Sparta and Mystras
The modern town of Sparta, Peloponnese, Lakonia prefecture, lies in a fertile valley with a backdrop of
 the awesome Taygetos Mountains. The tidy streets and busy centre belie the myths and legends of this renowned part
 of Greece. However outside the town, in a magnificent old olive orchard, lie the rubble and remains, including a ruined
 theatre, of the once famous city of Ancient Sparta. But itís to see the ruined Byzantine thirteenth century town of Mystras
 that brings most tourists here. Mystras is a special place, serene in its hillside setting, resting among wildflowers and
 lush trees, in the thrall of the Taygetos Mts. My pictures include the beautiful ruins of the Byzantine church
 of Agia Sophia
, the Palace of the Despots, the Monemvasia Gate, the Convent of Pantanassa, the Monastery of
  Perivleptos, and the Cathedral of Agios Dimitrios, also called the Mitropolis.

0500 Sparta Bus Station P1040076.JPG

0501 Looking over Sparta towards the Taygetos Mountains P1030923 (2).JPG

0502 Sparta street looking towards Taygetos Mountains P1040393.JPG

0503 Streets of Sparta P1030883.JPG

0504 Streets of Sparta R001-054.JPG

0505 Streets of Sparta R001-051.JPG

0506 Modern Sparta R001-053.JPG

0507 Sparta Street corner R001-055.JPG

0508 Looking over Sparta towards the Taygetos Mountains P1030923.JPG

0509 Sparta in Thrall - Mighty Taygetos Mountains P1030905 (2).JPG

0510 Taygetos Mountains from Sparta P1040397.JPG

0511 Taygetos Mountains from Sparta P1030926.JPG

0512 Taygetos Mountains from Sparta P1030893 (2).JPG

0513 Taygetos Mountains from Orange Grove, Sparta P1040398 - Copy.JPG

0514 Ancient Sparta lost in wildflowers P1030889 - Copy.JPG

0515 Ancient Sparta ruins P1030899.JPG

0516 Ancient Sparta - Ampitheatre P1030904.JPG

0517  Ancient Sparta - Ampitheatre - Town in background P1030911 (2).JPG

0518 Ancient Sparta ruins P1030898.JPG

0519 Ancient olive grove, Sparta P1030917 (2).JPG

0520 Ruins among the wildflowers, Sparta P1030897.JPG

0521 Ancient olive tree, Sparta P1030919.JPG

0522 Ancient Sparta with Byzantine wall P1030918 (2).JPG

0523 Top of Mystras P1030927.JPG

0524 Looking back to Taygetos Mountains from Mystras P1030929 (2).JPG

0525 Taygetos Mountains under snow, from Mystras P1030932.JPG

0526 Gate to Mystras DSC05749.JPG

0527 Top of the path to Mystras P1030935 (2).JPG

0528 Ruined houses, looking up to the castle, Mystras P1030983.JPG

0529 Byzantine ruins, Mystras, from top P1030952.JPG

0530 Ruined houses near entrance, Mystras P1030938.JPG

0531 Lakonian Plain from top, Mystras P1030991.JPG

0532 Byzantine Church of Agia Sofia, Mystras DSC05754.JPG

0533 Byzantine Church of Agia Sofia, Mystras P1030984.JPG

0534 Gateway, Mystras P1030936.JPG

0535 Ruined house, Mystras P1030951.JPG

0536 Ruined house, Mystras P1030981 (2).JPG

0537 Ruined house, Mystras P1030994.JPG

0538 More house ruins, Mystras P1030981.JPG

0539 More ruined houses, Mystras P1030953.JPG

0540 Hillside steps and wildflowers, Mystras P1030968.JPG

0541 Byzantine Palace of Despots, wildflowers and view, Mystras DSC05769.JPG

0542 Byzantine Palace of Despots, Mystras DSC05768.JPG

0543 Giant Fennel wildflowers by the Palace, Mystras P1030977.JPG

0544 Euphorbia, Silene and Phlomis wildflowers and old wall, Mystras P1030966.JPG

0545 Valerian and silene vulgaris wildflowers, Mystras P1030993.JPG

0546  Through the Monemvasia Gate, Mystras P1030987.JPG

0547 Monemvasia Gate, Mystras P1030990.JPG

0548 Entrance to Convent of Pantanassa, Mystras P1040002.JPG

0549 Convent of Pantanassa, Mystras P1040010.JPG

0550 Gallery of Convent of Pantanassa, Mystras P1040035.JPG

0551 Convent gallery, Mystras. View over Lakonia P1040029.JPG

0552 Convent Gallery, Mystras P1040033 (2).JPG

0553 View from Convent Gallery, Mystras P1040032.JPG

0554 Courtyard of Convent of Pantanassa, Mystras P1040011.JPG

0555 Convent of Pantanassa Courtyard, Mystras P1040022.JPG

0556 Inside Convent Courtyard, Mystras P1040013.JPG

0557 Interior of Convent church, looking towards altar, Mystras P1040024 (2).JPG

0558 Frescoes inside Covent of Pantanassa, Mystras P1040023 (2).JPG

0559 Frescoes inside Convent of Pantanassa, Mystras P1040027 (2).JPG

0560 Detail of Byzantine Convent church, Mystras P1040009 (2).JPG

0561 Detail of Byzantine Convent church, Mystras DSC05794 (2).JPG

0562 Entrance to Byzantine Monastery of Perivleptos, Mystras DSC05803.JPG

0563 Byzantine church of Agios Nickolas, Mystras DSC05815 (2).JPG

0564 Byzantine Monastery of Perivleptos, Mystras P1040045.JPG

0565 Byzantine Monastery of Perivleptos, Mystras P1040050.JPG

0566 Laskaris Mansion, Byzantine house, Mystras P1040057.JPG

0567 Byzantine church of Agios Georgios, Mystras P1040055.JPG

0568 The Mitropolis, Cathedral of Agios Dimitrios, Mystras P1030996.JPG

0569 The Mitropolis, Cathedral of Agios Dimitrios, Mystras P1040059.JPG

0570 Cathedral Courtyard, Mystras DSC05826.JPG

0571 Interior Courtyard of the Mitropolis, Mystras P1040071.JPG

0572 Interior Courtyard of the Mitropolis, Mystras DSC05825.JPG

0573 Gallery, the Mitropolis, Mystras P1040063 (2).JPG

0574 Gallery, the Mitropolis, Mystras P1040065 (2).JPG

0575 Exterior Frescoe, the Mitropolis, Mystras P1040073 (2).JPG

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