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Ancient Olinthos

ancient olinthos Halkidiki

Olinthos was for a century, the most important town of Halkidiki. Its foundation is lost in the mythical years. Some archaeological findings show that in the town’s position used to be a significant prehistoric settlement, which was the town of the classical years. According to the mythology Olinthos was the son of Strymonas, King of Thrace and he was killed in a lion hunting.

After his death his brother Vraggas build Olinthos in his honor. According to another story Olinthos was the son of Hercules. There are some records for the town which date at the 7th century b.c., when the Vottis conquered it.

In 480 b.c. the Persian General Artavazos conquered Olinthos and destroyed the town almost completely. The habitants he arrested were then slaughtered in the swamps, which are located between Olinthos and Potidaia.

Ancient Olynthos, as weve already said, is located at the heights, east of the village. This area is enclosed and the entrance is located at the Southwest base of the heights, where the guardhouse is located. You can go by car till the entrance as there is a motorway. Within the archeological site you can only walk. The towns position was identified by the last century. The habitats of the region named it Tower (name which is known and used until today by the local people), because of a Byzantine tower, which secured the metohi of Kastamonitos Monastery of Mount Athos. Only the foundation of the tower is found today at the south part of the town. During the years 1928, 1931, 1934 and 1938 many excavations took place by an American archaeological delegation under the supervision of Professor David M. Robinson.

The conclusions of the excavations have been published in twelve big books, which represent to the archaeologists a basic work for the study of the ancient Greek art.

However, one of the most important offers of Robinson is the thorough description he gave us regarding the town planning of a town of the classical era. As were already mentioned before, Olinthos was ruined in 480 b.c. by the Persians. Around 440 b.c. thousands of new habitats were added to the existing ones, who all came from the coastal towns of Halkidiki.

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