Thessaloniki – The Co-Reigning City

Greece is country that is full of history and archaeological finds. Athens is its capitol and his frequently visited. However, Greece also has another equally prosperous city. Thessaloniki is 2,300 year old city and is also the second largest in the country of Greece. It was deemed the Co-Reigning city during the Byzantine Empire as it was the co-capital alongside Constantinople. In order to visit this beautiful city rich in history be sure to start applying for a US passport if you don’t already have a passport in your possession.

Passports

Passports act as permission for international travel. Without a passport international travel is prohibited. They are doled out by the Department of State after a rigorous application process. Although detailed the process for obtaining a passport is much easier than it used to be. Today online passport applications and technology make getting a US passport much more accessible.

History Of Thessaloniki

King Cassander of Macedon founded Thessaloniki circa 315 B.C.E. He chose the name Thessaloniki in honor of his wife Thesslonike who happened to be the half sister of Alexander the Great and the princess of Macedon. This city became the most prominent city in Macedon. It eventually became an important trading city and later the capital of one of the four Roman districts of Macedonia.

Ancient Sites

With such a long history there are many archaeological sites in Thessaloniki. The city features the most UNESCO World Heritage Sites in the country of Greece. Alongside these heritage sites are many other prominent archaeological sites including the Roman baths, gladiatorial theatres, and the great throne room just to name a few.

Protected Sites

In addition to the many archaeological sites found in Thessaloniki there are many UNESCO World Heritage Sites. These sites are mainly comprised of structures involved with the early Christian and Byzantine eras. Sites such as the Complex of the Roman Emperor Galerius, the first church of Hagios Demetrios are rich in history. There is also the Hagia Sophia of Thessaloniki, the Rotunda of Saint George, the Church of Panagia Chalkeon, and the Church of Acheiropoietos. There fifteen UNESCO World Heritage sites in Thessaloniki.

Ancient Monuments

The Ottoman Empire took control of Thessaloniki in 1430. This invasion lead to the conversion of all the churches to mosques. Through the conversion, the Great Thessaloniki Fire of 1917, and even the Second World War, these monuments have survived. Albeit with extensive damage, the monuments were eventually restored, and can be viewed today contributing to the fifteen world heritage sites in Thessaloniki.

Museums

No ancient city is complete without an extensive array of museums honoring the archaeological finds of their existence. The two infamous museums of Thessaloniki include the Archaeological Museum of Thessaloniki and the Museum of Byzantine Culture. Other museums include the War Museum, the Sports Museum, and the Photography Museum. There are many other museums that boast the prehistoric antiquities of the city and artifacts from the Neolithic to the Bronze Age. Don’t forget the largest planetarium in Greece is located in Thessaloniki as well.

Thessaloniki has a lot to offer. It is a city that boasts rich history and historical sites. It has a long history of antiquity, war, and triumph. For these reasons it’s a top spot to visit if ever in Greece. It will soon be a featured port for many cruise lines. For this reason you should start the process for applying for a pass port and taking care of any other passport needs that might be required. Step back in time with a trip to the city of the sea, Thessaloniki.