The Corinth Canal is a waterway that crosses the narrow Isthmus of Corinth which connects the Peloponnesian Peninsula to the mainland of Greece. The 6.4 kilometers (4 mile) long canal connects the Gulf of Corinth to the Saronic Gulf saving ships from making a dangerous 700 kilometer (435 miles) voyage around the rocky coastline of the peninsula.

The canal’s width ranges from 69 feet to 82 feet with a water depth of 26 feet restricting the size of ships that can transit through the canal to 58 feet wide. The canal’s construction began in 1882 and was completed in 1883 providing adequate size for the ships built in the late 19th century but it is too small for today’s cargo ships and passenger liners.

The Corinth Canal is framed with steep limestone walls that soar 300 feet above the water level. The shortcut through the canal is not without challenges as landslides from the steep walls occasionally block the canal and navigation can be difficult due to channeled winds and tidal changes.

The canal across the narrow isthmus turned the peninsula into a virtual island with the only land access to the mainland via bridges across the canal. Two of the five bridges that cross the canal are shown in the photos below.

The Dust on My Shoes

The Corinth Canal is a relatively short canal but carving out 300+ feet of solid rock to connect two bodies of water at sea level is an impressive accomplishment considering it was done in the 19th century.

While I was standing on the pedestrian crossing of the canal and looking down, the scale of the cliffs that line the canal is overwhelming. The canal itself looks small until a ship passes through the canal and under the bridge then the size of the canal comes into prospective.

Many times something like a canal looks simple until we take a closer look at the obstacles that need to be overcome to turn that dream into a reality. Everything is simple until we are the ones that are doing the work!

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4 thoughts on “Corinth Canal – Greece”

  1. This is a great post/pictures. I recently saw a video of a huge cruise line passing thro this channel. It was really awesome to see that ship moving along the canal with only just a few feet of clearance. Beautiful pictures.

    1. Thanks Ashoak, it is amazing to watch ships move through this canal.

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