Epidaurus, Greece – Top 12 Interesting Facts about the City
Updated On: September 15, 2023
One of the most significant archaeological sites in Greece is the Ancient Epidaurus. It is renowned for having an incredible ancient theatre with good acoustics. The area is excellent for vacations, though. In the Peloponnese region of mainland Greece, there is a place called Epidaurus.
The historic site is adjacent to several lovely villages and beaches, including the seaside town of Ancient Epidaurus, a delightful fishing location with a few tiny beaches, fish restaurants, and studios.
The Ancient Theatre is the most significant landmark in Epidaurus, Greece. The theatre is exceptional due to its good state of conservation, which allows it to be still in a functioning condition, in addition to the symmetry of its construction.
The superb acoustics of this building is another distinguishing feature. Even if you are seated in the very last row of the theatre, you will hear whatever you drop on the stage.
The ancient Greek plays are performed here throughout the summer. The Sanctuary of Asklepios, a well-known healing facility in ancient times, is just a short distance from the Ancient Theatre.
The Archaeological Museum is home to a variety of fascinating exhibits culled from the site’s excavations. The majority of tourists visit Epidaurus, Greece, as part of a day trip from Athens, but this is a good area for enjoyable family vacations as well.
About a three-hour drive from Athens lies the picturesque fishing hamlet of Palea Epidaurus. It is located in the eastern portion of the Peloponnese and is a part of the Argolida region.
The mythological heritage is connected to history since Asklepios, the god of healing and Apollo’s son is claimed to have been born there. In fact, Epidaurus was home to the Asklepieion, the most well-liked medical facility in antiquity.
This structure was expanded and rebuilt between the 4th and 3rd centuries BC as a result of a rigorous Roman programme focused on monumental structures. The project was a success, and it had advantages that lasted throughout the Hellenistic period.
Other distinctive monuments that contribute to Epidaurus, Greece, also greatly distinguish it from other cities. One of these is the Ancient Theatre, a structure whose splendour is still evident today. The theatre, like the Asclepieion, owes a portion of its magnificence to the Romans; as under their rule, it got 21 more rows in addition to the existing 34.
This venue also has excellent acoustics, which means that even with a capacity of 15,000 spectators, the performers’ voices do not need to be amplified. Everyone in the audience can hear the play clearly, regardless of their seat in the theatre.
The Epidaurus Little Theatre, in addition to the Ancient Theatre of Epidaurus, is another theatre in the vicinity that still hosts musical and dramatic acts today. However, the region around Epidaurus is renowned for its lush landscape and scenic splendour as well as its historic landmarks.
The terrain is dotted with the mediaeval settlements of Ancient and Nea Epidaurus, gorgeous monasteries, striking gorges, and lovely beaches. A few visitors come to the tranquil ancient city of Epidaurus in the summer. It
is quiet throughout the winter, and the locals depend on agriculture and fishing for a living.
Greeks consider Nea Epidavros to be historically significant since it was here in 1822 that the First Institutional Meeting of the Greek State was held. A mediaeval castle that is in ruins is located above this community.
Asklepios, the deity of healing, has a significant influence on the history of Epidaurus. The healing deity Asklepios, a son of Apollo, was born at Epidaurus, according to Greek mythology4. Epidaurus houses the most well-known medical facility from antiquity.
The Romans expanded and partially rebuilt this edifice between the fourth and third centuries BC. The Asklepieion of Epidaurus, renowned as a significant therapeutic location, used to attract ailing people from all across Greece.
The sanctuary of Asklepios was built because Apollo Maleatas’ temple was too small to accommodate all of these individuals. The various documents on exhibit in Greek museums attest to the astute and cautious nature of the Asklepieion’s medical professionals.
They discuss the well-known Asklepios seventy miracles as well as other methodically planned medical treatments for the all-natural treatment of various illnesses. A temple, lodgings, and baths were also located in the sanctuary to aid in the recovery of patients from a variety of illnesses.
