Greece is a country with a fascinating history of more than 4.000 years. It has more than 100 archaeological sites scattered around the country and the islands that attract hundreds of thousands of visitors every year from around the world.
One of the most popular things you can do when visiting Greece especially if you are a history lover is to explore the main archaeological sites of the mainland including Olympia – the birthplace of the Olympic games, the oracle of Delphi and the impressive monasteries of Meteora.
What is it like to live in a country where classical mythology and ancient history still have a presence in everyday life? In the capital of Athens, namesake of the goddess Athena, walk in the footsteps of ancient Greeks at the Acropolis - and in the footsteps of current residents in the Plaka district. In Delphi, Epidaurus and Cape Sounion, learn how an old belief in mythological figures still influences medicine, politics and philosophy.
The History of Athens is one of the longest of any city in Europe and in the world. Athens has been continuously inhabited for over 3,000 years, becoming the leading city of Ancient Greece in the first millennium BC; its cultural achievements during the 5th century BC laid the foundations of western civilization. Its infrastructure is exemplary to the ancient Greek infrastructure. During the Middle Ages, the city experienced decline and then recovery under the Byzantine Empire, and was relatively prosperous during the Crusades, benefiting from Italian trade. After a long period of decline under the rule of the Ottoman Empire, Athens re-emerged in the 19th century as the capital of the independent Greek state.
With your expert local guide, you will see:
- Ancient Olympic Stadium
- Syntagma Square
- Visit the Acropolis Museum
- Ancient Agora
- Hadrian's Arch
- Temple of Olympian Zeus
- Panathenaic Stadium
- The Temple of Poseidon
Corinth • Nafplion
Corinth was one of the major cities of antiquity. It was made up of three parts; the acropolis on the hill (Acrocorinth), the city itself on a lower plateau, and its port (Lechaion) on the coast. All this was protected by a wall which ran for 20km (over 12 miles). Until the 1800's the city was covered up by development, with only the Temple of Apollo visible. The earthquake of 1858 destroyed nearly all the town, and excavations began in 1896 by the Americans. As with many sites of this nature, the Roman era produced far more remains than the ancient Greek.
- See the Corinth Canal
- See the Ancient City of Corinth
- Medieval Fortress of Nafplion
- Visit Castle of Bourtzi
Argolida • Epidaurus • Mycenae • Olympia
Probably the most beautiful and best preserved of its kind, the theater of Epidaurus was built in the 4th century BC by Polykleitos the Younger. Due to its excellent acoustics and condition, the ancient theater is still used today, most notably under the framework of the annual Epidaurus Festival. Here is a brief introduction to the Ancient Theater of Epidaurus.
Mycenae is one of the most important archaeological sites of Greece. The fortified citadel is nested over the fertile plain of Argolis near the seashore in the northeast Peloponnese. It is the largest and most important center of the civilization that was named "Mycenaean" after this very citadel. Mycenaean is the culture that dominated mainland Greece, the Aegean islands, and the shores of Asia Minor during the late Bronze Age era (circa 1600-1100 BCE). The Mycenaean Era occupies the tail end of the Helladic Civilization, which flourished in mainland Greece since 3000 BCE.
Olympia, ruined ancient sanctuary, home of the ancient Olympic Games, and former site of the massive Statue of Zeus, which had been ranked as one of the Seven Wonders of the World. Olympia is located near the western coast of the Peloponnese peninsula of southern Greece, 10 miles (16 km) inland from the Ionian Sea, near a point where the Alpheus (Alfios) and Cladeus (Kladios) rivers meet. Set amid an idyllic countryside consisting of low, wooded hills alternating with farmland, the Olympia archaeological site is of outstanding cultural significance. It was designated a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1989.
- Travel via Epidaurus and Mycenae to Olympia
- Tour Epidaurus and Mycenae with an expert local guide
- Visit the Archaeological Museum of Olympia
- Tour Olympia with an expert local guide
- Visit the Museum of Archimedes
- Ancient Nemea
- Monastery of the Dormition Rock Nemea
- Lion Gate
The city of Ancient Messene was founded in 369 BC by the Theban general Epaminondas (after the Battle of Leuctra in 371 BC, which resulted in Spartan defeat and the establishment of the Theban Hegemony). It became the capital of the free Messenian state following a long period (about four centuries) of occupation of the Messenian territory by the Spartans.
