Olympus is the tallest mountain in Greece, and the second highest in the Balkans with a series of high peaks that form deep ravines around of which it is extended an area of particular biodiversity. The reason Olympus is famous is not only because its impressiveness, but mainly because the mythology, history and legends that go with this place.
The highest peak of Olympus is called Mytikas and reaches up to 2.918 meters. It is impossible for human to survive at this altitude and that made the ancient Greeks to believe that only gods could live there.
The Myth of the 12 Gods
According to mythology, the twelve gods lived in the canyons -“the folds of Olympus” as poet Homer called them- where they had their palaces. Mytikas, also called the Pantheon, was considered the place where gods met. The throne of Zeus, now called Stefani, was the exclusive area of Zeus from where he unleashed his thunders, showing with this way his “Divine Power”.
The kingdom of the 12 gods is completed by Hera, Hestia, Dimitra, Neptune, Athena, Apollo, Artemis, Hermes, Aris, Aphrodite and Hephaestus (in Greek, Ήρα, Εστία, Δήμητρα, Ποσειδώνας, Αθηνά, Απόλλων, Άρτεμις, Ερμής, Άρης, Αφροδίτη and Ήφαιστος).
The Doors of Olympus
If you search about the Olympus on google, you will find countless stories, myths, facts, eyewitness reports and speculations that even surpass the best science fiction scenarios. You will find out that the legends cover every top and slope of this mysterious mountain, from fairy stories to flying objects on Jupiter’s “balcony” to powerful electromagnetic fields; and that’s particular point of intense electromagnetic activity drew NASA’s attention.
The Doors of Olympus is one of the most powerful geomagnetic regions of Greece. There are many statements from people, who witness strange lights in the sky, while some others talk about intense electromagnetic activity and disappearances of local residents. Specifically, a resident who had disappeared for 3 days on the mountain, returned suddenly and when he was asked about his whereabouts all these days, he described strange things about what seemed to be an underground city.
However, there is another thing that makes this region attractive to adventurous people and it is nothing else but the secret cave of Tsakalopetra! The cave of Tsakalopetra bears a history of 600 years and played a very important role during the Ottoman domination in Greece. It is this very cave where the Greeks used it as a hideout in order to be protected from the Turkish slaughter and centuries later from the German attack. This secret cave played another important role in Greek history; It was the meeting point of the Filiki Etaireia, one of the most important and secret organizations that was formed to prepare a revolution to liberate Greeks from the Ottoman Empire. The powerful geomagnetic and electric field with which Tsakalopetra’s cave is loaded has attracted the interest of NASA and, it is said that NASA scientists have done some ”interesting” experiments in this area.
To make things even more eerie, inside this cave there is a small church in which Adamantios Korais, one of the most important representatives of the Modern Greek Age of Enlightenment, left documents-commands to the inhabitants of the village; documents that are still preserved!
There are reports of mountaineers of the Elassona Skiing Mountaineering Center according to which during climbing in the cave area mountaineers heard very clearly human speeches but they could not spot where they were coming from…
Other Mysteries and Legends of Olympus
The Face of Zeus
It is said that at the sunrise the shadows created at the 3rd highest peak of Olympus called Stefani, depict the face of Zeus with its features. The location that looks like the face of Zeus is called “The throne of Zeus”.
The Pyramids of Olympus
According to the tradition and the careful observation of scientists, the pyramid peaks of Olympus did not form their shape by accident! The formation of those pyramids dates back to ancient times and the strange thing about them is the distance and the degrees between their angles.
According to extended scientific search and measurements, the Pyramids of Olympus are positioned in the same angle with the three stars of Orion’s belt in the sky, the so-called “Three Vassilies”! The two of these three stars, are in a straight line and the third is 27 degrees distant. The exact same phenomenon observed in the pyramids of Giza in Egypt. So new theories begin as to whether the pyramids of Olympus are natural or human creation.
The Church of Prophet Elias
Many residents and scientists have reported that the electromagnetic fields in the area where the church is located are so strong that whoever attends the church’s service feels strongly a sensation of shudder and hair-raising probably due to electrical charge of the place.
The Pierides Muses
At the eastern outskirts of Olympus, in the area called Pieria, the mythological tradition laid the nine Muses, protectors of the Fine Arts, daughters of Zeus and Titanida Mnemosyne. The myth of the Pierides muses is well-known to the villagers around the Pieria Mountains. In this area the stories about mysterious phenomena are many. Shepard, workers, and residents of the area, claim they have seen naked girls dancing and singing in the woods, referring to them as the Muses.
U.F.O on Olympus?
There are rumors about an unknown flying object to make its appearance in the greater area of Olympus. According to the eyewitness accounts, it emerges from the sea area at a high speed and in seconds reaches the top of the Olympus and then, suddenly it disappears behind the mountain.
Of course, this kind of stories and myths about aliens and strange ‘’beings’’ monopolize the discussions of the local people. On the other hand, the more reasonable people claim that, what is thought to be an UFO is probably some flight tests executed by Greece Air Force for future use.
The legends around this holy mountain are countless! Every resident of the surrounding villages has a different story to tell visitors. Whether you believe them or not depends on you but, taking an expedition to Olympus and knowing about its history and its significance is a life experience for both Greeks and tourists!
Whether it is for its natural phenomena, or myths and unexplained events, Olympus is the most important part of Greece, as an entire mythology is based on it! Olympus is not by chance the center of the world!