These bath-based therapies were most effective for people with skin conditions, and they might also benefit from working out in the gym. Even though the majority of sick individuals travelled to Epidaurus in hopes of finding a miracle cure, they often had to stay and receive treatment.
Additionally, they used to take natural baths, recuperate before returning to their original location, give sacrifices to the deity Asklepios, and take part in games that were held every four years.
The theatrical productions at the Ancient Theatre were a component of religious celebrations, and these games would be held in the stadium of Epidaurus.
Unfortunately, the sanctuary suffered significant damage from two significant earthquakes in 551 and 522 AD, and over time, wars, invasions, and natural calamities demolished the whole structure. Archaeologists uncovered the Asklepios temple and the Ancient Theatre in the late 19th century.
The Ancient Theatre is renowned for its exceptional acoustics, which enables voices to be heard from the scene to the last row. The seating capacity of the old theatre at Epidaurus is around 14,000 people.
After antiquity, the area around Epidaurus started to decay. To defend the area against invaders, a mediaeval castle was built near the settlement of Nea Epidaurus.
Epidaurus only acquired a significant political significance in the early 19th century when the first Greek revolutionary government was created there and the first Greek constitution was established (1822).
Now, Epidaurus is a very popular archaeological site, and during summer festivals, plays from antiquity are still performed at the Ancient Theatre.
Given that Greece does not have significant regional variations due to its size, it is simple to compare the weather in Epidaurus to that of the rest of the country.
Greece is situated in the southeast of Europe, and because it is encircled by the Aegean and Ionian Seas and the East Mediterranean, its climate is generally comparable to that of the other Mediterranean nations.
Low-lying areas often get warm, dry summers with clear skies, while winters are typically wet. The mountainous regions, on the other hand, have more rain and a tendency to be cooler.
Even though these weather conditions are uncommon in this sort of terrain, they can be witnessed throughout the winter on the summits of mountains. Nevertheless, despite the overall regularity brought on by the moderating influences of the sea, rainfalls often vary from one place to another based on terrain.
After spring has ended, summer officially starts in late June, and the typical weather, with highs of 30°C and above, lasts until early September. Except for a few significant thunderstorms near the end of the season, rain practically never falls during this customary vacation time of the year.
On the northeastern edge of the Peloponnese, the prefecture of Argolida includes the historical area of Epidaurus. It gets its name from the ancient Epidaurus theatre, which is 15 kilometres away from the settlement. In ancient times, the community of Ancient Epidaurus functioned as a port.
Ships that transported passengers to the historical theatre and the well-known healing temple of Asklepios were docked there. This community now serves as the primary tourist destination for the area and has a charming harbour for yachts and fishing boats.
The surrounding lush foliage, primarily made up of pine trees, is Epidaurus’ most distinctive geographic characteristic. Throughout the region, there are peninsulas covered in pine trees that extend to the sea.
The drawback of these pine trees is that moths and bees and other obtrusive insects congregate there in large numbers. The fruit trees in Epidaurus’ interior, especially lemon and orange trees, are also well-known. Argolida is renowned for its high-quality citrus tree production. The aroma of citrus trees when driving through the neighbourhood is incredible.
Ancient Site of Epidaurus
Epidaurus is one of the most significant ancient sites in Greece and is about a two-hour drive from Athens. It is situated in the northern Peloponnese. It owes its prosperity to the Asklepieion, a medicinal facility where people would go to receive treatment from the god Apollo.
Since Asclepius the Healer, a son of Apollo, was said to have been born in Epidaurus, the city’s shrine and healing centre had great popularity in antiquity. People in need of healing would travel there from all around Greece and Asia Minor.
Following the therapeutic procedure, god Apollo would visit each patient’s dream as they slept in a big sleeping hall. The patients would describe their dreams to the sanctuary priests the next day, who would then interpret them and determine which course of action should be taken to treat the patient.
