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Famous Landmarks in Greece

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Having been around for more than 6,000 years, you can expect to find all sorts of landmarks in the nation of Greece. Thus, today we are going to take you through the most famous landmarks in Greece. If you are planning a trip to Greece, we would recommend that you create time for all of these landmarks, even if it means multiple trips, because they are all worth it! 

Famous Greek Landmarks in Athens

The Acropolis in Athens and Parthenon in Athens 

Acropolis in Athens is arguably the most well-known landmark in the history of Ancient Greece and the most important archaeological site, the Acropolis is located atop a rocky outcrop above the capital Athens. It is basically the ruins of several ancient buildings of great architectural and historic importance. Out of these groups of buildings, the Parthenon is the most famous. Parthenon, the former temple, was dedicated to the goddess Athena. The ancient Theater of Dionysus and the Propylaea are also among the buildings in the Acropolis.

athens with kids
Acropolis – the most famous Ancient Greek Landmarks

Hills of Athens 

The Hills of Athens consists of seven peaks, on top of which Athens is built. All seven hills contain something unique, many of which are linked to ancient myths. The hills include: 

  • Temple of Parthenon (built in the 6th century BC)
  • Erechtheion
  • Temple of Athena Nike
  •  Theatre of Dionysus the world’s oldest theatre which hosts annual Epidaurus Festival.
Theatre of Epidaurus

New Acropolis Museum its probably one of the best archaeological museum we have ever visited and highlight of our Family trip to Athens

New Acropolis Museum – the modern Greek Landmark

The Tomb of the Unknown Soldier and Changing of the Guards in Athens 

Every hour on the hour from October 1st to March 31st and every half hour from April 1st to September 30th, the military perform a change of guard at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. This exercise takes place at both the Presidential Mansion and at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. 

Cultural Landmarks in Greece

Syntagma Square 

The Temple of Olympian Zeus in Athens 

Also known as the Olympieion, the Temple of Olympian Zeus was at some point the largest temple in the world. It is located in the heart of Athens and was dedicated to the Greek god Zeus is considered the head of the Olympian gods. 

Panathenaic Stadium

The first modern Olympic Games were held in 1896 in Athens, at the Panathenaic Stadium), which is the only stadium in the world built entirely of marble.

The Olympic stadium is a reconstruction of a historical facility from ancient times, where the games in honor of the goddess Athena were held. The stadium initially had wooden seats in 329 BC was covered with marble according to the idea of ​​the ruler of Lycurgus

Greece Landmarks

Famous Greek Landmarks on Greek Islands

The white and blue buildings of Cyclades Islands 

If there is anything that typifies Greece, it is the whitewashed houses with blue rooftops and windows. These buildings in the Cyclades are painted white and blue in a bid to prevent the spread of cholera in 1938. The limestone in whitewash was considered to be a potent disinfectant. During the military autocracy of 1967, it became a legal requirement for all houses in Greece to be painted white and blue created one of the few blue towns in the world 

Santorini Caldera

Santorini is probably the most famous island with beautiful sunsets, especially over Oia. While many people are aware of the sun-bleached, smooth-edged buildings, narrow streets, and azure-domed churches of Santorini, very few know where its caldera is. A caldera is a huge depression formed after an explosion of the volcano erupts and collapses. The caldera view in Santorini is in the towns of Firastefani, Fira, Oia – with one of the coolest bookshops in the world, and Imerovigli. 

Beautiful houses in Santorini

Kleftiko Beach in Milos Island 

Kleftiko is located on the southern coast of Milos, one of the Cyclades islands of Greece. It is surrounded by clear waters of the Aegean Sea and volcanic scenery of intriguing rock formations. The coastline at Kleftiko features an arid landscape on rocks that transform into sheer, sandy-colored cliffs rolling into the sea. To get t Kleftiko, you will have to take a boat from the town of Adamas.

Ancient Delos and the Naxian Lions 

The island of Delos is located near Mykonos and the center of the Cyclades islands. It is among the most important mythological, archaeological, and historical sites in Greece. The excavations on the island are some of the most extensive in the whole Mediterranean region.

There are plenty of landmarks in Delos, but the most popular ones are the Terrace of the Lions, which the people of Naxos dedicated to Apollo around 600 BCE. There were nine lions initially, but only seven remain today. 

