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In just an hour away from Athens by car or suburban rail, Loutraki awaits. Loutro means bath and Loutraki is the oldest bath city in Greece, dating back to antiquity. These days its ultramodern spa is linked to the local casino and the hot springs are a safe bet if you’re looking to freshen up body and soul. . Lively and fashionable, this town on the Gulf of Corinth also boasts a long esplanade with cafes and restaurants, a beautiful beach, pretty squares, palm trees, waterfalls and Belle Epoque style hotels. According to Xenophon, Spartan warriors would come here to renew themselves after battle. You too can be revived by the power of the hot springs. Legend says that the goddess Artemis protects the bathers here. Perhaps, then, we should give her thanks for the unique properties of the Loutraki mineral waters, which include sulphur and bicarbonate ions, healing people from antiquity to 1914, when the modern spa-town was founded, and right up to the present. Just 16km from Loutraki a surprising landscape awaits you. A closed lagoon encircled by nature’s finery can be your summer hideaway. Dive into the water, take a pedalo out, sit at the all-day cafe-bar, tuck into an excellent fish dish and wash it down with an ouzo. You’re already in love with this blue lagoon. Next to the lagoon at Vouliagmeni is an enclosed bay that is also an archaeological site. Beginning in the Geometric period, the goddess Hera was worshipped here next to the sea. The first temple devoted to her was built in 800 BC. It’s an attraction that will surely capture your attention.