Every four years, celebrations and sporting events would be held in the god’s honour to thank him for his counsel. This is the reason a stadium near the Asklepieion was discovered, where athletic contests would be held in homage to the deity Apollo and his son Asclepius.
To accommodate plays and rituals as part of the celebrations for the gods, the renowned Ancient Theatre of Epidaurus was also built for this purpose.
The Ancient Theatre of Epidaurus, which amazes visitors with its symmetry and beauty, was designed by Polykleitos the Younger in the 4th century BC.
With the ability to host 15,000 viewers, this theatre is famous for its exceptional acoustics that allows even the spectators of the last row to listen to what actors are saying on the scene.
During the Hellenistic era, the Asklepieion sanctuary enjoyed fame and riches; but, after that, the Romans, the Goths, and pirates frequently plundered the site.
However, the healing centre continued to function as a Christina centre even after the advent of Christianity, before it started to deteriorate over time. The ancient city of Epidaurus was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1988, and today it receives millions of visitors annually.
The sacred sanctuary of Asklepios, which was revered as the most magnificent of all Greek sanctuaries, made Epidaurus famous throughout the ancient Greek world.
The ancient theatre of Epidaurus, which is dedicated to Asklepios and is beautifully surrounded by lush terrain, is one of the best-preserved structures in the world and the greatest example of ancient Greek architecture.
On the slopes of Mount Kynortion, it was constructed by Polykleitos in the latter part of the 4th century. This design, which includes a stage, orchestra, and auditorium, is typical of theatres from the Hellenistic era. It is
divided into two portions by a semi-circular aisle; the bottom half contains 34 rows of benches, while the later-added top section has 21 rows.
Even today, the theatre at Epidaurus that was devoted to the God of healing is renowned for its superb acoustics and vast size. Contrary to other Greek ancient theatres, Epidaurus’ theatre did not change during the Roman era, keeping its original design until the end of antiquity.
The curious monuments and views at the Epidaurus ancient site will astound the visitor. However, the historic site is not the only place where Epidaurus’ architecture may be found.
Nea Epidaurus, a lovely community located nearby and tucked behind the remnants of a Venetian fortress, is situated on the hillside slopes of a narrow valley. A lovely collection of homes with tiled roofs may be found there, but getting there requires walking past a lot of vibrant yards.
The Agios Ioannis Church and Agnoundos Monastery are both of significant significance.
Major theatre productions are presented in the Ancient Theatre of Epidaurus every summer as part of the Greek Festival on the weekends in July and August.
Greek play makes up the majority of these performances. In the harbour community of Palea Epidaurus, the Little Theatre of Epidaurus hosts a select number of other theatrical productions, musical concerts, and lectures.
Greek Festival: All summer long, the Greek Festival is celebrated in Epidaurus and Athens. The festivities, which are held specifically in Epidaurus, take place on the weekends in July and August in the Ancient Theatre and the Little Theatre. Ancient Greek theatrical productions, musical concerts, and lectures are among the activities.
Agricultural Festivity: Every the lovely harbour town of Palea Epidaurus, an agricultural show featuring regional goods is held in July.
Museums in Epidaurus
One of the most significant cities in Greece, Epidaurus has a rich cultural and archaeological history. Since antiquity, it has been known for its various historic structures, the existence of ancient sites, and its renowned antique theatre, which is the only one of its kind on the whole globe.
The Archaeological Museum of Epidaurus is conveniently located next to both this famous landmark and the Asklepius shrine. The museum is home to a voluminous collection of historical artefacts that were discovered during the excavations.
Building inscriptions and hymns, many of which are connected to the sanctuary of Asclepius, the most significant sanctuary in ancient Greece, are among the items on show at this magnificent museum.
You may view temple columns, other architectural components, and Roman sculptures in different display rooms. The museum is organised into three rooms, the first of which houses a sizable collection of antique medicinal devices connected to the Asklepius temple.
