Delphi

The navel of the earth and a gift to humanity
The best experience is in spring when the olive groves and wildflowers are in bloom
Today
10°
SUN
13°
MON
TUE
WED
Thrace region-id="pin-13";Macedonia Macedonia Epirus Thessaly Sporades Ionian Islands Western Greece Central Greece Attica Peloponnese Crete Cyclades North Aegean Islands Dodecanese Dodecanese Karpathos Astypalea Tilos Sitia Faistos - Matala Patmos Kastelorizo Kasos Kos Leros Halki Rhodes Symi Sfakia - Loutro Rethymno Elounda - Agios Nikolaos Agia Galini Plakias Hersonissos - Malia Ierapetra Heraklion Chania Nisyros Ikaria Lipsi Tzia - Kea Thasos Samos Lesvos Samothrace Limnos Chios Kalymnos Paros Naxos Zante - Zakynthos Lefkada Corfu Santorini Milos Kythnos Kimolos Serifos Syros Sifnos Koufonisia Ios Kefalonia Mykonos Paxi Ithaca Arta Ioannina Tinos Parga - Sivota Metsovo Anafi Sikinos Folegandros Donousa - Iraklia - Schinoussa Antiparos Zagori Mountainous Arkadia Porto Heli - Ermioni Preveza Amorgos Andros Delos Messolongi Ancient Olympia Aegina Kythira Archea Epidavros Patra Nafplio Kardamyli Kalamata Ilia Corinth Western Messinia Kalavryta Elafonissos Nafpaktos Spetses Poros Hydra Alexandroupolis Pylos Mycenae Monemvasia Loutraki Piraeus Athens Arahova Xanthi Galaxidi Mystra - Sparta Mani Edipsos Delphi Chalkida Karystos Evia Skyros Vergina Alonissos Volos Karditsa Skopelos Skiathos Kastoria Thessaloniki Prespes Agios Athanasios Edessa Serres Veria Larissa - Tempi Elati - Pertouli Trikala Pelion Meteora Drama Ammouliani Mount Athos - Ouranopolis Nymfeo Mount Olympos Katerini Halkidiki Grevena Lake Kerkini Naoussa Kozani Kilkis Kavala Pella Lake Plastira
Nature at its grandest, the famous oracle and a Unesco World Heritage monument… After all these years, the gods still reign over Delphi

The harmony that bound men and their gods is still apparent in Ancient Delphi. Photographs cannot do justice to the grandeur and serenity of the setting. Nor can words express the emotions that this holy place provoke. The eagles, dispatched by Zeus to find the centre of the earth, met here. And it is where the god Apollo founded his sanctuary when he killed the dragon Python. 

The Delphic landscape of Central Greece and the archaeological site (easily amongst the most important archaeological sites in Greece and a Unesco World Heritage Monument since 1972) are a gift to humanity. In Delphi, you will bow to what men and nature made together, a creation beyond place and time. And you’ll discover your deeper self as the power of human potential and divine energy resonate within you. 

Feel the aura of the archaeological site of Ancient Delphi

 

What to do in Delphi, Greece

Witness the famous oracle at the navel of the Earth

Layers of myth and history enhance the natural magnificence of Delphi in Greece. It is said that Zeus sent two eagles in opposite directions to determine the fulcrum of all existence. When they met there, he proclaimed it the “navel of the world”. Tradition also relates that a sanctuary existed at ancient Delphi, dedicated to Mother Earth and guarded by the dragon Python. Apollo, disguised as a dolphin, arrived at Kirra, Delphi’s port, slew the dragon and founded his own sanctuary in its place, the Temple of Apollo.

The Delphic oracle was an important spiritual and religious centre from the 6th century BC to the 4th century AD and rewarded the god-fearing with credible, if ambiguous, prophecies. Ancient pilgrims expressed their gratitude in the form of dozens of magnificent offerings that came to light during excavations.

 

Explore a landscape fit for the gods

You can still feel the divine presence in every atom of this spell-binding location. Two giant cliffs at the foot of Mt Parnassos – the Phaidriades (Shining Rocks) – overlook the oracle and the sanctuary. The surrounding area from Arahova to Kirra is a vast silver-green olive grove. Together, they form the famous Delphic landscape. Soothing yet wild, dramatic yet welcoming, it seems to sway to an inaudible score that floods the soul with the music of the gods. 

 

Discover the temples, theatre and other ancient treasures

Like a worshipper in ancient times, you’ll walk up the Sacred Way to the majestic Temple of Apollo, which was decorated by Athenian sculptors. Pythia issued her prophecies from its inner sanctum. The temple is surrounded by monuments dedicated to the ancient Greek city-states, leaders and ordinary people and the whole place still exudes a unique energy.

Stand before it and look carefully at the ruins. They date from a temple built in 330 BC on the foundations of an earlier Doric temple erected in 505 BC. North of the sanctuary, you’ll find the theatre, where music and drama contests were held. Walk even higher and you’ll come to the Stadium, where the Pythian Games took place. 

 

Admire the Kastalia Spring’s purifying waters

In a landscape of surreal, mystical beauty, the spring gushes from the base of Phlemboukos rock in the crevice formed by the twin cliffs. It was here that Pythia and her priests washed and purified themselves, as did every ordinary mortal before they approached the Oracle. The history of the oldest fountain dates from the 6th century BC. In the 1st century, the Kastalia of the Rock was created closer to the spring. Niches cut into its sides held offerings left to the nymph Kastalia. You are now at the very source of the myth.