Mykonos windmills

The windmills in Mykonos are the most recognizable element of the island. You can see them in photos, paintings and other Mykonos themes. Currently, there are 7 of them. Currently, windmills are not used, but are a symbol of the island’s rich past. Like other buildings in the Cyclades, the windmills are painted white, and the mountain is made of wood. Some have only visual value, some have museums, others have been converted into hotels, restaurants.

Knossos Palace in Crete 

Knossos is an ancient and largest Bronze Age historical and archaeological site on the island of Crete. It is considered the oldest city in Europe having been settled as early as the Neolithic era. The site was discovered in 1878 and excavations began in 1900. Among the items found include a palace complex with features from several centuries back. It covers 150,000 square feet and has undergone renovation throughout the 20th century. 

Knossos Palace in Crete  where mitological Minotaur – half bull half man creature was held.

Elafonisi beach in Crete 

This beach is situated along the southeast edge of Crete, which is also the least populous corner of the island with very little to interfere with the natural beauty of the landscape. The beach is unique due to the contrast created by clear waters of the sea and pink coral sand. 

Spinalonga Island in Crete 

Throughout the 18th and 19th centuries and even some parts of the 20th century, Spinalonga Island was mainly used as a leper colony. The last leper left the island in 1957. The island is located around 50 miles east of Heraklion in Mirabello Bay, and thus it can only be reached by either a boat or ferry from Elounda and Plaka. Spinalonga is usually crowded in summer, so make your plan accordingly. 

Samaria Gorge in Crete 

Since it was opened as a national park in 1962, the Samaria Gorge has been a popular tourist hotspot in Crete. Visitors like hiking the gorge, which takes up to seven houses with varying difficulty. This is also the most popular hiking trail in Crete.

The hike is around 9.94 miles when you include the last leg to the small village of Aghia Roumeli.

Navagio beach in Zakynthos 

Tucked into a secluded cove on the northernmost corner of Zakynthos, one of the Ionian Islands, Navagio beach is reachable only by sea. Boats depart from Port Vromi or Volimes and take around 20 minutes to reach the beach. The name of the shipwreck beach is because of the old M Panagiotis shipwreck in the white sand.  

Myrtos Beach and Melissani Cave in Kefalonia 

Myrtos Beach is located in Pylaros on the northwest side of Kefalonia Island on the Ionian Sea. It is perched between the feet of Mount Kalon Oros and Mount Agia Dynati. The beach has been described by many travelers as one of the most dramatic beaches in Greece due to its more than a mile-long curvature of astounding white pebbles. 

Located nearby is the Melissani Cave. The cave is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Greece thanks to its strange appeal. It is B-shaped with two chambers separated by an island in the middle. 

The Medieval Town of Rhodes, Rhodes

The city of Rhodes comprises two halves – old and new. The old part tends to attract the most visitors than the new town because of the numerous ancient landmarks, including the Rhodes castle. The palace was built by the Knights of Rhodes in the 14th century, at the location of a former Byzantine fort. The castle served as a fortress during the period of the Ottomans. The Palace of the Grand Master of Rhodes is quiet is the most dominant structure in Rhodes and easy to spot from any corner. 

Old hospital in Rhodes

Famous landmarks in Inland Greece

Temple of Poseidon, Cape Sounion

Mount Olympus

Mount Olympus was highly regarded in Greek mythology as the home of the gods and the location of the throne of Zeus. The mountain is majesty, remote, and incredibly beautiful, thus it was natural for people in ancient times to believe it is home to their important gods. 

The ancient site of Delphi 

Delphi is one of the most important archaeological sites in Greece. It lies around 70 miles from Athens and relates to Greek mythology. Sanctuary in Delphi is believed to a religious site that was chosen by the God of Zeus. 

Tourists can interact with the remains of the Temple of Apollo as well as the nearby museum featuring numerous Greek artifacts.

Monasteries of Meteora

Meteora rock formations are found in central Greece and host one of the largest and most swiftly built structures of Eastern Orthodox monasteries, second only the already mentioned Mount Athos.  Great Meteoron Monastery is a UNESCO world heritage site due to its intriguing formation and the monasteries built on top. The monastires date back to the 14th century.

