Delphi and Iera Chora: the Steps of ParnassusDelphi, Greece
Delphi. Where a nymph once purified the believers in her well and Pythia chanted her prophesies. There, where for the very first time, the winners – not only of the athletic but also of the music and poetry competitions – were lauded. There, where two eagles once defined the centre of the world.
1. The Apollo Temple
3. Mt Parnassus
Pythia of the prophesies
The Apollo TemplePythia, a 50 year old woman, who was renowned for her honesty and virtue was the High Priestess of the god Apollo at the Delphic oracle. Apollo offered his guidance on the seventh day of every month to the messengers of the faithful and to all believers searching for an indication on how to lead their family, their army, their city and their lives.But a prophesy was not the only thing they were looking for. Every nine years, and later on every four years, the city of Delphi organized the famous Pythia, a great festival to honour Apollo and celebrate his victory against the dreadful monster Python, for the title to the land. The music and later the athletic and equestrian competitions, established the Pythia as one of the most important national festivals after the Olympic Games.
The centre of the world
Delphi“A place set apart from the rest of the world. An amphitheatre nestling on the first steps of Parnassus”, as it is described by the poet G.Seferis . There, at the sight of the sometimes bathed in full sunlight, and, other times, dark and threatening twin cliffs of the Phaedriades, the two eagles sent by Zeus the father of all gods, were brought together in order to find the centre - ‘the umbilical chord’ - of earth. There, at the navel of earth, where the first Great Mother Gaia chanted the first prophecies, Apollo - the god of light, music and divination - was meant to build one of the most famous oracles of Greece.
Τhe mountain of Apollo and the Nymphs
Mt ParnassusMt Parnassus, with an altitude of 2457m, has been known in Greek myth as the mountain of Apollo and the Nymphs and, on its southern foothills, stood the Delphic Oracle. Its woods reach up to 1600-1700 m and consist mainly of the Greek fir (Abiescephalonica), while on its northern slopes some black pines (pinus nigra) may also be seen. Extended alpine tundra and cliffs occur on higher altitudes of Mt Parnassus. The NW part of Parnassus was designated a National Park in 1938, the oldest in the country together with that of Mt Olympus. The mountain supports a remarkable range of flora with more than 1000 species and sub species recorded inside the National Park. The endangered Greek Peony (Paeoniaparnassica), native to the fir tree forests of Mt Parnassus and its adjacent Mt Elikonas, is an interesting and impressive species, together with the Centaureamusarum, the Eryssimumparnassi, the Euphorbiaorphanidis, the Bupleurumcapillare, the bellflower Campanularupicula, the hawkweed Hieraciumgaudryi, and others.
Nea Odos has undertaken the study, planning, construction, operation, administration and maintenance of the “Ionian Road” project. A breathtaking project covering a total length of 380klm.
Why take a self-guided tour?
This is a self-guided tour based on the award-winning storytelling concept developed by Clio Muse and the fascinating narratives prepared by our handpicked destination experts.
You can enjoy each multilingual tour by using your smartphone or tablet at your own pace even if you are offline. The interactive map on your screen will guide you step-by-step as you explore all points of interest along your route. Each stop comes with a selection of our signature stories allowing you to tailor the tour experience to your personal interests and schedule.
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