Untouched by mass tourist flows, Epirus is a little known region in northwest Greece and the host of the Cultural Route of Ancient Theatres; a region that may be justly described as a hidden treasure-trove, waiting to be discovered by the discriminating tourist, the tourist-traveler.Rich in history spanning from the Old Stone Age to the present day, Epirus is dotted with various archaeological sites, amongst which are six ancient theatres:
In Nikopolis, the city founded by Octavian (Augustus Caesar) to commemorate his victory against the enemy fleet of Mark Antony and Cleopatra at Actium in 31 BC, stand the grand Roman Theatre and a restored Odeon. This is not the only ancient theatre in the region. Other theatres in cities predating Nikopolis await the discerning visitor: the famous city of Dodona, renowned for its oracle (references to the sanctuary date back to the Copper Age); Kassope (founded in the first half of the 4th century BC); Amvrakia (founded n 625 BC); Gitana, on the banks of the river Kalamas (founded in the middle of the 4th century BC). Ancient theatre, the nucleus of public life, forms the links in this Route traversing all these ancient cities.
Beyond the history of the region, the Cultural Route of the Ancient Theatres of Epirus introduces visitors to the well-kept secrets of Epirus: a coastline stretching for kilometers, magnificent mountains, lakes and rivers (the famous Acheron, one of the five rivers of the mythological Greek underworld), a region with lush vegetation, traditional villages and vibrant cities, enticing local cuisine and regional products. At the same time, it introduces visitors to a destination where all kinds of vacations are available, ranging from a beach holiday on the shores of the Ionian Sea to cultural tourism at the various archaeological sites, modern museums and historic traditional settlements, ecotourism in protected areas, adventure tourism (rafting, kayaking) in its rivers and many more.
The Launch Event of the Cultural Route will take place at Ioannina on October 17-20, and will include a tour of the Route with various artistic events drawn from Epirus’ cultural heritage. The Launch Event inaugurates the journey of the Route itself towards the modern-day tourist, the discerning and engaged tourist, the tourist-traveler.
No journey is simply a journey. It is a manifold combination of pictures, sounds, tastes and aromas, of varying intensity, carrying a personal message for each one of us depending on the season, the traveler, companionship or solitude, thirst for adventure or introspection, discovery or relaxation. Each journey is many journeys together and each journey is unique.
The “Ancient Theatres of Epirus” is a cultural route promising many travels in one, travels through time, places, the five senses. The archaeological sites and their Theatres are the main stops, the starting points where everyone can collect and compose experiences that interest and inspire them. Everything is here: enthralling monuments and historically fascinating archaeological sites in unparallel landscapes, architecture, the crafts and flavors of an ancient unique tradition.
Are you ready for the journey of a lifetime?