The golden Mycenae
Following in the footsteps of mythology
The charming and peaceful land of Argolida holds, within the bowels of its earth, one of the most important civilisations ever to see the light of day: the Mycenaean civilisation.
It is difficult today to imagine the excitement of Schliemann and Dörpfeld, who with Homer as their guide, revealed one of the greatest cradles of humankind before the eyes of the whole world.
The Mycenaean civilisation held dominion over this land, which was inhabited continuously since the dawn of history, and it became the leading light of the ancient known world.
Mycenae – the city of the legendary Agamemnon
Homer and other writers of ancient Greek tragedy committed their names to memories which have passed into the collective unconscious of humanity. Agamemnon and Menelaus, Danaë and Perseus, Pelops and Atreus are the apparent forefathers of all of Europe, and the birthplace of all of these historical figures, is golden Mycenae.
The earliest archaeological fragments indicate that the site of Mycenae was inhabited since the 7th millennium BC, from prehistoric times. In a dominant, naturally fortified position between the tranquil sloping hills of Profitis Ilias, and Sara, with a plentiful water supply, it was an ideal place for man to settle and live a protected life.
The apogee of the Mycenaeans, with their majestic architecture, inscribed monuments and sophisticated civilisation, occurred in the Late Bronze Age, between 1350 and 1200 BC. The first hegemonic factions appeared as early as 1700 BC, that is, in an historical period for which is difficult to determine exact details. But around this same period construction began on the first monumental tombs. After this, expansion developed at a dizzying speed. Palatial complexes, Cyclopean masonry which is awe-inspiring even today, the famous "Tomb of Agamemnon” (also known as the "Treasury of Atreus”), huge arches, fountains and ramparts comprise one of the greatest architectural complexes known to the ancient world. The decline of Mycenae occurred around 1100 BC, possibly due to repeated damage from earthquakes and fires. They had managed, however, to have once been a truly great empire, which has indelibly stamped its reputation on the history not only of Greece, but the entire world.
The archaeological site of Mycenae is 140km from Athens and 24km from Nafplio.
- The impressive, majestic, Lions Gate, at the entrance of the Mycenaean citadel.
- The royal complex.
- The six royal tombs, in the 1st tomb ring (16th cent. B.C.), the grenary, temples and houses, in the citadel.
- The 2nd tomb ring, with the vaulted tombs (14 royal and 12 private), outside the citadel.
- The treasure of Atreus or the tomb of Agamemnon (13th cent. B.C.), a grandiose tomb, near the citadel.
- The Heraion of Argos, a pan-Hellenic worship centre of the goddess Hera.
- The church of the Assumption of Virgin Mary, in the village Chonikas (8 km. to the south)..
For your stay in Argolida and several areas close to The Theater of Epidaurus, you can book a room in one of the hotels and Bed & Breakfast inns.
In Nafplio, Argos, as well as in many other areas close to the Mycenae Archaeological Site, there are hotels and accommodations of various categories and types (rooms to let, residences, Bed & Breakfast inns, studios, hostels, guesthouses and furnished apartments) that can satisfy every visitor's demands and needs for a pleasant and enjoyable stay.
You will find wonderful hotels, rooms and apartments to let of all categories and price ranges.
Access to Argolida is easy by car through the existing road network. The time that you need to get there from Athens is 90 - 120 min by car.
The best way to explore, wander around Argolida and discover its nature and archaeological sights is to have your own vehicle.
It is worth visiting places where local tranportation and organized tours do not reach.
Indicative routes and distances from the Archaeological site of Mycenae:
Athens: 121 km
Patras: 165 km
Ioannina: 374 km
Sparta: 112 km
There are frequent daily routes to and from Athens and several areas of Argolida.
Nafplio: (+30) 27520.27.323
Athens: (+30) 188.8.131.528
Argos: (+30) 27510.69.323
Kranidi: (+30) 27540.21.218
Isthmus: (+30) 27410.83.000
Galatas: (+30) 22980.42.480
For destinations to Argos, Nafplio and Mili. Information (OSE), Athens, tel: (+30) 184.108.40.2060
For your convenience, you can use the route map on the field “Routes” with information about the mileage, the time you need and the route you will follow, selecting the points of interest.