Table of contents:
- Geographic location
- Local legends and history
- Underground labyrinths
- The town of Vouliagmeni
- Climate and beaches
- Urban development and infrastructure
- Sights in the city
- Lake resort
- Underwater peeling in the lake
- Reviews from vacationers
- Lake Vouliagmeni: how to get there
Mineral lake Vouliagmeni (Vouliagmeni Lake) is located near the town of the same name in Greece. Its water is known throughout the world for its healing properties, thanks to which many tourists and vacationers come here.
Located 20 km from the Greek capital of Athens, Lake Vouliagmeni is a well-known resort, the healing properties of which are determined by its water containing radon. Nearby, 100 m beyond the isthmus, along which the intercity route passes, is the Saronic Strait of the Aegean Sea.
According to scientists, the lake was formed in the place where the crater of the volcano used to be. It is its echoes in the form of hot springs that are the reason for the constantly warm water in Vouliagmeni. Its temperature of +21…+24°C is the most pleasant for bathing vacationers at any time of the year, especially for those who visit Greece in October-November or in winter.
According to another version, the lake was formed on the site of a huge underground cave, the upper part of which collapsed after an earthquake several centuries ago. In the Ottoman era, the lake was called "Vulyasmenos" and "Karachi", which intranslated means "black water".
Local legends and history
According to the legend told by the locals, Vouliagmeni Lake was a favorite place where the Greek goddess Athena took water procedures. The very first historical finds were made in 1924 by pupils of an orphanage at the local church. Digging in the sand, the children found marble columns, a pedestal and part of a slab on which the sanctuary of Apollo Zostiros was mentioned.
In ancient times, the Vouliagmeni region and the adjacent Voula and Vari, due to its favorable location and proximity to the sea, on the one hand, and the mountains, on the other, developed through s alt mining, and the inhabitants were also engaged in fishing and cattle breeding (bred goats). The territory was mastered in the Neolithic period (3 thousand BC), later in the 6th century. the towns were merged into the municipality of Ales Exonides and represented the Kekrop tribe.
As a result of excavations on the territory of Vouliagmeni and neighboring cities, 2 s alt works, 3 pottery workshops, as well as residential buildings (consisting of several rooms, a kitchen and a bath) and an ancient road were discovered. This testifies to the high standard of living of the ancient inhabitants of this region of Greece.
The bottom of the thermal lake Vouliagmeni is a whole system of karst caves through which groundwater passes. In total, there are 14 tunnels here, one of which, 88 m long, is recognized by scientists as the world's largest underground tunnel. Its width ranges from 60-150 m, and the average depth is80 m.
In the center of the lake there is a cave "Blue well of the devil", its dimensions are quite small (11 m - depth, 3 m - diameter). It got its name from the dark local legends, which testify to the dangers that await diving enthusiasts there.
Such an underground structure of the reservoir aroused strong interest among divers. However, a complex system of underground labyrinths has become the last refuge of a few people, a whole series of deaths has served as a pretext for the closure of underground tunnels for public use.
This was the source of the legend about a mermaid living at the bottom of the lake and pulling young beautiful boys into her "nets". However, scientists explain such tragic cases by a strong undercurrent, which can sometimes create whirlpools in the tunnels.
One of the underground attractions is a recently discovered geological monument - a huge stalagmite, which, according to scientists, is an ancient karst formation. It is located at a depth of 105 m, not far from the entrance to the underground cave. This discovery disproved the versions of many scientists about the recent date of the formation of the Mediterranean Sea, because stalagmites form only on land.
The town of Vouliagmeni
Territorially Lake Vouliagmeni is included in the municipality of Vari-Vula-Vouliagmeni, which was established in 1935 with a population of about 10 thousand inhabitants. The town with this name is very green, consisting of many hotels, villas and picturesque beaches adjacent to them. Its territory is divided into 3main areas: Big and Small Kavouri, and Lemos.
In the middle is a cape that divides the coast into 2 bays with gorgeous sandy beaches. Together with the cities of Glyfada and Voula, Vouliagmeni was called the "Apollo Coast", stretching from Athens through the coast and Lake Vouliagmeni to Cape Sounion for 70 km.
There are almost no shops in the town, due to its proximity to the capital, so locals and tourists go shopping in Athens. There are many establishments where you can eat deliciously, taste national cuisine.
Climate and beaches
Sea air blends harmoniously with the aroma of local conifers and eucalyptus trees, creating a unique healing microclimate. In the summer months, the average air temperature is around +30°C, but can reach up to +40°C. In winter, it drops to +10°C. The number of sunny days per year is up to 300, most of the doge falls during the cold period.
