Monthly Archives: September 2014

Spetses Town

Spetses town is quite extensive from north to south, and not as densely built as other typical Greek island capitals. The small boats are sea taxis.

Either from Piraeus or from Kosta, you will arrive at Dapia Port, which is more or less located at the center of the town.

Below is the Dapia port. On the left end is the ferry “Katerina Star” connecting Kosta and Spetses.

Dapia Port, Spetses

Dapia Port, Spetses

If you have large luggage, you can take taxi or horse carriage from Dapia.

Price of Horse Carriage (2014)

Price of Horse Carriage (2014)

Most of the hotels are around Dapia port, but some – like Spetses Hotel or Orloff Resort – are distant. You would like a transportation, if your luggage isn’t particularly small.

There are some points that you can swim inside the town, like Agios Mamas Beach (also known as Mama’s Beach). Kaiki or Scholes Beach is also in walking distance.

Agios Mamas Beach, Spetses

Agios Mamas Beach, Spetses

If you want to go to distant beaches, options are KTEL bus, rental bike, rental buggy, or taxi boat. You can use bicycle, but it is pretty exhausting and time consuming, if you want to go to the other side of the island (but Vrellos or Ag. Marina are well reachable).

The bus to Scholes/Kaiki Beach, Ligoneri and Vrellos Beach leaves from the square in front of Poseidonio Hotel and the bus to Ag. Anargyrii and Ag. Paraskevi leaves from Ag. Mamas.

If you are interested in visiting the Museum of Bouboulina (her Mansion), it is very close to Dapia Port. Find a sign board like this to check out the visiting hours.

Bouboulina Museum

Bouboulina Museum

You can enter only at particular time with guide. But if you are in a largish group of friends of family, they might arrange a tour for you. Entrance is 6 Euro (in 2014).

The restaurants in Spetses are located mostly along the coastline. However, if you are interested in fastfood like pizza, crepe, burger or souvlaki, you’d want to visit the Clock Square in the centre of town. Generally speaking, the restaurants are expensive in Spetses; better be prepared.

Clock Square, Spetses

Clock Square, Spetses

Spetses
Spetses Town

Beaches of Sounio

Information for those who want to swin in Sounio.

Beach of Sounio

Beach of Sounio

From the hight of Cape Sounio, you can see two possibilities; one is to the East, a small natural beach without facilities, and the other is to the West, a large beach with every convenience. The larger beach seems rather far for those who don’t have car. The smaller beach is reachable through a path in 15 min. and its free, but there is no parasol or shower.

Beach of Sounio

Beach of Sounio

This small unorganized beach is known to be favoured by nudists. When we went, I saw an very dark and skinny old man swimming without any piece of cloths.

Below is the organized beach seen from the Cape.

Beach, Sounio

Organized Beach, Sounio

INDEX of SOUNIO SECTION

Sounio
Temple of Poseidon
Stoa, Sanctuary of Poseidon
Fortification, Sanctuary of Poseidon
Propylon, Sanctuary of Poseidon
Sanctuary of Athena Sounias
Beaches

Sanctuary of Athena Sounias, Sounio

Sounio is famous for the temple of Poseidon, but the Athenians constructed also a temple dedicated to Athena.

Remain of Athena Sounias Temple

Remain of Athena Sounias Temple

As the Greek myth goes, these two deities competed each other to become of the patron of Athens; Athena won for her gift of olives to Attica.

Remains of Athena Sounias Temple

Remains of Athena Sounias Temple

The temple is contemporary of the Poseidon’s temple, constructed at the middle of the fifth century BCE. Regrettably the foundation is the only remain.

The first photo was shot from the entrance of the sanctuary toward the temple of Athena. The second photo is the temple of Athena; right being the façade of the temple (to the East). The cella is 5.9m by 3.8m, and the four angles were supported by four columns arranged in a square.

Vitruvius recorded its unusual plan; the external columns were arranged only on the eastern (façade) and southern sides.

There are the Doric capitals I found at the rear of the temple.

