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Kavala

4.2
Castles · Landmarks · Specialty Museums
Kavala is a city in northern Greece, the principal seaport of eastern Macedonia and the capital of Kavala regional unit. It is situated on the Bay of Kavala, across from the island of Thasos and on the Egnatia motorway, a one-and-a-half-hour drive to Thessaloniki (160km west) and a forty-minute drive to Drama (37km north) and Xanthi (56km east).NamesIn Antiquity the name of the city was Neapolis . During the Middle Ages, it was renamed Christoupolis .EtymologyThe etymology of the modern name of the city is disputed. Some mention an ancient Greek village Skavala near the town. Other proposals include either from the Italian cavallo (= horse), or from the Hebrew Kabbalah due to the city's large Jewish population in the past. Its nickname is The cyan city (Η γαλάζια πόλη).HistoryAntiquityThe city was founded in the late 7th century BC by settlers from Thassos. It was one of several Thassian colonies along the coastline, all founded in order to take advantage of rich gold and silver mines, especially those located in the nearby Pangaion mountain (which were eventually exploited by Phillip II of Macedonia).Worship of Parthenos / the Virgin, a female deity of Greek–Ionian origin associated with Athena, is archaeologically attested in the Archaic period. At the end of the 6th century BC Neapolis claimed independence from Thassos and began issuing its own silver coins with the head of Gorgo (γοργὀνειο) on one side. A few decades later a large Ionic temple made from Thassian marble replaced the Archaic one. Parts of it can now be seen in the town's archaeological museum.
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