0.5 hour detour to visit an ancient well

  • To find the ancient well where Heracles won a contest against Lepreos, you need to make a short detour from the valley to the east of the ancient wall.
  • Starting from the ancient spring, traverse a series of terraces to the north until you reach a track. Follow the track to the west as far as a stone goat house.
  • The well is close-by and, if you carefully remove its cover, you will see groves in the key stones made by ropes used to draw water in ancient times.

"Hercules and Lepreus had a friendly contest to see which could draw the most water from a Well before becoming exhausted. This trial resulted in the death of Lepreus, and, as he was buried in Phigalia, in the southwestern part of Arcadia, it is probable that the Well was in that town; a location that is also indicated by another feature which was introduced into the contest to determine which one could outeat the other, for the Phigalians were notorious for their excesses at table and, among themselves, rated a man's valiancy according to the amount of food he could consume.
     Admirers of Hercules claimed that he showed more wonderful power in what he did for pleasure at the court of King Thestius, and in eating whenever opportunity offered, that he exhibited in any of his twelve compulsory labours; but, although the cormorant had been assigned to him as a symbol of his voracity, Hercules was not able to eat an ox any soone than Lepreus did. He, however, easily won the contest at the Well, as also that with the dicus and in a drinking bout, and, at the end, in a personal combat, in the course of which Lepreus lost his life. This Well has no doubt been filled in by the ruins of Phigalia of which only some traces of walls are left near the village of Pavlitza on the banks of the Neda."

Rope marksExamine the rope marks
Covered wellDiscover Heracles' well
Well holePeer down the well
Heracles' well
Ancient Phigaleia Heracles' well
Heracles' well

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