Ancient Greek Temples are some of the most iconic historic sites in the world. Indeed, any ancient Greek temple list would include some of the best known historical places on the planet. There is probably no better example of ancient Greek architecture and civilisation than those Greek temples of the world which have survived through the ages.
Built not as places of mass worship, but rather as homes for the deities, Greek temples were symbols of a Greek city’s status, culture and achievement. Though the earliest ancient Greek temples would have been made of wood or mud brick, by around the 6th century BC the stone and marble structures which have come to epitomise these temples began to appear, with the best examples – such as the Parthenon – being built in the 5th century BC.
In terms of architecture, ancient Greek temples were square buildings with an external colonnade running around the outside. Over time the style of these columns changed, giving three distinctive architectural periods: the Doric, Ionic and Corinthian. Inside each temple would have been a statue of the deity, often vastly ornate, with the most famous becoming world renowned – such as the statue of Zeus at Olympia.
Today the list of surviving Greek temples is longer than you may imagine, with Greek temples appearing not just in Greece itself, but throughout the Mediterranean. You can explore our ancient Greek temples map above or check out the list of these ancient temples below. Click on each entry for more details and visitor information.
Definitely deserving a place on any ancient Greek temples list, the Valley of the Temples contains the very well-preserved remains of several temples including the fifth century BC Temple of Concorde.
The Valley of the Temples (Valle dei Templi) is a famous archaeological site in Sicily housing some of the best preserved Ancient Greek ruins in the world, especially outside Greece. Agrigento, in which they are located, had been a Greek colony since the 6th century BC. Really more of a ridge... Read More
By far and away the most famous of all Greek temples, the Parthenon in the centre of Athens is a monument to Classical Greek civilisation.
The Parthenon is probably the most famous surviving site from Ancient Greece. Standing at the heart of The Acropolis in the centre of Athens, the Parthenon is a monument to Classical Greek civilisation. Built during the golden age of Pericles - the famous Athenian statesman - the Parthenon was originally constructed... Read More
Ranked among the best preserved ancient Greek temples in the world, Paestum in Italy contains the spectacular remains of the Temple of Hera, the Temple of Neptune and the Temple of Ceres.
Paestum is a Greco-Roman site located south of Naples which contains the stunning remains of three ancient Greek temples which still stand tall today. Founded as a Greek colony in the 6th century BC, Paestum was originally known as Poseidonia, named for the Greek god Poseidon. The city was captured by... Read More
Said to be the birthplace of medicine, Asklepieion was an ancient Greek city the ruins of which include Greek temples dedicated to Apollo Maleatas and Asklepios.
Asklepieion, also known as Asclepeion, in Kos was an ancient Greek and Roman sacred centre of healing based on the teachings of Hippocrates. It seems that there has been a healing sanctuary at the site of Asklepieion since prehistory, but the main ruins today are those of later sanctuaries. The most... Read More
A major Greek city, the ruins of Corinth include the remains of the 6th century BC Temple of Apollo and the remaining columns of the Temple of Octavia.
Ancient Corinth, the ruins of which can be found in the modern town of Korinthos, was a city of major importance in Ancient Greece and in Ancient Rome. Located in between mainland Greece and the Peloponnese, Corinth was a vital port and a thriving city-state as well as being of... Read More
Cyrene in Lybia contains some fascinating ancient Greek temples, including the Temple of Zeus, the great sanctuary of Apollo and the Temple of Artemis.
Cyrene in Libya is considered to be one of the most impressive Greco-Roman sites in the world and one of the best Classical Greek sites beyond Greece itself. Traditionally said to have been founded by the Greeks of Thera in 631BC, Cyrene was a trading hub first inhabited by the Battiadae... Read More
A UNESCO listed ancient Greek site, Delos contains the remains of the partially preserved Temple of Apollo.
