The port town of Anacopia (now located in New Athos city) was recorded by Greeks in the 3rd century. In the 5th century Georgians built a fortress on top of the Iverian mountain, alarmed by the Arab invasion of the Caucasus.
Anacopia served as capital within the Byzatine empire, and later on in the 8th century became the capital of the Abkhazian Kingdom. It was ceded to the Byzantines again for a short period until the Georgians took it back in 1072.
The Arabs never managed to conquer the fortress, instead they captured Derbent city from Dagestan in 654.