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Information About Messinia Archaeological Sites
Ancient Messini is one of the most important ancient cities as regards, size, form and preservation. Not only does it have sacred temples and public buildings, it also has imposing fortifications, residences and burial monuments.
Southwest of Anditsena, in wild mountainous area, lies the impressive Temple of Apollo the Helper, one of the largest ancient temples. It was built in 42-400 BC on the ruins of an older temple. It is located 14km from Andritsena, 1130m above sea level on Mt Kotilio.
The temple of Apollo is one of the best preserved ancient Greek monuments. Specifically it is the second best monument as regards its condition after the Temple of Hephaestus in Athens. Amongst all the temples in Peloponnesus it could easily claim the first place for the beauty of its marble and its harmonious structure.
The Mycenaean Palace at Ano Englianos was brough to light in 1952. Ano Englianos is a ridge-like acropolis running from northeast to southwest, with a maximum length of 170m and a width of 90m at its broadest. The hill rises from the surrounding ground in steep scraps 4-7m high.
The acropolis had been occupied before the palace was built, as the ceramic evidence indicates, since the Middle Helladic period. Since then the hill was destined to accommodate royalty with the main palace and the assisting chambers. Further down the slope the town spread out around the hill. Near the acropolis many Mycenaean tombs have been found both royal and common chamber tombs.
The fortress of Pylos (Niokastro) was started by the Ottomans in 1573 shortly after their defeat in the battle of Nafpaktos (1571). The purpose of the castle was to control the south entrance of the Navarino bay. It was named Niokastro (New Castle) in contrast with the previous Castle of Kytyfasiou (Paliokastro: Old Castle) which controlled the north side of the bay and the old port. The Castle of Pyrgos took part in all the historical events that left their mark on the region.
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