12 DAYS ARCHAEOLOGY TOUR

1,650.00

Includes

  • Accommodation for 11 nights with breakfast
  • Cycling and hiking
  • Licensed Archaeological Guide on Day 11 (Half-Day Tour in Athens)
  • Tickets for archaeological sites and museums
  • Ticket for Kapsia Cave
  • Wine tasting on day 2
  • Cooking lesson
  • Local transportation
  • Three meals with one drink included

Single supplement:  240 €

Optional Licensed Archaeology Guides for (Olympia, Mycenae, Epidaurus, Delphi, Sparta, Meteora €350p.p).

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Description

This trip is not just a trip in Greece. It is a trip in the past, to the birthplace of science and the great growth of the arts.Taking this trip, you will travel 3500 years back in time, as you will visit some of the most important ancient Greek sites, including the Acropolis of Athens, Delphi and Meteora,and mainly in the area of Peloponnese: ancient Olympia, ancient Epidaurus (with its famous theater), Mycenae, Nafplio, Sparta, the hidden monasteries in Loussios gorge and ancient Tegea.

It is a trip that seeks not only to offer information and knowledge, but also to stimulate the imagination by immersing the visitor in the very same environment that is described by ancient legends and histories. But there’s more than that. Just like in all of our holidays, you will experience the true Greek way of living and we will try to introduce you the true Greece in a way that only locals can do. You will also have the chance to relax, to spend some time on famous Greek beaches, visit the Corinth Canal (and cross it by boat if you wish), and to observe some local winemaking and have the chance to taste the local wines. You can alsocreate your own program of day-trips and activities suited to your length of stay with us.*

Our base will be Tripoli of Arcadia, situated in the heart of the ancient world, in the center of Peloponnese, from where we will have day-trips to each destination.

This small city, having managed all these years to maintain the pure Greek way of living (avoiding mass-tourism), will offer you a taste of the authentic Greece, as the locals experience it.

We also have four more overnights,two in the picturesque seaside village Galaxidi, close to Delphi, and two in Athens next to the rock of Acropolis.

*Personalized programs can be created for you with additional charge depending on the number of participants, length and program of the tour.

Why choose this holiday?

The big advantage of this holiday is that visitors are able to travel to the most important ancient Greek sites outside Athens, without the need of changing hotels every day. Tripoli is located exactly in the centre of all our destinations, no more than 45 minutes by car from most of them. Forget about bothering with moving luggage every day and losing time checking-in and checking-out of hotels. In this way visitors have more time at their disposal to relax, try some of the activities, or simply enjoy the many cafes and the bars of the city.Finally, in this trip you will meet not only ancient Greece, but the modern one too. One of our biggest priorities is to introduce to you to the Greek way of living and culture.

DAY BY DAY ITINERARY

DAY 1: Arrival – Corinth Canal – Welcome Dinner

We welcome you at the Athens National Airport ‘El. Venizelos’. Appointment with the other participants of the group and transfer to our base, Tripoli, which is less than 2-hour drive.On the way we will stop at the Corinth Canal of Isthmos, one of the most famous world’s 19th century engineering masterpieces in history (the first attempt to build the canal was in 602 B.C). Arrival at the hotel with a welcome homemade dinner by us with Greek local food and drinks.Overnight Tripoli.

DAY 2: Ancient Tegea – Alea – Kapsia Cave – Wine Tasting

This will be a guided tour in ancient Tegea and Alea (optionally you can take this route on a bicycle). The tour will start from the ancient city of Tegea (ancient Tegeatis), one of the most developed and important cities of ancient Greece with the byzantine church built exactly above the ancient Greek theatre of the city. Our tour will continue with the visit in the village of Alea with the ancient temple of Alea Athena, the second biggest temple in Peloponnese after the temple of Zeus in Olympia, and the brand new museum. The tour around Tripoli will continue in a lighter way concerning archaeologyto the Kapsia Cave,a true masterpiece for the eyes of the visitor under the earth, aged over than 3.000.000 years! And finally, visit to the local traditional “Kalogris” winery to taste the Greek wine made of local varieties accompanied with the homemade pies of the family. The afternoon will be free. You can take a walk around Tripoli to see the centreof the city with the cafes and the shops, the Areos square which is one of the biggest squares not only in Greece but also in the Balkans, and the statue of the local and national hero of the Greek revolution, Theodoros Kolokotronis.You can alsovisit the Archeological Museum of Tripoliif you want with its important antiquities.In addition, we can arrange for you a half-day trip in the seaside village of Astros to spend some time on the beach and walk around the picturesque dock.Overnight Tripoli.

