It is a two to three-hour ride from Patras, Greece to Olympia and the journey was as beautiful as it was long. The roads in Greece can be quite dangerous as drivers are always passing other cars into oncoming traffic which makes it quite scary for us motorcycle riders. We went through several different landscapes on our trip from the city life of Patras, Greece to the country side and mountain views along the way to Olympia, Greece. I couldn’t imagine living in a more diverse country full life and historical sites. The cites are practically built on ancient and historical ruins.
Once you arrive in Olympia, Greece to the site of the Ancient ruin of the Olympic games you will notice a majority of the ruins are eroded or broken. Years ago many of the historical artifacts that make up the site were stolen for their materials such as marble. The statues that were left are in the museum about half a mile from the site of the Olympic games.
The ticket to gain access to the site of the Olympic games is 12 Euros and includes a ticket to the museum where all the statues and artifacts are protected. Also the most important thing to note was there was air conditioning inside the museum so after a long walk through the ancient ruins you can cool off in the museum. The museum has several “minders” which are the people that make sure you don’t touch the artifacts and damage them. The minders are also highly knowledgable and will basically give you a tour if no one is there which is exactly what happened.
Being inside the museum was just as humbling as being on the site of the Olympic games as the statues are not only ancient but gargantuan compared to one meager human. The history behind each statue and artifact is captivating. There are many famous Gods and goddesses which are idolized in moments and statues so knowing your Greek mythology is a must. The most famous of all is Zeus but there are several other popular Gods and Goddesses which show up multiple times in the artifacts and greek history.
Many sections of the olympic site are either destroyed or missing. After thousands of years I guess even rocks can’t withstand the weather and constant barrage of rain. Who knows what else these ancient buildings have had to endure. The fact that anything at all is left shows how strong the buildings and moments were in their prime. Having both guides and locals help with understanding the vast history of each building. As I made my way through the site I couldn’t help but bask in the vast amount of stonework and marble artesian before me. The location of the original Olympic games is pretty much just a huge soccer field. Most of the oringinal stadium is gone.
Once you have been to the museum and the Ancient ruins of the Olympic I challenge you to take a tour of the Olympic botanical gardens. Being an avid hiker and having a small garden for my fruits and some peppers it is amazing to see so many different types of plants and flowers. I think it would be better to go when everything is blooming but it was just as captivating to see it in July.
Leaving was the easiest part for once the fine genetlemen at the ticket booth were kind enough to hold onto our helmets as we walked around and toured the grounds. The Olympic grounds closes at 8pm however they waited for us which was nice as it took 15 minutes to get the from the museum to the ticket booth. We left the grounds and headed to the near by village for food and drinks. After riding around we found a restraunt and I had Gyros for the fourth time and it tastes just as good as it taste different every where you go. Also you can have three different types from chicken to goat they also refer to it as Pita.
Leaving the village to start the ride to my next destination I realized how small we are in history. These Olympic heros and Gods had monuments made for them and not only that but people still know their names to this day. The average person is lucky to make the news when they do something of great importance. Looking back on things i’d like to be known for the decesions i’ve made and the peoples lives i’ve touched. That alone should be enough to get you through the day as it sure as hell is for me. The other reason I was thinking about what legacy I would leave behind is that once again Greek drivers are pretty crazy and there was a couple close calls. As we continue to ride I will keep everyone posted on the next stop! Vance, Out.