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Ioannina

Country: Greece
Population:64,012
Time Zone:UTC+3
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The Castle of Ioannina
The imposing castle of Ioannina was built in 528 AD by the Emperor Justinian, and was an ambitious expression of the might of the Byzantine Empire. It is the oldest Byzantine fortress in Greece with significant influence over the history of the town which grew around it.
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Monastery of Zermbitsa
The Monastery of Zermbitsa is located in a prominent location atop a hill of Mt Taygetos. This setting gives visitors to the monastery a rare treat because from here you can behold the splendor of the magnificent Evrotas River valley. Looking westward, we see the highest peak of our proud and majestic Mt. Taygetos.
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Lake Pamvotida
The routes around the lake offer exquisite scenery and plenty to explore. A tour by car is an experience to suit all kinds of traveller - there is much to see, much to learn about, and there is the serene calming effect of the lake
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Ioannina Market
The traditional Ioannina desserts are famous throughout Greece. The famous ‘sker bourek’, or ‘sugar pie’, the exceptionally delicious baklava and the other syrup pastries are but a few of the flavours that are certain to captivate visitors.
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Ziros Lake
Stylish buildings that blend harmoniously with the region were built on the banks of Lake Ziros between 1950 and 1955. The purpose was to create a Children’s City (Paidoupolis in Greek, also known as Ziropolis) to look after the orphaned children of the Second World War and the Greek Civil War, on the initiative of Queen Frederica. Stylish buildings that blend harmoniously with the region were built on the banks of Lake Ziros between 1950 and 1955. The purpose was to create a Children’s City (Paidoupolis in Greek, also known as Ziropolis) to look after the orphaned children of the Second World War and the Greek Civil War, on the initiative of Queen Frederica. Lake Ziros is an important and stunning natural attraction, which is relatively unknown to the public because it is not shown on tourist maps with a scale below 1:300,000. The buildings of Ziropolis were designed by Austrian architects in 1955. The lake is approximately 1000 m long and 500 m wide and has an elliptical shape. It has a depth of over 25 m at its deepest point. Until 1965, when it was almost destroyed by an earthquake, Ziropolis was an important educational, cultural and economic centre in the region.
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Sarakiniko Beach
Sarakiniko Beach Milos: This beach is one of the most beautiful beaches of Milos and surely the most particular one. It is located along the coastal road east of Adamas, north-east of Milos. It is the most photographed spot of the island and is also considered as one of the most beautiful Greek beaches. Its particular landscape is very impressive and surely unforgettable: long horizontal rocks bent over the sea; those rocks are eroded by time and saltwater and have small and huge hollows all over them. The entire landscape formed by the volcanic rocks doesn't show any signs of vegetation and is coloured entirely in a bright white, which makes an interesting contrast with the deep blue and turquoise of the surrounding waters. This amazing scenery gives one the impression of standing on the surface of the moon.
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Nikopoli
The consequence of this battle was the collapse of the last Hellenistic kingdom (the Ptolemeans of Egypt) and the beginning of the Roman Age under the monocracy (autocracy) of the victor, Octavian Augustus. In memory of his glorious victory, Octavian founded Nicopolis (the City of Victory) to the southernmost end of Epirus by forcing the inhabitants from around twenty cities of Etolia, Acarnania and Epirus to resettle there, in addition to bringing new settlers from Italy. Endowed with exceptional privileges and tax exemptions, as a "free city", Nicopolis did not take long to develop into a large thriving city. Its harbours (Komaros and Vathy), its excellent geographical position at a junction between Epirus and Acarnania as well as between Greece and Italy, the re-establishment of the Aktia Games as an "equivalent to the Olympic gymnastic games along with musical competitions, horse races that were held every four full years", turned it into a pole of attraction in the wider Mediterranean area. 'Nicopolis is populous, and its numbers are increasing daily', mentions Strabo. Its inhabitance continued on into the Byzantine times as well.
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Archaeological site of Aiane
The ancient city of Aiane was the most important of the kingdom of Elimeia. From the finds here, archaeologists have concluded that it was home to quite an advanced civilisation, on a par with the Mycenaeans.
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Macedonian Mension
You will absolutely fall in love with the byzantine churches and the beautiful mansions, which are typical examples of Macedonian architecture.
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Byzantine Art Museum
The Byzantine Art Museum (in Dexameni square), where artifacts from the Byzantine period are showcased; over 700 well preserved byzantine sculptures, murals, paintings and icons from temples from around the city.
