The region of Olympia and the Peloponnese in general may be home to some very large and impressive ancient structures, which leave visitors in awe with their magnitude and splendour. After a while, though, one does need to return to smaller-scale beauty and take in the wise economy of quiet village life the modestly sized village of Andritsaina is just the place to do that. Located at a mountainous landscape at the top of a hill, very close to the significant archaeological site of the Temple of Apollo Epicurius at Bassae, it is the ideal setting for a short, relaxing escape before descending to one of the larger nearby towns (Olympia, Kalamata, Sparta), which are no more than an hour's ride away.

The main square boasts the "Great Fountain", the first fountain in the Peloponnese built in 1724, while another famous fountain in the village runs through the trunk of an old plane tree. While roaming the cobbled streets, one has the chance to admire the colourful architectural elements which make Andritsaina so popular with visitors all year long, including quite a few old mansions and a very typical kafenio (Greek for coffee-shop). For those wishing to focus on history even far from the apparent antiquities, the beautiful neoclassical building of the Nikolopouleios Library houses a very interesting collection of books and manuscripts dating back to the 16th century AD, including documents related to the Greek War of Independence (1821).

More than anything, though, what a traveller should do while passing from Andritsaina is get carried away by the awe-inspiring natural beauty of the landscape. Its proximity to Alfeios, the longest river in the Peloponnese, ensures that wildlife here is second to none. With the added bonus of rafting along the river and climbing in the gorge, this short but quite essential stop has something for everyone!

Nikolopouleios Library

A library full of rare books dating to the 16th century is probably one of the last places of interest one would expect to find in a picturesque village up in the mountains of the Peloponnese. The story of the library itself is no less surprising. In 1840, forty-seven crates of books left the 6th-floor apartment of 12 Rue Castillon, Paris; they were first shipped to Athens, then Nafplion, and finally loaded on donkeys for the journey to their final destination – Andritsaina. After being stored for 39 years at the church of Agia Varvara, they weremoved to the Library, located at the first floor of the School of Andritsaina, which was inaugurated in 1879. The collection already included precious first copies of rare books, with marginal notes and handwritten dedications by the likes of Jean-Jacques Rousseau and members of the European nobility.Later additions include correspondence from king Otto of Greece, and other important documents drafted by the protagonists of the Greek Revolution or the political scene of the newly-established Hellenic Republic. Since 1998, the Library, now counting more than 40,000 volumes, has had its own home at a beautiful neo-classical building next to the historic Gymnasion (=secondary school) of Andritsaina.In 1963, 23 cast copies of the sculptures adorning the frieze of the Temple of Epicurean Apollo at Bassae were donated to the Library by the British Museum and have since been part of its permanent collection.

The Folklore Museum of Andritsaina


The Museum was created by local women in 1981 and housed at a stone mansion originally built in 1847. The 4,000 exhibits, organised over three floors, reflect everyday life and habits in Andritsaina from 1832 to 1932. The collection boasts numerous traditional costumes, meta-Byzantine icons, rare legal documents, paintings, and photos from 1850 onwards.


Ancient Olympia Virtual Tour


Ancient Olympia Virtual Tour



Athens, a modern metropolis, a european capital, a nest for all the Mediterranean cultures. Athens, the meeting point of East and West, the harbor of everyone, who still loves passionately life! There are so many different ways to describe and analyse Athens, that any given effort to do a short depiction of the city is nothing but a try doomed to fail. Nevertheless, we will try to underline some of the main characteristics of the city of Athens. Visit Virtual Tour


Knossos was undeniably the capital of Minoan Crete and is the site of one of the most important and better known palaces of Minoan civilisation. Knossos was inhabited for several thousand years, beginning with a neolithic settlement sometime in the seventh millennium BC, and was abandoned after its destruction in 1375 BC which marked the end of Minoan civilization. It was damaged several times during earthquakes, invasions, and in 1450 BC by the colossal volcanic eruption of Thera, and the invasion of Mycenaeans who used it as their capital, while they were ruling the island of Crete until 1375 BC. Knossos was ruled by the dynasty of King Minos and is connected with thrilling legends, such as the myth of the Labyrinth with the Minotaur. Visit Virtual Tour


Known from the Homeric myth, as the mythical island of Phaeacians where the shipwrecked Odysseus was soothed by princess Nausika, Corfu continues to welcome visitors from all around the world. Be a synchronous Odysseus and follow the new destination of YouGoCulture initiative. Having the Central Corfu and its old town which is in the list of the Unesco World Heritage Sites, a journey begins in the history, the traditions and the unique beauties of the island. Visit Virtual Tour


Situated in continental Greece on Mount Parnassus, Delphi was considered to be one of the most important cities of ancient Greece. It was believed to be home to the goddess Gaia, or Earth, and later to Apollo after slaying Gaia’s son, the snake Python. The Pythian games—similar to the Olympic Games—were held here every four years to honour Apollo’s slaying of the Python dragon. Visit Virtual Tour


A breath away from Athens, the birth place of Eleusinian Mysteries and goddess Demeter challenges you to explore it! Eleusis or Eleusina, as now known, one of the five sacred cities of antiquity enjoys the privilege of being located only thirty kilometers from the historic Athens. But let me refresh it! It could be the privilege of Athens to have so nearby a city full of life and history! Visit Virtual Tour


Even today’s visitors feel that they are in a sacred place as soon as they set foot in the Asklepieion of Epidavros. The place where healing was a religious mystery. The sick were cured by the god Asklepios in their sleep (enkoimesis) or received from him instructions on the therapy they should follow. From the sixth century BC until the end of antiquity, hosts of people resorted to the Sanctuary of Asklepios in expectation that their prayers for healing would be heard and answered by the god. These were patients and pilgrims who arrived there bringing precious votive offerings from all parts of the then-known world. Visit Virtual Tour


Peering over the plain of Argolis, up there from the heights of the acropolis, one comes to terms with the superiority of the Mycenaean civilization. It reached its heyday in the Late Bronze Age (1350 - 1200 BCE) and then disappeared, leaving to eternity its legendary acropolis, built on an inaccessible, rocky hill between two ravines. The footprints of the Atreidai, the mythical royal dynasty, are visible to today's visitor and inspire awe in an era like ours, in which myth meets the history of the most important period of the ancient world. Visit Virtual Tour

Ancient Olympia

What can be said of Olympia and not sound like a cliché? The significance of the archaeological site is self-evident, even if one is not familiar with the fascinating historical details and the political background, which literally span thousands of years. Known to the world as the cradle of the Olympic ideal, this open-air museum of imposing ruins and unique artefacts tells a story of religious piety, fair play, political ambition, and demonstration of power. All the buildings you can still admire were erected to please the gods and send a message to the thousands of visitors who swarmed to the sacred grounds. Walking around the Stadium, the Gymnasium and the Temples of Zeus and Hera – both instrumental in the ritual and competitive part of the Games – modern visitors will be able to understand why the event remained relevant even when the rest of the Ancient World was long dead. As an added bonus to the splendour of the site, the Museum of Olympia boasts some of the most famous works of art produced in the long course of Hellenic culture. Visit Virtual Tour


Travelling in the Messenian land from Mount Taygetus to the coast, our glance dives, following the sunlight dipping onto the Messenian plain. From the mountainous volumes to the fertile valley, the olive groves and herbs, we see a landscape of culture, myth, and history, unfold before our eyes. In the heart of the region of Messenia, one town stands out: Ancient Messene. This "blissful plain" as Homer calls it, became a theatre of war and mythical narrations offering a viewpoint on the past and the present. Visit Virtual Tour