City beaches on the Mediterranean coast are sandy, most of them belong to hotels, and therefore the entrance to them is paid (about 8 euros), this includes renting an umbrella and a sunbed. The most luxurious beaches here are Kavouri, Astera-Volimenis and Attika-Akti (entrance - up to 30 euros). Playgrounds, cafes, swimming pools, etc. have been built on the territory. However, there are also free, but less well-groomed.
Many beaches provide services for active water activities: diving, windsurfing and others.
Urban development and infrastructure
Bthe last decade the town has become one of the most expensive resorts in Greece. Therefore, when choosing where it is better to go on vacation in Greece, many we althy Greeks and foreign travelers want to combine a business trip and a medical vacation. There are well-organized beaches, prestigious yacht clubs, and schools for many water sports.
The city has an excellent infrastructure, on the waterfront there are numerous restaurants, Greek taverns and round-the-clock cafes, where both European and Mediterranean cuisines are presented, where you can try original national dishes. In the farthest bay of Vouliagmeni, there is the most expensive and luxurious yacht parking. Thanks to the expansion, the city almost merged with the capital and turned into a southern suburb. Housing in this area has become one of the most expensive in Europe.
Sights in the city
For tourists deciding where to go on vacation in Greece, Vouliagmeni provides several interesting historical and architectural monuments. In addition to the lake of the same name, formed by thermal springs, here you can look at stalagmite caves, an old lighthouse made of stone, the monastery of St. Potapius. At 3 km from the city, on Cape Melengvi, a dilapidated temple of Hera rises, from which the foundation, parts of the columns, an altar and a gallery have been preserved.
A few kilometers from Vouliagmeni, on the shores of Sunia Bay, tourists can see the ruins of the Temple of Poseidon. It was built in 440 BC. of white marble in the Doric architectural style. The temple personified the power of Athens and servedan important religious site in antiquity. Of its 34 columns, only 15 have survived.
The choice of the place of its construction - on Cape Sounio - was due to the fact that it was here from the cliff, according to ancient legends, King Aegeus jumped, giving his name to the Aegean Sea. For many centuries, the temple served as the first symbol of the home for Greek sailors sailing to Athens.
In the vicinity of Vouliagmeni, inquisitive travelers can also visit Argolis, where the ancient Greek theater of Epidaurus has been preserved. Those who love natural monuments will be interested in visiting the nearby islands of Aegina (famous for their pistachios), Poros (near the coast of the Peloponnese) and Hydra.
And, of course, the capital of Greece, located 20 km away, provides tourists with many interesting places to see historical monuments: the Acropolis, the Pantheon, countless museums displaying rich collections of ancient exhibits and artifacts.
The location of the lake is 40 cm above sea level, but the water here is not very s alty, because. it mixes with the hot underground springs that pass under Mount Imitos. The lake is connected to the bay by a small channel 6 m wide, which adds salinity to its water.
The combination of sea air and the microclimate of the radon lake Vouliagmeni has created a unique microclimate with healing properties. Mineral components dissolved in water (metals, hydrogen sulfide and minerals) made it possible to open a resort here for the treatment of patients with various diseases of the musculoskeletal system.motor apparatus, dermatological and gynecological.
Underwater peeling in the lake
Tourists are of great interest to the small Garra Rufa fish living in Lake Vouliagmeni, 2-3 cm long. These fish “of their own free will” perform the procedure of peeling or biting the dead part of the human epidermis on the heels for everyone. The fish prefer the very warm water of the lake, they can survive even when it rises to +40°C.
Feels very pleasant, a little ticklish. When the fish start to hit hard, then you need to start moving deeper, because. they swim closer to the shore.
Reviews from vacationers
Medicinal waters in Lake Vouliagmeni, according to patients who have been treated, perfectly cure eczema and other dermatological diseases, have a positive effect on neuralgia, lumbago, sciatica and other types of rheumatism. They effectively cure chronic female diseases, deforming arthritis and eliminate other problems.
Doctors recommend limiting the duration of swimming in the lake to 20 minutes, but no more, and the next time you can enter only after 2 hours. To keep track of time, you can see large clock faces right on the rocks.
Lake Vouliagmeni: how to get there
You can get to the lake by bus from Athens (stop Vouliagmeni). Tourist buses Hop On Hop Off also come here from the capital. You can also get from the capital by taxi, which will cost indaytime about 30-40 euros (2300-3000 RUB).
Opening hours: 7:30-19:30. The entrance ticket to the territory of the lake and the baths costs 8 euros (for those who come before 9:00 am) and 12 euros (900 rubles), the ticket is valid for the whole day for one vacationer, you can leave and return from the territory. There are sunbeds, umbrellas, changing rooms, a shower, a toilet and a cafe on the shore.
The territory also hosts interesting events: festivals, parties, drawing classes, etc.