quality medical services. This has been proved by the surgical tools found here which are exhibited in the Epidaurus Archaeological Museum.
Activity level: Moderate
Cultural exposure: 10/10
Duration: Full day
Type: Ancient History, Sightseeing, Walking, Full Day
Theater of Epidaurus Ticket: 7€ full, 2€ Reduced
Archeological Site of Mycenae Ticket: 8€ full, 4€ Reduced
Valid for: Archeological Museum of Mycenae, Mycenae, Treasury of Atreus

* Students of non European Union countries holders of an international student card are entitled to 50% discount on the entrance fee. Young people up the age of 18 are entitled to free admission. European Union students are entitled to free entrance while European Union senior citizens over 65 have 50% discount on entry to all Greek museums and archaeological sites.

Free admission days : 6 March, 5 June , 18 April, 18 May, the last weekend of September annually, Sundays in the period between 1 November and 31 March, first Sunday of every month, except for July, August and September and on 27 September International Tourism Day.

All sites are open, in winter: From November 1st to March 31st: from 8:30am to 3:00pm, in summer: From April 1st to October 31st daily from 8:00am to 7:30pm.

Closed on Holidays: Jan 1st, March 25th, May 1st, Oct 28th.
Christmas and Boxing Day: closed
Easter Sunday: closed
Good Friday: open from 12noon to 3:00pm.
Holy Saturday: open from 8:30am to 3:00pm
Easter Monday: open from 08:30am to 3:00pm.
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