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Greece: Next stop Delphi

By Staff | Apr 22, 2016

Editor’s Note: This is the second part of a series sharing my recent travels to Greece.

The second day after our arrival in Athens was spent traveling by bus to Delphi, a town on Mount Parnassus in the south of mainland Greece.

Delphi was an ancient town and seat of the most important Greek temple and oracle of Apollo.

During the 8th century B.C. Delphi became internationally known for the Oracular powers of Pythia–the priestess who sat on a tripod, inhaled ethylene gasses, and muttered incomprehensible words that foretold the future. The Temple of Apollo housed the priestess and many traveled to hear her predictions and seek her guidance. While allegedly telling the future, most of her predictions were often quite vague.

This extensive mountainside archaeological complex contains the remains of the sanctuaries of Apollo and Athena Pronaia, plus a stadium and a theater. To get to the site, we walked up what seemed to be countless steps and slopes. The actual ruins of the temple, shown in the photo below, were only half of the climb. To see the remains of addiitonal buildings and the theater, we had to traverse even farther. Having only a short time, I was content to only go approximately half way up the distance beyond the Temple ruins.

Even from this point, the view was phenomenal. The photo at right does not begin to do justice to the beauty in Delphi.

After we visited the small museum at the site of the Temple ruins, we loaded back on the bus for a visit to a local olive farm.

The farmers welcomed us to the olive orchard where they had set out samples of olives, olive oil and feta cheese, which they also made on the farm.

There were approximately 1.5 million olive trees on this farm.

Olive oil is a top product of Greece and is consumed at every meal. It is used to dip bread at each meal. Add a little salt and pepper and it’s easy to get hooked on the oil! It also is the dressing for salads and used to prepare many main dishes.

The numbers of trees visible all over the country show why it is such a bountiful crop. The farmer with whom we met shared that there are no fences between orchards. Growers simply know their trees by markings.

Next stop: Mykonos.