OLYMPIA – Museum of ancient Olympic Games
Ancient Olympia is the birthplace of the Olympic Games and today the area is one of the most important archaeological places in the world. The Museum of the ancient Olympic Games at Olympia presents exhibits ancient works which cover a long period from the 2nd millennium BC until the 5th century AC.
More than 400 exhibits, dated from the prehistoric period to the 5th century A.D., are presented in thematic groups. The majority comes from Olympia, but also on display there are many ancient works of art from other important sites of Greece .
You get a complete understanding of the historical development of the Olympic Games and the other Panhellenic Games (the Pythian at Delphi, the Nemean at the sanctuary of Zeus at Nemea and the Isthmian Games at the sanctuary of Poseidon near Corinth) through a wide selection of exhibits, as well as information and visual material.
Among the most important exhibits are the gold rings-seals with the first representations of athletic competitions, representative examples of the Minoan and Mycenaean art, bronze and clay geometric figurines of warriors and chariots coming from Olympia. Also, equipment used by athletes, such as discs, halteres (weights for long jump), arryballoi (small oil vases) strigils (for scrapping the dust from the skin) etc. Exhibited in the galleries are interesting inscribed bases of statues of athletes who adorned the sacred Altis, and small bronze figurines of athletes and many vases and vessels decorated with scenes of athletic performances.