Greece’s Minister of Culture and Sport Lina Mendoni has brought forward the time for the completion of work on the Kasta Hill Tomb in Amphipolis, Serres so that people may visit the site by early 2022.

Ms Mendoni, who was touring the site with Central Macedonia Governor Apostolos Tzitzikostas on Saturday, said that because of its layout, the tomb site could receive up to six visitors at a time.

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The minister said that while much work is still needed before the site can open to the public, that modern methods will make it possible for the Amphipolis site to be ready much sooner in comparison to the tomb of Philip in Vergina, which opened to the public after 20 years of work.

The Central Archaeological Council (KAS) had approved the study for restoring the tomb and its surroundings on 17 December, 2018, and Ms Mendoni said that the first phase of the work could be completed six months earlier than planned for June 2021 instead of the first months of 2022. She added that all was now in place for the work to continue past the first phase of the project.

Michalis Lefantzis, the architect guiding the officials around the site, said that 330 large slabs of marble that were part of the structural elements of the enclosure around the tomb on Kasta Hill and which had been moved to the site of the Lion Amphipolis, were transferred back to the original site and had been strategically stacked to make the excavation work easier. They will be fitted together once the structure of the original enclosure has been established.

The famed Lion of Amphipolis. Photo: Berthold Werner/WikiCommons