“Letter to the Corinthians – Yes we can”

This Reuters article came through my feed last week describing how the modern village of ancient Corinth is dealing with Greece’s economic crisis.  The author seems to me to be painting an overly dramatized view of the drop in tourism in the village.  In my 15 summers of visits to the Corinthia, I don’t recall large crowds ever swarming Acrocorinth, and indeed, this summer there were two bus loads of students touring the acropolis when we visited at the start of June.  Conversations with Corinthians this summer suggest that there is a real concern to improve tourism (is that really a new concern?), but I also heard from a tavern owner that tourism was not down.  One’s impression of tourism in a place like ancient Corinth depends in large part on the time of day and year one is there—unlike, say, the Acropolis in Athens where the tourists come in more constant flows.  See, by contrast, Joel Willitts’ recent visit to Corinth after a ten year period — he describes it as ‘bustling tourist trap’!  I would be curious to see some figures for the drop in tourism in 2011.

A replica of the Argo ship sails into the Corinth canal some 100 km (62 miles) west of Athens July 2, 2008. REUTERS/Yiorgos Karahalis

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