The archaeological site at Rhamnous, an isolated, romantic spot on a small promontory, which was saved at the last minute from the devastating 2009 fires, overlooks the sea between continental Greece and the island of Euboia. It is a bit off the beaten track but if you want to escape the crowds of Athens and make it a day trip together with a swim at nearby Sxinias, it is definitely worth the drive (especially if you have your own vehicle). From at least the Archaic period, Rhamnous was known for the worship of Nemesis, the great leveler, who brought down the proud and punished the arrogant. The scenic site, excavated during many years, preserves traces of temples from the 6th and 5th centuries BC. The smaller temple from the 6th century BC was dedicated to Themis, goddess of Justice. The later temple housed the cult statue of Nemesis, envisioned as a woman, the only cult statue remaining from the high classical period. Many fragments have turned up, including the head, in the British
Museum. The acropolis stood on the headland, where ruins of a fortress (5th and 4th centuries BC) are visible. As you wander over this usually serene, and always evocative, site you discover at its edge little coves where you can enjoy a swim. For those going by public transportation, take a KTEL bus from Athens toward the Ayia Marina port, get off at the Ayia Marina and Rhamnous crossroads, and follow the signs, about 3 km (2 miles) down the road. Or take a taxi from Marathon village.