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Jun 30 2017

Historical Sites to Visit near Athens

Category: Destinations | General | Sightseeing | Historykmaxwell @ 09:12

There is much to explore in Athens—from museums to ancient architecture to the vibrant nightlife. But many of the region's most fascinating archaeological sites lie outside the city. If you're ready to dig deeper into Greek history, head to these remarkable spots. ("Yamas" [cheers] to adventure!)

Mycenae

Located southwest of Athens, in the northeastern Peloponnese (a peninsula in southern Greece), this archeological site was one of the major centers of Greek civilization during the late Bronze Age Era. In fact, the period of Greek history from about 1600-1100 BC is called "Mycenaean" in reference to this important citadel.

According to Greek myth, Mycenae was founded by the legendary hero Perseus, son of Zeus and Danae. It was also the home of Agamemnon, commander-in-chief of the Greeks at Troy. Be sure to check out the Lion Gate, which served as the main entrance to the citadel and is the only surviving monumental piece of Mycenaean sculpture.

The Lion Gate at Mycenae; via Wikimedia Commons

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Apr 6 2016

Five must-see temples in Kyoto, Japan

Kyoto, Japan is a city of seemingly endless temples and shrines, and it is easy to begin to feel as though one has seen it all—there are so many that even several days in Kyoto wouldn't allow for visiting nearly all of them. A few temples stand out for their intricacies and idiosyncrasies, and we highly recommend checking them out.

1. Fushimi Inari. This temple is famous for its red torii gates—there are thousands of them crawling up the hillside to the temple, with more being added all the time: Wealthy businesspeople donate them for large sums of money as tribute to the shrine of the god of rice and money. The shrine itself, at the top of the mountain (a long hike, and not really a necessity), isn't much of an attraction; you come for the gates. It's a great place to visit at night as well.

                                                                                    

          Just a small sampling of the thousands of gates at Fushimi Inari; photo via Wikimedia Commons

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