Archaeological sites, museums across Greece celebrate August full moon
ATHENS, Aug. 15 (Xinhua) -- Greece celebrated on Thursday the August full moon by offering free entrance to archaeological sites, museums and monuments across the country, under the auspices of the Greek Ministry of Culture and Sports.
Citizens and foreign visitors have the opportunity to combine the moonlit summer night with special events, and enjoy the brightest moon of the year, with more than 100 cultural events, including concerts, poetry readings, guided tours and theater performances.
Forty-eight archaeological sites and museums remained open to the public. This year's full moon occurred on Aug. 15, which also coincide with one of the largest religious holidays in the country.
The celebration of the August moonlight in Greece's archaeological treasures began in 1999 and has proven very successful and becomes a summertime tradition across the nation.
The Acropolis Museum invited locals and visitors to take part in a courtyard musical celebration. Local musicians performed popular songs from several prominent Greek singers, while visitors can also stroll around the museum's exhibitions.
The National Archaeological Museum of Athens also hosted some special "guests" this year. Four small lunar stones that were brought back 50 years ago by Apollo 11, the first manned mission to land on the Moon on 1969, impressed the visitors. On their return to the Earth, the astronauts brought with them 21.5 kg of lunar material, of which 135 countries, including Greece, received small fragments. The visitors to the Museum can see four stones from the Moon, weighing a few grams, along with the Greek flag that traveled in space with Apollo 11.
The events, part of the Culture Ministry's "Under the Moonlight" series, will conclude on Sunday, Aug. 19, according to an official announcement. In 2018, the full moon celebrations hosted over 100,000 visitors, compared with 74,970 in 2017, and 63,795 in 2016.