Excursions - Greek nights
OUR TRAVEL AGENCY WITH ITS OWN COACHES ORGANIZES:
- DAILY EXCURSIONS TO ARCHEOLOGICAL SITES
- CLASSICAL ROUND TRIPS
- ANY TYPE OF CUSTOMIZED TOUR UPON REQUEST
DONT MISS THE CHANCE TO GET TO KNOW THE NATURAL BEAUTY OF OUR COUNTRY COMBINED WITH THE EXPLORATION OF OUR COUNTRYS HISTORY!
The Parthenon is, perhaps, one of the worlds most renown buildings and is an enduring symbol of Greece. It is a temple dedicates to the goddess Athena and was built to house a huge 12 metre statue of her created by the ancient words` s most famous sculptor. It sits high on the Acropolis (city heights) 90 metres above the city and commands views of the entire area. The marvel of the architecture fascinates experts even today. It stood all but complete until 1687 when a stray mortar exploded munitions stored there by the Turks, destroying the inner structure and the entire roof. The Acropolis is home to many beautiful buildings and temples that were built in the same era (5th century BC) and envisaged as a monument to triumphs of the city.
Around the Acropolis are a great many areas of historical importance. There are two important amphitheatres, one restored and in use today during the summer months. There is the Agora (market place), which was the heat of ancient Athens; the meeting area for speeches. Law courts, the city mint, schools and shops. Further down the slopes is the enchanting area of Plaka. Its charming streets with wonderful houses and delightful shops are lovely to wander and explore.
There are many highlights in central Athens but a favourite has always been the Evzones (National Guards) patrolling in their famous uniforms before the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in Syntagmatos Square. Another special spot is the Kallimarmaro Stadium. This is a faithful replica of an ancient stadium and built on the same exact site. It was restored using the same beautiful white marble as the original and used to host the first Modern Olympics in 1896.
Delphi is located in the verdant mountains of Central Greece in the area northwest of Athens. It was considered the absolute geographical center of the ancient world.
Delphi is the single most important sanctuary of ancient times. It was a place of great reverence and piety and this atmosphere echoes sown to the present day. Great political intrigues were stages in order to become the sponsoring nation of the sanctuary and it` s oracle.
Meteora (soaring rocks) is an area with fascinating geological formations made famous by the monasteries perched, almost impossibly, on the peaks of these natural stone towers. Considered a religious retreat from about 1000 AD, monasteries were built jeer in the centuries following, numbering 24 at the area zenith. Although theories abound as to how the monks first reached the tops of these smooth vertical cliffs, their methods remain shrouded in mystery. The only absolute certainty is the dedication required to haul extensive materials to these isolated cliff tops to build such beautiful monasteries.
Six of these Byzantine monasteries still survive and can be visited by the public. Cinema fans may remember the James Bond movie For your Eyes Only that was set, in part, here.
Whether seen from above at one of the viewing areas or experienced from the deck of a boat at sea level, the Corinth Canal is literally breathtaking. First envisaged in ancient times, it was eventually opened in 1893. Its completion allowed ships to avoid the long and this voyage was considered so perilous that ships were unloaded and dragged the six kilometers across the Isthmos relaunched and reloaded rather than risk the dangerous passage.
Nearby is the site of Ancient Corinth. Its pivotal location meant that the city prospered as a center of trade. At its peak in the first century AD, it was estimated to have a population of 750,000 inhabitants. However, it had a reputation for loose living, drinking and fighting abounded and the city was famous for it` s brothels. It was from here that the Apostle Paul preached to the Corinthians in 52 AD.
In ancient times Hercules performed the first of his twelve labours here in Nemea, killing a ferocious, man-eating lion. These days it is famous as the best winemaking area in all of Greece. Following the Nemean Wine Trail, you can visit various vineyards and try their unique selection of wines.
There is also an important archaeological site here dedicated to Zeus, where the ancient Pan Hellenic Games were held. Perhaps dating to even before the Ancient Olympics, they were held on alternate years and considered very prestigious. The nearby museum houses some impressive finds from the site itself and the surrounding area.
Mycenae is the mythical City of Cold that gave its name to an entire culture and era. The kingdom welded influence al over Greece and the eastern Mediterranean even as far as Egypt. It was the legendary King Agamemnon of Mycenae who commanded the Greek fleet that sailed to Troy to punish Paris for abducting Helen.