Delos is an island and archaeological site which was held sacred by the ancient Greeks as the birthplace of the deity Apollo. It is unclear as to whether his twin sister Artemis was also believed to have been born there. There were temples built in honour of Artemis at Delos,... Read More
One of the more famous ancient Greek temples is the 4th century BC Temple of Apollo at Delphi, though little remains of this once-sacred place.
Delphi is an archaeological site in mainland Greece comprised of the well-preserved ruins of one of the most important cities in Ancient Greece. Archaeologists have found evidence that Delphi was inhabited as early as the Neolithic period and sites dating back to the Mycenaean Civilisation, but it was the Ancient... Read More
Once one of the seven wonders of the ancient world and vital to any Greek temples list, the remains of the Temple of Artemis in Ephesus, Turkey, are sadly rather poorly preserved.
Ephesus or "Efes" was a vibrant classical city, now bordering modern day Selçuk in Turkey and representing some of the best preserved Greek and Roman ruins in the Mediterranean. Thought to have been founded in the 10th century BC by an Athenian prince named Androklos, Ephesus grew into a thriving city... Read More
The ruins of Epidaurus are a UNESCO World Heritage site and include the Temple of Asklepios (also spelt Asclepius) as well as the hill-top sanctuary of Apollo Maleatas.
Epidaurus was a major city in Ancient Greece famed as a centre for healing. Inhabited since prehistoric times, Epidaurus thrived as a sanctuary devoted to the healing deities including Apollo, Asklepios and Hygeia and contained hundreds of spas, the remains of many of which can be seen today. The main sanctuary area,... Read More
Histria is thought to be the oldest settlement in Romania and was once a Greek colony. Today you can still find the remains of temples to Aphrodite and Zeus among the ruins.
Histria, close to the city of Constanta in Romania is an archaeological park housing ruins which date throughout Romania’s history. Histra was once a harbour, first occupied by the Ancient Greeks in 675 BC. Under the Greeks, it flourished into a centre of trade, specialising in ceramics, glass and metals.... Read More
Laodikeia was an Ancient Greek then Roman city, which contains, among other ruins, the remains od a Greek temple dedicated to Zeus.
Laodikeia, also known as Laodicea, was an Ancient Greek then Roman city, which is now represented by a set of interesting ancient ruins. Said by some to have been founded by Antiochus II Theos of the Seleucid Kingdom in the third century BC, many of the buildings and monuments at the Laodikeia... Read More
Not ranking among the better preserved Greek temples, the foundations of the Temple of Apollo Didymaeus at Miletus can nevertheless still be seen today.
Miletus was an important ancient Greek then Roman city, which still boasts an impressive ancient theatre among its ruins. With a history thought to date back as far as the 16th, perhaps even the 17th, century BC, Miletus eventually became a thriving hub from the 8th to 7th centuries BC until... Read More
Mycenae is a well-preserved pre-classical Ancient Greek site in the Peloponnese which contains among its ruins the remains of an archaic ancient temple.
Mycenae is an important archaeological site in Greece which was once the city at the centre of the Mycenaean civilisation of between 1600BC and 1100BC. Believed to have been inhabited since Neolithic times, Mycenae flourished into a fortified city and was ruled at one time by the famous King Agamemnon. At... Read More
The ruins of the famous Greek city of Olympia contain two ancient Greek temples, the Temple of Hera and the Temple of Zeus.
Olympia was a vibrant Ancient Greek city. It is believed that the site of Olympia was inhabited from 3000 BC, however it was after the fall of the Mycenaean civilisation that the city began to flourish and, by 900 BC it was already considered an important religious site. The Olympic Games In... Read More
Once a thriving ancient Greek then Roman city, Pergamum’s ruins include famous sites such as its Asclepion temple, theatre and library.
Pergamum, which is also spelt Pergamon, is a famous archaeological site in Turkey which developed under the Attalid dynasty following the death of Alexander the Great. When Alexander died, one of his generals, Lysimachus, took control of the region. When Lysimachus died in 281BC, Pergamum and the surrounding area fell... Read More
Priene contains the remains of the Greek Temple of Athena which was funded by Alexander the Great, as well as a number of other fascinating historical remains.
