Villehardouin's Castle

Mystras, Greece

Mystras, the ‘wonder of the Morea’, developed down the hillside from the fortress built in 1249 by the prince of Achaia, William II of Villehardouin, at the top of a 620 m high hill overlooking Sparta.

The Principality of Achaea was one of the three vassal states of the Latin Empire which replaced the Byzantine Empire after the capture of Constantinople during the Fourth Crusade. It became a vassal of the Kingdom of Thessalonica, along with the Duchy of Athens, until Thessalonica was captured by Theodore, the despot of Epirus, in 1224. After this, Achaea became for a while the dominant power in Greece.

The Franks surrendered the castle to the Byzantines in 1262, it was the centre of Byzantine power in southern Greece, first as the base of the military governor and from 1348 as the seat of the Despotate of Morea. Captured by the Turks in 1460, it was occupied thereafter by them and the Venetians.

Today impressive ruins of Villehardouin's Castle still remain.

References:

Comments

Your name



Address

Unnamed Road, Mystras, Greece
See all sites in Mystras

Details

Founded: 1249
Category: Castles and fortifications in Greece

Rating

4.7/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Magdalena Reszke (2 years ago)
Very nice walk up the hill (not a short one). Amazing how big it was. A must see. Beautiful views. 12€ entrance.
Remy (2 years ago)
Insanely large place with gorgeous views, it is a bit maze like though, and you better wear good shoes and are in good shape.
Greg Charalambopoulos (3 years ago)
It is a great place, which needs lots of time to cover it all. Visitors mat start either from entrance A, at the bottom, or B, on top. Entrance fee of €6-12, depending on the season, where kids are free. From entrance B onwards should also visit the castle, which is further 10' walk. Of great historical value, definitely a must.
maria teresa (3 years ago)
Amazing walking. If you want to look for bysantine pictures...is the best one!
Ronald Luiten (Rumsmurf) (3 years ago)
Site was really a revelation. Beautiful place with lots of nice views and visits. Best wear good shoes.
Powered by Google

Featured Historic Landmarks, Sites & Buildings

Historic Site of the week

Duino Castle

Duino Castle was built by the Wallsee family in 1389 on the cliffs overlooking the Gulf of Trieste. It replaced an older castle from the 11th century. Over time, the Wallsee family disappeared and the castle, after having been used as a prison, became the residence of the Luogar and Hofer.

At the end of the 19th century it became the property of Prince Alexander von Thurn und Taxis from the Czech branch of the House of Thurn and Taxis. It remains with the family to this day with his great-grandson Prince Carlo Alessandro della Torre e Tasso, Duke of Castel Duino the current owner. The castle has been opened to the public as a museum and park.