The historical naval battle of Salamis in 480 BCE was very important, since it was decisive in determining the outcome of the Greek-Persian conflict. King Xerxes of Persia prepared his campaign against Greece for four full years, mobilizing an enormous military force. The final battle between the two fleets took place in the straits between Attica and Salamis as Xerxes looked on from the mountain of Aigaleo in Attica, as the Greek fleet attained a remarkable victory. The naval battle is considered among the most important in the history of Western civilization because it definitively brought to an end Persian plans to expand their influence into Europe. Moreover, a Persian victory would have halted the development of Greece, meaning that Western civilization would not have turned out as it has today.
The Athenians used the trireme’s advantages in their crucial victory over the Persian navy at Salamis in 480 B.C.E. The triremes smashed into the Persian vessels, crushing their hulls and driving them into one another.
Salamis is a destination where, in order to have a good time, you have to go it alone, to find the points of interest. Salamina has its own character. It is the little sister of Athens, the flesh and blood of Piraeus, the place ruled by the mythical king Aias the Great (Telamonian Aias), where Euripides wrote, Karaiskaikis (leading general of the Greek Revolution) was buried, and Sikelianos (the great neohellenic poet) spent his last days.
Salamis means beach, ouzo and fish. Here you will enjoy octopus, kalamari, soupies (cuttlefish) and prawns. The fishmarket in the town of Salamina is a great place for a trip, to shop for fish for home and to strike up conversations with the perpetually sociable fishmongers. Here you will find bakaliaro (cod), prosfigakia (whiting), menoula (Spicara maena), soupies (cuttlefish), thrapsala (small squid), octopus and much other fish, which, according to the sellers, is caught from Aegina, Poros and Hydra.
In Salamis’s pastry shops, you will find halva, loukoumades, skaltsounia and krostini (a meze with a base of bread grilled or toasted in the grill or oven served with different cheeses, vegetables, meat and dips.
Other local dishes
Barbounia-savore: medium-sized mullet, floured and fried in sauce with rosemary, garlic and a little vinegar.
Skatiles pilafi: this is the name for the beach clams of Salamis. After being washed to clean off the mud, they are steamed and cooked as pilaf with onion, tomato paste and dill.
Kougoulouari: Α sweet marrow pie.
Platetsi: oiled bread, with or without feta cheese.
Stuffed pancakes: which are filo stuffed with grated almonds and walnuts, sugar, cinnamon and cloves and rolled and presented in a form of a circle, then fried and served with warm honey, cinnamon, cloves and grated walnut.