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Orestiada Lake
The best way to explore the city is taking a little tour around the lake starting from the southernmost side up to the northernmost. Take a stroll on the narrow pathway along the lake’s coast; you will be overwhelmed by its idyllic beauty and tranquility.
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Monastery St.Naum
Set amidst lush verdure where the River Crn Drim tumbles into the lake, the monastery of St. Naum is a refuge of tranquillity at the very southwestern corner of the Macedonian Republic. Situated 29 km (18 m) from the town of Ohrid and only 1 kilometre (0.6 m) from the Albanian border, the monastery brings the Macedonian experience to a dramatic culmination. As with most Byzantine churches, St. Naum was chosen primarily for its location – on a high, rocky outcropping over the lake, above deep forests and life-giving springs of the river Crn Drim. The monastic complex and church of St. Naum was built originally at the turn of the tenth century by the monk that bore the same name; Macedonians believe you can still hear the saint’s heartbeat by pressing an ear to his stone coffin inside the church. The monastery has been renewed and enlarged several times over the centuries. While most of its iconostases and frescoes date from the 16th and 17th century, earlier etchings in the Byzantine Greek vernacular also remain. But numerous orthographical mistakes indicate that they were written by Slavic-speaking local monks. Other inscriptions in the church make up some of the oldest epigraphic evidence of Slavic literacy. The icons of St. Naum are some of the best religious painting achievements in the Balkans. They date from the first half of the 18th century. The wood-carved iconostasis itself was made in 1711 by an unknown artisan. A peculiar element of St. Naum is located not on the inside of the church but on the outside: the preponderance of multi-coloured peacocks strutting around and luxuriating in the grass.
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Agios Nikolaos
The church of Agios Nikolaos with its attractive belfry and carved birdhouses, the traditional meeting point for the town’s inhabitants.
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Bay of Bones Museum
Ohrid was enriched with another cultural and historical landmark as well as with a tourist attraction - Museum on Water - an exceptional archaeological complex, which is one of a kind in the region. On the southern coast of Gradiste Peninsula in the Bay of Bones, a pile-dwelling settlement has been erected, which in the past was spreading at a total surface of 8.500 m2. Bay of the Bones is an authentic reconstruction of a part of the pile-dwelling settlement, dating back between 1200 and 700 BC.A Roman military fortification (Gradiste) has been reconstructed on the hill above the Bay of Bones simultaneously with constructing the pile-dwelling settlement and the Water Museum. The walls of the fortification that once had protected the Roman Empire from its enemies, are once again lifted up on the hill near Gradiste. The Roman fortress is connected with the settlement in order tourists and visitors to be given an extraordinary opportunity to experience time travel, from prehistoric to ancient times and vice versa.
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Church of St. John at Kaneo
One of the most magnificent churches in all of Macedonia stands right above a small fishing settlement, on a cliff rising up from Lake Ohrid; St. Jovan Kaneo is a combination of Byzantine and Armenian architectural styles. Built in the honour of St. John the Theologian, St. Kaneo with its sublime atmosphere and views of the placid lake below, remains an inspiring place for spiritual contemplation. The church which was consecrated at the end of the 13th century was built on a rectangular stone base. Its exterior is decorated with ceramic decorative sculptures and stone carvings. Though the fresco painters are unknown, the fragments that have been preserved are of exceptional quality; the Communion of the Apostles and the portraits of St. Clement, St. Erasmus and Constantine Kavasilas especially stand out. Being as it is - an extraordinarily unique construction - St. Kaneo is indeed one of the most beautiful churches in Macedonia as well as in the whole Balkan region.
