Medieval castles in Greece

Pythion Castle

The castle at Pythio, one of the most important and best preserved examples of military architecture in Greece. It is set on a low mound at the north-eastern edge of the village Pythio, near river Evros, very close to the Turkish borders. The castle was founded by John Kantakouzenos (later an emperor) around 1330-1340. It served as residense and stronghold during the civil war against the emperor John III Palaiologus. Th ...
Founded: 1330-1340 | Location: Pythion, Greece


Kastro is a small village in the Greek island of Thassos. It is believed to be the oldest village on the island. The village name comes from the old castle that existed here to protect the inhabitants. The settlement was first mentioned in 1434 in connection with the establishment of a local fortress or citadel by Umberto Grimaldi, when Thassos was ruled by the Genoese Dorino I Gattilusio. The ruins of the citadel"s ...
Founded: c. 1434 | Location: Thasos, Greece

Kremasti Castle

Kremasti Castle looks more like a tower-house than a real castle. Of square plan, it covers an area of 400 square metres and has a perimeter of 80 metres. The only entrance was on the north side. In 1914, the Italian medievalist G. Gerola discovered there the arms of grand master Fabrizio del Carretto (1513-1521) and of the Order of St. John. The castle was a control point and in the line of sight of Phileremos castle. I ...
Founded: 14th century | Location: Kremasti, Greece

Pantokratoras Monastery

Pantokratoras monastery, standing on the summit of the mountain of the same name, enjoys scenic views of the entire island of Corfu, the surrounding islands and the mainland. The first construction was built in 1347 and destroyed in 1537, while the building we admire today dates back to the late 17th century. Besides the stone church there are portico and inner courtyards. Entering in the monastery you have not a feeling ...
Founded: 1347 | Location: Corfu, Greece

Lardos Castle

Lardos castle was built sometime in the 12th century, during the Byzantine era. When the Knights of the Order of St. John invaded the island in 1309, one of their immediate priorities was to locate ideal sites on which they could erect forts so that they could be used as lookout posts over the sea, but also to protect the soldiers from the enemy. When they came to Lardos, they discovered an entire fort from the Byzantine ...
Founded: 12th century | Location: Lardos, Greece

Avantas Castle

On the outskirts of Alexandroupoli, close to the village of Avantas, lie the medieval castles of Avantas and Potamos. Three different historic eras coexist on those walls, namely the Mycenaean, Classical and the Byzantine era. Both these castles supervised the field and controlled the passages towards the plains of Komotini and inland of the Rodopi mountain range. Both constructions date to the second half of the 13th ce ...
Founded: 13th century | Location: Evros, Greece

Featured Historic Landmarks, Sites & Buildings

Historic Site of the week

Medieval Walls of Avila

The city walls of Avila were built in the 11th century to protect the citizens from the Moors. They have been well maintained throughout the centuries and are now a major tourist attraction as well as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Visitors can walk around about half of the length of the walls.

The layout of the city is an even quadrilateral with a perimeter of 2,516 m. Its walls, which consist in part of stones already used in earlier constructions, have an average thickness of 3 m. Access to the city is afforded by nine gates of different periods; twin 20 m high towers, linked by a semi-circular arch, flank the oldest ones, Puerta de San Vicente and Puerta del Alcázar.