Venue-Sights for Visiting

Useful information about the Sights interesting for visiting

This is a page with general information to whom are wish to visit places and archeological monuments nearby the conference venue.

About Venue: Greece, Patras, Rio, Univ. of Patras, Conference & Cultural Centre

Travel Info:
Transportation, Passport/Visa,
Currency, Time Zone, Electricity, Weather

Sights for visiting: Rio, Patras, Olympia, Delphi, Mycenae, Epidaurus


Rio's Castle, Rio-Antirio Bridge

Rio's Castle


The first fortification of the pass was made in 1499 by Bayazid II. It was smaller in area and with a double circuit and moat. In 1532 it was taken by the Spaniards and Andrea Doria, and later retaken by the Turks. In 1603 the Knights of Malta wrought significant destruction. In 1687 it was taken by Morosini. Drastic repairs were made and it received the form it has today: new towers - bastions, strengthened ramparts. The castle was seized by the Turks in 1715, and in 1828, after a siege, the Turks surrendered it to General Maison. It was repaired and handed over to the Greeks. The castle, Greek:castro (kastro), was used as a prison for a considerable time. During World War II the Germans established themselves there and later was used by the Greek army as a camp. Cleaning and removal of earth was done in 1980-81 and in 1984 the wall of the eastern side of the castle was restored. Today it is using during the summer for outdoors performances and is the place where concerts are given mainly and especially by young music groups.

Rio-Antirio Bridge


The bridge of Rio - Antirio connects the Rio from one side of Patraicos gulf, sited on the West-Northern Peloponnesus, with the Antirio to the other side of Patraicos, sited on South-Western Sterea Hellas. The bridge was opened for first time to allow the Olympic flame to cross, but to the traffic it was opened a few days later. It is characterized as the biggest cable stayed bridge of multiple openings in the world and is constructed by particularly specialized methods, creating a worldwide originality of manufacturing bridges of this kind, This was because of the environmental characteristics of the region, as are the big depth of foundation, the strong seismic activity coupled by the possible tectonic movement, the mediocre quality of subsoil in the seabed of sea and other. Some technical characteristics of the bridge are: length 2.252 metres (2.883 metres with the addition of bridges of access at each end), three central openings of 560 metres and two lateral ones of 286 metres, and a unique base in a depth of under 65 m below the surface of the sea. The bridge is hanged in four pylons over the sea and supported in two akrovathra (piers) at each coast. The deck width is 27,2 metres allocating two lanes of circulation (plus a hard shoulder) per direction. It is continuous in all the length and completely hanged from the heads of four pylons with 368 cables, distributed per 12 metres at length of deck in eight teams using some 40 kilometres of cables of a weight of about 5.000 tons. Each pylon has a maximum height of 227 metres and a weight of about 170.000 tons. The bridge is also characterized as a construction of high art and aesthetics. During holydays and weekends the bridge is lighten at nights and this adds a more magnificent view to it. The bridge of Rio-Antirio symbolizes generally the Greek development today and specifically the cities of Rio and Antirio and the area around.


Fortress, Dassylion-Tourist kiosk, Roman Odium, Municipal Theatre, Saint Andrew's Cathedral;
Museums: Archaeological, Folk Art, Historical, Press, Municipal Gallery;
Squares: Georgiou, Olga's, Trion Symahon, Ipsila Alonia,


Patras is the capital of the region or prefecture
and for the year 2006 the civilization capital of European Union. It owes its name to Patreas, chief of the Achaeans. The city is among the most important in Greece, and the largest in the Peloponnesus. It is also a major transportation centre, linking the country with Italy and the Peloponnesus with the Ionian islands. The city extends from the shore up to the Castle. It is divided into two parts, the upper and the lower, whose layout, parks and piazzas give it a definite distinction.
The old city, at the foot of the castle, still has quite a number of attractive neoclassical houses, while the lower city has many mansions, such as those housing the Municipal Theatre, the Odeon, etc. The Cathedral of St. Andrew, the city's patron, rises majestically above the lower city. To the left of it stands an older church built on the site of a Byzantine church that was destroyed by the Turks.
From here Trion Navarchon street leads to Psila Alonia - the "balcony'' of Patras - a lovely spacious square with slender palm trees and a sun dial. Patras possesses a fine archaeological museum, an art gallery and a printing museum. Dominating the city from on high looms the ruined shell of the castle, whose grounds have been transformed into a park. From here you have a view of the whole city and the sea beyond. Patras' famous Carnival - a festive sampling of its citizens' imagination, humour and high spirits - attracts thousands of visitors every year. Finally, the city's innumerable pastry shops, its quiet little cafes, its wide range of taverns, its lively streets bustling with locals, foreigners and transient travellers complete the picture of Patras, beautiful and celebrated throughout


