Patra in Greece
Patra is the 3rd largest city in Greece after Athens and Thessaloniki. It is also the capital of West Greece and a very important port of the Mediterranean Sea.The city is famous for hosting the biggest carnival in the country every February-March. People from all over the country fill the streets drinking a local red wine called "Mavrodafni" and then the parade follows. Patra can offer a big variety in hotels, guesthouses, restaurants, cafes and bars.... Read more...
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Patra is the 3rd largest city in Greece after Athens and Thessaloniki. It is also the capital of West Greece and a very important port of the Mediterranean Sea.The city is famous for hosting the biggest carnival in the country every February-March. People from all over the country fill the streets drinking a local red wine called "Mavrodafni" and then the parade follows. Patra can offer a big variety in hotels, guesthouses, restaurants, cafes and bars. From here you can also take the boat to the south Ionian Islands.
Patras' own airport is located on the military base of Araxos (IATA code: GPA), some 50 kilometres to the south, but this receives only seasonal charter flights from various locations in Europe. For regular flights, Patras is served by Athens International Airport, some 250 kilometres to the west.
A startup floatplane company, Air Sea Lines, operating DHC 6 de Havilland Twin Otters, has set up a seasonal base at the Patras marina, linking the city with several Ionian Islands and the city of Ioannina in Epirus. Onwards services from Corfu run to Brindisi in Italy.
Patras is linked by ferry to the Italian ports of (south to north) Brindisi, Bari, Ancona and Venice, with numerous sailings daily year-round. Service to Trieste has been discontinued.
For the ferry form Ancona to Patra you will e.g. pay for a single person about 40€ winter/60€ summer. www.Ferries.gr
Local ferry services offer daily sailings from Patras to the Ionian Islands. Corfu is served by the International ferries on their way to and from Italy.
Patra, located in the northeastern corner of the Peloponnese is connected to Athens by road via Korinth on the 8a National Road (corresponding to the E65 and E94 European Routes. To the south, Patra is connected by road to Amaliada, Pyrgos and Olympia and further to Kalamata. The construction of a new bridge linking Rion (on the Peloponnese) to Antirrion (on the Central Greek mainland) has been in operation since 2004 and carries the E55 European route, linking Patra with points in Central Greece and Epirus (and onward to Albania) including the port of Igoumenitsa.
A narrow gauge train line runs through Patra southwards to Olympia and Kalamata and eastwards to Athens and the port of Pireaus. the Slow For more info see the train company webpage www.ose.gr
Close to the port lies the intercity bus station, info on www.achaiaktel.gr and 2610 623888
Buses run through almost all parts of the city. There are 10 bus lines that start early in the morning and stop before midnight. You can always hail a taxi or call one (2610 450000)
When to go
Patra is a big city and an interesting destination all year round.Visit
-in summertime if you feel like swimming in the nearby beaches or taking a boat to an Ionian Island
-in February/March if you feel like partying during the Carnival of Patra, which is the largest in the country
-in fall and winter, if you want to get to know the local life with the least tourists on site
2610 999111 (in Rio, just outside Patra)
The city of Patra was founded in 1082 BC and from then, took an active part in the alliances made by the cites in the area of Achaia.
In 146 BC, Patra is occupied by the Romans, who built roads, public buildings and turn the city to an important center of the Roman Empire. In 330 AD, Patra belongs to the Byzantine Empire. In 375 AD, most parts of the city are destroyed due to an earthquake. During the 9th-12th century AD, the economic life of the city grows and many craftships and small production units are created. The port plays a significant role as a point between east and west. But again Patra sees the conquests by various tribes: Slavs, Saracens, Bulgarians, Normans, and Franks rule the city. In 1458 the Turks came and stayed until 1687 when the Venetians came. They will leave in 1715, only for the Turks to come back. In 1821, Patra is leading the preparation for the Greek Revolution against the Turks. During the revolution, the city was burned and destroyed, while many of the locals were killed and injured. After that in 1829, Ioannis Kapodistrias, the first leader of the newly created greek state, orders an architectural plan for Patra and the city is rebuilt. From that time and onwards, the city evolves in many ways. Immigrants from many places, commercial houses, industries, the redesigned port contribute to the improvement of everyday life in Patra. In 1870, the first Carnival officially took place in the center of the city.
In 1902 Patra becomes the first greek city to have a tram line. In the 50’s the ferry between Patra and Italy is established while in the 1960s the city starts to grow with many people coming here from villages around. The University of Patra is founded in 1964, contributing to the life of Patra, with many students coming to live here.
The bridge connecting Rio to Antirrio just outside the city is a major event, making transportations easier. Patra was also chosen as Cultural Capital of Europe in 2006.
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