The sanctuary’s colonnades and sculptures are all across the second chamber. The third chamber, which includes this statue of Artemis and its pillars, is devoted to various temple components. Along with various earthenware, pottery, and other minor artefacts, the museum also features an intriguing exhibit of fossils that were discovered in Epidaurus.
Epidaurus Archaeological Museum: is situated between the Asklepieion and the Ancient Theatre inside the archaeological site. The museum was founded in 1897 and was crucial for preserving and displaying the results of the extensive excavation of the Asklepios shrine (1881–1928) under the direction of the archaeologist Panagis Kavvadias.
The building’s construction was finished in 1900, and it became a museum in 1909. The structure is one of Greece’s oldest archaeological museums. In actuality, the museum’s exhibition, which was also prepared by Panagis Kavvadias, is ancient and is a typical example of the early 29th-century museology idea, with a dense show ranking in a little space.
This further demonstrates the necessity for Epidaurus to build a brand-new, cutting-edge museum. Two oblong rooms and a tiny hall make up the museum.
These displays span the Archaic through Roman eras and feature artefacts such pieces of temples and sanctuaries, the Propylaea of the Ancient Theatre, the Tholos of Epidaurus, sculptures from both periods, epigraphs, miniature statuettes, implements for healing, coins, and more.
Numerous pleasant places to spend the night are available in the towns around the ancient city of Epidaurus. The town of Ancient (Palea) Epidaurus is a charming setting for a leisurely meal in one of the restaurants by the harbour or a pleasant drink in one of the few lounge cafes.
There are a few clubs outside the hamlet that are open all night. There are other similar pubs and cafeterias for a lounge evening in the neighbouring villages, such as Ligourio. You may go an hour or so to Nafplion or Tolo for a more active nightlife, with more visitors and all-night parties.
Best Epidaurus Restaurants:
- Epidaurus To Perivoli tis Gogos: The spiritedly constructed “To Perivoli tis Gogos” Tavern in Ancient Epidavros is situated in an area surrounded by orange trees.
Its kitchen blends tradition and fantasy to create grilled main courses, hotpots, snacks, and outstanding dishes for any palate. A pleasant and delicious lunch is assured by excellent, attentive cooking, attentive service, and a friendly attitude.
- Epidaurus Mouria: There are many reasons to travel to Mouria, including the local cuisine, the lovely beach, coffee with friends, and of course, Epidavros.
The key features of this restaurant include Greek food, recipes that haven’t changed over time, and a distinctively designed green atmosphere by the sea.
- Epidaurus To Kalogerikon in Panagia: In its 10 years of existence, Kalogerikon has established a reputation for both its food’s excellent preparation and its overall appearance.
Because the estate is surrounded by orange tree yards, the area surrounding it always smells orange, especially in the summer. The menu offers a variety of salads, appetisers, and hot main courses, with Greek cuisine in charge.
Seafood pasta and pieces of meat are well paired with fresh vegetables. The dinner menu is frequently modified, but you always have access to wine and beer made by regional farmers, which is a hidden gem.
- Epidaurus Stork: At the distinctive STORK restaurant, have a memorable meal with the people you care about. A lavish and welcoming location that is ready to provide you with special culinary delights.
You may also take in the most stunning view of Epidaurus while sipping on your beverage or drinking your coffee at the cafe-bar area.
1) Epidavros Seascape: Epidavros Seascape, which is 650 metres from Camping Bekas Beach, has a seasonal outdoor pool, a garden, and air-conditioned lodging with a balcony and free WiFi.
A terrace, a fully furnished kitchen with a refrigerator, a fireplace, a seating area, a flat-screen TV, a washing machine, and a private bathroom with a bath and a hairdryer are all included in each unit.
There is also a kettle and a coffee maker, as well as an oven, a burner, and a toaster. Hiking is possible nearby, and Epidavros Seascape may arrange a car rental service if you’d like to explore the region.