The fortress of Patras was built during the second half of the 6th century, on top of the ruins of the ancient acropolis. It is situated on a low hill of Panachaikos Mountain, at a distance approximately 800 meters from the coast. Its walls surround an area of about 22725 s.m and is constituted by a triangle outer enclosure, loaded with towers and ramparts, initially protected by a deep moat, and an inside enclosure that raises high in the NE corner and is also surrounded by a moat.
It was built by Justinian, after the destroying earthquake in 551 using material from buildings of the B.C. era for the defence of the region and its citizens. In the centuries that followed and up to the Second World War, it has been in constant use for the defence of the city, but also as an administrative and military centre.
During the Byzantine Ages, until the entrance of the Franks (1205) it was besieged by the Slaves, Saracens, Bulgarians, Normans etc, though without any of them achieving to besiege it. In 805 AD the people of the city were besieged in the castle by the Slaves and the Saracens and their victory, attributed to a miracle of the Patron Saint Andrew, was important for the restraint of the barbaric invasions in the Peloponnesus.
The Frank Crusaders developed it, reinforced it and dug a moat all around. In 1278 it was mortgaged to the Latin Archbishop while in 1408 the Pope ceded it for five years against a rental to the Venetians. It remained in the hands of the Latin Archbishop till 1430, when it was set free by Constantine Palaiologos. Constantine moved on to extension and repair of the walls.
It was slaved, during the Turkish Occupation and it passed in the hands of the Greeks in 1828, after its liberation by the French General Mezon.
Since 1973 the Castle is under the supervision of the 6th Committee of Byzantine Antiquities. In the dismantling theatre (640 seats) that lies at the interior enclosure, cultural celebrations take place every summer.
The building phases that are obvious on the castle are evidence of the work that has been made from the various conquerors for its repair and fitting in the development of the fighting technology.

Fortress: open 8.00 am-6.00 pm
(except Mondays).
On Sunday: 8.00 am-6.00 pm Free Entrance

Dassylion-Tourist kiosk

This pine-clad hill is called the "veranda" of the Patraic Gulf, due to the excellent view that it offers. Dassylion (small wood) lends itself for promenades and jogging.

Roman Odium

On the West side of acropolis, at the upper town, lies the Roman Odium of Patras, erected prior to the Athens Odium. (Herodeum, 160 AD). The Odium contains all the basic parts of a theatre such as hollow, orchestra, proscenium, scene and wings as well as 23 rows of seats, while its capacity is 2300 spectators.
After the establishment of Patras International Festival, Ancient Odium constitutes its main venue, welcoming in the summer months, top Greek and foreign artistic bands.

Roman Odium: open 8:00 am-2:30 pm except from Monday (free entrance)
Tel: 2610220829

Municipal Theatre

"Apollo" Municipal Theatre is located on King George I Square and is considered as the most impressive architectural ornament of Patras, while it is one of the first opera theatres in Europe. It was built on 1872 according to the designs of the German architect Ernst Ziller, with the financial contribution of Patras' merchants.

Saint Andrew's Cathedral

The old: The two churches dedicated to Patras' patron Saint, St Andrew, constitute a national and Pan-Orthodox place of pilgrimage. The small Church was erected during the 1836-1843 period at the spot where Apostle Andrew died a martyr. It is a basilica
The New: The new magnificent Byzantine church was founded in 1908 by King George I and inaugurated in 1974 by Patras' Metropolitan Bishop Nikodimos.
It is the largest and most artistic church in the Balkans and one of the largest across Europe.
The Church's central dome is 46m high and supports a five meter high gold-plated cross and twelve smaller ones, symbolising Jesus and his twelve disciples respectively.

The church's capacity is 5.500 persons.

It is one of the most important archaeological Museums in Greece. It is roofed at the old mansion of Karamandanis' family and it is a legacy of Partas' Municipality, located on the cross-road of Mezonos and Aratou streets, just across National Resistance Square. At the two halls at the ground floor are exhibited Antiquities from the Classic, Hellenistic and Roman periods, mosaics, earthen and alabaster pots. Especially interesting are the marble statue of goddess Athena, a large Roman mosaic pavement and the ceramics from the Classic and Hellenistic period.
The limited space of the building does not allow the exhibition of all the archaeological findings of the region (from the Mycenaean to Byzantine periods), so most of them are stored in special areas until the new Patras' Museum is erected.

The Archaeological Museum is open daily from 08:30am to 15:00pm. Monday closed.

Folk Art:
It was founded in 1977 by the Cultural Centre of Patras and is shielded in one of the buildings of the Skagiopouleio legacy (Koritsas and Maurokordatou street).
Its purpose is to gather folklore stuff, to maintain and store it, as well as its research, study and promotion.
Its articles include tools of rural life, furniture of folk residences and objects of everyday use, means of transport as well as workrooms for the elaboration of agricultural products, production of handy objects and handiwork of every kind.
The Museum also disposes of a library and photographic archive while it also hosts lectures, debates and exhibitions concerning folklore, archaeology, musicology and maintenance of the architecture inheritance.
The various traditional workrooms (hat making, shoe making, waxing, typography etc), exhibited in alternating program address to School and University students.