- The Arcadian Gate
- The circuit wall
- Andromonastiro (Monastery of the Metamorphosis)
- The Ancient Messene archaeological site
The history of the town of Monemvasia starts with its name, as the words it derives from moni and emvasis, which means single passage. The name comes from the Venetians who saw that the only passage to the Castle Town of Monemvasia was through a paved walkway that they built. Before this walkway was constructed, the only way to go to the town was by boat.
- Castle of Monemvasia
- Archaeological Museum
The Ancient Greek City of Sparta was the greatest military power in ancient Greece and played a significant role in history. Ancient Sparta was not as sophisticated as Athens, did not create arts and crafts and has not left us any written masterpiece. It was though the city that stayed in history due to the bravery of its citizens, and its immense role in the Persian Wars. Sparta was actually the complete opposite of Athens and other major cities in ancient Greece, provoking feelings of admiration and fear because of the spirit, virtue and valor of its citizens.
- King Leonidas statue
- Sparta Archeological site
- Visit the Mystras
- Diros Cave
Delphi • Meteora
Delphi was an important ancient Greek religious sanctuary sacred to the god Apollo. Located on Mt. Parnassus near the Gulf of Corinth, the sanctuary was home to the famous oracle of Apollo which gave cryptic predictions and guidance to both city-states and individuals. In addition, Delphi was also home to the panhellenic Pythian Games.
Meteora is an exquisite complex that consists of huge dark stone pillars rising outside Trikala, near the mountains of Pindos. The monasteries that sit on top of these rocks make up the second most important monastic community in Greece, after Mount Athos in Halkidiki. Out of the thirty monasteries that were founded throughout the centuries, only six of them are active today. The history of Meteora goes many millenniums back. Theories upon the creation of this natural phenomenon are associated with the geological movements that have occurred several geological periods ago. Scientists believe that these pillars were formatted about 60 million years ago, during the Tertiary Period.
With your expert local guide you will:
- Take a guided tour of Delphi
- Visit Temple of Apollo
- Delphi Archaeological Museum
- Take a guided tour of Meteora
- Visit 3 monasteries inside, but you will see all 6 of them
The city was founded around 315 BC by King Cassander of Macedon, on or near the site of the ancient town of Therma and twenty-six other local villages. King Cassander of Macedon named the new city after his wife Thessalonike, a half-sister of Alexander the Great. She gained her name ("victory of Thessalians", from Greek: nikē "victory") from her father, Philip II, to commemorate her birth on the day of his gaining a victory over the Phocians, who were defeated with the help of Thessalian horsemen, the best in Greece at that time. Thessaloniki developed rapidly and as early as the 2nd century BC, it had its first walls built, which enclosed and protected the city. The city also came to be an autonomous part of the Kingdom of Macedon, with its own parliament where a King was represented that could interfere in the city's domestic affairs.
- Roman Rotunda (Saint George's Church)
- The White Tower: Relic of the Byzantine-Era Ramparts
- Arch of Galerius
- Archaeology Museum
- Byzantine Walls (Ancient Ramparts)
- Catacomb St. Demetrios
The city of Aigai, the ancient first capital of the Kingdom of Macedonia, was discovered in the 19th century near Vergina, in northern Greece. The most important remains are the monumental palace, lavishly decorated with mosaics and painted stuccoes, and the burial ground with more than 300 tumuli, some of which date from the 11th century B.C. One of the royal tombs in the Great Tumulus is identified as that of Philip II, who conquered all the Greek cities, paving the way for his son Alexander and the expansion of the Hellenistic world.
- Visit the tomb of Philip II
- The awe-inspiring museum of the royal tombs
- The gold larnax and the oak leaf wreath
- The Prince’s tomb
- The birthplace of the kings of Macedon, Aigai
What to expect
Who it's for
Our educational tours are designed for private and corporate groups looking to explore the beauties of Greece while enjoying a ride.
- 13 nights accommodation in a bed & breakfast basis
- 14 lunches (drinks excluded)
- Maps and detailed travel information
- All Transfers
- Guided tours to all sights of interest (English language)
- All taxes and service charges
- 24hrs Assistance phone number