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At the Battle of Thermopylae, 300 Spartans fight to the death holding off the Persians. In 480 B.C. the Battle of Thermopylae set Spartan King Leonidas and his personal guards (The 300 Spartans) against the Persian King Xerxes who led the largest Army ever to enter Europe up until that time over 1,600,000.

Sparta (Sparti) is the capital of the prefecture. A simple town built in the Evrotas river valley, in the same site where the ancient city stood. The plain of Lakonia spreads out around Sparta, green and cool. A few kilometers distant is the ascent for Taigetos. Snowy peaks and precipitous rock. Plateaus and ravines. Olive groves on the gentler slopes. Porlars, willows and plane trees line the banks of the Evrotas. Gardens of every shade of green. And the series of villages continues. Some drenched in chestnut trees (Anavrito) or enormous plane trees (Karies) or perched in precarious sports – real eagles’ nests (Georgitsi). Some boasting castles and Byzantine churches (Geraki, Vresthena, Vrondamas) and others simply bucolic. The succession of villages makes you want to wander and poke about them. Every instant is different. You need love and an adventurous spirit to walk this land. But who would not love it?

SITE MONUMENTS

  • ANCIENT ACROPOLIS
  • THE SANCTUARY OF ARTEMIS ORTHIA (6th c. BC)
  • THE TOMB OF LEONIDAS (5th c. BC)
  • MENELAION
  • MUSEUM: with finds from the area is housed in a neoclassical building in the centre of town. It was established in 1874, in a building designed by the Greek architect Katsaros. In 1930s two rooms were added to the initial central building. The new design is attributed to the Danish architect Christiansen Hansen.

USEFUL INFORMATION

THE ARCHAEOLOGICAL MUSEUM
Telephone: +30 27310 21516
Ticket: Full: €2, Reduced: €1
Open: from the 1st of November until the 31 of March 2010: 8:30-15:00

MUSEUM OF OLIVE AND THE GREEK OIL
Telephone: +30 27310 89315, 210 3219523
EMail: piop@piraeusbank.gr
Ticket: Full: 2, Reduced: 1
Open: from the 1st of November until the 31 of March: 8:30-15:00, at Othonos and Amalias 129.

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The Acropolis