The Royal Tombs of Aigai, the capital of ancient Macedonia, are one of the most impressive sights in the area of Vergina. The museum stands right next to the excavation site, hosting the treasures that have come to light since the 70s. Is the place you should visit without a second thought to experience its magic. So, let's take a trip to history in the period of Macedonian omnipotence.
Royal Tombs of Aigai: A riveting metaphor into history
The entrance to the museum asks you to follow the downhill of a stone-built road, which will lead you to the tomb of the underground museum space, which is covered with soil, resembling the image of the burials before their imposing image came to light. Crossing the door, you will be greeted by an extremely dark environment for the light to follow the exhibits, which will shine illuminating the magnificence of the Macedonian royal family.
The first thing that will leave you completely impressed can only be the urn made of pure gold for its material. Weighing more than ten whole kilos, it was the place where the bones of King Philip II were deposited. The Macedonian star, also known as the sun of Vergina with its 16 rays as many as the sum of the elements of nature and the gods of Olympus, adorns its cover, while its side pieces are decorated with floral jewelry.
The golden oak wreath is another find that will delight you with the detailed construction of its more than 300 leaves, weighing more than half a kilogram, with the shield and armor of the great king giving an insight into the martial appearance of the most successful expansionist dynasty.
Heading towards the end of the tour you will have the opportunity to meet everything found in the tomb of Alexander the Great's son, with the looks of admiration stolen by the urn made of silver, containing the bones of Alexander IV, murdered by Cassander.
The Museum of Aigai is a place of hospitality for various masterpieces from jewelry, to frescoes and mosaics. To ensure their best possible condition, the building maintains specific degrees of temperature and humidity in its space.
Royal Tombs of Aigai: The Historical Wealth of Vergina
The unique archaeological site of Vergina, a UNESCO cultural heritage site, includes other important monuments of great historical importance. The tomb of Philip II, two meters away from the museum, exudes a diffuse air of mystagogy in the atmosphere, managing to remain unlooted over the centuries until it was discovered along with its two great shrines.
The neighboring tomb of Persephone, with the fresco of the abduction of the daughter of the goddess Demeter that gave it her name, as well as that of the prince, rumored to belong to the son of Alexander the Great and Roxane, along with that of free columns, complete the unique burial ensembles. The theater of Aigai, where King Philip is believed to have died, as well as the gigantic palace built on the top of the hill, come to compose a space that presents us the splendor of the Macedonians to its true extent.
Just so you know: The excavations of the area of Aigai began in the 19th century and culminated in 1976, when the great archaeologist Manolis Andronikos discovered the tomb of Philip II in the area.
How to get there: To get to the unique place of Vergina, in the prefecture of Imathia, starting from Athens, you will need a journey of more than five hours to reach the city of Veria. From there you are separated by more or less ten kilometers until you reach your destination, while if you are in Thessaloniki, with just an hour's trip you will be there.
Vergina is a city where when you visit its monuments you will experience strong shocks of a historical tradition of millennia that flourished in its lands. Make your visit and feel the connection of the glorious past with the present and the future. The Royal Tombs of Aigai await you.