Aigion – the Beautiful Balcony of the Corinthian Gulf
Aigio is the second largest city of Achaia, after Patras and the seat of Aigialeia Municipality. The town is built amphiteatrically on a hill 60 meters above sea level overlooking the Corinthian Gulf. According to Stravona, the name Aigio is derived from the sacred goat (aiga) Amanthea, which nursed baby Zeus when hiding from his father, who ate his own children.
The city of Aigio is today divided in the lower town (Greek: kato poli) which also covers the coastal area, in the middle town (Greek: mesi poli) including Galaxidiotika or Agios Andreas, and the upper town (Greek: ano poli) with the historic centre and the neighborhood Synoikismos.
Where is Aigio?
Aigiois a town in Aigialeia, Achaea, on the north coast of Peloponnese in Greece. Its population is around 30,000. Aigio is surrounded by trees in the north and cliffs in the northwest. The city can be accessed by GR-8A from the south and west. Mountains neighbor the southern part. The area was known as Vostitsa or Vostice from the medieval times until the 20th century.
Aigio on a map
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A city with a stunning view
The blue Corinthian Gulf can be seen from many parts of the city, and a short walk from any of several main streets, via steep concrete steps set into the cliffside, open to a motorway lined with elite restaurants and eclectic hotels facing the sea. The brilliant blue harbour at Aigio boasts a long pier where fishing boats and sailboats are docked. Fishermen bring their catches from a night of fishing into the markets every morning. There are no beaches at Aigio, but outstanding, unspoiled beaches are only a 5 to 10 minutes drive from the city centre, and both taxis and buses are available.
Aigio Beach Guide
The coast of Aigialeia has several beautiful beaches with crystal-clear waters. Here you can swim and relax while enjoying delicious dishes and entertainment at the seaside restaurants and bars.
West of Aigio Town
- Lampiri beach – pebbled with trees on the beach and clean sea, partly organized with sunbeds and umbrellas, and great fish taverns, located 17 km west of Aigio.
- Buka beach – a tranquil, pebbled beach with trees, deep clean water. The beach is non-organized, but you will find shade under the trees. It is near Buka village where you will find cafes and restaurants, located 11,5 km west of Aigio.
- Akonia beach – tranquil, pebbled beach with cafes and restaurants. The sea is clean, the beach is non-organized, located 11 km west of Aigio.
- Loggos (or Itia) beach – small, picturesque with popular bars. Quiet, non-organized with no shade so bring your own umbrella. Located 8,7 km west of Aigio.
- Selianitika beach – pebbled town beach, beautiful with crystal-clear sea and open-air cinema nearby. Organized with beach showers and bay watch towers, umbrellas, sunbeds, cafes, and restaurants. Located 7 km west of Aigio.
- Akolis (or Avythos) beach – deep, crystal-clear waters, not family friendly. Beautiful, pebbled beach, non-organized. Located 4,8 km west of Aigio.
East of Agio
- Digeliotika beach – pebbled and non-organized with a few trees on the beach. Beautiful with crystal-clear water and a few umbrellas and sunbeds. Located 5,5 km east of Aigio.
- Temeni beach – organized, beautiful beach with a crystal-clear sea and the great tavern of Aigion Pelagos nearby. Located 6 km east of Aigio.
- Nikoleikon beach – pebbled with crystal-clear water, quiet beach, family friendly. Partly organized with umbrellas and sunbeds. Located 9 km east of Aigio.
- Elaionas beach – Family friendly, popular, organized beach with pebbles. Umbrellas, sunbeds, cafes, and restaurants along the beach. Located 12 km east of Aigio
- Pounda (Trapeza) beach – beautiful, pebbled, one of the cleanest of Aigialeia. Not family friendly as water is very deep already one meter inside the sea. It is a quiet non-organized beach, located 19 km east of Aigio.
- Kryoneri beach – quiet and beautiful beach, non-organized with crystal-clear sea and pebbles. Just next to the picturesque harbour of Akrata, located 29 km east of Aigio.
- Akrata beach – long and wide, organized beach with many shops and restaurants. Pine trees on the pebbled beach and crystal-clear, deep waters. Located 32 km east of Aigio.
- Aigeira beach – Long, non-organized, family friendly pebbled/sandy beach with crystal-clear water. Great fish taverns with fresh fish. Located 35 east of Aigio.
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Aigio – according to Greek mythology
Greek mythology tells us that Aigio was inhabited by Pelasgians Aigialeis, whereas it was founded by the Ionians of Attica in the 16th century B.C. During the 12th century Achaeans from Laconia drove out the Ionians, settled in the area and named it Achaia.
Sites of interest include a Mycenean House dating back to ancient times, located near the cliffs. In 2000, the ancient city of Helike (sometimes called “The Lost Atlantis”) was discovered: it had been buried by an earthquake and tsunami in 373 B.C. Archaeologists are now excavating the site every summer.
The Strait of Rio
The Corinthian Gulf is a deep inlet of the Ionian Sea separating the Peloponnese from western mainland Greece. It is bounded in the east by the Isthmus of Corinth which includes the shipping route of the Corinth Canal, and in the west by the Strait of Rio, which separates the Gulf of Corinth from the outer Gulf of Patras at Cape Drepano, where the narrowest point is crossed by the Rio-Antirio bridge. The Gulf of Corinth is almost surrounded by the prefectures of Aetolia-Acarnania, Phocis in the north, Boeotia in the northeast, Attica in the east, Corinthia in the southeast and south and Achaea in the southwest. The gulf is one of the most seismically active regions in Europe.
Archaeological Museum of Aigion
The museum is housed in the building of the old town market of Aigion, which was designed by E. Ziller and built in 1890.
The collections of the museum include finds dating from the Neolithic to the Late Roman periods. Among the notable works found in the museum is the Marble statue of Aigiochos dated to the 1st century AD, a fruitstand with painted decoration, found at the Neolithic settlement of Sylivaina at Krathion and dates from the Middle Neolithic period (6000 BC), a three-handled pithos-amphora dated to the second half of the 15th century BC, and a necklace of cornelian and glass-paste beads dated to the 14th-13th century BC.
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