Naupactus; view from the fortress.
|Administrative region:||West Greece|
|Population statistics (as of 2011)|
|- Area:||159.9 km2 (62 sq mi)|
|- Density:||124 /km2 (320 /sq mi)|
|Time zone:||EET/EEST (UTC+2/3)|
|Elevation (min-max):||0–3 m (0–10 ft)|
|Postal code:||303 xx|
Naupactus or Nafpaktos (Greek: Ναύπακτος, formerly Έπαχτος; Latin: Naupactus; Italian: Lepanto; Turkish: İnebahtı), is a town and a former municipality in Aetolia-Acarnania, West Greece, Greece. Since the 2011 local government reform, it has been part of the municipality Nafpaktia, of which it is the seat and a municipal unit. It is the third largest town of Aetolia-Acarnania, after Agrinio and Missolonghi.
Naupactus is situated on a bay on the north coast of the Gulf of Corinth, 3 km (2 mi) west of the mouth of the river Mornos. The harbour is accessible only to the smallest craft. It is 9 km (6 mi) northeast of Antirrio, 18 km (11 mi) northeast of Patras, 35 km (22 mi)east of Missolonghi and 45 km (28 mi) southeast of Agrinio. The Greek National Road 48/E65 (Antirrio - Naupactus - Delphi - Livadeia) passes north of the town.
The name 'Naupactus' means 'boatyard', from ναύς (ancient Greek naus meaning "ship") and πηγνύειν (Ancient Greek pêgnuein meaning 'to build'). In the Byzantine period, the name used was the slightly altered Epahtos (Έπαχτος), while the Venetian term was Lepanto and the Ottoman Turkish İnebahtı. The ancient name was revived in the 19th century.
In historical times it belonged to the Ozolian Locrians; but about 455 BC, in spite of a partial resettlement with Locrians of Opus, it fell to the Athenians, who peopled it with Messenian refugees and made it their chief naval station in western Greece during the Peloponnesian war. Two major battles were fought here. In 404 it was restored to the Locrians, who subsequently lost it to the Achaeans, but recovered it through Epaminondas.
Philip II of Macedon gave Naupactus to the Aetolians, who held it till 191 BC, when after an obstinate siege it was surrendered to the Romans. It was still flourishing about 170, but in Justinian I's reign was destroyed by an earthquake. It was again destroyed by earthquakes in 553 and in the 8th century and so on. From the late 9th century, it was capital of the Byzantine thema of Nicopolis.
In the late Middle Ages it was part of the Despotate of Epirus and for a short period part of the Despotates of Angelokastron (1358–1374) and of Arta (1374–1401) Afterwards it was taken by Venice, who fortified it so strongly that in 1477 it successfully resisted a four-month long siege by a Turkish army of thirty thousand; in 1499, however, it was rumoured to have been sold by the Venetians to the Ottoman Sultan Beyazid II. Under the Ottomans, Naupactos was known as İnebahtı and was the seat of a Turkish sanjak. The mouth of the Gulf of Lepanto was the scene of the great sea battle in which the naval power of the Ottoman Empire was nearly completely destroyed by the united Papal, Spanish, Habsburg and Venetian forces (Battle of Lepanto, October 7, 1571). In 1687 it was recaptured by the Venetians, but was again restored in 1699, by the Treaty of Karlowitz to the Ottomans. It became part of the Kingdom of Greece in March 1829.
Naupactos suffered damage from the 2007 Greek forest fires.
Today the population is about 19,768 people according to the 2011 census. Residential homes align with the Gulf of Corinth over a length of about 3 km (2 mi) and a width of about 1 km (0.6 mi). The port divides the beachfront in two parts. The Western part is called Psani, while the Eastern part Gribovo. Naupactus sits on a shoulder of a mountain range on the north while farmlands dominate the western part. It used to be on the GR-48/E65 linking Antirrio and Amfissa; now it is bypassed to the north at the elevation of 150 to 200 m (492 to 656 ft) above sea level. The bypass has contributed significantly in lowering the number of heavy trucks passing through the narrow streets of the town.
- The port and castle provide the main attraction for the town. Shops, cafes and bars dot the immediate area, while a cafe is also located within the castle walls
- The port also includes monuments commemorating the Battle of Lepanto (1571), and there is also a statue of the Cervantes by the Mallorcan artist Jaume Mir.
- A small water park is located just past the western portion of the beach near Psani
- Nafpaktos is also home to a local museum
The municipal unit Naupactus is subdivided into the following communities (constituent villages in brackets):
- Afroxylia (Ano Afroxylia, Kato Afroxylia)
- Dafni (Dafni, Kato Dafni)
- Mamoulada (Kato Mamoulada, Mamoulada)
- Neokastro (Neokastro, Paliampela)
- Palaiochoraki (Palaiochoraki, Mikro Palaiochoraki)
- Pitsinaiika (Pitsinaiika, Kastraki, Sykia)
- Riganio (Riganio, Diasello, Poros)
- Vlachomandra (Vlachomandra, Gefyra Bania, Sfikaaika)
- Vomvokou (Vomvokou, Agios Vasileios, Lefka Vomvokous, Marmara)
- Antirrio (west)
- Katafygio (Katafigio): One of the traditional villages in Orini Nafpaktia (mountainous Nafpaktia).
- Ano chora (north): One of the traditional villages of Orini Nafpaktia
- Kentriki (north): One of the traditional villages of Orini Nafpaktia
- Aspria (north): One of the traditional villages of Orini Nafpaktia
- Chomori: One of the traditional villages of Orini Nafpaktia
- Elatovrisi or Elatou: One of the traditional villages of Orini Nafpaktia with famous natural spring water.
- Skala: Village found in the hills minutes from the town centre; overlooks the town itself
- Skaloma: beaches
- Hiliadou: Part of the strip of beachside villages outside of Nafpaktos (Hiliadou-Monastiraki-Skaloma); sandy beach makes it a popular destination for residents of Nafpaktos and tourists
- Klepa: One of the villages in Orini Nafpaktia
|Year||Town population||Municipality population|
- Agelaus (3rd century BC), politician
- Georgios Athanasiadis-Novas (1893–1987), lawyer, politician and former Prime Minister of Greece
- Metropolitan Hierotheos (Vlachos) of Nafpaktos (1945-), metropolitan of Nafpaktos and Agios Vlasios
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Nafpaktos.|
|Antirrio||Gulf of Corinth|