I made this extensive list of famous landmarks in Greece beyond the Acropolis so you can visit the must-see Greek landmarks on your next vacation to Greece.
When you search for famous landmarks in Greece, the first place that pops up is the Acropolis in Athens. It’s no surprise; this is a mind-blowing place that takes you right back in time simply by looking at it. But Greece is about far more than that, which is why I made this list of top Greek landmarks.
Greece has so much history that it’s hard to even think about a complete list. But you mustn’t end up simply assuming that the Acropolis is the ‘be all and end all’ of Greece. There is so much to see, and the hope is that this list will inspire you to get out and see more beyond the Acropolis.
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Map Of The Greek Landmarks
Yes, I know we said ‘beyond the Acropolis,’ but first things first, let’s talk about why it’s so famous. Firstly, it’s more than 3,300 years old and counting – and it’s still standing.
This ancient citadel sits high over Athens, looking over everything the capital city does and reminding residents of their history. While it’s not as intact as it was back in the day, the ruins are very well preserved and include The Parthenon, the Temple of Athena Nike, and the Propylaea, to name just a few.
It’s a must-visit, even if it’s not everything historical that Greece has to offer.
2. Acropolis Of Lindos
Located on Rhodes Island, the Acropolis of Lindos is the ruins of an ancient city, sat high on a hill with stunning views over the sea. You can walk up the hill or go by donkey, although we all know the animal cruelty issues related to that.
The highlight is the ruins of Athena Lindia, a temple built during the 4th century BC. You can also check out the castle built during the Knights of St. John era.
Akrotiri was once a vital city under Minoan rule, located on the beautiful island of Santorini. After a vicious volcano eruption in 1628 BC, it was totally engulfed by lava. Many people consider it a Greek version of Pompeii, and the ruins are surprisingly well preserved, considering what happened to the site.
You can see frescoes still showing vibrant colors and some of the settlements from days gone by.
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4. Ancient Epidaurus Theatre
Located in Epidaurus, this theatre was built during the 4th century and is exceptionally well preserved. Festivals and events still use the theatre even now. It used to be able to hold 8000 people but underwent restoration in the 2nd century to expand its capacity.
5. Ancient Agora
The Ancient Agora of Athens is one of the most important spots in Athens, and it’s a must-visit. Located close to the Acropolis, you have no excuse not to visit! It was previously used for political gatherings, but it’s in excellent condition all these years later.
6. Angelokastro Castle
Close to Paleokastritsa, this castle is one of the top places to visit in Corfu and the whole of Greece. It was founded around the 7th century and has been fortified several times since. Sitting high on a hill, the views from here are amazing, but the history will blow your mind.
7. Corfu Old Venetian Fortress
Visible from almost every angle of the town, the Old Fortress is a mainstay and one of the most beautiful visions of the island. Built during Byzantine rule, the castle was built to protect the island from invaders but later became a prison and then a military hospital.
Located in the Cyclades chain, close to Mykonos, Delos is the birthplace of Apollo and has a history dating back to the 1st millennium. The island’s ruins are huge and surprisingly easy to identify, with markets, an old theatre, houses, and statues. Be sure to check out the Archaeological Museum to learn more about this amazing place.
9. Ancient Messini
Lesser known than Olympia but no less impressive, Messini was a thriving city in its own right, and while it remains in ruins today, it still packs an impressive punch. Sitting high on a hillside, the views from here are amazing, and excavation is still ongoing, so who knows what else they may find! The city was originally founded in 371 BC and was one of the main defense spots for Sparta.
Around 2.5 hours away from the capital, you’ll find Delphi, high in the mountains. This is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and you’ll be able to identify many ruins, including a theatre, stadium, and treasury. An earthquake destroyed much of this site in 373 BC, but it has been restored to show you its former glory.
11. Knossos Palace
If you’re visiting Crete, put this spot on your visit list. Just outside of Heraklion, Knossos Palace was built during the Neolithic period but was expanded considerably during Minoan times. Then, it was one of the most important spots in the whole civilization. Be sure to check out the museum to learn more.
Located close to Kalabaka on the mainland, Meteora is a hugely popular place to visit, and you’ll see why! Dating back to the 11th century, this site is a series of monasteries, around 24 in total, which were built into the rocks to avoid danger. To get to them now, you cross bridges and climb stairs, but back in the day, the monks would pull up the ladders whenever they sensed danger.
13. Mount Athos
You’ll see Mount Athos, also referred to as Holy Mountain or Agion Oros, and it was a monastic community of men. It is located around 130km away from Thessaloniki, making it reasonably secluded. The community lived here for around 1000 years, giving a sense of what life was like during the Byzantine Empire.
However, only men are allowed to visit the site in person. Women can take a boat tour close to the site, but they’re not allowed to step on it.
14. Ancient Thera
If you’re visiting Santorini, be sure to head here. Located on top of Mesa Vouno Mountain, the views are stunning, but the history is the same. Dating back to the 8th century BC, King Theras originally named Santorini after himself and, therefore, this spot too.
Located in Laconia, Mystras is an important UNESCO World Heritage Monument that was a remarkable Byzantine town in the thirteenth century. The archaeological site, also known as Mistras, features interesting Byzantine Churches and an important Archaeological Museum. It can be a fantastic day trip from Sparta or exploring the breathtaking coast of the Peloponnese.
This is, without a doubt, one of the big must-visits when you head to Greece. Located on the Peloponnese Peninsula, this is the site that inspired the Olympic Games and is a key player in Ancient Greek history. Dedicated to Zeus, the site provided religious sanctuary and contained more than 750 buildings back in the day. This place will blow your mind.
Located on the small island of Naxos, this is a huge doorway made of marble that stands high on a hill with a stunning view over the sea. There is a lot of mythology related to this site, and it’s said that the Minoan princess, Ariadne, was abandoned by Theseus at this very spot after he killed the Minotaur.
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18. Rhodes Old Town/Palace Of The Grand Master Of The Knights
The Old Town of Rhodes is a fantastic place to walk through, and it’s huge, so be sure to take your time and read the boards telling you all about it. You’ll see the Palace of the Grand Master of the Knights without fail; it has huge circular towers, and it’s one of the most photographed spots on the island. The palace was built in the 14th century by the Knights of Saint John.
19. Traditional Windmill Of Antimachia
Located in Kos, head to Antimachia, a small village with a special secret! The traditional windmill was originally built during pre-industrial times as a way to be sustainable but also to create wheat and other ingredients for food. However, it was damaged during an earthquake in 1933 and then restored. Today, it is still in working order and fully functional. You can go inside, learn about how it works, and buy delicious treats.
20. Temple Of Aphaia
Located on the Saronic Gulf, the Temple of Aphaia is dedicated to Athena and sits high on a hill, with amazing views. It was built back in 480 BC, and out of the 32 original Doric columns, 25 of them are still standing.
21. Temple Of Hephaestus
Located in Thissio, this is thought to be one of the most well-preserved temples in the country, and it was dedicated to the ancient god of fire, Hephaestus, and the goddess of pottery and crafts, Athena. Built around 450 BC, the same architects who built the Parthenon also built this temple.
Wrap Up On Famous Landmarks In Greece
These are some of the best spots to visit in Greece beyond the Acropolis, but it’s certainly not an exhaustive list – we would be here all week! But it certainly goes to show that there is a lot more to Greece than just the Acropolis – am I right?