Ancient Sikyon is Greece’s most ancient city state, built at the end of the 4th century BC. Not much is known about the history of this delightful rural village, destroyed in 303 BC by Demitrios Poliorketes, who then built a new city. Excavations are still in progress. In ancient times, Sikyon was to the arts what Athens was to philosophy. Many of Greece’s greatest artists and sculptors were born here, including Kanachas and his brother Aristokles, along with Lysistratos and his brother Lysippos. In fact, painting is said to have been invented here, in this cradle of the arts. Famous metal workers lived here, the first to work with iron and bronze. According to history, it was in Sikyon that Prometheus brought fire to mankind.
Homer, most famous of Greek poets, author of the “Iliad and Odyssey”, called ancient Sikyon Eurychoras – wide open space. Breathtaking views take in acres of olive trees (never out of sight in Greece), orange and lemon groves, rows of grapes ripening on the vines, almond, apricot, and peach trees especially wonderful in the spring with their mass of frothy pink blossom.
Sitting at the village café, located on the main street of ancient Sikyon, one can watch the ongoing excavations taking place across the road a couple of steps away. We will visit the site, observe the ancient Agora, Roman baths, gymnasium, stadium, and ancient theater, where every August, as the sun sets over this magical place, plays are performed just as they were thousands of years ago.