Explore the ruins on Islands in the Mediterranean

by Jules on April 19, 2013

Whether you’re thinking about Menorca holidays or a trip to Israel, there’s plenty to do across the Mediterranean. From landscapes to culture to ruins, there’s something for all the family. Here we look at the ruins on offer, starting in Cyprus…

Cyprus

The ancient Cypriot city of Salamis is said to be founded by the Trojan war hero Teucer. Resisting the Persian invasion in the 5th century BC and helped by Alexander the great the city flourished and even minted its own coinage. Tragically, the last King of Salamis killed himself to avoid surrendering to the Egyptian King in 295BC and burned his palace to the ground.

However, the ancient ruins can still be seen today in their magnificent and captivating form in Cyprus. Sprawled over 1km with a beautiful sandy beach running against it this is a place to discover the history and the beauty of Cyprus.

Malta

Described as the hidden Gem of the Mediterranean, Malta offers some wonderful ruins to be discovered. Found under rubble in 1839, the megalithic temples ruins date back from around 2400 – 2000 B.C.

Around 50 remains of temples have been found on the islands of Maltaand have been beautifully reconstructed with roofs, paving, doors, sculptures and paintings. A rich amount of mystery surrounds these ruins which makes them even more intriguing. Some historians believe that the early Maltese’s architecture evolved from sinple rock-cut graves to the later magnificent temple complexes between 3800 and 2400 BC although no dates are set in stone.

Sicily

Syracuse or the Parco Archeologico della Neapolis is the largest Greek Theatre in Sicily and is certainly a breathtaking archeological site. It still houses classical plays as it did in the times of Aeschylus. The Ear of Dionysius is also a spectacular site at the quarries of the Latomie del Paradiso.

The Villa Romana del Casale in the Piazza Armerina will give an insight into the way the wealthy Romans lives. The impressive ruin comes complete with traditional Roman baths and is embellished in beautiful mosaics on its floors. Stories can also be found within these Mosaics which describe every day life, hunting and one even paints the picture of a female athlete with stitches on her leg.

Crete

A trip to Crete would not be complete without a trip to the famous archeological site of Knossos, though to be the capital of Minoan Crete. The architecture is grander and more flamboyant than many of the other ancient Mediterranean constructions of its time. According to legend, the palace was designed by the famous architect Dedalos in such a way that ensured that nobody could find its exit. However, this is said to have worked against him as King Minor soon held him prisoner to guarantee he would not reveal the plans of the palace to anyone. A breathtaking site full of history and intrigue.

Majorca

Yes Majorca has much more to offer than a simple beach holiday, it is also filled with ancient Roman ruins that will take your breath away. The ancient Roman city of Pol-lentia dates back to 123 AD and was a thriving part of the Roman Empire for many years only to fall to ruin as the empire did. Excavated in 1920, the ancient city has been rescued and visitors can now walk its grounds whilst learning about the history of Majorca.

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