Capital of the Temple

Capital of the Temple

In the first century CE, the temple was demolished and some of the parts were reused to construct the South-East Temple in the Athenian Agora. One of its Ionic columns is exhibited in the Stoa of Attalos (= Agora Museum) in Athens.

In the sanctuary of Athena, there is also a smaller Doric (distyle prostyle) temple (in the photos below).

Temple of Phrontis (?), Sounio

Temple of Phrontis (?), Sounio

It is considered to be dedicated to the hero Phrontis, who is a character in Odyssey of Homer, and was believed to have been buried here after his death on the ship of Menelaos. According to another theory, the temple is of Artemis, and the circular mound behind (you can somehow recognize in the photo above) is the tomb of Phrontis.
In these photos , the gray stone at the middle is the base of the cult statue.

Temple of Phrontis (?), Sounio

Temple of Phrontis (?), Sounio

Bibliography

  • Robin Barber, Greece (Blue Guide), London- N.Y. 2001 (Revised reprint of the 6th edition of 1995), p. 143.
  • Christopher Mee and Antony Spawfort, Greece: An Oxford Archaeological Guide Oxford/ Oxford University Press 2001, p.100.

INDEX of SOUNIO SECTION

Sounio
Temple of Poseidon
Stoa, Sanctuary of Poseidon
Fortification, Sanctuary of Poseidon
Propylon, Sanctuary of Poseidon
Sanctuary of Athena Sounias
Beaches

Propylon of the Sanctuary of Poseidon, Sounio

The Doric Propylon (or Prolylaia) – monumental entrance gate – to the Sanctuary of Poseidon. Made of poros stone and marble.

Propylon, Sanctuary of Poseidon

Propylon, Sanctuary of Poseidon

Material remains are rather little. In the photo above is the base of the gate structure. In the photo below is remain of a column.

Column of Propylaia

A Column of the Propylon

The photo below was shot from the north; you can recognise how the propylon and the temple is positioned.

View of the Temple from Propylon

View of the Temple from Propylon

INDEX of SOUNIO SECTION

Sounio
Temple of Poseidon
Stoa, Sanctuary of Poseidon
Fortification, Sanctuary of Poseidon
Propylon, Sanctuary of Poseidon
Sanctuary of Athena Sounias
Beaches

Fortification, Sounio

Cape Sounio is situated at the southern most tip of Attica Peninsula and has a strategic value to guard the entrance to the Saronic Gulf.

Fortification, Sounio

Fortification, Sounio

During the Peloponnese War, in the winter of 413/412 BCE, the Athenians fortified the Poseidon’s sanctuary with circuit wall. Later in the third century BCE, the Macedonians extended the fortification.

Fortification, Sounio

Eastern Part of the Fortification, Sounio

In the photo above is the eastern fortification wall of the sanctuary, and below is the remains of the bastion attached to it, constructed by the Macedonians.

Fortification, Sounio

Bastion, Eastern Part of the Fortification, Sounio

In the 2 photos below is the remains of the northern fortress.

Fortification, Sounio

Northern Fortress, Sounio

Fortification, Sounio

Northern Fortress, Sounio

Around 100 BC, the slaves of the Laurium (Lavrion, silver mine) revolted and occupied this fortress for some time, probably for some years, ravaging the surrounding country (Posidonius, FGrHist 87 F35).

Bibliography

  • Christian Habicht, Athens from Alexander to Antony, translated by Deborah Lucas Schneider, Cambridge Massachusetts/ Harvard UP 1997, pp. 292-293.
  • Robin Barber, Greece (Blue Guide), London- N.Y. 2001 (Revised reprint of the 6th edition of 1995), p. 143.
  • Christopher Mee and Antony Spawfort, Greece: An Oxford Archaeological Guide Oxford/ Oxford University Press 2001, pp. 96-100.

INDEX of SOUNIO SECTION

Sounio
Temple of Poseidon
Stoa, Sanctuary of Poseidon
Fortification, Sanctuary of Poseidon
Propylon, Sanctuary of Poseidon
Sanctuary of Athena Sounias
Beaches