The first underwater museum in Greece, in Alonissos, is scheduled to opens its ‘aqua gates’ to the public. Staring from Monday, August 3, to Friday, October 2, 2020, amateur diving enthusiasts and amateur free divers will be able to visit, accompanied by diving experts, the famous shipwreck of 5th century BC full of amphorae at the bottom of the island of Peristera in Alonissos.
The ancient shipwreck near the western rocky shore of Peristera came to light in 1985, when it was discovered by a local fisherman at a depth of 28 metres. What emerged was a large merchant ship, possibly from Athens which sank there around 425 BC. It was loaded with thousands of wine amphorae from Mendi (ancient city of Halkidiki) and Peparithos (today’s Skopelos), areas known in antiquity for their wine. The shipwreck is one of the most important of classical antiquity.
The substantial number of amphorae, the excellent condition of the shipwreck at a depth 21-28 metres and the beauty of the exotic waters are more than enough reasons to experience it.
The whole region is situated within the protected area of the National Marine Park of Alonissos – Northern Sporades.
Access to the mysterious world at the Aegean seabed, however, is not only for the diving aficionados, but for all visitors to Alonissos, as they will have the opportunity to enjoy the unique spectacle of the shipwreck, without even getting wet. In the enchanting alleys of Alonissos Town, the Centre for Public Information and Awareness will welcome you, with all the information about the history of ancient shipwrecks and the ability to dive virtually to the bottom and navigate shipwrecks as a true diver, with technological applications of augmented reality.
The pilot operation of the Peristera shipwreck as a visitable marine archeological site in the summer of 2020 is the result of cooperation between the Ephorate of Marine Antiquities of the Ministry of Culture and Sports, the Region of Thessaly and the Municipality of Alonissos.
The project was prepared in the framework of the BLUEMED cross-border cooperation program and will continue with the funding of the Thessaly Regional Development Plan until 2023. The ‘landmark’ project, which is expected to put Greece on the “map” of world diving tourism, has already won significant awards from the European Union, while it has been presented by leading international media such as the New York Times, Lonely Planet, Daily Mail, Travel & Leisure etc.