Cycling to Thermopylae and the Thermal Springs, located 24.9 km from Hotel Sissy, is a pleasant route and relatively easy through the coastal road of Kamena Vourla.
In mythical times, the goddess Athena asked Gaia to create the baths of Thermopylae so that Hercules could heal the wounds after his exploits.
The landscape of Thermopylae in antiquity was different from today. The passage of Thermopylae was possible through a path about nine kilometers long and up to 20 meters wide, between the sea of the Gulf of Maliakos and the steep slopes of Mount Kallidromos.
From there the troops of Xerxes would pass in the summer of 480 BC. to go south, to Athens and the Peloponnese. There the Greeks chose to wait for them, as the strait gave them the opportunity to neutralize the numerical advantage of their opponents and not allow the development of their strong cavalry.
Next to the monument of Leonidas, in the historical location of Thermopylae, is the Thermopylae Information Center, https://www.lamia.gr/basiki-selida/kentro-istorikis-enimerosis-thermopylon, dedicated to the battle of 480 BC. which changed the flow of Greek history and beyond.
Do not forget to climb the hill opposite the monument, which has been identified with Kolonos, where the final phase of the battle of Thermopylae took place. In the 1st century AD, the neo-Pythagorean philosopher and leading mystic of antiquity, Apollonius from Cappadocia visited Thermopylae to pay tribute to the famous site. He was then asked which is the highest mountain, and he disarmingly replied: “The highest mountain is Kolonos because in it the faith in the law and the noble self-sacrifice erected a monument of human virtue whose pedestal is here and the top is in the stars”.
The form of the hill of Kolonos, where the final phase of the battle of 480 BC took place. has changed radically from antiquity to the present, due to the construction of successive defensive works in the area, in different eras, a fact that confirms its importance as a strategic point of defense. The small excavation of 1939 on the above hill yielded a number of iron and bronze spears and arrowheads of the 5th c. BC, many of which belong to Eastern types.
According to the narration of Herodotus, the fallen of the battle of Thermopylae were buried there and in their honor a stone lion was erected and three inscribed monuments. Today the top of the hill is adorned with a representation of the epigram of Simonides of Keios.
Cyclists will have the opportunity to pass through the spa town of Kamena Vourla, to taste the local delicacies by the sea but also to be enchanted by the combination of mountain and sea offered by Kamena Vourla. The route you follow is through the old highway, without major uphills. Approaching the baths, the water vapor gives the space a mystical atmosphere. As the water gushes from the waterfall, at a temperature of 41 degrees, body and spirit are delivered in a slow clearing. Access to the spring is free and its water contains mainly sulfur and sodium. It is famous for its healing properties in rheumatic, arthritic, gynecological, neurological diseases, as well as in diseases of the respiratory system, asthma, bronchitis and emphysema.
- The Statue of Leonidas
- Hill of Kolonos
- The Center of Historical Information
- Ηot Water Springs of Thermopyles
- the view of Kallidromos mountain
- the Center of Kamena Vourla
- coffee shop in the center