Culture – Monuments
For Greek culture lovers, the area is rich in archaeological sites and monuments.
At a very close distance, one finds Olympia, the largest and most glorious sanctuary of ancient Greece, and birthplace of the Olympic Games. In the museum of Olympia, one can see the famous statue of Hermes of Praxiteles, among other exhibits.
Furthermore, in the bare and rocky landscape of Vasses, you can visit the temple of Apollo Epicurious, one of the most important and imposing temples of antiquity, built by Iktinos, the architect of the Parthenon
Take a tour of the archaeological site of the city of Elis and visit its museum. Visit the museum of the city of Pyrgos.
Climb up Chlemoutsi castle in Kyllini. It is one of the most important and well-preserved fortresses in Greece and an excellent example of fortress architecture during the Frankish era in the Peloponnese.
On the way back, dedicate some time to see the Gothic church of Agia Sophia in Andravida.
The monasteries of the area, such as the Monastery of Kremasti, the Monastery of Panagia Sepetiotissa on the acropolis (ancient city) of Alifira, the Monastery of Panagia Skafidiotissa, the Monastery of Fragkapidima, and the Byzantine Monastery of Frangavilla are also of great interest.
Ancient Olympia & Archaeological Museum
Over the centuries, Ancient Olympia has been a landmark and a starting point for all of mankind. This was the most glorious sanctuary of ancient Greece, dedicated to Zeus. It was the venue of the Olympic Games, which were held in the context of the Olympics, the most important festival of the Greeks during most of antiquity.
In Olympia, inside the majestic temple of the god, stood the gold and ivory statue of Zeus, a masterpiece by Pheidias, which was known in antiquity as one of the Seven Wonders of the World. The starting point of the Olympic Games is placed in 776 BC, and they were held every four years.
The Temple of Apollo Epicurious
In Figalia, on the border between Arcadia and Messinia, at an altitude of 1130 meters stands the imposing temple of Apollo Epicurious, which was built in the 5th century BC; according to Pausanias, the architect of the temple was Iktinos. It is one of the best preserved monuments of ancient Greece and is founded on the rock of Mount Kotili, where the ancient city of Vasses was located.
The temple of Apollo Epicurious in Vasses, Figalia, is one of the most important and imposing temples of antiquity. The people of Figalia dedicated it to Apollo, because he had helped them overcome a plague epidemic. The temple was built in the second half of the 5th century BC (420-410 BC?) and is attributed to Iktinos, the architect of the Parthenon. This is one of the best preserved monuments of classical antiquity, and the first in Greece to be declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1986.
Chlemoutsi was the most important castle of the Principality of Achaia. It was built between 1220 and 1223 and protected Andravida. Chlemoutsi is located on a hill approximately 220 meters high, at a short distance from the sea (approximately 2-2.5 km), on the westernmost cape of the Peloponnese, overlooking the Ionian Sea, opposite Zakynthos.