It is the perfect place to take a rest at the hot waters after an exhausting day and I heard that it is good also for the skin problems cause of the sulfur, if you can stand the smell then it is a paradise.Coming from the national road (both directions to Lamia or to Athens) there are signs than lead you there.The place is behind a gas station , there is a parking place and you have 2 options: 1) To use the organized space where you can find the pool - but I dont know the operation hrs and the fee and 2) to use the free place outside , beware of the rocks, there are two ropes to help you enter the water and a big waterfall where you can enjoy the massage on your back :) Towel and swimming suit are needed. The water temperature is about 40 degrees so you cant stay more than 20-30minutes.
Recommented during cold days and nights :)
Thermopylae derives half of its name from its hot springs (+43C). This river is formed by the steaming water which smells like Hydrogen sulfide (H2S) smelling like rot egg (Thanks, Jean-Louis, for your correction!).
In the background, you can see buildings of the modern baths. In ancient times the springs created a swamp.
Simonides composed a well-known epigram, which was engraved as an epitaph on a commemorative stone placed on top of the burial mound of the Spartans at Thermopylae. It is also the hill on which the last of them died. The original stone has not been preserved. Instead the epitaph was engraved on a new stone erected in 1955.
The form of this ancient Greek poetry is an elegiac couplet. Some English translations are given in the table below.
Go tell the Spartans, thou who passest by,
That here, obedient to their laws, we lie. (William Lisle Bowles)
Go tell the Spartans, you who read:
We took their orders, and lie here dead.( Aubrey de Sélincourt).
Thermopylae is located in eastern central Greece on the only land route large enough to bear any traffic between Lokris and Thessaly. Passage from north to south along the east coast of the Balkan Peninsula requires use of the pass. Further west the way is blocked by mountains and the Gulf of Corinth.
It’s situated 20 km southeast from Lamia just at the E75 road. You can’t miss it if you are traveling by bus or by car along the E75 - Greek National Road 1. The section Athens - Lamia opened in 1962.
You may watch my high resolution photo of Thermopylae on the Google Earth according to the following coordinates 38º 46' 38.06" N 22º 43' 54.27" E or on my Google Earth Panoramio Battle Place.
To my great surprise the VT-database of destinations in Greece is almost empty. I couldn’t find several destinations: Prefecture of Fthiotida – Thermopiles, Prefecture of Attica - Vravrona; Prefecture of Tricala - Kalambaka. I’ve put a question on VT Technical Forum if anybody had any idea how to put pages on these destinations here.
Kiwi (Pam) helped me to find the following location.
Though the VT-database of Greece is divided into the databases of Prefectures, but this link leads to Greece as a whole country. I don’t know how it can be.
Jokerit_Pl (Phil) helped to find another location Theropilai.
He told what is interesting about Thermopilai (or its various other spellings) was that it had been a historical point of interest along a coastal passage in Greece, not a city or town. He was sure someone from VT has been here before on a road trip or a tour.
Yes, Phil, it's a place of historic interest first of all (though I doubt it very much and will write about my doubts in my future Thermopiles VT-page) but it's also a village with the real source of thermal water, which attracts a lot of people to bath even in wintertime. That's why it has the name of Thermopiles.
It’s strange that I discover the place which is one of the most attractive for tourists because of the famous battle and two famous films - Thermopiles or Thermopilai or Thermopilon for the first time in VT database… No one VT member has been there!
A main highway E75 14 of meters width now splits the pass, with the monument of Leonidas on the north side of the highway. It is directly across the road from the hill where Simonides of Ceos's epitaph is engraved in stone at the top.
So there isn’t any possibility to cross the road in that place. If you are passing by Thermopylae in the direction to Athens (like me) you may visit only the Hill with Simonides of Ceos's epitaph and may watch the monument of Leonidas from the distance.
On the contrary if you are passing by Thermopylae in the direction to Lamia you may visit only the monument of Leonidas and watch the Hill from the distance. Police will not allow you to cross E75 road!
When a boy I admired a movie called "The 300 Spartans" which was released in 1962 and told the same story as Frank Miller's recent "300". The old movie was campy and ridiculous in only the way that '50s and '60s historical epics can be.
Could I dream in far 60th that I would see the place of the battle with my own eyes?
You may watch a 1 min 43 sec video 300 Spoof Trailer - The 300 Spartans. This is the reconstruction of the recent "300" trailer using shots and dialogue from the old 1962 movie
The 300 Spartans Trailer with music out of Modern Film
Trailer for a Modern 300 Spartans Movie by Warner Bros. It's based on Frank Miller's graphic novel "300" which itself was a ferocious retelling of the Battle of Thermopylae.
Trailer for a Modern 300 Spartans Movie.
Another version in 8 min 06 sec Video 300 Spartans .
In the Battle of Thermopylae, which occurred in 480 BC, an alliance of Greek city-states fought the invading Persian Empire at the pass of Thermopylae. Vastly outnumbered, the Greeks held back the Persians for three days in one of history's most famous last stands. A small force led by King Leonidas I of Sparta blocked the only road through which the massive army of Xerxes I of Persia could pass.
An historical documentary film from History Channel about the Spartans and the legendary Battle of Thermopylae. The film is divided in 3 videos: 9 min 18 sec, 4 min 52 sec, 6 min 31 sec
Battle of Thermopylae Part I
Battle of Thermopylae Part II
Battle of Thermopylae Part III
The movie "300" adapted from Frank Miller's graphic novel is wickedly good entertainment, but for those who would like to get the historical facts about the Spartans last stand at the Battle of Thermopylae, this History Channel documentary is a better option.
The film is divided in 3 videos: 8 min 40 sec, 8 min 14 sec, 5 min 45 sec.
300 Spartans Part I
300 Spartans Part II
300 Spartans Part III
You may watch several pics from the film which I was watching while our bus approached to Thermopylae.