Epidavros

7:21:00 PM Brooke Neal 0 Comments

Epidavros (Epidaurus) is only a 40 minute drive from Nafplio.  We weren't planning on going, but then we ran into someone who raved about it, so we decided, "what the heck," and drove out.  Anciently, Epidavros  was a healing center, a cross between a spa and hospital.  People who came here for healing could enjoy sports events, baths and theater performances in a addition to temple worship.  According to legend, the God Asklepios was born here making this the most sacred of all healing centers in Greece. We visited another of these healing centers in Turkey, you can read about it here.   

Ever wonder why the modern symbol for the medical profession includes two snakes wrapped around a staff.  It goes all the way back to Greek times.  Snakes played an important role in the "healing" of the sick.  Non venomous snakes were said to slither around the dormitories and it was considered good luck if one licked you.  If you were lucky, you might also have a dream which a priest would interpret then prescribe the appropriate treatment.  As much as we may want to chuckle, there are monuments recording the aliments, dreams, prescriptions and healing of patients. This was serious stuff to the Greeks!  
Cost: €6 adults, children free
Time: 45 minutes
Hours: 8am-3pm
TIP: Operating hours of archaeological sites in Greece were inconsistent and finding a reliable link online was difficult.  The hours listed in our guide book were wrong at every location, but by the end of our trip we found 8am-3pm to be the new standard.  Perhaps in the summer they will offer longer hours.
The theater at Epidavros is billed as the best preserved in all of Greece. It had a seating capacity of 15,000--that's a lot of "sick" people if you ask me.  It is customary for theaters to be built into hillsides, but what makes this one so nice (and I didn't photograph) is the view from the seats.  Everywhere you look, you are surrounded by green, it is beautiful!

You might be wondering why I took a picture of the two holes, that was for drainage.  There is a horseshoe shaped ring around the theater with holes at both ends to capture rain water.  The acoustics are genius.  I asked Eden to sing me a little song, but my never shy girl, was suddenly shy.  Luckily, a student group was also in the theater and their teacher exhibited the sound quality for us.
This area of the Peloponnese has been inhabited forever and fore runner to Greeks or Myceanean's left their mark.  This bridge is about 3000 years old,incredible that it still stands. Course, I don't think anyone is driving over it, but it's cool none the less.  

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