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Ohrid Church St. Sophia
The church of St. Sofia is one of the largest medieval churches on this territory. For a long time, it was the cathedral church ("Great Church") of the Ohrid Archiepiscopate whose ecclesiastical authority covered the territories up to the river Danube to the north, the Albanian coast to the west, and the Bay of Thessalonica to the east. The church was probably used as a cathedral way back in the past, in the period of the Car Samuel who, in the late X century, moved his throne from Prespa to Ohrid. The other assumption is that there used to be another church on the same site during the reign of the Macedonian Czar Samuel and that later on this church was ruined for unknown reasons. The date of the construction of that church is uncertain because there are no inscriptions that help reveal it. It is also mentioned that today's church was either built or restored during the period of the Archbishop Leo who was on the throne of the Church in the period between 1035-1056. His esteemed ecclesiastical principle became a donor of the painting decorations in the church of St. Sofia. The original church had only one main dome. In the XIV century, an opulent external narthex was constructed. Its original shape was a three-naval basilica with a transept, a dome, and galleries on the side naves. It had a parvis and separate chapels above the northern and southern altar sections even in XI century. Almost three centuries later, during the period of the Archbishop Gregorius, a new parvis was built. It represents the climax of the Macedonian XIV-century culture. The concept of the extended parvis was horizontal, with a portico on the ground, and galleries on the first floor. Above the Gregorious Gallery, on the northern and southern sides, there were separate sections with towers. With the arrival of the Turks, the church St. Sofia was converted into a mosque. They "took care" to reshape the church almost entirely so that it could serve the Muslim religion. The frescoes were whitewashed, the ornamented plates from the iconostasis were used for constructing the internal staircase, and a minaret was built above the northwest dome. These undertakings distorted the structure of the entire church. In the period from 1950 to 1957 extensive conservatory and restoration activities were performed. The frescoes were cleaned and conserved, and also some reconstruction work was done. The fresco paintings in the church are amongst the highest achievements in medieval painting in Macedonia and even wider. At that time Ohrid was under the direct authority of the Constantinople Patriarchate, so these are the most important preserved works of Byzantine monumental painting. The donor of the fresco paintings, one of the most learned men of the time, Archbishop Leo, directly influenced the selection of the compositions painted in the XI century.
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Ancient Theatre of Ohrid
The builders of Ohrid’s ancient theater have estimated very precisely where to put the building - in the center of the elevated old town. The open theater holds a perfect location, as the two hills (Gorni Saraj and Deboj) keep it protected from winds that could interfere with acoustics during performances. The Ancient theatre of Ohrid of the Hellenistic period was built in 200 BC and is the only Hellenistic-type theatre in the country as the other three in Scupi, Stobi and Heraclea Lyncestis are from Roman times. It is unclear how many people the original theatre used to seat, as only the lower section still exists. During Roman times, the theater was also used for gladiator fights. However, since the theater was also a site of executions of Christians by the Romans, it rapidly turned to a highly disliked site by the locals. In fact, as a result of this dislike, the theatre was abandoned and buried by the locals after the demise of the Roman Empire. Discovered accidentally and later excavated completely, this 4, 000 square meter monument to antique Greco-Roman culture is being used today during the annual Ohrid Summer Festival for performances of ancient tragedies and comedies. The Theatre offers a wonderful view of Lake Ohrid and Mt. Galichica to the southeast.
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The Pyramid
It is absolutely an important tourist attraction. As a symbol of a notorious communism, it resisted some attempts to be destroyed by previous governments. But it is still there, unrestored, a symbol of the mixed and contradictory history of Tirana. It was inaugurated on October 14, 1988, as the mausoleum of the dictator, Enver Hoxha. The pyramid form was designed by a group of architects led by the daughter and son-in-law of the dictator. Construction began in 1986 and ended in 1988. It did indeed serve as a mausoleum for Hoxha, until 1991, after which it became a conference and fair centre.
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Resurrection of Christ Orthodox Cathedral
Tirana’s Resurrection of Christ Orthodox Cathedral is not just a Cathedral. It is the third-largest such structure in the Balkans and is located close to the centre of Tirana. The construction of the building, south-west of Tirana Centre Plaza, was completed in 2012. The cathedral complex comprises the cathedral itself, the chapel of the Nativity, bell tower, the residence of the Holy Synod, cultural centre, a library, two other chapels and a small museum. The cathedral's dome reaches 32.2 metres above ground, with the bell tower reaching 46 metres. Following its construction the cathedral has become a major tourism attraction in Tirana
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New Bazaar
The New Bazaar is located at Avni Rustemi Sqaure, only 8 minute walk from the center of Tirana and quickly became the newest attraction of the city. Before the Inauguration, even though it kept the same name, the New Bazaar area was a chaotic place where vendors were selling their products not in good conditions. New Bazaar was a much needed investment for the city, replacing the decrepit one. It hosts some contemporary painted buildings, but it respects tradition, and is giving back to the city the beauty and authenticity. The New bazaar is already turned into a major attraction of the city due to the unique facades that have preserved the Italian architectural style, the decoration with Albanian motives, as well as public spaces to enjoy fresh food and rest.
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White Tower
One of the historical Site in the city if Thessaloniki which form the center of city and has ancient Value attach to it.
