Before the construction of the Odeon of Herodes Atticus in Athens, in 160 A.C. the Roman Conservatory was built in Patras. According to Pausanias, this Conservatory had the most beautiful decoration, surpassed only by that of the Odeon of Herodes Atticus in Athens. Up until 1889 it was completely covered in soil but later on, it was fortunately discovered and unearthed. The final repairs of the Conservatory took place after the II World War. The high wall of the stage (scene) has five entrances in total, which lead to the stage and to the backstage. The orchestra was paved and it was separated from the cavea (koilon) by a semi-circular wall.
Ancient Theatre of Aigeira (Aigeira)
Overlooking the Gulf of Corinth and at an altitude of 350 metres is located the Ancient Theatre of Aigeira, which is near the city. It was constructed around 280-250 B. C. During the Hellenistic period it was a two-storey building with a seat capacity of 3,000 spectators. The cavea (koilon) of the theatre was divided into two separate parts by a diazoma (landing) and it was more than 30 metres in length.
The Rio Castle (Patras)
The Rio Castle was built in 1499 by the sultan Vayazit II. The castle was built at a location where in antiquity there was a temple of Poseidon. Some of the building material for its construction was taken from the temple itself. The castle was built in a short period of time (three months). The Rio Castle was taken over by the Venetians, the Turks, the Gevovese, even by the Knights of Malta. From 1686 to 1715 the castle was under the control of the Venetians who gave it the form that it continues to have up to the present day. During the II World War it was used as a prison. The castle is located on the sea shore over a small bluff, which in antiquity was called “Rio”. This is probably the origin of its name, as well.
The Patras Castle (Patras)
The Patras Castle was constructed by Justinian and it is located 800 metres away from the coastline on Panachaicos hill. It was built over the ruins of an ancient acropolis during the 6th century A.D. and its outer wall encloses an area of 5.7 acres. Admission to the castle is free and you can visit it on weekdays (except for Monday) from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.
The Holy Monastery of Saint Lavra (Kalavrita)
The monastery of Holy Lavra was founded in 961 A.D. by the monk Eugene. It was originally situated 300 metres to the southwest of its current location. At its original location the catholikon and the double-aisled, cross-vaulted temple, characterized by two series of wall paintings, have been preserved. The original monastery was destroyed by a fire in 1585 and in 1689 the monastery was transferred to its current location (6 km west of Kalavrita). A lot of valuable artefacts can be found there, such as the banner of the Greek Revolution in 1821 and a Gospel decorated with diamonds, which was a present of the empress of Russia Aikaterini. There are also many manuscripts that date back to the 11th and 14th century, icons, various byzantine and venetian archives, a rich library and so on. The monastery celebrates on the 15th August.
The Holy Monastery of Mega Spileo (Kalavrita)
The Holy Monastery of Mega Spileo is located to the northeast of Kalavrita at a distance of approximately 10 km from the town. The monastery is built on the west vertical side of Mount Helmos, at an altitude of 900 metres, over the cliff face of Vouraikos river and it is considered to be the oldest monastery in Greece (362). The original temple was destroyed in 1934 because of a fire and a few years later, in 1937 the new temple was built. The building of the monastery consists of 8 floors and its catholikon is buried inside the rock. More than 3,000 books, valuable crosses, rare Gospels, a rare banner, icons of great historical value and many other artefacts can be found there.
Panagia Tripiti of Aigio (Aigio)
Panagia Tripiti of Aigio is situated over the port of Aigio in a steep hill where the mess of a monastery used to take place. It is said that around 1550 A.D. a castaway looking for land saw a light coming from inside a rock that was 30 metres high and as he approached it, he found the icon of Virgin Mary. The name “Tripiti” has its origin in this legend. Panagia Tripiti celebrates on Friday of the Easter week, when thousands of visitors from all over Greece come to the church.
Church of Saint Andrew (Patras)
The old church of Saint Andrew in Patras was built between 1836 and 1843. Then on, in 1908 the new church was inaugurated by king George I. It was then that they started building it under the supervision of the architect Anastasios Metaxas and after his death in 1937 the architect George Nomiko took over. The church had been built by 1974 and today it is considered to be the largest byzantine church in the Balkan Peninsula. The church of Saint Andrew is characterized by its central dome, which is 46 metres high. The church occupies 2,000 square metres and has a capacity of 5,000 people. From 1955 to 2005 there was an obligatory tax that all the citizens in the municipality of Patras had to pay for the completion of the works on the church.