Oropos

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The Amphiareion of Oropos, less than an hour north of Athens, is a great site to visit for those trying to avoid the more hectic and tourist-heavy parts of the country. In Greek mythology, Amphiaros was the king of Argos, and was given by Zeus the gift of foresight. As depicted and immortalized by the legendary playwright Aeschylus, Amphiaros helped lead an alliance into battle against the city-state of Thebes, despite knowing that it would lead to his death. Thus, in ancient times, the sanctuary of Amphiaros at Oropos was a place of healing and home to an oracle, like that at Delphi. Supposedly, a pilgrim could be cured of any ailment at this temple, so long as they threw a coin into the sacred spring once they were finished!

A small theater can also be found at the site. This is a beautiful and quiet day trip, and there are few things like walking through a shady grove on a summer day, standing in front of an ancient stone seat where somebody once awaited their fortune, perhaps two thousand years ago to the very minute! The sanctuary is an excellent spot for a picnic on a warm spring, summer, or fall day, perhaps as a stop between some of the many other sites within striking distance.

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