Ancient blocks of stone beneath olive trees at the Sanctuary of Poseidon on Poros

20 Ancient blocks of stone beneath olive trees at the Sanctuary of Poseidon on Poros

At approximately 200m above the gulf of Vagionia, on the north of the island of Poros, rises a cape where the ancient temple of Poseidon was built in the late 6th and early 5th century B.C.

The temple was close to the ancient city of Kalavria and was part of an important amphictyony, that is an association of religious centers of neighbor cities in antiquity.

The temple has not survived today; however in the archaeological site you will see remnants of Kalavria, of the temple’s auxiliary buildings, and of an arcade used for trade and by craftsmen in the Roman Era.

111 Ancient blocks of stone beneath olive trees at the Sanctuary of Poseidon on Poros

The first excavations to the place started in 1894, but they were stopped, and it was only in 2007 that started again. Today, archaeologists plan to represent the place as it was, in  digital form.

A walk in the archaeological site of the Temple of Poseidon is magic. There are certain reasons why this place is a must- see spot. First you will enjoy a pure traditional beauty of the field. Second, you will be delighted walking under olive and pine trees and be surprised each time you discover ancient blocks of stones scattered on the field. Third, you will have a wonderful view over the Saronic Sea and the hills of the island as they reach down to the coast. Finally, this is the place where ancient orator Demosthenes committed suicide in 322B.C.

18 Ancient blocks of stone beneath olive trees at the Sanctuary of Poseidon on Poros

Demosthenes (384BC-322BC) earned his fame by reciting fervent speeches against the Macedonians who were expanding to the south of Greece and incited Greeks to resist them. He even took part in the battle of Chaeronea in 338 B.C., as a soldier. The battle ended with a triumphal victory of the Macedonians who dominated the whole of the region  for almost a century.

Demosthenes continued inciting Greeks to revolt against them, and in 322 BC, at a battle in Kranona in Thessaly, their last revolution failed. Then, the soldiers of Antipatros chased Demosthenes and he fled to Poros, where he asked for an asylum in the Temple of Poseidon.

22 Ancient blocks of stone beneath olive trees at the Sanctuary of Poseidon on Poros

But Macedonians reached him and threatened to arrest him. Then Demosthenes took poison and died in the temple of Poseidon.

Capitals of the columns of the temple of Poseidon are displayed in the Archaeological Museum of Poros. The entrance to the archaeological site is free. Enjoy your walk in the site and take with you beautiful memories of traditional Greek beauty and the echo of the orator’s last moments.

Article by Vivi Zografou
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