2) Melissafarm Guest House: Around 7 miles from the Archaeological Site of Epidaurus, Melissafarm Guest House provides lodging with a patio and a coffee maker. The property, which is 7 miles from the Ancient Theater of Epidaurus, has a garden and free private parking.
One separate bedroom, one bathroom, and a fully furnished kitchen with a refrigerator and a cooktop make up the air-conditioned flat. There are bed linens and towels available. There is a patio in the flat. Elefthérios Venizélos Airport is 78 kilometres away from Melissafarm Guest House.
3) Verdelis Inn: The Verdelis Inn in Argolida, which is surrounded by a well-kept garden and is close to Palaia Epidavros Port, has air-conditioned rooms, a restaurant, and free WiFi in all areas.
The distance to Gialasi is 2 kilometres. A fridge and TV are provided in each room at Verdes. They have balconies that have views of the ocean, a garden, or mountains. There is a hydro-massage shower in each bathroom.
The daily continental breakfast is available to guests in the dining area to help them get their day started. For lunch and supper, the on-site restaurant specialises in Greek food and seafood specialities.
There is also a bar and a function room. The distance between the Mycenae Archaeological Site and the Ancient Epidaurus Theatre is 54 km and 18 km, respectively. There is free public parking available close by.
4) Aristotelis: The beach is a 10-minute stroll from this house. In Yialasi, the hotel Aristotelis is conveniently located next to Yialasi beach and Ancient Epidavros. It has opulent decor, a restaurant, a bar, a swimming pool, and a private parking lot.
At the Hotel Aristotelis, every accommodation has a sizable balcony with views of the ocean. Anatomic beds, a minibar, a hairdryer, and a safe are available. Some rooms are accessible to those with disabilities.
There are enjoyable and relaxing times in the pool. The poolside bar serves up refreshing beverages throughout the day and night for patrons to enjoy.
Best Things to Do in Epidaurus
1)Shopping in Epidaurus: Shopping is typically overshadowed by the offered cultural events in Epidaurus, a contemporary town with several tour facilities and a large selection of intriguing activities.
Between the theatre and the archaeological site, there is a tiny gift shop where you may get a memento, some postcards, or a guide to Epidaurus.
But those who value living a natural lifestyle will be charmed by the range of regional goods available in nearby stores or at the summer market at the historic harbour.
Products like olives, cheese, and baked goods are prepared using only natural ingredients—farmers don’t even use pesticides—and time-honoured techniques.
Fruits, especially citrus, may be tasted and purchased in the neighbourhood stores at affordable costs, along with thyme honey, various types of wines, and fruits.
- Ceramotechnica Xipolias in Epidaurus: Greek mythology has served as the inspiration for the ceramics that Ceramotechnica Xipolias has been producing since 1974.
They are driven to manufacture ceramics and pottery with the right infrastructure, premium materials, and cutting-edge techniques for both ornamentation and everyday usage. Visit the showroom to see our handcrafted items’ wide range and Greek artistic influence.
2)Epidaurus Paragliding: Paragliding in Flying Paradise Greece is a popular destination for paragliding pilots, from beginners to professionals, as well as for their spouses, families, friends, and other people or groups. For more than 20 years, spring and fall have become full-time seasons.
Although everyone is welcome for whatever long they stay, the majority of clients stay for 9, 10, or more days. Only two of the ten flying locations are specifically for soaring; the remainder are all thermal flying and, of course, XC locations.
3)Epidaurus Scuba Diving: The epidive centre is located directly in the quaint bay of Palaia Epidavros, a lovely hamlet. We provide guided dives, courses, formations, trial dives for novices, and diving tours to the islands of the Saronic Gulf. We are affiliated with SSI, PADI, and CMAS.
