Kavala is the capital of the prefecture and is geographically located in Eastern Macedonia. The city of Kavala is located at the foot of the mountain "Symbolo" and is the second largest city and port of Macedonia and one of the most strategic ports of northern Greece. Its seaside location and the route between the East and West, makes the city a communications center of peoples and cultures. The historic settlement of Kavala was established and developed on the peninsula of Panagia where the earliest evidence of human presence dates back to 1050-700 BC. The city's history begins in the second half of the 7th century BC when Parian settlers, who in the meantime had colonized the island of Thassos, passed on the opposite mainland coast and founded a new colony called Neapolis.
Around the same time, another walled settlement was created in the area of Kipoupoli, named Antisara. During Macedonian rule Kavala, as a harbor serving Filippi, gained great prosperity, after Philip II -father of Alexander the Great -annexed it. During the Roman Empire the city upgraded into a major port in the region and a travel station, as in front of its walls was passing through Via Egnatia (the main thoroughfare of the Roman Empire connecting Durres to Istanbul). In 45 AD the Apostle Paul visited Kavala on his way to Philippi, where he founded the first Christian community in Europe. In the eighth century the city was known as Christoupolis. After intense adventures and struggles, during the times of the Crusades was conquered and completely destroyed by the Turks (about 1391). After almost a century of desolation, and in the second half of the 15th century the city appears again under the current name and quickly developed into a major port. Not until 1864 did the Greek people get permission from the Turkish state and created the first neighborhood outside the walls in the area of St. John. The 20th century was the golden age of Kavala. From 1903 until 1909, the Greek inhabitants, with a high national morale, took part in the struggle for Macedonia.
The booming of the tobacco industry and the population growth resulted in an economically prosperous middle class and a broad working class organized into powerful trade unions vigorously asserting its claims. Nowadays Kavala over 80,000 inhabitants and is one of the most picturesque cities in Greece. It is a city that many people rank among the most beautiful and picturesque of our country. The reason is its unique character, its privileged location and its warm and friendly atmosphere. Among the city's impressive landmarks are the old walls, the Byzantine castle, and the Kamares - the aqueduct erected by Suleiman the Magnificent in the 16th century, Mehmet Ali's house (18th century) and the Imaret, a Turkish building. The walk up to Profitis Ilias to admire the panoramic view over the city takes you through the fascinating old district. The old houses of the Panagia quarter of town are in excellent condition. In particular the Imaret, an old building with 18 domes overlooks the harbor.
The archaeological museum contains finds from the ancient city of Amphipolis, a colony of Athens. Not far from Kavala (17 km), near the tobacco producing villages of Krinides and Filipi, you'll find the ruins of the ancient Macedonian city of Filipi, named after its founder, Philip II. Still visible on the site are the remains of two Early Christian basilicas, traces of the Via Egnatia, the grand Roman forum, the acropolis, and the theatre. Performances of ancient drama are held every summer in the restored theatre. Kavala as a modern center has numerous beaches, hiking trails and a variety of entertainment. It is also an ideal starting point for excursions into the Nestos area and the interior landscape. Wherever you are Kavala is definitely nearby since it’s easily accessed from all parts of Greece by daily land, air and sea connections and is also linked to the rest of Europe by frequent charter flights.