8 DAYS ARCHAEOLOGY ACTIVITY TOUR

1,250.00

Includes

  • Accommodation for 7 nights with breakfast
  • Cycling and hiking
  • 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: 125 €

Licensed archaeology guides as mentioned in the program for Athens, Epidaurus, Mycenae, Olympia, Delphi and acropolis of Sparta (220 € p.p).

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Description

About this holiday

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. In this trip, you will travel 3500 years back in time, as you will visit some of the most important ancient Greek sites but in an active way! You will visit Acropolis of Athens, Delphi, ancient Olympia, ancient Epidaurus (with its famous theater), Mycenae, Nafplio, Sparta, and you will hike across Lousios gorge discovering the hidden monasteries cycle through the meadows up to ancient Tegea and the temple of Alea Athena, and participate in our cooking lessons to learn how to cook Greek traditional specialities!

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 are described by ancient legends and histories. But there’s more than that. Just like in all of our holidays, you will meet 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 to observe some local winemaking and even try a little wine tasting. You can also create 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 the 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 two more overnights, one in the picturesque seaside village Galaxidi, close to Delphi, and one 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 see the most important ancient Greek sites in an active way. You will cycle towards, hike and participate in a cooking lesson of Greek specialties. You will visit exceptional places and you will come much closer to the Greek culture. And the most important, without the need of changing hotels every day. Tripoli is located exactly at the centre of all our destinations, no more than 45 minutes by car from the 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 the Greek way of living and culture.

Small group holiday

Typically you will be sharing your experiences with between 3-15 like-minded travelers (depending on the dates and how many others are booked on the trip) and you’ll have a group leader with you. Whether you are traveling alone or with friends, it is a great value, and a great way to meet new people! While itineraries are pre-planned there is some flexibility and you’ll have plenty of privacy. This trip will appeal to travelers of all ages who enjoy an authentic cultural experience as well as meeting new people and seeing significant historical sites

Responsible travel holiday

Responsible travel is a new way of travelling for all those who prefer authenticity of experiences, life and culture instead of mass tourism. It’s about respecting and benefiting local people and the environment – but it’s about far more than that. Responsible travel is about bringing you closer to local cultures and environments by involving local people in tourism. It’s about doing this in a fair way that helps ensure that they will give you an even warmer welcome. For example, a local guide from the destination will open your eyes to their cultures and ways of life far better than an expat guide could ever do.
The responsible travelers want to get a little bit more out of their travels, and to give a little bit back to the special places and people that they encounter. They want deeper and more real travel experiences. The responsible traveler values authenticity – experiences integral to local people’s traditions, cultures and rituals – rather than those created for tourism, or those whose existing meanings and uses have become lost as they have been packaged up for tourism.
Choosing our holidays, you choose responsible holidays. One of our biggest concerns is to secure that tourism will not affect negatively our area in ecological and also socio-cultural way, and also that the locals will mostly benefit from your travel. Our company which is the organizer and operator of this package is local-based and all our guides and employees are locals too. In this trip, you will be given printed material about how to apply maximum responsibility during your holidays. We also, as a company, offer 10 euros per person for the environment, for offsetting the carbon emissions caused by this trip. This money are going to be used, in cooperation with the local Forestry Office, the Greek Climbing Club of Tripoli and the Tripoli Ecologist Club, for reforestation in our mountains, that have been hit by great fires in the summer of 2007.

DAY BY DAY ITINERARY

DAY 1: Arrival – Corinth Canal – and Welcome.

We welcome you at the Athens Airport El. Venizelos. Appointment with the other participants of the group and transfer to our base, Tripoli, is less than 2 hour drive. On the way we will stop to the Corinth Canal of Isthmos, one of the world’s 19th century engineering masterpiece’s 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. This is what we eat at home! Overnight in Tripoli.

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

Today, our guide will take you for a leisurely 20 Km tour with your bikes in the Tripoli plateau, through the villages. During your ride, you will also pass from the ancient city of Tegea, the most important city of Arcadia in antiquity. In Tegea, you will see the byzantine church of the city built exactly over the ancient Greek theatre and the Agora, which is found and saved by the archaeologists. You will also pass and visit the ancient temple of Alea Athena in Alea settlement. This temple was the biggest in Peloponnese after the temple of Olympian Zeus in Olympia. Burnt in about 395 BC and restored in 340 BC by the sculptor Scopas, it housed the ivory statue of Athena.

The net biking time is about 2, 5 hours and the route is very easy for anyone with a minimum level of fitness. The tour around Tripoli will continue in a lighter way concerning archaeology in the Kapsia Cave, a true masterpiece for the eyes of the visitor under the earth, aged over than 3.000.000 years old!

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 centre 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 to the statue of the local and national hero of the Greek revolution, Theodoros Kolokotronis. You can also visit the archeological Museum if 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 in Tripoli.

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

This day includes a tour in 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 at another traditional settlement, Dimitsana in mountainous Arcadia. Firstly, we will visit the outdoor Hydromovement Open Air Museum, the 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, complete with their original machinery and equipment. Each of these old, restored buildings houses an exhibition related to its former industrial 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 significant role during the Greek revolution of 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 where passing 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! Overnight in Tripoli.

DAY 4: 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 in the remains of the Acropolis of the city, passing 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 the all the important findings of the area.

Our next stop will be Epidaurus, the medical centre of antiquity that Asclepius had founded with 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 science even today.

In the afternoon there will be free time in Nafplio where you can try the local cuisine and visit the Venetian castle, Palamidi, with its 999 steps ascent to the top, for the daring. Return back and overnight in Tripoli.

DAY 5: 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 equipped with appetite for exploration and water especially in the deep summer 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 explain to you and make you imagine the Spartan way of living and fighting.

Back to the hotel in Tripoli you will participate in cooking lessons where you will learn how to cook some of the Greek specialties… and of course taste them as a part of a light dinner. Overnight in 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 birthplace of the Olympic Games.

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 Palestra 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 Olympia museum. The brilliant Hermes of Praxiteles, the Nike of Paionios and the pediments of Zeus temple are just some of the exhibits that anybody 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 if you wish. Our trip continues north, passing by the Rio- Antirio bridge, up to Galaxidi, a beautiful seaside village close to Delphi. Overnight in Galaxidi.

 

DAY 7: Delphi.

After a good breakfast at the hotel we pack our luggage and 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.

Our today’s trip continues to Arahova, a mountainous top destination, where we will have a stop. You can have lunch in nice taverns with local-traditional food, enjoy your coffee in the main square or just explore the town wondering through the small streets. Departure to Athens and overnight there.

DAY 8: Acropolis – Acropolis museum – Departure

In the morning we take a good breakfast and get ready for our appointment with the guide. The tour includes of course, both Acropolis, the masterpiece of the ancient Greek engineering, and the New Acropolis Museum with the impressive heritage that our ancestors left to us. When tour is finished, we transport you to the airport. We the Greeks don’t like to say goodbye. Instead we prefer to say «Εις το επανιδείν» which means that we hope to see you again some time!

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: 1250€ p.p.

Includes

  • Accommodation for 7 nights with breakfast
  • Transportation
  • Cycling & Hiking
  • Cooking Lesson
  • 3 meals (one drink included)
  • Tickets for archaeological sites & museums
  • Tickets for Kapsia Cave
  • Wine Tasting
  • Optional Licensed Archaeology Guides as mentioned in the program (€220p.p)
  • Single Supplement €125

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