DAY 3: Dimitsana – Hydromovement museum – Monasteries in Lousios Gorge

This day includes a tour through the magical Lousios gorge with the hidden monasteries built among the rocks. In this place, natural beauty meets history in a combination that only a place like Peloponnese can offer! Taking our minibus we arrive in another traditional village, Dimitsana in mountainous Arcadia. Firstly, we will visit the Hydromovement Open Air Museum, which is unique in the Balkans, to see how the locals were using the energy from the power of the water. The museum complex includes the renovated buildings of a watermill, a tannery and a powder shop, along with their original machinery and equipment. Each of these old, restored buildings houses an exhibition related to its formerindustrial use. Then, we will move on to the byzantine Filosofou monastery and if you are in a mood for a little bit of walking we will visit the ancient Filosofou monastery or “secret school” which is the oldest and most historical monastery in Arcadia and one of the oldest Greek Byzantine sites. Our next stop is the Prodromou monastery, which played a significant role during the Greek revolution in 1821 against the Ottomans, being used as a shelter for the Greek fighters. Finally, the tour ends in the findings of a 2500 year old city, ancient Gortys, from where the Spartans passed on their way to Olympia to participate in the Olympic Games! The best part is left for the end, as the program includes picnic and relaxation next to the river under the trees! OvernightTripoli.

DAY 4: Sparta – Mystras.

Excursion and tour in Sparta and in the byzantine city of Mystras. Sparta is located just 57 km from Tripoli, on the foot of mountain Taygetos, the highest mountain of Peloponnese. There, we will visit the byzantine city of Mystras, with its fortified castle and the many churches. The most important and complete site from the byzantine age, as the whole city still exists, and many of the monasteries are still alive! You must be willing to explore and definitely have a bottle of water with you especially in the summer months if you wish to walk in the whole city as there are lots of steps and there are plenty of things to see.After a small stop for charging our batteries, our tour continues with the visit of the statue of Leonidas (king of Sparta, and the legendary 300 Spartans at the Battle of Thermopylae), and then the acropolis of the city with the theatre, one of the biggest ones among those of all the ancient Greek cities! Our guide will talk to you about the history of the place and make you imagine the Spartan way of living and fighting. Dinner will be served back to the hotel in Tripoli. According to the program theafternoon is free but if you wish, you can take part in cooking lessons at the hotel where you will learn to cook some of the Greek specialties…and of course taste them.Overnight Tripoli.

DAY 5: Mycenae – Epidaurus – Nafplio.

Excursion and guided tour in Mycenae, the center of Mycenaean world, 3500 years ago in the Bronze Age. You will be guided through the remains of the Acropolis of the city, pass through the Gate of Lions going up to the Palace of the king Agamemnon, the greatest king of Mycenae. You will also visit the great vaulted grave of Atreas,also King of Mycenae and father of Agamemnon and the unique museum with all the important findings of the area. Our next stop will beEpidaurus, the medical centre of antiquity that Asclepius had foundedand the famous ancient theatre. You will walk in the orchestra and then you can have a seat in the “kilon”. You will be amazed by the acoustics of the theatre;it is a masterpiece of architecture even today. In the afternoon there will be free time in Nafplio where you can swim and rest on the beach, taste the local cuisine and visit the Venetian castle, Palamidi, with its 999 steps ascent to the top, for the daring. Return back and overnight Tripoli.

DAY 6: Ancient Olympia

Today we pack our luggage in the morning as there is no other overnight in our base, Tripoli. We head to ancient Olympia where we will have a guided tour to the place where the Olympic Games originated. There, you will step in the ancient Olympic Stadium putting yourselves in the position of the athletes of the ancient times. You will be able to feel the grandeur of the games and imagine them competing. You will be browsed in the ancient buildings of the city; the great Temple of Zeus, the Temple of Hera, the ancient gymnasium and the Palaestra and to the workshop of Phidias where the great sculptor crafted the gigantic chryselephantine statue of Zeus, listed as one of the Seven Wonders of the ancient world. The sightseeing tour also includes a visit to the Museum of Olympia. The brilliant Hermes of Praxiteles, the Nike of Paionios and the pediments of Zeus temple are just some of the exhibits that everybody should see at least once in his life! In the end of the tour you will have some free time in Olympia where you can have a drink or lunch. Our trip continues north, driving on the Rio- AntirioBridge, to Galaxidi, a beautiful seaside village close to Delphi. Overnight in Galaxidi.

DAY 7: Delphi

After a good breakfast at the hotel head to Delphi for our guided tour.Delphi was the most important oracle of the ancient Greek world and according to mythology the center of the earth and nowadays a monument of Global heritage of Unesco. During your visit you will have the opportunity to admire the temple of Apollo, the ancient theatre, the Stadium and also the spectacular view among the rocks. The tour will end with the archaeological museum of Delphi, one of the best in Greece, with great findings from the oracle and the area.Free time in the afternoon in Galaxidi.Overnight Galaxidi.

DAY 8: Free day in Galaxidi – transfer to Meteora

Today you have a free day in Galaxidi. Galaxidi is a small port situated on a natural double harbor surrounded by mountains. The main harbor provides docking facilities for yachts and is lined with restaurants, bars, and shops. The smaller harbor is called Chirolaka.On the rocky shoreline by the side of the larger harbor, is a pine forest planted by school children in the early 20th century. You can explore the town, relax by the beach or take part in any of the activities that the area offers(hiking, scuba diving). You will surely enjoy yourselves doing whatever you want in this beautiful place. In the afternoon, our trip continues to the world known site of Meteora. Overnight in Meteora.

