Splendid Byzantine churches dominate the holy places of Thessaloniki | Religion

THESSALONIKI, Greece — Under waving Greek and Byzantine flags, three men erected a party tent on the terrace of the 5th-century Osios David Church on a recent Saturday, hoping it would shelter festival-goers from the heat that was already shrouding the view of Mount Olympus across the gulf.

This is Thessaloniki in an instant – a seaside treasure trove of early Christian art and architecture, with echoes of the sacred all around the city, from the mythical mountain home of the ancient Greek gods to the contemporary Orthodox Christian monasticism of Mount Athos.