Greek landmarks on Peloponnese

The statue of Leonidas at Thermopylae 

Leonidas was a King of Sparta before he died in 480 BC. He took part in the Second Persian War, leading allied Greek armies to the last stand at the Battle of Thermopylae. However, he died during the battle and entered myth as the leader of the 300 Spartans. His bronze statue was erected in 1955 at Thermopylae. Under the statue is his famous words during the battle, “Come and take them”. 

The Corinth Canal 

The Corinth Canal connects the Gulf of Corinth in the Ionian Sea and the Saronic Gulf in the Aegean Sea, cutting through the thin Isthmus of Corinth and separating the Greek mainland from the Peloponnese. Though it was constructed in 1881, the canal was first proposed in classical times as well as 1st century AD. 

Things to do in Corinth – Visit Corinth Canal

The Lions Gate of Ancient Mycenae in the Peloponnese 

The Lion Gate market the entrance to the fortress of Mycenae, which was built during the Minion Civilization in the Bronze Age. It was constructed in the 13th century and named after the relief statues of two lions or lionesses in a heraldic pose above the entrance.

The Picturesque town of Nafplio 

An important seaport, the town of Nafplio features some impressive architectural styles and a friendly climate. It is considered to be one of the most picturesque towns in Greece, with spellbinding scenery around it. 

Epidaurus Ancient Theatre

Epidaurus is also one of the most important archeological landmarks in Greece. During prehistoric times, the site was used mainly for healing because a grand theater was constructed in the 4th century BC. The theater is an example of the effectiveness of an ancient engineer. Some of the few design masterclasses include the limestone seats that filter out crowd noise and impressive acoustics that allow 14,000 spectators to hear clearly what is going at the stage. 

Frankish and Venetian castles in the Peloponnese 

The peninsula of the Peloponnese is full of some iconic castles that have been constructed throughout the centuries. You will find all sorts here, including Greek castles, Venetian castles, Frankish castles, and Byzantine castles. 

The castle in Monemvasia 

Monemvasia is perhaps the most important medieval walled cities in the whole of Greece and one of the most beautiful castles in the whole world. The area is raised about 100 meters from the ground and stretches around a mile. 

The stadium in Ancient Olympia 

Located on the western edge of Peloponnese, the stadium in ancient Olympia is known for being the venue for the first even as the birthplace of the Olympic Games in the 8th century B.C. The stadium includes training facilities and the temple of Zeus and Temple of Hera.

The archeological site is listed as a UNESCO world heritage site. 

Rio – Antirrio Bridge 

The Rio-Antirrio Bridge is one the longest multi-span cable-stayed bridges in the world and the longest suspended bridge in the world. It links the town of Rio on the Peloponnese to Antirrio on mainland Greece over the Gulf of Corinth. 

The White Tower in Thessaloniki 

The White Tower was constructed in the 15th century in the seaport town of Thessaloniki. It was slightly renovated by the Ottomans and was once a crucial feature of the city’s defense system, acting as a fortification as well as a lookout pot. 

The promenade in Thessaloniki 

While the city of Thessaloniki has plenty of attractions, the beach promenade is the most famous and top tourist attraction in the city. It runs along Nikis square through the White Tower and a number of bars and cafés that never sleeps. It is an important nightlife scene in Thessaloniki.

Mount Athos monasteries 

With 20 monasteries and over 2,000 monks, Mount Athos is an important center of the Orthodox Christians. It is home to the oldest still surviving monastic community in the world.

The Royal Tombs at Vergina 

Aigai-Vergina is the capital of prehistoric Macedonia and the burial spot of King Philip II. Located an hour southwest of the city of Thessaloniki, it is here that you will find one of the most memorable archaeological museums in the whole of Greece – the Museum of the Royal Tombs. The museum features a series of monumental tombs as well as an array of grave goods. 

Vikos Gorge in Epirus Region 

Located in the centre of Pindos Mountain Range in Epirus, Vikos Gorge is a must-visit landmark in Greece. It stretches some 12 miles, dropping several hundred meters along the way. The vast gorge is home to a wide range of bird species and exotic plants. 

Famous Landmarks in Greece – Pin it

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Ania James

photographer, traveller, mother of twin girls, wife, worldschooler, rulebreaker

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