Palace of Nestor, Epáno Englianós
The Mycenaean palace (Palace of Nestor) at Epáno Englianós (18 km/11 mi north of Pylos) is not so imposing as Mycenae or Tiryns, since it lacks their massive cyclopean walls (it is the only unfortified Mycenaean palace); but the layout is so clear and easy to follow that the site is a very rewarding one to visit. The whereabouts of Nestor's stronghold were the subject of dispute even in ancient times; but the American excavations in 1939 and since 1952 have suggested very strongly that the palace found here was indeed the home of the Homeric hero. The excavations brought to light some early remains dating from before 1300 B.C., an Old Palace (1280 B.C.) and a New Palace (1250 B.C.): dates which fit in with the traditions about Neleus's conquest of the land, his palace and the palace of his son Nestor.
Opening hours: 8:30am-3pm
Always opened on: Assumption Day - Christian (Aug 15), Óhi Day - Greece & Cyprus (Oct 28)
Always closed on: New Year's Day (Jan 1), Greek National Day (Mar 25), May Day / Labor Day (May 1), Day after Christmas, St Stephen's Day, Boxing Day (Dec 26), Christmas - Christian (Dec 25), Easter - Christian, Good Friday - Christian
Entrance fee in EUR: Adult €3.00, Concession or reduced rate €2.00, Students from EU FREE, Child 18 & under FREE
Useful tips: Admission is free on Sundays from November to March.
Disability Access: Partial facilities for persons with disabilities.
Palace of Nestor Highlights
Parts of the Old Palace can be seen on the west side of the site. The plan of the New Palace is completely preserved, and the rooms are now covered with a protective roof and labelled. The propylon, beside which were archive rooms, leads into a court, beyond which is the central element in the palace, the Megaron, with two antechambers preceding the main hall (11.2m/37ft by 12.9m/42ft). In the center of the hall is a circular hearth 4m/13ft in diameter, with painted stucco decoration. On the right-hand wall the position of the throne can be identified; a depression in the floor beside the throne was probably for libations.
On the right-hand side of the court a propylon gives access to a corridor, in which are a staircase leading to the upper floor and apartments for the queen or for guests. In one of the rooms is a small circular hearth, in the next one a terracotta bath-tub. Other rooms alongside or beyond the Megaron served as store-rooms (with pithoi for oil still in situ).
North-east of the palace is a tholos tomb. At the foot of the hill on which the palace stands the excavators found remains of the lower town and numbers of tombs. From in front of the palace there is a good view of the gentle green countryside extending to Navarino Bay.