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Panaghia (Virgin) Chalkeon Church
The Panaghia (Virgin) Chalkeon (1028), Hosios David (12th century), St Panteleemon (late 13th or the early 14th century), is of four-columned cross-in-square type, Ayioi Apostoloi (1310-1314),Taxiarches (14th century), Panagouda a three-aisled basilica with significant icons, Agios Ioannis Prodromos (Nymphaion),Vlatadon monastery a 14th century foundation of which only the katholikon and two cisterns within the precinct survive, Ayios Demetrios a splendid basilica dedicated to the patron saint and protector of the city, etc.
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Byzantine Bathhouse
The byzantine bathhouse is a late thirteenth century building in the city of Thessaloniki.
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Koukounaries Beach
Koukounaries beach is the most famous beach of Skiathos, therefore the most crowded. It is well-known for its extremely fine white sand and its fragrant pine trees forest from which the region took its name. It is considered as the most unspoiled natural beach of the Mediterranean and is a protected environment. The beautiful crystal-clear deep blue waters are a real pleasure. Since the beach is well-organized, it offers many water sports, chairs, umbrellas, beach bars. The region around the beach is full of restaurants, taverns and hotel units. A local bus links this beach to the capital every 30 minutes. A biotope can be found in the pine forest boarding the beach where different species of plants and birds are protected. This place, as well as the beach, is developed for ecotourism, financed by the Municipality and the European Union.
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Panagia Eikonistria
Panagia Eikonistria is the most holy site of the island since the miraculous icon of Virgin Mary (Panagia) was found here around 1650. An important intellectual figure of the island and of the Church, Dionysios the Old, was a monk in this monastery.
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The Church of Santa Maria delle Grazie
The Church of Santa Maria delle Grazie, is a interesting frescoes and works sculpted in wood.
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Piazza Sant
Piazza Sant'Oronzo narrates the city's entire history. The Roman period is visible in the ruins of the Amphitheatre that becomes the exceptional stage for theatrical performances in summertime, and in part by the high Column - on which stands a bronze of St. Orontius, depicted in the act of blessing - erected in the 17th Century utilizing some of the Roman columns positioned on the Ancient Appian Way.
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Piazza Duomo
A visit to Lecce can begin with Piazza Duomo, once used as a fortress and today considered the most elegant "salon" in the city. T
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Matka Canyon
Matka - A gorge in which a rich complex of mediaeval building survives, including churches, monasteries and remnants of a fortress (the mediaeval town of Matka).There are dozens of caves and a large number of endemic plants and animals. The Canyon covers an area of around 5.000ha and is located 15km south-west of Skopje. By its morphogenetic characteristic, it is a breakthrough gorge. Krastic form deserve particular attention here-ten caves with their length ranging between 20 and 176 meters and two vertical chasms with a depth up to 35 meters. Matka was one of the largest refugee centers during the glacial period resulting in the presence of a high number of relic and endemic plants, 20% are endemic or relic spices. Among Tertiary relics, the most significant are the Kozani violet and Italy's Ramonda (Ramonda Natalie). It is also important to mention that there are 77 species of Balkan endemic small butterflies in area of Matka Canyon, while 18 other species are new to the science.
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Millennium Cross
The Millennium Cross (Macedonian: Милениумски крст, Latinic: Mileniumski krst) is a 66 metre-high cross situated on the top of the Vodno Mountain in Skopje, Republic of Macedonia. It was constructed to serve as a memorial of 2,000 years of Christianity in Macedonia and the world. The construction of the cross began in 2002 and was funded by the Macedonian Orthodox Church, the Macedonian government and donations from Macedonians from all over the world. The cross was built on the highest point of the Vodno mountain on a place known since the time of the Ottoman Empire as "Krstovar", meaning "Place of the cross", as there was a smaller cross situated there. On 8 September 2008, the independence day of the Republic of Macedonia, an elevator was installed inside the cross. In 2009, a restaurant and a souvenir shop were opened next to the cross. In 2011 the Millennium Cross ropeway was opened. The ropeway is three and a half km long. At night the cross shines down over the city.
