Wednesday, April 24, 2013

The sacred island of Delos- Greece

One of the most fascinating places that I visited in Greece was the island of Delos a boat ride away from the tourist heaven Mykonos.

Delos was the legendary birthplace of the twins Artemis and Apollo and a place where the Greek came to worship various gods and goddesses at the temples built there.

The island is an archaeological site- with excavations still going on. In ancient times the island was so sacrosanct that no one was allowed to spend the night here. In 167 BC, it became a hub of commercial activity and merchants settled here and built luxurious home. We landed on the island and spent a day walking through the ruins, with the sounds of bees and cicadas in the air, with a map in hand.

One of the most gorgeous sights on the island was the Avenue of the Lions.  At one time there were between 9 and 12 lions, crouched marble beasts, standing guard at the Sacred Lake.

The lions in the photo are replicas but the real Naxian lions can be seen in the island's archaeological museum.

I loved these mosaics, well preserved columns, statues, and resident chameleons on rocks.

I visited the small museum on the island with some of the finds from the archaeological digs.

The only other people we saw were these students on a field trip..

 I had a fresh orange juice here ( the owner said they were from Crete) and sat gazing at the ruins....A great way to spend a day away from Mykonos...



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