Tel: 2610334713.

Founded in 1973, when the efforts of its prime movers, Giannis Meletopoulos and Theodors Papanagiotou, finally succeeded. The first one had the idea for the creation of a space to roof the historic relics of Achaia and the second one undertook its materialisation. The material collected was initially placed at a room in the Municipal Library, to be transferred later to Speech and Art Mansion, where it is sheltered till today.

The Museum is open from 11:00 to 13:00 daily. Friday and Monday closed
Tel: 2610274962

It operates since 1952 and its exhibitions include rare editions, newspapers since 1875, magazines from Patras and the Peloponnesus, books and other documents of historic value. The Press Museum is shielded in the Building of the Editors' Union, in Mezonos 20 street.

It is open from Monday to Friday 10-1. Tel: 2610310488

Municipal Gallery:
The Municipal Gallery of Patras was founded in 1988. Since 2000, it has been working within the framework of activities organized by the Patras Cultural Development Municipal Enterprise (DEPAP). Its objectives focus mainly on organizing art exhibitions, simultaneous activities and many educational projects.
The Municipal Gallery's objective is to present as many aspects of Art as possible to the wider public, and also educate through art. Both objectives are met successfully every year, as the Municipal Gallery fulfils its educational and artistic mission. Its co-operation with the National Gallery, the Benaki Museum, the numerous institutions and other Galleries of Greece, have guaranteed the opening of many exhibitions, all important samples of the history of Modern Greek Painting, Sculpture and Engraving.
Amongst the Municipal Gallery's initiatives is to organize many exhibitions-productions, either collective or retrospective, in order to honour certain artists for their valuable and multi-dimensional work.


It is the central square of the city with the characteristic of two fountains placed in the year 1875. It was a place, where national dances and outdoor meetings, mostly of political content were held. It was the square of the political and cultural being of the city, the place where the most important activities were taking place. The contemporary George Square still constitutes the square of political meetings, demonstrations, cultural activities and mostly carnival celebrations. Olga's: It is the square that carries the name of king George's wife, Olga. It used to be called Omonoia Square. It is worth referring that on this square, Kostis Palamas used to play as a child. Trion Symahon: This particular square bears the name of the Three Alliance Forces with Greece in the fight for liberation. These forces were England, France and Russia. This square's old name was Custom Square, because it lied beside the Custom House. Ipsila Alonia: It is considered to be the best square in Patras. It is a hill, wide on top.


At the foot of the Kronion Hill stretches the space formed by the wedge of land between the converging rivers of the Alfios and the Kladeos.
This was the site called the Sacred Grove of the Altis, regarded as belonging to Zeus in which, in historically recorded times, the most famous of Greek sanctuaries was estabilshed. Formerly it had been a place of worship of pre-Hellenic deities. Every four years, athletic contests were organized here in honour of Zeus, lasting seven days. Outside the enclosure to the West, was the Stadium with a 45,000 seating capacity (men only were allowed in). Access to the Stadium was along a vaulted passage and, to the South, was the Vouleutirion where the Olympic Senate met.

Historically, the Olympic Games began in 776 B.C. Up to the 5th century B.C., the sacred enclosure contained the Heraion, the Prytaneion, the Pelopeion and the Hippodameion while, at the foot of the Kronion Hill, stood the twelve Greek city treasures. The Olympic Games ceased in 393 A.D. after the edict issued by Theodosius the Great which forbade all pagan festivals. They were revived for the first time after fifteen centuries, in 1896 in the marble stadium in Athens.
Today, an international Olympic Academy functions at Olympia. There is also a Museum of Olympic Games (tel. 26240 22 544) where data connected with the Olympic Games are displayed together with a Collection of commemorative postage stamps.

Archaeological Museum

The Museum at Olympia contains most interesting exhibits. Among various other items, there is the most impressive collection of sculpture of the austere style (first half of the 5th century B.C.). There are also the pediments and metopes of the temple of Zeus
. The twelve metopes, three of which are Gypsum casts, depict the twelve Labours of Hercules. Two more masterpieces of 5th and 4th centuries. B.C. is to be seen in the originals of the sculptors Paionios with his statue of Niki (Victory) and of Hermes by Praxiteles.


