The Amfissa Olive Grove is one of the oldest in the country, with a 3,000-year history. The earliest information indicates wild olives were harvested at the Amfissa Olive Grove as far back as the Neolithic Age! However, according to some sources, it was the Pelasgians who first planted olive trees here in prehistoric times. Since then, the use of the land has not changed, no matter how many occupiers have gone by. The Olive Grove takes up 5,500 hectares and has approximately 1,200,000 trees. It stretches from the town of Amfissa up to the Corinthian Gulf, from the village Erateini to the village Kirra. It is the largest continuous olive grove in Greece and part of the famous Delphi Landscape.
It is a single cultivation, non-linear plantation of old trees (70% of them are more than 150 years old). Their trunks have deep folds, their foliage is rich and many of them are as high as 10 meters.
Olive groves are made up of parcels or lachidia. The lachidia are separated by berms called trafia, which hold the rainwater; on sloping areas, the land is terraced.
The ancient path leading to the Temple of Delphi passes through the Olive Grove, and below the village Chrisso (ancient Krisa), among the many olive trees of Krisaio Pedio (Field), lied in ancient times the Delphi Horse Racing Forum, where the Pythian Games took place, a tournament attracting athletes from everywhere in Greece.
Today, a large part of the Olive Grove is an integral part of the Delphi Landscape, which is recognized by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site.
THE DELPHI LANDSCAPE
The Delphi Landscape is the area stretching from the Delphi archaeological site to the town of Itea, including the Amfissa Olive Grove and the valley of Pleistos.
In ancient times, Pleistos and Ylaithos, two rivers which are now dry creeks, flowed into that valley. The area fauna is mostly shrubland, but a large part of it, possibly half of the expanse, is covered by olive groves.
These olive trees were the result of wild olive grafting and belong to the famous Amfissa olive variety. Most of the trees at the Amfissa Olive Grove are more than 100 years old and, as such, they are protected trees.
The Delphi Landscape is considered integrally connected, aesthetically and archaeologically speaking, to the Delphi Archaeological Site. It is a protected area recognised by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site.