The beauty of the lakes in Athens reflects the unique landscape of Greece. It is no coincidence that they have played a central role both in the lives of the locals and the famous Greek mythology and the gods. Closely linked to the human element and the growth of the communities located nearby and the surrounding areas, the lakes in Athens are an enchanting sight for their visitors and a peaceful escape from busy city life.
In the heart of the Athens Riviera is the hidden treasure of Attica’s nature. Lake Vouliagmeni is part saltwater, part spring water lake where people can swim year-round due to its desirable, steady temperature of 22-25 degrees. The warm water is known for its therapeutic mineral qualities and healing properties and has been used for years to bring relief to arthritis sufferers.The lake is recognized as a wonder of nature because of its unique appearance and the surroundings.Scientific research and studies have discovered that millions of years ago, where the lake is now, there was once a large cave with many hot springs. Eventually the high temperature and moisture of these springs caused the roof to collapse. The underwater cave at the edge of the lake has never been fully explored.
The Marathon lake is a water supply reservoir embedded in a beautiful mountainous area. The Marathon Dam was constructed in the 1930s and served as Athens’ main supply of water for decades. Multiple walkways have been built around the area so that people can enjoy the lake from all sides. A bridge also goes across the lake, but it is quite narrow and only for cars to traverse.Quiet and serene, the lake is a great place to get away from the noise and crowds of people in the city. A great place also to find a bench to rest at and watch the colors change as the sun goes down.
Just 30 kilometers from central Athens on the eastern slopes of Mount Parnitha, at an altitude of 600 meters, there is a small artificial lake that seems to belong in a fairytale. Lake Beletsi, named after the nearby peak of Mount Parnitha, was created by accident in the 1970s. When construction on the area’s infrastructures began, a torrent mound was closed off. Water began to accumulate in the region, creating the 5,000 square meter lake, which reaches 5 meters in depth. Even though it was created by accident, the lake Beletsi also called a kithara lake from its shape is now an oasis near central Athens, where the capital’s residents and visitors can enjoy their day.The area is also home to many migratory birds, while the lake waters are often filled with swans and ducks.
The modern lake Koumoundourou, in the southern region of the Municipality of Aspropyrgos, is identified with the site of the ancient twin ponds of Reitoi. The Reitoi were small artificial lakes created by the waters of a group of springs on the western foot of Mount Aigaleo, about 300 m north of the coast. The northern lake was devoted to Demeter, whereas the southern to Persephone. The latter has been preserved until the present day and is currently known as «lake Koumoundourou». It marks the border between the modern towns of Haidari and Aspropyrgos. Similarly, in ancient times the Reitoi lakes constituted the boundary separating Athens and Eleusis.