From the Try Dive through the Divemaster Program, every one of our dives and instruction is conducted in a welcoming and comforting environment. We provide a variety of diving locations that have stunning cliffs and drop-offs, fish-rich reefs, even ancient treasures, wreck dives, and cave dives.
The most recent Beuchat gear is available at the diving shop. We have three boats: the “Sofia Loren,” a typical Greek caique, and two smaller but faster ones. The latter is our pride. The club also offers non-divers activities including monitored buoys, boat tours, wakeboarding, and snorkelling. A boat may also be rented for a full or partial day.
4)Epidaurus Canyoning: An ideal sea kayaking adventure is organised by Tribal Kayak in Epidaurus, giving guests the chance to explore the ancient city’s ruins and the surrounding natural beauty.
The participants in this activity can swim or snorkel while utilising the Tribal Kayak equipment on Yialasi Beach, which is located south of Palaia Epidaurus. Visitors can ride with a friend or another family member because the kayaks have either one or two seats.
Whatever the participants’ level of fitness or expertise, this sea kayaking excursion is offered all year long and is perfect for everyone.
5)Epidaurus Medieval Castle: There are the remains of a mediaeval castle that was constructed to defend the region from intruders and pirates on the hilltop above the traditional town of Nea Epidaurus, some 15 kilometres from the archaeological site.
The hill serves as a natural fortress since from its top one can see the whole region, including the Epidaurus Valley in the Peloponnese. Only the remnants of a few towers from this Frankish Castle, which was built in the early 13th century, are still visible today.
The churches of Saint Theodosios, Panagia, and Saint John once stood inside the walls, although only the last one is still standing today. You may explore the magnificent Vothylas Gorge and the location of the first Constitutional Meeting of the current Greek State, which took place in 1822, both of which are within walking distance of the mediaeval castle of Nea Epidaurus.
6)Epidaurus Monastery Of Taxiarches: 5 kilometres to the west of the settlement of Nea Epidaurus is where you’ll find the Monastery of Taxiarches.
Originally constructed in the early 15th century, this monastery. The monk Nyphon, who subsequently rose to prominence as the first bishop of Thessaloniki and Patriarch of Constantinople and made significant contributions to the establishment of the Romanian Orthodox church, is said to have found it.
He was made a saint after his passing, and August 11 is dedicated to his remembrance. The main church of the monastery is where the remains of Saint Gabriel, Saint Nyphon’s assistant, are preserved.
The monastery conducted Greek language lessons for the Greek youngsters who were being held as slaves and made significant contributions to the Greek War of Independence.
Before being destroyed in 1945, the monastery’s main church had a total floor area of just 21 square metres. After it, a tiny Byzantine church was erected there. The sisters have been the sole residents of the monastery since 1945, and it is available to tourists.
7)Epidaurus Monastery Of Agnountos: The Monastery of Agnountos is a stunning example of Byzantine art and regional architecture that inspires awe in both tourists and academics.
The monastery, which is situated on a high slope 7 kilometres from Epidaurus, welcomes guests with lovely olive gardens, rocky slopes, and mountains covered in lush woods.
According to a legend, visitors noticed a faint light on a nearby peak. Following the light, the tourists arrived at the location and discovered a hidden Virgin Mary icon. As a result, they constructed a monastery close by to remember this occasion.
The Greek term agnantevo, which means to look, is possibly where the name of the monastery comes from. It is regarded as a symbol of Christianity and is thought to have been constructed in the 11th century.
Despite the lack of documentation on the building date, monk-created graffiti from 1029 A.D. has been discovered. Given that the Peloponnese has historically been vulnerable to invasion by pirates and Turks, among other invaders, it is not surprising that the monastery was constructed with thick, high walls.
To provide proper safety, there are several towers and hiding spots. The monastery’s distinctively designed church, which is entirely constructed of stone, rises in the middle of the yard. The building is supported by 8 pillars, 4 of which are placed along each sidewall and have a curved top.
