A UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of the largest sites we have been to in Greece this site is downright boastful as one of the most important cities of ancient times.
With an open active archeological dig happening while we were there we feel very grateful to have been able to speak to the archeologists involved and get some very interesting insight into the new finds. Lots of preparation, loads of work (digging and more digging), and then sorting and cataloguing (and more cataloguing) makes archeology exciting and boring at the same time!
Dating back from the late Neolitic period with one of the first shrines of the cult of Zeus Ithomatas, and the first sanctuary of Artemis Orthia throughout the area; Messene being the most central part of the site is exceptional.
This site has some of the best pottery finds and some very well preserved buildings including the Temple and the stadium (with its over 10 thousand seating capacity), Roman villas with beautiful mosaics, and an Agora and reconstructed monuments. It is breathtaking!
This was our third visit to this site and we were still in awe of its size and complexity. During the last hour we had torrential rain so we sought cover under the roof that shelters a Roman villa and it lovely mosaic floors. Time well spent in the middle of a rain storm.
Check out the UNESCO justification of its “Universal Value” here:
This site is a ‘must see’… very highly recommended!