Top 10 Most Famous Greece Landmarks Travelers Talk About
Greece is one of the most popular tourist destinations in all of Europe, and the country’s role in the formation of modern civilization along with its stunning natural beauty make it hard to pass up amongst European travel stops. Mykonos Attractions are very popular for cruise ship guests stopping off at the popular glamour island, and Santorini remains one of the trendiest idyllic playgrounds for guests seeking excitement and a hopping nightlife. The beaches of Crete, particularly those reserved for posh hotel Minos Palace, are especially popular with guests, and westernmost island Corfu Greece is a perfect pit stop for travelers coming from both capital city Athens and the southern portion of Italy. But, while a beachy landscape and Mediterranean vibe draw millions of tourists here each year, Greece landmarks are also huge draws for both art and history buffs alike. With many well preserved sites of ancient cities, there are numerous famous landmarks in Greece for visitors to enjoy. We’ve put together a list of the best ten of them to make sure to include on a maiden journey or repeat visit to the historic country.
1. The Acropolis: Serving as a raised Citadel, the 5th century structures comprising the site include both buildings and monuments alike. Most of the buildings found here are temples, such as the Parthenon, perhaps the most famous of all Greece landmarks. This temple belonged to Goddess Athena, but there are other tributes found on the World Heritage Site as well. The symbol of Greek architecture and early civilization is one of the most popular of all Athens attractions, situated amongst the hustle and bustle of the capital.
2. Olympia: The modern day event that draws millions every year that came from this ancient site is what makes it so popular. This most famous of all Olympia attractions marked the location of the very first Olympic Games. Two temples can be found here, one to Zeus and one to Hera along with other buildings and structures as well. Like many Greece landmarks, the ruins at Olympia have been around since well before modern civilization, dating back to 776 B.C.
3. Rhodes: Over sixty islands are found in Greece and one of them is Rhodes, which historically was the home of a well known medieval city. Here can be found the most well known of all Rhodes attractions, The Palace of the Grand Master. Aside from the former fortress turned museum, other Greece landmarks can be found in Rhodes too, such as the Church of Our Lady of the Castle and the Hospital of the Knights.
4. Delos: Delos refers to an island, which is nothing new in a country sporting dozens upon dozens of them. But, what is unique about Delos is that essentially the entire tiny landmass is one big archeological site. Delos is one of the most important Greece landmarks because it is said to be the place where Apollo, son of Zeus was born. A sanctuary to him can be found here as well as many assembly halls and marble lion statues.
5. Samaria Gorge: Although notable for beaches, another natural feature found in Crete and a unique selection amongst Greece landmarks draws adventure seekers and nature lovers alike in droves throughout the year. Samaria Gorge is a canyon that is around ten miles long that traverses through centuries’ old trees and steep cliffs. Although walking the canyon takes a fair amount of both time and endurance, (it can take over seven hours to complete) over a quarter of a million people make the journey each year, making it one of the most popular Crete attractions with tourists.
6. Delphi Theater: Frequently depicted in movies and stories, the theater found in Delphi is very significant to Greek religion as it served as the home of the Oracle of Apollo. Aside from the ruins of this incredibly important selection amongst Greece landmarks, the landscape they rest on is almost equally stunning. The theater perches cliff side atop a hill that provides remarkable views of the surrounding scenery.
7. Temple of Athena in Delphi: Not more than one mile from Apollo’s sanctuary, one of the most popular of all Greece landmarks, can be found the stunning 4th century rotunda that characterizes the Athena Sanctuary in Delphi. Here some amazingly beautiful ruins sit at the base of rocky cliffs amongst a living sea of olive trees. Three buildings in total can be found at the site, but geographical considerations and natural disasters have left much of the area damaged and even demolished in some cases.
8. Shipwreck Beach: Interestingly enough, while the large majority of Greece landmarks have been around for hundreds if not thousands of years, one of the most popular of all Zakynthos attractions was so named for an event that occurred here just three decades ago. It was 1983 when Panagiotis, a smuggler ship, wrecked here at the small beach while carrying cigarettes. But the name of the beach is much less relevant than its setting. Perfectly clear turquoise waters, bright white sand and steep limestone cliffs that make it popular for BASE jumping make it a popular tourist attraction.
9. Meteora Monasteries: The term Meteora as it’s used to describe these six monasteries translates to “middle of the sky” or other variations of the phrase suggesting suspension in the air or in the heavens. The name is quite fitting for the rust colored structures that perch perilously atop rock formations made of sandstone in the central part of Greece. The monasteries are considered some of the most beautiful of all Greece Landmarks and are a World Heritage Site.
10. Koutavos Lagoon: A success story of the preservation of ecology and a natural environment can be found at Koutavos, a lagoon situated just across from Argostoli Greece. Today the spectacular waterscape is home to a diverse blend of wildlife, some unique to the area, and a well loved population of loggerhead turtles that come here to feed. However, the peaceful lagoon was once an infested swamp chock full of mosquitoes and a source of infectious diseases. Koutavos is on the path to a healthy ecosystem thanks to environmental awareness which has led to its slow but steady recovery.