DAY 9: Meteora

Today you will visit two of the unique Meteora Monasteries, with the breathtaking view. The Metéora is a formation of immense monolithic pillars and huge, hill-like rounded boulders that dominate the local area.Metéora means “suspended in the air” and describes in an excellent way the monasteries there. The monasteries are included in the Monuments of world cultural Heritage, because they are a unique harmonious matching of Byzantine architecture and natural beauty.It is the largest and most precipitously built complexes of Eastern Orthodox monasteries in Greece, similar in importance to Mount Athos. The six monasteries are built on natural conglomerate pillars. Meteora is near the city of Kalambaka at the northwestern edge of the Plain of Thessaly near the Pineios river and Pindus Mountains, in central Greece. Meteora is a great place to experiencea spectacular landscape and byzantine monasteries that house priceless artifacts and wall paintings. Today only six monasteries are active with a small number of monks or nuns who reside there. After visiting these magnificent monasteries, we head off to Thermopylae, which is a world-famous spot for the battle that took place there between the Greek forces (notably the Spartans) and the invading Persian forces, commemorated by Simonides in the famous epitaph, “Go tell the Spartans, stranger passing by, that here obedient to their laws we lie.” After a quick stop, we leave for Athens. Overnight in Athens.

Day 10: Cape Sounio – Lake of Vouliagmeni – Athens Riviera

The most popular excursion nearby Athens, not only for its great archaeological interest but for the scenic drive along the coastal road of the Saronic Gulf, as well. On your way towards the cape you will pass through the Athens Riviera, the southern suburbs of Attica Glyfada, Varkiza&Vouliagmeni where the urban landscape gives its place to blue waters and organized beaches.At cape Sounio, the ancient Greek temple of Poseidondominates, perched on the craggy rocks offering to its visitors, magical sunsets over the Aegean Sea, as viewed from the ancient ruins. The location’s unique energy has inspired many myths in the ancient years. On the way back we will make a stop to the Lake of Vouliagmeni, a hidden natural treasure in an idyllic scenery, labyrinthine underwater tunnels and rich vegetation. The Lake of Vouliagmeni is integrated into the National list of NATURA 2000.At the end of your tourwe will stop in Athens Riviera, to relax and have the farewell lunch by the sea. Overnight Athens.

DAY 11: Half Day Walking Tour of Athens

In the morning we take a good breakfast and get ready for our appointment with the guide. Starting from Syntagma square where you can see the ruins that sprang from the depths of the earth during the construction of the subway in 2004. Continue to the impressive House of Parliament and get to witness the famous change of the Presidential Guards done by the imposing Evzones in front of the tomb of the unknown Soldier dedicated to all those who lost their lives for this country. Walking through the vivid street of Ermou with its modern stores, you reach the colorful and full of life Flea market in Monastiraki and enter the old town o Athens. Through Plaka’s alleys, you will step in the cradle of Ancient Greece where Greeks used to gather to trade but mostly to discuss political, philosophical and social issues thus creating the notion of Democracy. Stop at a small tavern and have a taste of the traditional Greek cuisine before taking of for the rest of your journey. Follow your guide along the beautiful paved walkway to the fabulous Acropolis Museum, walk on the glass floors which enable you to see the excavations under your feet and reach the entrance of the museum. Through the information provided by your guide and the 4,000 Acropolis masterpieces you will travel through time and have the chance to really grasp the myths behind the history. Your tour will be concluded on the Holly Rock of the Acropolis with its beautiful and unique monuments such as: the Temple of Athena Nike, the Propylaea gateway, the Erechtheion and of course, the most famous archeological monument, the astonishing Parthenon. From the top of the hill and between all those breath taking marble temples you will feel closer to Zeus who will surely blink back at you!!

DAY 12: Departure

This Tour comes to an end and. Your luggage is full of memories and souvenirs from all these places you have visited. We the Greeks don’t like to say goodbye. Instead we prefer to say «Ειςτοεπανιδείν» which means ‘we hope to see you again’!

ACCOMMODATION

During this tour you will stay in 3* Hotels or Apartments. All accommodations have been selected by us and are checked in person by our crew. They fulfill a minimum level of standards set like cleanness, stuff behavior, breakfast, comfort and more. In terms of our Responsible Travel Policy, all accommodations are owned by locals, they mainly employee locals and do care about the environment. Most probably you will meet the owners themselves, have a cup of coffee with them or taste the breakfast made by their hands! For the most demanding there is also the possibility of upgrade in for 4* Hotels but only in some places. Contact us for more details.

PRICING

Price: 1650€ p.p.

Includes

  • Accommodation for 11 nights with breakfast
  • Local Transportation
  • 3 meals (one drink included)
  • Tickets for archaeological sites & Museums
  • Ticket for Kapsia Cave
  • Wine Tasting
  • Optional Licensed Archaeology Guides (Olympia, Mycenae, Epidaurus, Delphi, Sparta, Meteora €350p.p).

Single Supplement €240

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