Every once in a while in Second Life, a superlative new destination opens that sets a standard for others to follow. The new city of Antiochia, set to open on Sunday January 11 at 10:00 am SLT with a full schedule of educational and performance events, is one of these. Antiochia (Antioch) on the Orontes, the ruins of which are located near the current city of Antakya in modern day Turkey, provides the inspiration for the new destination.
Antiochia one rivaled the legendary Byzantine city of Constantinople (now Istanbul) for its beautiful art and architecture. It is famous for its role in development of Christianity and is mentioned many times in the New Testament. You can find out much more about Antiocha, one of the main cities of antiquity in the Hellenic, Roman, and Byzantine Eras. history by visiting the interactive exhibits located around the sim, details of which are provided in the When You Arrive section below.
Antiocha is a gorgeous place. I toured the destination earlier this week - more plantings and trees were being readied for landscaping. The mosaic art which decorates the large Byzantine church which is reminiscent of Hagia Sophia in modern day Istanbul is particularly beautiful.
But which makes Antiocha such a standout, are the interactive educational exhibits. You leave your visit here feeling that you have actually learned something about Byzantium, which for nearly 1,000 years was the center of the civilized world. A look at the structures and art here gives you an indication of why the term "Byzantium" conjures up thoughts and images of intrigue, mystery, and exotic beauty.
When You Arrive:
Antiochia is the home of Second Life's Community of Citizens of Antiochia (Agora Polis Antiochia - APA). Antioch's primary sponsor is Antiocha Scholarships Trust.
When you arrive, click on the round stone located on the ground, to your left as you face the city gate to find our more about the origins of Antiochia. Then walk through the doors of the Porta Aurea (Golden Gate) ahead of you, and walk down the Main Street (the Cardo), to the APA Info Center, located on your left as you enter Nymphaeum Plaza. Once there you can find out more about Antiochia sites and activities.
During your visit, will find 44 round signs bearing the AST logo and the letter "i". Click on them to receive a notecard with informative details about the location you are visiting.
SLurl to Antiocha:
To find our more about Antiochia, and see the opening day event schedule:
To find our more about Antiocha Scholarships Trust, the main sponsor of Antiocha:
In 2009, I wrote a substantial review of travel to the city of Istanbul, which was the city of Constantinople, capital of the Byzantine Empire before 1453. You can find it here, and compare the photography to virtual Antiocha:
Education Links about Antioch and the Byzantine Empire:
To find out more about the ancient city of Antioch:
To find our more about the Byzantine Empire (Byzantium):
You can see an excellent three hour documentary on the Byzantine Empire here. I watched all three hours, and it is very interesting: