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One of the great healing centers of antiquity, the ruins of the Asklepieion still impress and fire the imagination, framed by a thick grove of cypress trees and laid out on several broad terraces connected by a monumental staircase. Hippocrates began to teach the art of healing here in the 5th century BC and, until the decline of the Roman Empire, the Asklepieion was the most renowned medical facility in the Western world. The lower terrace probably held the Asklepieion Festivals, famed drama and dance contests held in honor of the god of healing. On the middle terrace is an Ionic temple, once decorated with works by the legendary 4th-century BC painter Apelles, including his renowned depiction of Aphrodite (much celebrated in antiquity, it was said the artist used a mistress of Alexander the Great as a model). On the uppermost terrace is the Doric Temple of Asklepios, once surrounded by colonnaded porticoes.
- Address: Asklepieion, Kos 85300
- Phone: 22420/28763
- Cost: €4
- Hours: Apr.–Oct., Tues.–Sun. 8–6; Nov.–Mar., Tues.–Sun. 8–3
- Location: Asklepieion
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