While cycling up to Parnitha mountain (post: cycling Parnitha mountain) I passed by this abandoned sanatorium.
The once sanatorium of Athens lays in decay near the top of Parnitha mountain. It was erected in 1914 and functioned for more than 30 years. Many of the patients didn't make it out of it alive. It is estimated that during the 1930s, more than 100.000 people died from tuberculosis in Greece. It shut down around the end of the 1960s and became a hotel. Finally in the 1980s the building got abandoned and since then lays there all these years in decay. You can actually go inside and linger on places where people suffered and many of them died.
The "Park of Souls" stands in front of the sanatorium. Wooden sculptures made by artist Spyros Dasiotis symbolize the feelings of the patients who suffered (and many died) inside the sanatorium. In the park there is a sign that reads: "We love the earth, the people and the animals. The reptiles, the sky and the insects. We, we are all together as well. Together the sky and the earth". Greek poet John Ritsos spent six months in the sanatorium in 1937-38. He didn't manage to get cured but he kept on writing, this extract is from the "Symphony of Spring" written during that period.
GPS coordinates for places in this post, click on them to be redirected to the exact point in google maps. Click on the names to be redirected to their official websites (if applicable).
Abandoned sanatorium of Parnitha mountain: 38°08'55.6"N 23°43'08.9"E
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