The sea area of Elafonisos has for centuries been the site of cosmological legends such as the birth of Aphrodite in Kythera, the Three Graces in the Strait of Elafonisos, Paris and Helen during the Trojan war, the Cyclopes' Land and the journey of Odysseus, Glaucus, Silenus, Chiron, the labor of Heracles with the Centaurs and the worship of deities like Athena, Apollo, Artemis, Poseidon and others.
Aphrodite, the Three Graces, Ugo Foscolo, Kythera and Elafonisos
Hesiod, the poet of Theogony, says that Aphrodite was born near Kythera through the foams created around a mutilated "divine member" of Uranus. Aphrodite, the goddess of beauty, soon became the most popular deity. Foscolo, the great Italian writer, could not stand unimpressed by her divine presence. In the "Hymn to the Graces" inspired by Canova, he states that: At that time Kythera and Elafonisos were united and there was a forest between them, in the place of the present Strait of Elafonisos. From that point the Graces appeared on a chariot carried by deer. The children of Kythera looked at them with admiration, but wild bear hunters lived in the woods who, when they saw the Graces, attacked them with bats and wild screams, and Aphrodite, to protect the Graces, covered them under her veil and ordered the forest to sink. That's how the Strait of Elafonisos was formed.
Mentis, Sp. Konstantinos, under publication, Cultural Economy and Sociology of Cultural Tourism, University and Cultural Publications of Smigopelagos, pp. 70-71
At the sanctuary of Athena, which was built around the 10th century BC, in Elafonisos (probably in Vigla), Paris with the beautiful Helen of Troy, according to tradition, escaped from Kranai, where they remained until they left for Troy.
Menelaus built in Elafonisos a burial monument for the commander of his ship, Kinadis, as Pausanias informs us, who visited the area. The most probable area of construction of the monument is considered the area of Panagia in Kato - Nisi.
Odyssey begins from the Strait of Elafonisos
After the occupation and destruction of Troy, Odysseus returned to Ithaca. Following a stormy voyage, after Zeus's intervention, he arrived at Cape Malea. The winds, however, were intense, “the wave and the current and the North Wind beat me back as I was rounding Malea, and drove me from my course past Cythera" (Odyssey I 79-81). Odysseus, making an unequal struggle with nature, overcame Malea and attempted to enter the Strait of Elafonisos. But that was impossible and the wind moved him away while he was at the entrance of the Strait of Elafonisos, west of Kythera. After his ordeal in the Strait of Elafonisos, Odysseus arrived in the land of the Cyclopes. The local tradition, taking into account the above and in combination with the landscape of the southwest Elafonisos (Kato Nisi), considered the islands of Panagia as the stones that the Cyclopes threw at Odysseus's ship, the cave lying in front of them, as the cave of the Cyclops Polyphemus and the Katonisi as the land of the Cyclopes.
Mentis, Sp. Konstantinos, under publication, Cultural Economy and Sociology of Cultural Tourism, University and Cultural Publications Smigopelagos, pp. 74-75
The Odyssey Book 9, Translated by A. T. Murray
Glaucus in Cavo-Malea
Glaucus, according to mythology, was a sea-god and had the gift of prophecy. Close to Cape Malea he appeared to Menelaus and prophesied the future to him. Glaucus was worshiped in Gythio, Malea, Delos, Naxos and was a very popular deity among seamen. Each year, he crossed the seas at night and visited all the islands and all shores.
Mentis, Sp. Konstantinos, under publication, Cultural Economy and Sociology of Cultural Tourism, University and Cultural Publications Smigopelagos, pp. 72
Silenus was the son of Pan and tutor of Dionysus. He was considered to be very wise and had the gift of prophecy when he was drunk. He had settled in Malea, where he was worshiped. He is believed to be the father of Apollo, of shepherd Staphylus and Centaur Pholus.
Mentis, Sp. Konstantinos, under publication, Cultural Economy and Sociology of Cultural Tourism, University and Cultural Publications Smigopelagos, pp.72
Chiron in Malea
Chiron was immortal. When the Lapiths drove him out of Pelion, he settled in Malea.
Mentis, Sp. Konstantinos, under publication, Cultural Economy and Sociology of Cultural Tourism, University and Cultural Publications Smigopelagos, pp. 73
Heracles and the Centaurs at Malea
The myth of Heracles' fourth labour is also related to the myth of the Centaurs of Foloi (Pholóē). Heracles, having been ordered by Eurystheus to capture the Erymanthian Boar, crossed the country of Pholóē and was hosted by Centaur Pholus, the son of Silenus. Pholus brought wine to Heracles from a jar given to him by Dionysus, having first assured him that he should not fear the other Centaurs. However, the Centaurs, after the smell of wine struck their nose, arrived armed with stones and bats and rushed to the cave of Pholus. Heracles repelled the first two who dared to get in, Agchius and Agrius, and chased the others by shooting arrows at them, as far as Malea, until they fled to Chiron.
Heracles inadvertently injured Chiron on his knee and was very sorry. Although Chiron was immortal, he begged Zeus to take his immortality and bestow it upon Prometheus, so that he would not suffer from his wound. The other Centaurs, according to Apollodorus of Athens, scattered across the area. Some of them fled to Malea. Elafonisos was then a peninsula of Malea. Heracles, turning to the cave of Pholus, found him dead, along with many others.
Mentis, Sp. Konstantinos, under publication, Cultural Economy and Sociology of Cultural Tourism, University and Cultural Publications Smigopelagos, pp. 73-4
Deities and Coins of Ancient Boiai (Boeae)
The deities that were worshiped by the inhabitants of the ancient Voies (present Vatika) are known from ancient descriptions (such as Pausanias' Description of Greece), literary sources and archaeological findings such as: architectural remains, statues, inscriptions, marble reliefs of male and female figures and coins with a divine representation on one side and on the other side the inscription "ΒΟΙΑΤΩΝ" (of Boiai). The figures of Poseidon, Artemis, Apollo, Hermes, Eros and even Isis and Serapis are depicted on the coins.
Anomitris, Tzortzis, 2010, TA VATIKA newspaper, 292, December