Priene is an ancient Greek city which lies between the popular holiday resorts of Kusadasi and Bodrum. It is one of many important ancient sites in the area and is close to both Miletus and Ephesus. However, though smaller than other nearby historical attractions, the real charm of Priene lies in... Read More
One of the most impressive Greek temples to visit, the ruins of the city of Segesta contains the famous 5th century BC incomplete, but very well-preserved, Temple of Segesta.
Segesta is an archaeological site in north western Sicily most famous for the Temple of Segesta. This fifth century BC temple was started by the Elymian people (circa 426 BC-416BC) but never completed. Nevertheless, with its over thirty intact Doric columns and clear structure, the unfinished Temple of Segesta is so... Read More
Containing the remains of a number of stunning ancient Greek temples Selinunte includes the particularly well preserved The Temple of Hera.
Selinunte is an Ancient Greek archaeological site in southern Sicily containing the ruins of an acropolis surrounded by five historic temples, mostly dating to the sixth to fifth centuries BC. The sites at Selinunte are relatively meagre when one considers that this would once have been one of the great cities... Read More
The Syracuse Archaeological Site contains the remains of two ancient Greek temples, the Temple of Athena and the Temple of Apollo.
The Syracuse Archaeological Site (Siracusa) in Sicily contains the impressive remains of the ancient city of Syracuse dating as far back as the eighth century BC. The city of Syracuse was founded by Greek colonists - heralding from Corinth - in 734 BC. At its height, Syracuse was the most... Read More
The ancient Temple of Aphaea on the island of Aegina is one of the most important and picturesque temples in Greece.
The ancient Temple of Aphaea on the island of Aegina is one of the most important and picturesque temples in Greece. The site itself was the location of an important ancient sanctuary which dates back far into antiquity. The sanctuary was dedicated to the cult of Aphaia, a local deity later... Read More
Arguably better preserved than its more famous Athenian neighbour, the Parthenon, the Temple of Hephaestus is an extremely impressive ancient Greek temple and one of the best Greek temples of the world.
The Temple of Hephaestus is an imposing ancient Greek temple in the Athenian Agora and site of worship of the Greek deity of fire, blacksmiths and sculpture. Built in the fifth century BC, the Temple of Hephaestus was later incorporated into the Church of Agios Georgios, this accounting for its excellent... Read More
Once the largest temple in Greece, the Temple of Olympian Zeus is now but a shadow of its former self with only a few standing columns surviving.
The Temple of Olympian Zeus, also known as the Olympeion is one of the biggest - if not actually the biggest - ancient temples in Greece. Vast and impressive, the Temple of Olympian Zeus was begun by Peisistratus the Young in the sixth century BC but various events and circumstances meant... Read More
A picturesque ruin of a fifth century BC Greek temple, the Temple of Poseidon of Sounio was dedicated to the deity of the sea.
The Temple of Poseidon of Sounio is a picturesque ruin of a fifth century BC Greek temple dedicated to the deity of the sea. Dramatically perched on a cliff overlooking the ocean, the Temple of Poseidon of Sounio is now made up of a rectangle of restored large Doric columns. For... Read More
One of several Greek temples on the Acropolis in Athens, the Erechtheion has survived in reasonably good condition.
The Erechtheion is a well preserved ancient temple within the Acropolis complex where its believed namesake, the legendary Greek king Erechtheus, is thought to have come to worship. Immersed in myth and legend, the Erechtheion was home to several cults, including those of Poseidon, Athena and, of course, Erechtheus himself. Completed in... Read More
One of the lesser known Greek temples, the Serapeum was a magnificent ancient temple and library complex in Alexandria of which little remains today.
The Serapeum in Alexandria was an ancient temple dedicated to the worship of the Greco-Egyptian deity Serapis. Built by Ptolemy III in the third century BC, the Serapeum also housed an important library which may have served as an annex of the Great Library of Alexandria. In late... Read More