The blue lagoon of Vouliagmeni, Corinthia
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The spectacular blue lagoon of Vouliagmeni lies 16 km (10 mi) NW of Loutraki and is a roughly rectangular body of saline water spanning about 2 km E-W and 1 km N-S.
Geologically it is a fault-bound depression which has filled with seawater through a small artificial channel of unknown chronology on its southern side. Indeed, the modern Greek name of the lagoon, Vouliagmeni, literally means ‘sunken’.
Situated near the tip of the Perachora promontory, it is easily reachable whilst also being isolated, peaceful and quiet.
In ancient times, it was called Eschatiotis (meaning the last or remotest part of the promontory) or Gorgopis, from the mother of Megareus, who reputedly drowned in its waters. No trace has survived of the ancient Megarean colony of Aegeirus, which stood at the northern region of the lagoon.
Archaeological findings have unearthed in region to the W and NW of Vouliagmeni, including a settlement dating back to the early Helladic I period, which was discovered by archaeologist J.M. Fossey at about 30 m. west of the channel from the lagoon under the waters of the Gulf of Corinth. Another settlement, of the early Helladic II period, has come to light to the NW whilst 300 meters from this an ossuary of the same age yielded the bones of ten individuals and around five hundred pottery vessels. It can be concluded from the scattered finds that families of farmers and fishermen sparsely inhabited the area in the third and second millennium BC.
Farther to the W of the lagoon and near the tip of the Perachora promontory lies the important archaeological of the Heraion.
Vouliagmeni is an ideal destination for hiking as the shores of the lagoon, the attractive hilly and pine- forested nature surrounding it, the archaeological site of Heraion and the lighthouse at the very tip of the promontory lend themselves to a rewarding day of happy exploration.
The day can be wonderfully concluded by sampling the simple but hearty Greek food which can be enjoyed at the delightful tavernas both on the east and west shores of the lagoon.
All images copyright Eric CB Cauchi / Eternal Greece Ltd, unless otherwise stated.