Nafplion of the Greek Revolution
Picturesque? Certainly. Romantic? For sure. Beautiful? Without question. Apart from all these aliases, you cannot come to Nafplio and not think adding the most important one: "historical".
Making a short few days' break on the occasion of the Greek Revolution's Anniversary every March 25th, it is worth taking a small note with some useful information for your walks:
Going up to Palamidi, to admire the magnificent view, remember that:
-The famous castle, built by the Venetians, was found in the hands of the Turks from 1715, until the dark and rainy night of 29th to November 30th 1822, when captain Staikos Staikopoulos and his men attacked and liberated the fortress and the city of Nafplio.
- Here Theodore Kolokotronis, the great figure of the Greek Revolution was imprisoned.
Crossing the coastal road of Bouboulina with the hangouts overlooking Bourtzi, remember that:
-It was named after Laskarina "Bouboulina" Pinotsi, heroine of the Greek Revolution of 1821, and head of the first siege of Nafplio (4-10th of April 1821).
When looking for a tavern or restaurant on Staikopoulos pedestrian street, remember that:
-It got its name from Staikos Staikopoulos, the 1821 Greek Revolution's fighter, liberator of Palamidi.
St. Spyridon's church
Passing by the church of "Agios Spyridon" remember that:
- Here Governor Ioannis Kapodistrias was assassinated on October 9th 1831, by members of the Mavromichalis family.
Crossing the avenue or looking at the famous "Amalia Costume" as part of the 1821 celebrations, remember that:
- To create this avenue in 1867, the sea walls were demolished.
-The Prince Otto of Bavaria, was the first king of the new Greek state and during his reign, his wife Amalia was named "Amalia Queen of Greece."
While drinking your coffee in one of Europe's most beautiful squares, remember that:
- It was originally called Platanos' Square; then was renamed after Ludvich (in honor of Otto's father) and finally was named Syntagma Square, when the Greeks in Athens demanded a Constitution ("Syntagma" in Greek) from king Otto.
- Under the same plane-tree that you are now standing, the chieftains were devising their plans for the revolution. The Vouleftiko (old Parliament building) housed the first Greek parliament, while the Old Mosque stands out (Trianon - The Old Tzami), the oldest surviving specimen of Ottoman architecture in the city.
-The monument of Kalliopi Papalexopoulos is not accidentally located outside the National Bank, as this building was home to the wife of the mayor, who encouraged the Nafplians to revolt.
Stay in Syntagma Square, at the Xenon Inn, and you have all this right before you!
Crossing the square, to go hop on the touristic train or bicycle or to sit in one of its hangouts, remember that:
-The philhellenes, with their love for Greece, significantly helped the Revolution of 1821, both morally as well as materially, but also fighting alongside the Greeks against the Turk occupiers.
Arriving at the square, for the kids to play in the playground, remember that:
- Ioannis Kapodistrias, a brilliant diplomat and a Greek patriot, was the first Governor of the country. He arrived in Greece in 1828, donated all his fortune and carried out major projects for the newly established Greek state.
-The marble statue in his honor, created by the sculptor Michael Tompros, was placed in the square in 1932.
As you sit on one of the benches to take a break from your walk and seeing the statue of the Old Man of Morea, remember that:
-This statue is one of the most important creations of modern Greek sculpture and is designed by sculptor Lazaros Sochos in Paris.
-Theodore Kolokotronis, commander-in-chief of the Peloponnese and a politician, was a leading figure in the Revolution of 1821, lived in Nafplio for many years and was even given a home in Syntagma Square.