Sparta, the capital of Laconia, is a renowned metropolis with a fascinating history. The city was founded by the Dorian descendants of Hercules in 1100 BC and reached the height of its glory in 480 BC during the legendary battle of Thermopiles, where King Leonidas and his 300 men made a heroic sacrifice. Homer mentions the powerful Mycenaean kingdom of Sparta in his Iliad and Odyssey, with King Menelaus fighting in the Trojan War. The city lost its splendour after the Romans conquered it in 146 BC, and Mystras occurred during the Byzantine and Ottoman Empires. However, Sparta was rebuilt in its original ancient location on October 20, 1834, with faultless zoning and tree-lined highways, making it a beautiful modern city today.
Sparta is home to many historical sights, including the temple of Halkioikos Athena and the temple of Orthia Artemis, initially a place of worship for the Mycenaean deity Orthia and later for the goddess Venus. Visitors can also explore the ruins of a large theatre, trading shops, and a mid-Byzantine basilica on the south side of the citadel, as well as the Menelaeio, a temple where Helen and Menelaos were worshipped, and the temple of Apollo in Amikles. In the city, visitors can see the statue of King Leonidas, the statue of Lycurgus, the city's legislator, and the Leonideon. In this ancient temple-like structure, the bones of the legendary king were transferred and buried. Sparta is not only one of the most beautiful cities in Greece but also a symbol of history that the world associates with.