Journey through Ancient Greece
Ancient Dion is an area at the foot of Mt Olympus. Ancient kings of Macedonia had chosen Dion as their summer resort. There they created, centuries ago, a settlement in the ruins of which the parts of the ancient Macedonian civilization are evident. Archaeologists, with Professor D Pantermalis at the head of them, discovered an admirable civilization. Remains of an ancient theatre, market baths and palace. Most royal tombs give away the existence of an eminent and thriving civilization. Today we can admire the ruins of that civilization in the archaeological site of Dion and the archaeological museum of Dion.
Dion was the sacred city of Macedon, built at the foot of Mount Olymbos, the home of the gods. With sanctuaries dedicated to Zeus, Demeter, Artemis, Asklepios and the Egyptian goddess Isis. At the end of the 5th century BC King Arkelaos I, founder of Pella, built the sanctuary to Zeus.
In around 43 BC Roman colonists arrived here and after the Battle of Actium (31 BC) Augustus organised a mass transportation of Italians.
In the courtyard as you enter the museum are a number of Macedonian altars; made of marble and usually surmounted by a large pine cone, these were placed over tombs in the 2nd & 3rd centuries AD. In the portico are the leaves of the marble door of a Macedonian tomb.
On the ground floor are beautifully displayed the many statues and steles, found in the Baths and the sanctuaries of Isis and Demeter, and dating from the 4th century BC to the 2nd century AD. They include a group of six 2nd century AD statues with inscriptions which identify them as the children of Asklepios.
The Archaeological Site
We can see remains from the Hellenistic, Roman and Byzantine phases of Dion’s existence.