Athens Excursions » Athenian Riviera
Athenian Riviera. Driving along the coastal road of "Posidonos", a beauriful coastline, you will pass by the beautiful beaches of Glyfada, Vouliagmeni and Varkiza. The ultimate place for sailboats, yachting, sunshine and blue seas! A splendid view of the Saronic Gulf. Destination is Cape Sounio, the southernmost point of the European mainland.
Cape Sounio Panoramic view of all the Aegean sea, from the top of the outstanding rock a monument to the history of the temple of Poseidon. Sounio was believed to be the home of the god of the sea, Poseidon. The temple of Poseidon, standing some 60m above the sea at the edge of a cliff on Cape Sounion, is one of the most breathtaking and deeply moving sights in all of Greece. And Greece has many of them. The temple is an hour's drive from central Athens and both the site itself and the route leading to it are worth every minute of the drive. The road runs along the Saronic coast and from the window of your car or bus you can enjoy the endless and brilliant blue sea. If you are travelling by car make sure you stop for a breath of sea scented air and a walk on the beach. You will also find many coffee shops, fresh fish tavernas and ouzeri along the way.
The mighty God of the seas - This is the place where the ancient Greeks worshipped their mighty god of the seas, Poseldon. The 15 (of the original 34) columns of the Doric order that are still standing, belong to the temple built here during the Golden Age of Perikles' Athens, over the relics of an older one. The architect is unknown, but it is believed to be the same who built the Theseion in Athens. The finds in the area show that Poseidon was worshipped here long before the 5th century B.C.
The Temple of Goddess Athena - It is worth walking for about 400m from the temple of Poseidon to the sanctuary of Athena Sounias. The understructures of two temples can be seen here: A bigger one, which was built either circa 470 B.C. or during the Peloponnesean war (431-404 BC), and a smaller one, about which opinions diverge. Some archaeologists maintain that the remains are of an older temple also dedicated to Athena built in 600-550 B.C. Others believe that the temple was dedicated to Artemis.