Eleusina: the sacred city of Athens
Acropolis and Parthenon are considered to be the sacred hill of ancient Greece, along with Olympia, Delphi and Delos as well. But not that many as it maybe should, know that the most important place in ancient Greek world was Eleusis, modern Greek Elefsina, located about 20 kilometers far from Acropolis. The way that led there was called Iera Odos, existing till today, even not used, and it was the main festival not only for Athens, but for the entire Greek world. It was also the birthplace of the tragic poet Aeschylus. Unfortunately, Eleusina was completely destroyed, with the prevail of Christianity and Byzantine period.
The mysteries were the most famous event in ancient Greece, and all of the most intellectual and powerful people even of the Roman period, like Emperor Hadrian, Julian and also Cicero were participants. From famous Greeks there were Socrates, Plato, Aristotle, Sophocles and Plutarch.
The mysteries were kept secret for centuries. The city was completely destroyed at the 4th century AD, as well as with many ancient Greek monuments.
The modern city
Today you can enjoy a magnificent view from the site to the surrounding mountains, even Athens’ mountain Ymmetus, showing that the hill was initially used as a communication port as well.
Today you can access Eleusina directly from Athens airport via Attiki Odos, in less than one hour. The museum that is located inside the archeological space, but is not open due to restoration activities until 2021, when Eleusina is the European cultural capital. The city could be a major industrial heritage site of Europe as well.