Archaeological Places

Portara in Naxos GreeceAround Naxos, there is number of archaeological sites.

The most visited of these are the andent marble quarries at Melanes and Apollon, where there are the partially carved remains of large male statues known as Kouroi.

The colossal Apollon Kouros (7 C. BC) is easily the best, 10.5 m tall (making the figure four times life-size ), it is a giant rough sketch in stone of a god -probably Dionysos.

The two Melanes Kouroi despite being abandoned in something nearer their intended final form, are much smaller (being only just over life size) and of a much cruder design than the Apollon figure. The remains of a finished Naxian colossal figure of similar
size to the Apollon Kouros can be seen ΞΏn the nearby island of Delos. Naxos was a major exporter of sculpture during the Archaic period (the famous lions ΞΏn Delos were also carved from Naxian marble).

Remains of ancient structures are to be found in remoter areas of Naxos. The most noteworthy of these is a Temple of Demitra that lies halfway down the road from Naxos Town to the beach hamlet at Pyrgaki. Dating from the 6 C. BC, it was unusual in having a square floor plan and 5 Ionic columns on its pedimental side, and a roof made up of marble beams and thin marble tiles that allowed a diffused light into the interior.

The building survived until the 9 C. AD, when it was destroyed and the site abandoned. Now recognised as important because of the uniqueness of its architecture.