- Archaiological site
- Archaiological museum
After crossing the Corinth Canal we drive west across the Peloponesse to Patras, the port which opens on to the Ionian Sea and the passage to Italy. Here St Andrew was crucified on a cross in the shape of an X and his skull can be seen in the cathedral of Ag, Andreas (no shorts or short skirts).
Following the western coast through Pyrgos we arrive at the village of Olympia, site of the original Olympic Games, held every 4 years from 776BC until banned by the Christian Roman emperors. Held in honour of Olympian Zeus whose statue at Olympia was one of the 7 Wonders of the Ancient World, the games originally consisted of javelin, chariot races, wrestling and foot races. The main victor of the games was crowned with a wreath of olive leaves and had the right to have a statue erecetd to himself in the Olympian arcade. Only Greek speakers were allowed to take part in the games and ‘barbarians’ (non Greek speakers) could only watch. The Games were completely dedicated to the worship of the male body and athletes trained as well as competed completely nude.
The archeological museum houses some of the most beautiful statues from classical times including the wonderful statue of the god Hermes by Praxeteles.