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Memorial House of Mother Teresa
The desire to pay respect to one the most famous person and Nobel Prize winner from Macedonia was accomplished on the 30-th of January 2009 with the opening of the Memorial house dedicated to Mother Teresa. The Memorial house of Mother Teresa is a non-profit organization financed by the Government of the Republic of Macedonia. The Location of the museum is not randomly chosen. That is to say, on this exact place the old Catholic Church “Sacred heart of Jesus” used to stand. It is where Mother Teresa, then Gonxha Bojaxhiu was baptized just one day after her birth, on the 27th of August 1910, place where she received her first communion and where she finds her inner peace after her father’s death. This place had great importance and influence on developing the character of young Gonxha and to her desire to help the poor people. Since she was a child she sang in the Catholic Church choir and participated in charity organizations. Somehow the location itself represents a symbolic bridge that connects little Gonxha to one of the greatest humanitarian of the world, Mother Teresa.
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Fortress Kale
The Skopje Fortress commonly referred to as Kale Fortress, or simply Kale (from kale, the Turkish word for 'fortress'), is a historic fortress located in Skopje, the capital of the Republic of Macedonia. It is situated on the highest point in the city overlooking the Vardar River. The fortress is depicted on the coat of arms of Skopje, which in turn is incorporated in the city's flag. The first fortress, according to research and available data, is believed to have been built amidst the 6th century A.D., on land that had been inhabited during the Neolithic and Bronze ages or roughly 4000 B.C. It was constructed with yellow limestone and travertine and along with fragments of Latin inscriptions, asserts the idea that the fortress originated from the Roman city of Skupi, which was completely destroyed by an earthquake in 518. The fortress is thought to have been reconstructed during the rule of emperor Justinian I and constructed further during the 10th and 11th centuries over the remains of emperor Justinian's Byzantine fortress which may have been destroyed due to a number of wars and battles in the region, such as that of the uprising of the Bulgarian Empire against the Byzantine Empire under the rule of Peter Delyan. Not much is known about the Medieval fortress apart from a few documents which outline minor characteristics in the fortress' appearance.
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Skopje Old Bazaar
The Old Bazaar (Macedonian: Стара Чаршија, Stara Čaršija from the Turkish: Çarşı meaning marketplace, Albanian: Çarshia e Vjetër) in Skopje is the largest bazaar in the Balkans outside Istanbul. It is situated on the eastern bank of the Vardar River, stretching from the Stone Bridge to the Bit-Pazar and from the Skopje Fortress to the Serava river. The Old Bazaar falls within the borders of Centar and Čair municipalities and is a protected national landmark. The earliest known documented sources that point out to the existence of a merchant quarter on the bazaar's territory date back to the 12th century. During the Ottoman rule with the city, the place underwent a rapid development to become city's main economic and merchant centre, evidenced by about 30 mosques, numerous caravanserais and hans, as well as other Ottoman buildings and monuments. The bazaar was heavily damaged by the earthquakes that occurred in 1555 and 1963, and the destructions caused during the First and the Second World War. Subsequently, it was reconstructed on several occasions and nowadays represents the only remaining cultural monument in the Republic of Macedonia, which has kept its multicultural heritage of different civilizations.
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National Archaeological Museum
One of the most important archaeological museums in the world, the Archaeological Museum of Athens houses the finest antiquities all over Greece. Well-curated exhibitions guide you through magnificent findings, exceptional sculptures, detailed pottery, Avant-garde jewelry, frescoes and artifacts dating back to antiquity and the classic times.
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Monastiraki
Monastiraki is one of the most renowned neighborhoods in central Athens partly because it belongs to the oldest part of the town and due to its traditional flea market. A vivid neighborhood with the aromas and arts of a bygone era still prominent!
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Odeon of Herodes Atticus
One of the legendary sites that sits beneath the slopes of the Acropolis on the southwest side, is the stunning open-air theatre, Odeon of Herodes Atticus. In ancient times, Odeons were built for musical contests and this ancient stone theatre has gone on to host some of the world’s best musical performances during the last 60 years since its modern day re-opening, including Nana Mouskouri, Luciano Pavarotti and Frank Sinatra to name a few. Widely known by locals as simply “Herodeon”, it was built between 160AD – 174AD by the wealthy benefactor of Athens, Herodes Atticus as an ode to his late wife Rigilla. It was the third Odeon to be built in Athens and was distinctively Roman in contrast to the nearby Theatre of Dionysos. With its Roman arches and three story stage building, it was originally partly covered with a wood and tiled roof. The circular orchestra has now become a semi-circle, paved with black and white marble. With 35 rows, the marble auditorium extends slightly beyond a semi-circle with a diameter of 80 metres and today seats 4680 people.
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Sacred Rock of the Acropolis
The Sacred Rock of the Acropolis "the province of the Gods", unoccupied by humans, is a perfect 5th century BC collection of public monuments which stands as a unique Greek testimony.