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Petralona Cave, Halkidiki Region
(3.9/5 based on 150+ reviews on the web)
The Petralona cave also Cave of the Red Stones, a Karst formation - is located at 300m above sea-level on the western foot of Mount Katsika, 1km east of the eponymous village, about 35km south-east of Thessaloniki city on the Chalkidiki peninsula, Greece. The site came to public attention when in 1960 a fossilized hominid skull was found. The cave had been discovered accidentally only a year earlier (1959) after erosion had left clefts in the rock. "Bejeweled" with impressive stalactite and stalagmite formations and holding an abundance of fossils the cave soon attracted geologists and paleontologists. After decades of excavations the cave is open to the public and scientific work is documented and presented in an adjacent Archaeological Museum.The cave's most prominent fossil specimen, since known among paleoanthropologists as the "Petralona Skull", named Archanthropus europaeus petraloniensis by Aris Poulianos, former head of the Anthropological Association of Greece. He considers it the oldest European hominid ever found and assessed it to be 800.000 years old. Yet "there was the constant problem that the skull was an isolated find" as other scientists strongly disagree and the find has been a continuing cause of controversy since. The Anthropological Association's conclusions and results are in direct conflict with accepted speciation models of the genus Homo and the chronology of the Out of Africa theory.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • We went by car with children. Everyone really enjoyed it. Not a lot of people. Gather in small groups and with the guides lead into the cave. Guided tour in English.
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  • Tried to get the address and the name of the car Navigator. Umajalis'. Eventually drove Navigator phone some picturesque villages and farms. Got in of Petralona. The car on the parking and on the "train" climbed to the cave (not cross-barrier). Tickets at the box office, entrance only with a guide about every 30 minutes. Inside track, ladders, sometimes very narrowly! Beautiful shades of red lights. There is a place of ancient human remains and finds of animals (they selected Museum cave, while the exhibits are mounted). When the cave there is a seating area with tables. Very decent toilets.
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  • nice cave. it's a long cave. there are interesting things to find about it. it was good. I like it very much