 

Treasure a never-ending feast of monuments

Remains of its past glory fill the site of Delphi. Among them are the Tholos shrine of Athena Pronaia, the unusual circular structure whose function remains unknown; the Gymnasium, where athletes trained and worked out; the Palaistra or wrestling arena; and the Baths from the Classical period near those from the Roman era.

 

Visit the Archaeological Museum

Ancient Delphi’s museum is one of the most important in Greece. It was built in 1903 to house finds from the first great excavations that began in 1892. In 2004, the space was renovated and expanded and the exhibits enlarged and rearranged according to modern standards. The result is fascinating. Don’t miss the marvellous Charioteer, the focal point for many of the thousands of visitors who yearly pass through its 14 rooms.

 

Discover Delphi’s European Centre

A contemporary cultural centre in Delphi, it hosts performances, conferences, international symposia on ancient theatre and exhibitions of Greek and foreign artists. It was founded on the initiative of former Prime Minister Constantine Karamanlis to create a pan-European and global centre for intellectual pursuits near the town. The conference complex, a representative example of the Modern Movement in architecture, was built in the 1960s. An interesting sculpture park surrounds it.

 

Join in the revival of the Delphic Festival

Early in the 20th century, the major Greek poet Angelos Sikelianos and his American wife, Eva Palmer, sought to revive Delphi as a world centre. In the first Delphic Festival in 1927, ancient prestige shone once more with a performance of Aeschylus’ Prometheus Bound in the ancient theatre and, again, in 1930 with another of his plays, The Suppliants.

Today, in Sikelianos’s house-museum, one of the many attractions you’ll encounter near the modern town, you will see manuscripts and correspondence concerning the festivals, photographs, by the celebrated Greek photographer, Nelly, and costumes designed by Eva, based on vase paintings and woven on her own loom.

 

Stroll through the modern town of Delphi

Here you’ll find excellent hotels, restaurants, cafe/bars, shops selling folk art and replicas of finds from the archaeological site. And that same extraordinary view of the dramatic mountain above a sea of olive trees.

 

Hidden gems of Ancient Delphi

The magical Corycian Cave

From a large triangular opening, you’ll enter a cave whose subtle lighting enhances the amazing stalactites and stalagmites. The Corycian Cave, the grandest on Parnassos, was also a treasure chest of very old finds dating to the Neolithic era (4000 BC). In the 5th century BC, Pan and the Nymphs were worshipped here. It still emits an aura of mysticism.

 

Travel the path of Pausanias

Follow one of the best-known hiking paths in the area. A large stretch of it was actually the ancient path described by Pausanias, the 2nd century AD traveller and in many respects the originator of the modern concept of the ‘guidebook’. Now a section of the international E4 route, it leads from Ancient Delphi up to a place called Kroki.

 

Walking from Delphi to Chrisso and Kirra

You’ll enjoy this gentle downhill path that traces the ancient road that linked the port of Kirra with Delphi. Follow the footsteps of the pilgrims, reach an altitude of 550 meters, and enjoy a scenic walk through olive forests and rivers. 

 

FAQs about Delphi, Greece

  • What is Delphi in Greece known for?

    In Ancient Greece, Delphi was the most important oracle where people would travel and consult the high priestess Pythia. Today, it is a major archaeological site featuring a temple, theatre and stadium.
  • What does Delphi mean?

    The word Delphi comes from the ancient Greek word “Delphus”, meaning womb, because Mother Earth worshipped there during the Mycenean era. Additionally, Delphos, the son of Apollo or Poseidon, conceived the art of fortune-telling.
  • Why was ancient Delphi considered the centre of the Earth?

    Ancient Delphi was believed to be the centre, or “the navel”, of the earth because there is the same distance (exactly 121 km) between Delphi and the most important religious sites of ancient Greece, namely the Acropolis in Athens and the Temple of Aphaia on the island of Aigina.
Read More Read Less

Experience the best of Delphi

Located above the temple of Apollo, the ancient theatre looks over the entire sanctuary and a valley of olive trees

Feel the aura of Delphi’s world-famous archaeological site

Book your trip

All your holiday planning needs in one place, letting you book direct and benefit from official online rates

Done
Done
Done
Done
Accommodation

Leto Hotel Delphi

Delphi

Welcome to Delphi and to our new hotel Leto. In the centre of Delphi we created an elegant, contemporary and hospitable fami...

Official online rates

11 ways to reconnect with nature in Central Greece
Whatever your reason for coming to Central Greece, you’ll revel in discovering a part of the country that’s way off the chart for most international visitors.
Discover It
Hiking to the Black Cave and Via Ferrata
Top 5+1 ways to get active in Central Greece
Fir tree-clad mountains, glistening lakes and rivers, and traditional village life … every minute spent in Central Greece fills you with the urge to get active.
Discover It
Multiple footpaths allow you to explore the countryside of Central greece

Travel ideas

Shining the light on stories
Mount Olympus summit. The "Throne of Zeus" 2.919m

12 destinations that gave life to Greek mythology

Relive some of the greatest tales from Greek mythology… in the mind and then in the flesh.
Hiking to the Black Cave and Via Ferrata

11 ways to reconnect with nature in Central Greece

Whatever your reason for coming to Central Greece, you’ll revel in discovering a part of the country that’s way off the chart for most international visitors.
Caldera view in Santorini

12 incredible places in Greece you have to see to believe

You know the feeling when you find a place you can’t wait to tell people about. Somewhere you know everyone should visit at least once.

Nearby destinations

You might also be interested in exploring