Δευτέρα, 9 Μαΐου 2016

Katakolon Port History

Katakolon is a small Greek town and an important port of the country, with a population of about 600 people. It overlooks the Ionian Sea, located on a peninsula, on the western part of Ilia not far from the capital city, Pyrgos. Katakolon Port is the gateway to Olympia. It boasts a lighthouse located on the southwest side opened in 1865.

Katakolon has been a port town for a long time with its glory days beginning toward the end of the 19th century up to the mid 20thcentury. The local Pyrgos authorities entirely funded construction of the port and was built to enable the transportation of merchandise to other major ports throughout Europe.

In 1881, the Pyrgos-Katakolon rail link was
completed ten years before the Greek state railway line connecting Lamia to Athens was built. The old town of Katakolon is still visible due to the old warehouse structures situated on its back streets. Many of these structures have been graciously restored to preserve the history of Katakolon Port.

Olympia is one of the most prestigious and notable places in classical Greece. Here, the ancient Greeks honored their god Zeus, most notably with the Olympic games that featured athletic challenges. It is the birthplace of the Olympic Games, which originated in 776BC, being repeated every four years.

At their origin, the Olympic Games included few sports or games, characterized by courage and loyalty. All competing athletes had to be Greek. The games lasted only one day, followed by the ceremony which lasted for several weeks.

The ceremony was reserved only for men. The Hera priestess was the only woman permitted to attend. If any women were caught at the games, rule breakers were punishable by death. Winners were awarded an olive crown celebrating their triumphs publicly. Their names were engraved on a stone, and they also erected life-size statues in their honor. The Olympic Games came to an abrupt halt, sadly in 393 AD. This came after over 1200 years. Of course, they are with us again, having been reborn in Athens in 1896.

The main attraction of Katakolon has always been Olympia. The different buildings that made up the Olympic complex were sadly destroyed. Through the years, they have been rebuilt numerous times, which is evident in the various architectural styles seen.

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