The site` s huge walls, in places up to 14 m thick, protect the ancient citadel. Entry is gained through the famous Lion Gate, which leads on to Grave Circle A where most of the important archaeological discoveries were made. A where most of gold artifacts was recovered from here and can be admired in the National Archaeological Museum in Athens, however clever copies are now displayed in the sties` s own museum.
Just outside the walls are the famous Tholos tombs.
The spectacular architecture, resembling a natural beehive, is amazingly intact and an important part of a visit to Mycenae.
Although legend mentions that Nafplio`s founder and name sake was involved in the siege of Troy, nothing remains of the ancient city. As an impressive natural fortress was invaded and held by many occupying powers over the centuries. Its strategic location was particularly important to the Venetians who built most of the city`s castles and fortresses. It was one of the first cities liberated from the Turks in the War of Independence and became, for a few years, the first capital of modern Greece.
The old town, below the walls of the Acronafplia castle and overlooked by the impressive fortress of Palamidi, has retained an almost aristocratic atmosphere. The homes and buildings here have largely been one of the prettiest in Greece. With such an extensive local history there are many places to discover and explore.
Epidauros is most famous for its beautiful preserved theatre, which holds up to 14.000 spectators. It is reputed to have the best acoustics of any open-air theatre in the world. Even today, during the high summer, performances of ancient Greek tragedies and comedies are staged here and attract huge audiences.
The theatre was built as part of a healing centre dedicated to Asklepios, god of medicine and son of Apollo. Famous throughout Ancient Greece for its miraculous cures, the sanctuary dates from the 8th century BC and appears to have been in use for at least 700 years.
There is an extensive site to explore and a wonderful museum where amongst other artifacts you can see ancient surgery tools that are nearly identical to those used today.
KALAVRYTA & THE RAILWAY
Kalavryta is a beautiful town in the foothills of Mount Chelmos. It was totally destroyed by German troops in World War II in reprisal for its role in the resistance. It can be reached by narrow gauge railway that runs for over 22 km up a steep and spectacular gorge. The railway was initially built in the late 1800`s to transport ore down to the coast but with its exquisite scenery, successive tunnels and wonderful bridges it has become an attraction in its own right. Over six kilometers of the track is so steep that a rack-and-pinion system must be engaged both up-and downhill.
The only intermediate station lies approximately halfway and is the stop for the monastery Mega Spilaio (Great Cave). This famous monastery was founded by two wandering monks on the spot where, in 342 AD, a shepherdess showed them a miraculous icon of the Virgin Mary.
Nearby is the spring of the Styx, which was believed in ancient times to be connected to Hades and the Underworld. It was also in these waters that Achilles was dipped making him impossible to wound except for heel by which he`d been held.
The games were held every four years and lasted for five days followed by a period of festivals and celebrations. The Olympic Truce was instigated so that all athletes would have safe passage to participate in the sacred games. Here lie the ruins of the temple of Zeus, which once held the gigantic statue considered one of the 7 wonders of the ancient world. The Olympic Flame is still lit here in a ceremony conducted in the ruins of the temple of Hera. The original stadium is well preserved along with the gymnasium and many other buildings.
The museum has a stunning array of artifacts and statues recovered from the site and are beautifully displayed. Two particularly famous statues, Hermes with the newborn Dionysus and Nike, goddess of victory are housed here.
Mystras was the last outpost of the Byzantine civilization and home to its last emperor. Through clever politics and diplomacy it managed to maintain a semi-independent stance and restrict Turkish influence in the region. On a mountain overlooking the area of Sparta, the city was built on two levels and dominated by a castle on the summit.
It was a religious and cultural centre attracting scholars and artists from around the Mediterranean. The many abandoned churches and monasteries boast beautiful religious wall paintings, some of which are absolutely unique. Sometimes referred to as a ghost town, it takes very little effort to reconstruct the bustling city 40,000 inhabitants in your imagination.
CONTACT US TO GIVE YOU ALL THE INFORMATION AND DETAILS ABOUT THE EXCURSIONS.
TELL US WHICH PLACES & ARCHEOLOGICAL SITES YOU WANT TO VISIT AND WE WILL ORGANIZE YOUR TRIP ACCORDING TO YOUR REQUEST.
Experience traditional Greek night with live Zorba music and dance group. Music is part of the nature and culture of Greece. Grate chance to follow the dancers on the dancing floor and learn the `SYRTAKI` traditional dance.
WE ALSO PROVIDE TRANSPORT&GUIDING SERVICES WITH EXPERIENCED AND LICENCED GUIDES FOR THE WHOLE OF GREECE OR HIRED LOCALLY.