Katakolon (Olympia), Greece
Perched on the west coast of the Peloponnesus, Greece's largest peninsula, this sleepy fishing village of some 300 souls is your gateway to Olympia, site of the original Olympic Games. Held every four years between 776 B.C. and 393 A.D., when the Emperor Theodosius banned pagan festivals, the Olympic Games celebrated the ideal harmony of mind and body. Every four years, the sacred flame of Altis is rekindled to light the torch for the Modern Games.
Olympia's temples were destroyed after the games were banned. An earthquake in the 6th century compounded the destruction, and floods buried the site. Excavation of the ruins began in 1875, and Olympia was declared a National Park in 1976.