30 Mar Olympia
In western Peloponnese and the beautiful valley of Alpheios river lays the most celebrated sanctuary of ancient Greece. Dedicated to Zeus, the father of ancient Greek gods, it sprawls over the southwest foot of Mount Kronios, at the confluence of the Alpheios and the Kladeos rivers, in a lush, green landscape. Although secluded near the west coast of the Peloponnese, Olympia became the most important religious and athletic centre in Greece. Its fame rests upon the Olympic Games, the greatest national festival and a highly prestigious one world-wide, which was held every four years to honour Zeus. The origin of the cult and of the festival went back many centuries. Local myths concerning the famous Pelops, the first ruler of the region, and the river Alpheios, betray the close ties between the sanctuary and both the East and West.
The visitors can walk through the impressive monuments of the area where athletes trained and run in the ancient stadium; just as the ancient Olympians did after their victory 3000 years ago. They can also visit the new Archaeological Museum, one of the most important museums of Greece and admire invaluable collections and masterpieces of the ancient Greek art, such as the sculpted decoration of the temple of Zeus, one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World, the famous statue of Hermes of Praxiteles and the great statue of Nike of Paionios.
Route from Ilakia to Olympia:
The ride is through the national road Pyrgos-Kyparissia (E55) and the local routes. The distance is 60,8 km (almost 1 hour and 10’).