The myth recounts that at a certain moment Zeus released two eagles, one from the East, the other from the West, and at the point where they met, he threw the Sacred Stone, marking the center of the earth - the navel of the world. At this point one of the most important oracles of antiquity was developed and cultivated - the Delphic Oracle. The cave where the divinity Gaia (Mother Earth) used to utter prophecies guarded by her son, the serpent Python, dates from the second millennium BC (Mycenaean period), was located on the way from the Gulf of Corinth to Central and Northern Greece, in a region then called Pytho. When the god Apollo was an infant, he killed Python, at the same time abandoning Delphi to purify himself. After the purification took place, he returned to Delphi crowned and took over the Oracle, which from then on belonged to him. Apart from the mythical implications, this act symbolized the introduction of the worship of Delphinios Apollo at Krisa (a town in Phokis, today Hrisso) by the seamen of Knossos. The god became known as Apollo Pythias and the area was called Delphi from that time on.
It was liberated in 590 BC, and it is from this date that the true history and fame of Delphi essentially began.
 Then a number of Sacred Wars broke out for control of the Oracle. In 191 BC the Romans became masters of Delphi. After then, nothing could halt Delphi's decline and eventually it ceased to be regarded as the navel of the world.

The archaeological site

The first excavations began in 1838 and were completed in 1935.
The Sanctuary of Apollo with the Treasuries (buildings where the city-states kept votive offerings and religious vessels), the temples and the perivolos (enclosure) lie on the south flank of Mt. Parnassos to your right if you are coming from Arahova. The Doric temple of Apollo dominates the centre of the Sanctuary. The Sacred Way leads to the temple and is lined with Treasuries, monuments and offerings. Northwest of the temple is the theatre (5,000 seats) where the Delphic Festivals were held, which had as a central theme the representation of Apollo's victory over the serpent Python.

The Museum

The first building dates from 1902. The museum's collection consists exclusively of objects of all kinds from the Sanctuary of Delphi. Among its major works are: the navel of the world (a Hellenistic or Roman copy of the Sacred Stone), the Sphinx of the Naxians (550 BC), the statue of Antinous, the statue of Agias, the group of Thyiads (three colossal female figures portrayed dancing around owered the metopes from the Treasuries of Sicyon and Athens. the Karyatid and Zephyr from the Treasury of Sifnos, the bronze Charioteer, the head of Dionysos.


is a pre-historic citadel built on a site that commanded the greater part of the plain, stretching southwards to the sea and the exit from the Pass of Dervenakia. It is fortified with Cyclopean walls with two gates (the Lion Gate and the North Gate) as well as two small auxiliary exits. The first walls were built around 1350 B.C. but the citadel itself assumed its presence form around the year 1200 B.C.
A continuous supply of water was ensured by the Perseia Fountain close to the entrance of the acropolis, while the proximity of the fertile plain ensured food supplies.
The site's natural advantages thus enhanced its strategic position and it was inhabited very early in Neolithic times. The period of its greatest power, however, came at the close of the Late Helladic period (1600-1100 BC), which is also known as the Mycenaean period and with which many tales and legends are associated. In 1100 BC Mycene was destroyed by fire.

Perseus, son of Zeus and Danae, founded Mycenae and the Perseid dynasty provided many of its rulers. After the last of them, Eurystheus (famous for the labors he imposed on Herakles), the Mycenaeans chose Atreus, son of Pelops and Hippodamia, as their ruler.
In the 17th century BC, Mycenae began an extraordinary growth in wealth and power that was to influence all of the eastern Mediterranean. At first heavily influenced by that of Minoan Crete, spread throughout Greece, and by 1400 BC Mycenaeans controlled the mainland and the Aegean, including Crete.

Here you find ruins of private houses, Grave circle B with 14 royal tombs, among which nine tholos tombs of the Atridae, the Treasure of Atreus, also known as the Tomb of the Agamemnon, the Tomb of Clytaemnystra, the Tomb of Aegisthus, and 12 tombs of private citizens. There is also the Mycenaean Palace on the crest of the hill, a smaller palace further East, known as the House of the Columns, the House of the Artists and, finally, at the N.E. extension, the Secret Cistern.
Most of the more exceptional finds are on exhibit in the National Archaeological Museum in Athens, like frescoes, gold jewellery, the gold mask of Agamemnon.


Open-air theatre

The main and most interesting monument of this area is the open-air ancient theatre. It Stands to the S.E. and is the best preserved theatre ιn the whole of Greece. It was the work of the architect Polyklitos Junior (4th century B.C.), built of limestone with 12,000 seats for equal spectators. Every summer it comes alive. Attending a performance of ancient drama in this theater is almost a mystical experience. At Epidavrus the actors donít need to shout or speak loudly. The acoustics are so perfect that the merest whisper can be heard in the last row.

Other monuments
Other interestic monuments are the Sanctuary of Asclepius, the stadium and the museum where is exhibited pieces from the Tholos and the temple of Asclepius, gypsum casts from pediments (sculptures by Timotheos), Roman portrait statues, inscriptions, medical and surgical instruments and others.l.







About Venue:
Univ. of Patras
and Cultural

Travel Info:
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