Monday, July 31, 2006
In order to reach Bulgaria and Romania we have had to turn around the Peloponnese. We took 2 weeks to do the job and it was amazing, just ruins after ruins (Olympie, Corinth, Delphes, Mycène., Epidaurus ..) after beaches.
Read more about Greece on Wikipedia
Just a few words on Peloponnese:
Greece's first major civilizations, the Mycenaean civilization, dominated the Peloponnese . During classical antiquity, the Peloponnese was at the heart of the affairs of ancient Greece, possessed some of its most powerful city-states and saw some of its bloodiest battles. It was the site of the cities of Sparta and Corinth, and the homeland of the Peloponnesian League. The peninsula was the scene of the Peloponnesian War of 431 BC-404 BC. It fell to the expanding Roman Republic in 146 BC and became the province of Achaea.
The Peloponnese was subsequently ruled by the Byzantine Empire, but the Franks founded the Principality of Achaea in the northern half of the peninsula in 1205, while the Venetians founded a number of ports around the coast such as Monemvasia, Pylos and Koroni. The Byzantines retained control of the southern part of the peninsula, which they ruled from the fortified hill town of Mystras near Sparta. the Ottoman Turks overran the Peloponnese between 1458-1460. The Venetians occupied parts of the peninsula between 1699-1718 but Turkish control was otherwise solid and opposed only by sporadic rebellions in the Mani Peninsula, the southernmost part of the Peloponnese.
The area surrounding Nafplion has been inhabited since ancient times . The town has been a stronghold at several times in history. The first of the visible fortification, on the Akronafplia, was built by the Byzantines. In 1377 the Venetians arrived and built the Castle of Bourtzi in the 15th century (the first picture below) . Shortly after, the city, along with the rest of the Morea, was captured by the Ottomans. The Venetians returned in 1685, and strengthened the city by building the castle of Palamidi (the two other pictures), which was in fact the last major construction of the Venetian empire overseas.
Sunday, July 2, 2006
In the second millennium BC Mycenae was one of the major centres of Greek civilization, a military stronghold which dominated much of southern Greece. The period of Greek history from about 1600 BC to about 1100 BC is called Mycenaean in reference to Mycenae.