Terrace of the Lions on the island of Delos


Replicas of Apollo’s stone guards still guard the sacred site of Greece. Located across the street from the now-dry lake where, according to legend, the ancient Greek sun god Apollo was born, the Terrace of the Lions keeps the memory of what was once an imposing row of stone lions.

terrace of lions

Entry related to location: Greece

The original row of 12 (although there may have been 16) stone lions was built around 600 BC. people of Naxos in honor of the god Apollo. The lions face east towards the Sacred Lake of Delos, where, according to Greek scholars of the time, Apollo was born. As planned, the lions were supposed to either symbolically guard this place, or simply instill a sense of divine power in travelers heading to the shrine of Apollo in the area.

Although visitors can still walk through the original arrangement of the five remaining lion statues, they are actually just marble replicas. The original cat figurines were moved to a nearby museum to protect them from environmental exposure and subsequent destruction.

To get to Lions Terrace, take a small ferry from Mykonos to Delos. The island of Delos is a visit-only archaeological site, without any accommodation facilities and hotels in Greece, so an overnight stay is not possible.