‘Thessaloniki has beauty, chaos, history and culture, and wonderful sea views’. This statement from Lonely Planet is very true about this city. It is a city of contrasts where old and new cohabit wonderfully.
Second city in Greece and capital of Macedonia, Thessaloniki is very proud of its past. This statue of Alexander the Great expresses the conviction the Greeks are fighting for these days: Macedonia is part of Greece and it belongs to the Greek history and culture.
The monument of Alexander the Great is located in one of the most popular areas of Thessaloniki, in Nea Paralia right by the sea. You will easily find it right after the city’s symbol, the White Tower and the Royal Theater, heading east.
It is an impressive, six meters (20 ft.) tall monument that represents Alexander while riding his horse “Voukefalas” (Bucephalus), one of the most famous actual horses of antiquity. (Source: www.inthessaloniki.com)
Also in Nea Paralia, you will find this interesting sculpture called of course ‘Umbrellas’ by the famous sculptor Giorgios Zoggolopoulos.
The city walls surrounded Thessaloniki from the Middle Ages until the late 19th century.
The modern OTE Tower used for telecommunications:
The Arch of Galerius, AD 303, celebrates the victory over the Persians. The arch originally had eight gates and a dome.
Roman Emperor Galerius also built the Rotunda in AD 306 as his future mausoleum. This building was never used as his mausoleum because he died and was buried in Serbia. Later Constantine the Great made the Rotunda Thessaloniki’s first church. I will talk more about Thessaloniki’s Byzantine churches in the nest post.
Here is a perfect example of how the old is trying to cohabit with the new:
Thessaloniki also has a connection with Canada:
Prime Minister Mackenzie King declared: “When the birthplace of the finest civilization the world every experienced, the country to which we owe what makes life superior and more beautiful, faces such an attack, the place of all real people is by her side”
Blé bakery is Thessaloniki’s most elegant bakery and coffee house:
Aristotelous is the city’s main and most elegant square. It was designed by French architect Ernest Hébrard in 1918 when Thessaloniki was being rebuilt after a huge fire that destroyed one third of the city in 1917.