Mykonos Archaelogical Sites

Most of the ancient relics have been destroyed. There are relics of a Neolithic settlement in Ftelia and some Early Cycladic tombs in Diakofti peninsula. Also the remains of 3 towers have been traced in the southwest part of the island in position Linos. The most famous finding of Mykonos is a relief amphorae (7th century BC) that depicts scenes of the Trojan war and is on display in the archeologic museum.

Fotolia 32912327 XSDelos: The sacred island of Apollo is located 6 nautical miles southwest of Mykonos. It is a lengthy island that has an area of 3.4 sq km, a maximum length of 5 km and a maximum width of 1.3 km. The visitors are not allowed to stay overnight in the island. The island is an open air archeological museum in its total and thousands of visitors visit it. It is also included in the catalogue of world heritage monuments of Unesco.

Two of the most important gods Apollo and Artemis were connected with Delos since they were bourn there by Leto the first wife of Zeus. The important position of Delos due to the safety that it provided to the travelers from Minor Asia to Greece attracted inhabitants since the 3rd millennium BC. The first settlement was founded from seamen of Minor Asia. Until the 14th century BC Delos was infamous. Some worshiping centers of Artemis were founded which took second place to the worshiping of Apollo. In the beginning of the 1st millennium along with the settlement of Ions came the worship of Apollo. After that Delos was an important religious center. The significance of the island grew to the Ions of Aegean and of Minor Asia and they were all gathered there once a year to celebrate Delia. These were festivities on honor of Apollo and Artemis (twin gods). Representatives from all Greek towns took part in these festivities. The representatives of Athenians were tranfered there with the ship of Thiseus which was preserved and repaired for that purpose and was named Delian ship. Ions have made a political and religious union (Amphiktionia) that had Delos as a center. In the middle of the 6th century Peisistartus the Tyrant of Athens tried to make Delos dependant of Athens something that Polycratis the tyrant of Samos managed. When his tyranny ended the Amfiktionia of Delos was independed (490BC) and even recognized by the Persians who did not attack Delos during Persian wars.

A decisive element to the further development of the island was the interest of the Athenians. After the end of the Persian wars the Athenians named their alliance Delian. The alliance had a fleet and the 300 cities that protected the union gave taxes. The total amount that Athenians collected was 360 talants a year. In 403 BC after the end of the Peloponnesian war Athenians left Delos, they came back in 394 BC and left in 314 BC with the dominance of the Macedonians. In 314 BC and until 166 BC Delos was independed at that period many buildings and statues were created due to Donations. IN 166 BC the Athenians returned to the island and remove all Delians from the island. The dominance of Christianity in the Eastern Roman Empire brought the final hit in the center of the old religion. Delos was abandoned at the end of the 5th century AD.

The excavations in Delos begun in 1873 from the French archeological school and revealed the most important parts of the sanctuary and of the ancient city. The deserted roads, houses and the yards that were decorated with marvelous mosaics all remain in to their original position, Apart from their artistic value they all give an image of the everyday life in a place that had rich activity for centuries. The sanctuary of Apollo and the public buildings that surround it are all gathered in the northwest side of the island. After the Propylea of the sanctuary and the market of Competaliston (Italian merchants) lies the house of The Naxos (560BC) and to the east the so called building C which is one of the most preserved constructions of the island. The sacred street leads to the three temples of Apollo. In the east wing of the yard of the sanctuary the Prytaneion is located (501 BC). In the north side of the sanctuary the arcade of King Antigonos of Macedonia (late 3rd century BC) is located. Near the temples of Apollo lies the Artemision, a temple of the 7th century BC. In a position that had a worshiping character since the 2nd century BC The Ecclesiastirio and Thesmoforio are located. North of the temple of Apollo the neighbor of Lake is located as well as the temple of the 12 gods, the Leto sanctuary and the Lion street. In the Northeast side there is the neighbor of the theaters that has many residencies with beautiful mosaics. To the south there is the neighbor of Inopos River with Ireon (temple). To the south on the top of the hill lies Kynthio, one of the most sacred spots in Delos.