RIVERS ALPHEIOS RIVER The sacred Alpheios river is the longest river on the Peloponnese. Rising in the highlands of Arcadia, it flows under many a bridge and absorbs numerous tributaries before emptying into the Ionian Sea west of Olympia. It is said there is a legend for every bank of the river. One relates to its name. In antiquity, Alpheios was worshipped as a god who brought wealth. He became a river in order to pursue the love of his life, the nymph Arethousa who had fled to Sicily to avoid his advances. It was believed that whenever he wanted to see her he travelled as water to the island.