Philippi, overlooking the coastal plain and the bay at Kavala, was founded in 356 BC by the energetic Macedonian dynast Philip II, father of Alexander the Great. He fortified the Thasian settlement called Crenides to control neighboring gold mines. He derived a fortune from the gold mines but treated the city, renamed after him, as a “free city” with its own Greek constitution. That prominence persisted through subsequent Roman, Byzantine, and post-Byzantine Christian periods. Many ruins, especially of the imperial epoch, are spread over the site, highlights include the Hellenistic theatre, set dramatically against the hill, the forum, and later remains of the basilicas that rose here once Philippi became an important center of early Christianity, when the Letter of Paul to the Philippians was addressed to Christian converts in Philippi whom he had visited in his second and third missionary journeys.
Parking location – Philippi: 41.012224N 24.288607E (🚻)