Zagorohoria & the Ancient Ruins of Kassope and Nikopolis

*This is for college purposes only.

In the Pindus Mountains in Epirus in northwest Greece, close to Ioannina, the remote region of Zagori is known for its stunningly dramatic landscapes crisscrossed by hiking paths. Here, you’ll find Zagorohoria, some 46 old stone villages, the best known of which are Papingo and Monodendri, where tumbledown cottages have been restored for use as holiday homes and traditional hotels complete with antique furniture and open fireplaces. Zagorohoria’s main attraction is hiking down the Vikos Gorge, but other things to do in the area include mountain biking and paragliding, as well as canyoning and rafting down the Voidomatis Gorge.

A little further afield, archaeology buffs will enjoy a visit to the ancient city of Kassope, one of the best examples of a city built according to the grid-like pattern of a Hippodamian plan. In 31 BC, Kassope was abandoned and its inhabitants eventually established a settlement at Nikopolis. Today, visitors can explore the Nikopolis Museum here displaying finds from the town’s ancient ruins and cemetery.The Agora (market place) above right, has been give most attention,with its stoa and its octagonal Doric columns, terracotta antefixes of eagles and thunderbolts, eagles and Ganymedes. Statues of deceased citizens originally lined some bases that were found, dedicated to the gods and to the city itself. The 3rd century BC building there was built on top of an earlier one. Other structures include a possible Prytaneion, set around a small courtyward which once had a Doric portico; east of the Agora is an Odeion; behind the north end of the stoa are remains of a hostel (a Katagogeion), each room featuring a hearth and table, the rooms surrounding a court with a peristyle of octagonal Doric columns and and entrance porch to the street.

Some houses have also been unearthed, mostly consisting of rooms around small courts and built during the Classical period, though often remodeled later. There is also a Theater and a Macedonian Chamber Tomb.

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