Greek Sparta

Greek Sparta – main image

"This is Sparta!" - probably everyone knows this sentence, as well as the story of the proud and brave Spartans, which in the 5th century BC won hegemony in Hellas. What is Sparta today? What is left of the proud nation?

Another part of the film story about the brave Spartans has appeared in cinemas. Legends about a cruel but fascinating nation of warriors have intrigued people for hundreds of years. Some describe the Spartans as barbarians, others admire their martial art and love for their country. What is Sparta today?

There is not much left of the city's proud past - only picturesque ruins. The times of former glory are mainly evidenced by the legends written on parchments of conquered peoples. Modern Sparta is a small town that is the capital of Lakonia Prefecture. We find them on the island of Peloponnese, in southern Greece.

Sparta then and now

Within the borders of Sparta lies the Byzantine and medieval city of Mystras , which is very popular among tourists. The charm of the village is added by its location in the vicinity of the vast Taigeta mountain range, and the architectural complex that is its pride (fortress, monasteries, churches and the palace) is on the UNESCO World Heritage List.

The oldest temple in Mystra is the cathedral of Mitrópolis . It was built in the 13th century, initially as a building with two aisles and a nave with a barrel vault. The oldest frescoes depict the martyrdom and burial of the patron saint of the church, Saint Dmitri, while in the narthex there are paintings depicting the Preparation of the Throne of the Last Judgment.

Also worth seeing are the remains of the monks' former cells in the Vrondochión Monastery , which was the center of Mistry's cultural and intellectual life in the 15th century. In turn, the best-preserved frescoes in the city are in the 13th-century Perivléptos Monastery, partially carved into the rock.

The Pandánassa Monastery , which is currently the only inhabited building in Mistry, is also a big attraction. This is the last temple built in the city. It houses frescoes from various periods - most of them were created at the turn of the 17th and 18th centuries.

For lovers of mountain hiking - Tajget

But coming to Sparta does not only mean wandering among the souvenirs of the past. Also waiting to be explored is Tajget, a beautiful and geologically rich region. It offers great views of the surrounding area - especially in the southern part, which cuts sharply into the sea, creating the Mani Peninsula. Tajget is built mainly of limestone and marble, which makes it a mountainous framework that is difficult to access for inexperienced tourists. There are steep slopes and the ridge is sharp and toothed.

The highest mountain range of the Peloponnese maintains snow cover in the upper parts until May. Tajget is rich in water, so lovers of mountain streams and smaller and larger rivers will be delighted with the landscapes. In the lower parts of the mountains, between the spruce forest, there are many hiking trails, and one of the ridge passes is also accessible by car. It is home to the Panagia Giatrissa Monastery , which can only be admired from the outside.

Visitors appreciate the charms of Tajget in April and May, when the local tourist infrastructure is much cheaper than in the high season.

Under the Spartan skies

If someone wants to spend a day or a few in these beautiful areas, they may be interested in the offer of Castle View camping . It is located in Mystra, surrounded by mulberry trees and olives. The location at the foot of Tajget, not far from the historic part of the city and approx. 6 km from Sparta, allows guests to fully enjoy all the attractions of the area.

It is not only beautiful here - staying at the campsite has nothing to do with the proverbial Spartan conditions. There is a restaurant with tempting prices and an extensive menu (including grilled meat dishes, fish, salads and a large selection of wines), as well as a large swimming pool. Residents also have access to wireless Internet. An adult will pay 6 euros per night, the same price is for a motorhome, and a child's accommodation costs 4 euros.

A view of the majestic mountains, the smell of olive trees and a memory of the past. While in the south of Greece, it is worth visiting the city where the Spartans lived hundreds of years ago. Today it is quiet and peaceful here, but in the past, grueling war exercises took place day after day. Let's sit in the shade of the trees and enjoy the beauty of the Peloponnese.

Greek Sparta – image 1
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A writer by profession, a passion of a cat. One day he will see what is behind the Urals - good to Vladivostok. So far, when he can, he enjoys the sun of the countries of southern Europe. And it's also fun;)

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