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Nafplio and Surroundings
Nafplio the capitol of Argolis, is one of the best known and most beautiful cities in Greece. According to legend, the city takes its name from its founder, Nauplios, the son of Poseidon and Amimoni. In ancient times Nafplion was basically overshadowed by Argos, which used it as a port from the 7th century BC.
The city of Nafplion, or the Napoli di Romania as it was named by the Venetians, took shape during the first Venetian occupation, when, towards the end of the 15th century, artificial banks were built into the sea to form the lower city. Today, this area is regarded as the historical centre of the modern city. During the first Turkish occupation of the city, which lasted from 1540 to 1686, Nafplion seems to have enjoyed special rights and privileges. In 1686, the Venetians, lead by Francesco Morosini hold onto it for the short period until 1715. Nafplio became a very important city during this period as the capitol of the Morean kingdom. The second and harsher Turkish occupation began in 1715 and the city began to fall into decline. The city reached the peak of its glory again when it became the capitol of the new Greek state from 1827 to 1834.
Over the last few years, Nafplio has developed into a popular destination for Greek and foreign tourists (Nafplio virtual tour ).
7 Places to Visit in and around Nafplio
1) The Old town
Strolling through the old town, the visitor enjoys the unique charm of the city, with its many cobbled streets, narrow Venetian balconies decorated with colorful bougainvillea, stone houses with the stairs full of flowering pots and stone fountains. The Old town streets full of cafes, restaurants and bars offer unforgettable moments throughout day and night.
2) Archaeological Museum of Nafplio
The Archaeological Museum is accommodated in the imposing in size as well as strict in symmetry, stone-built Venetian structure which covers and encases the central, Syntagma Square on its west side. It was first built in 1713, during the second reign of the Venetians. The Archaeological Museum of Nafplion exhibits artifacts from excavations in the general Argolis area, including rare Mesolithic objects from the Franchthi cave, contents from several Bronze Age settlements and tombs, as well as later Archaic, Classical, and Hellenistic items.
3) Palamidi fortress
The Palamidi hill was fortified for the first time by the Venetians during the 2nd Venetian occupation (1686-1715). The Palamidi is a classic Baroque fort, built to plans by Giaxich and Lasalle. In 1715 is was conquered by the Turks, who held it until 1822, when it was transferred to the Greek State.
4) Bourtzi fortress
The fort on the sea, which has remained known by its Turkish name ‘Bourtzi’, meaning tower, has become Nafplion’s trademark. The Venetians, having understood the strategic importance of this site for the protection of the port, built a tower on the rock in 1473.
5) Archaeological sites of Epidaurus, Mycenae and Tyrins
Epidaurus is famous for its 4th-century-b.c. temple of Asclepius the god of healing. Excavations revealed that it contains temples of Asclepius and Artemis, the largest theater of the ancient world (12.000 spectators), stadium, gymnasiums etc.
The archaeological sites of Mycenae and Tiryns are the imposing ruins of the two greatest cities of the Mycenaean civilization, which dominated the eastern Mediterranean world from the 15th to the 12th century B.C. and played a vital role in the development of the classical Greek culture. Mycenae ‘Rich in Gold’, is the kingdom of mythical Agamemnon, first sung by Homer in his epics, the Iliad and the Odyssey.
The low hill of Tirynth, in the 8th kilometer of the road Argos-Nafplio, was continuously inhabited from the Neolithic Age to Late Antiquity. During the Late Bronze Age, Tiryns the fortified hill surrounded within the “Cyclopean” walls of the palace complex and other buildings that were used primarily by the ruling class.
6) Ancient Nemea and the revival of Nemean Games that take place at end of June every year
The Society for the Revival of the Nemean Games is a movement born from nearly 40 years of excavation by the University of California at Berkeley in the panhellenic Sanctuary of Zeus at Nemea. Races are organized by gender and age, and participants compete one another like 2,300 years ago.
7) Arvanitia, Banieres and Karathona beaches
Nafplio’s town beach is called Arvanitia, a beach with gravel and small rocks pleasantly situated between Palamidi and Acronafplia, in the south end of the town. The beach offers a cozy all day cafe-beach bar. The so called Bathtubs (“Banieres” in Greek) are located under the Akronafplia at the western end of Arvanitia walking path.
The natural bay of Karathona, just about 4 km south from the center of the city, is a sandy beach, an ideal place for a swim. Either on foot, continuing the Arvanitia Promenade or by bus this well organized beach offers cafes, beach bars with sun loungers and umbrellas.
Our Cultural Activities
Guided Tour of Nafplio City Center
We offer one free walking tour of the city with one of our teachers every week. Topics include History, Culture, and Food.
Hydra and Spetses islands
After five days of lessons, it is time for the weekend and time to relax! Do not miss the opportunity to participate in these all-inclusive tour, with tickets and transportation included in the price of the course! On Tuesday or on Saturday the boat trip starts from the port of Tolo to glamorous Hydra and charming Spetses islands!
Enjoy a theatrical play in the unique ancient theater of Epidaurus
The Ancient Theater of Epidaurus is hosting each summer the Epidaurian festival, mainly ancient drama performances, are celebrated as a major international theatrical event. Do not miss the opportunity to enjoy a theatrical play (only available according to the official program) in this magical theater and feel the vibes of the ancient culture overwhelming your soul.
About the Training Centre in Nafplio
The Training Center in Nafplio is located in two buildings:
- In the center of Nafplio, at the Library of the neoclassical building where the National Gallery-Department of Nafplio is held.
- In the FOUGARO (The FUNNEL) just 1,5 kilometers away from the city of Nafplio, situated in Asklipiou St, a place of Recreation and Expressiveness, featuring an art and science library, exhibition and concert rooms.
How to reach us
We are located in the historic city center of Nafplio.
Courses up to six participants are held at the National Gallery – Department on Nafplio:
Sidiras Merarchias 23, Nafplio, P.C 21100
Courses with more than seven participants are held at The FOUGARO (The FUNNEL:
Asklipiou St, 98, Nafplio, P.C 21100