Above these pillars, spherical domes are built, and the main octagonal dome is supported by arcs and domes. All of the church’s architectural features are extremely symmetrical.
The inside of the church is decorated with exquisite murals that date to 1250. The most spectacular and well-liked woodcarving of the time was used to create iconostasis.
The stunning golden-scarlet hue has been used to carve images of branches, leaves, birds, and even fruits. The etched inscription states that it was made in 1713.
8)Epidaurus Little Theatre: The Epidaurus Little Theatre is situated in a neighbourhood named Nisi, close to the harbour of Palea Epidaurus. In addition to hosting theatrical productions, it served as the ancient city-theatre state and provided a venue for political and religious events.
The restoration of this theatre, which was found in the early 1970s hidden beneath an olive grove, is still ongoing.
Its construction began in the fourth century B.C., and because it was first created to meet the demands of this little city-state, it was not very large. It could hold roughly 2,000 spectators and had 9 decks and 18 rows of seats.
Inscriptions on some seats reveal that the theatre was constructed in parts and was dedicated to the deity Dionissos. Roman times saw a complete renovation of this theatre, with a semicircular orchestra and a new seating layout.
The little theatre in Epidaurus, nevertheless, is thought to have been in use for just seven centuries after it was built since Pausanias. A traveller who visited the region in the middle of the 2nd century BC, made no mention of it.
In front of the theatre’s orchestra is a restored, historic, two-story home. Roman times saw a complete renovation of this theatre, with a semicircular orchestra and a new seating layout.
The little theatre in Epidaurus, nevertheless, is thought to have been in use for just seven centuries after it was built since Pausanias, a traveller who visited the region in the middle of the 2nd century BC, made no mention of it. In front of the theatre’s orchestra is a restored, historic, two-story home.
9)Epidaurus Sanctuary Of Asklepios: A holy healing location dedicated to Asklepios, the god of healing, the deity who could relieve people of their suffering and disease, was known as the Sanctuary of Asclepius, or Asklepieion, in Epidaurus.
Such sanctuaries were common in ancient Greece and were well-liked since people would travel there for healing from all around the Mediterranean. Asclepius was said to be the progeny of the mortal Arsinoi, daughter of the monarch of Messinia, and the deity Apollo.
He was once mortal, but due to his extraordinary healing abilities, people worshipped him as a deity. According to legend, Asklepius discovered all of the treatments for illnesses, and death would no longer exist.
Zeus murdered Asklepios with a bolt of lightning because he had upset the natural order of things. People would travel to an Asklepieion, the Asclepius temple, in the hopes of being healed.
There were other similar sanctuaries dispersed across Greece, but the most well-known one, which attracted travellers from all over Greece as well as from other parts of the Mediterranean Sea, was at Epidaurus, the mythical birthplace of Asklepius.
People would spend the night in a sleeping room to determine the best course of therapy for them, and the god would appear to them in their dreams to instruct them on how to recover.
The sanctuary also had a hotel with 160 rooms, a stadium, and thermal springs in addition to sleeping quarters. People constructed a theatre about 340 B.C. to entertain temple guests and honour the gods.
Today known as the Theatre of Epidaurus, it is regarded as a marvel of architecture. This theatre was built by Polykleitos the Younger, and it is renowned for its excellent acoustics.
The sanctuary was pillaged by pirates in 67 BC and by the Roman commander Sulla in 87 BC. The Archaeological Institute conducted excavations there in the 19th century, which uncovered the Asclepius temple as well as a few temples to Artemis and Apollo.
The sanctuary and the nearby theatre together make up a well-known archaeological site today.
On the productive Argolid plain of the eastern Peloponnese of Greece, Epidaurus was a prehistoric religious centre and town.
The shrine of Asclepius at Epidaurus was a significant religious site in both ancient Greek and Roman civilizations because of its temperate environment and natural springs. The location is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and has the enormous Epidaurus theatre.