Corinth - ancient capital, modern canal

About Corinth - ancient capital, modern canal

Lecheo, only 7 kilometres from Corinth, is the first village you encounter en route to Patras so it makes a good base for exploring this lovely part of Greece, so important in ancient times.

Ancient Corinth was capital of the Greek province in Roman times. Then it was a very wealthy city, an important spot for both Greeks and Romans, as whoever controlled Corinth, controlled the trade route between the north of Greece and the Peloponnese. It was made up of three parts; the acropolis on the hill (Acrocorinth), the city itself on a lower plateau, and its port (Lechaion) on the coast. All this was protected by a wall which ran for 20km (over 12 miles). It flourished under Roman rule and was visited by St. Paul who preached there in 52 A.D. If you decide to make your way to the top of the Acrocorinth you'll be rewarded with extensive views over the Saronic and Corinthian Gulfs.

Periander, who lived in the 6th Century B.C., first conceived the idea of linking these two gulfs, thereby avoiding the Peloponnese, but it wasn't until many centuries later that his vision became a reality and the canal was finally opened after Greece's independence in the late 19th century. This has significantly reduced sailing time and distance (by 185 miles).The Corinth Canal is a true feat of engineering at 6km long, 25m wide & 8m deep. Looking down onto the canal from the bridge you wonder how some ships actually make it through the canal!

Nemea lies close to the border with the Argolis region. It is surrounded by large vineyeards yielding wines that gave the region its reputation. In ancient times it gained fame when Hercules carried out one of his Twelve Labours by killing a local lion terrorising the area.

Loutraki is a beautiful coastal city and is one of Greece's most important spa resorts. Its hot springs are said to cure all manner of ailments, those of you who visit Greece regularly may also remember that it gives its name to a popular brand of bottled water.

The archeological site of Iraio occupies a beautiful site and enjoys glorious sea views. The remains of Hera Temple are fully visible here, as well as many other ancient buildings and facilities. The archaeological area is almost washed from the sea waves, whilst the picturesque little cove located there, is ideal for swimming and sunbathing in the crystal clear waters of the Corinthian Gulf. The lighthouse that stands on the edge of the cape, is the ideal spot for watching the view and the sunset.

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