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Welcome to Athens! At 6 pm, meet your traveling companions for a welcome drink with your Tour Director.
. Sightseeing with a Local Guide features a visit to the world-famous ACROPOLIS, perched high on a rocky outcrop overlooking the city. Here, see the Parthenon, the Erechtheum with its Porch of Maidens, and the Temple of Athena Nike. Enjoy a panoramic view that includes glimpses of the Temple of Olympian Zeus, Theater of Dionysus, and the beautifully preserved Theseum, where Socrates taught. Later, a city orientation tour features the Parliament House and a picture stop at the Panathenaic Stadium. Dating back to the 2nd century AD, it is the only stadium in the world built entirely of marble, and was host to the opening and closing ceremonies of the first modern Olympics in 1896. The rest of the day is at leisure. Tonight, perhaps join an optional dinner outing to sample local fare.
Cross the spectacular Corinth Canal, and visit ANCIENT CORINTH, where St. Paul preached. Two highlights today: MYCENAE, where 19th-century excavations reveal impressions of the splendors so vividly described by Homer. Admire the Beehive Tombs, known as the Treasury of Atreus; the Lion Gate, Europe’s oldest known monument; the remains of Agamemnon’s Royal Palace; the impressive fortifications of the Citadel and visit the museum. A short drive brings you to EPIDAURUS for a tour of its amazingly well-preserved 2,300-year-old open-air theater. Overnight in nearby Nauplia.
Today’s Distance: 132 mi / 212 km
. Spectacular scenery abounds on the way through the Arkadian Mountains. Spend the afternoon in OLYMPIA, where athletes of antiquity competed in honor of the king of deities. Learn about the history of those original Olympic Games as you walk among the impressive remains of the Gymnasium and the Temples of Hera and Zeus. Also visit the MUSEUM that displays Praxiteles’ magnificent statue of Hermes. Tonight, LF enjoy a COOKING DEMONSTRATION and learn how to make the traditional Greek tzatziki appetizer.
Today’s Distance: 112 mi / 181 km
Pass by the busy seaport of Patras, proceed to mystic Delphi. The afternoon is devoted to a fascinating tour of the ancient sanctuary of the god Apollo in its dramatic setting on Mount Parnassus. Hear about the Oracle and tour the EXCAVATIONS. End the day with a visit to the ARCHAEOLOGICAL MUSEUM to admire the Charioteer, an extraordinary 5th-century BC bronze statue. A highlight this evening is LF a DANCE LESSON, where you’ll learn how to dance the sirtaki, made famous in the movie Zorba the Greek, accompanied by a glass of Ouzo.
Today’s Distance: 149 mi / 239 km
Drive past Lamia and Trikala to Kalambaka in the unreal, fantastic landscape of Meteora with its rock-top monasteries. Visit VARLAAM MONASTERY, famous for its frescoes, and ST. STEPHEN’S MONASTERY, featuring a unique collection of icons and an incredible panoramic view.
Today’s Distance: 155 mi / 249 km
. Today’s highlight is a guided visit to THERMOPYLAE, the site of the heroic battle of Leonidas’ 300 doomed Spartans against Xerxes’ huge Persian army. On the way back to Athens, your Tour Director will tell you about Thebes, the setting of Sophocles’ Oedipus Rex, and Marathon, where 10,000 Athenians defeated more than twice that number of Persian invaders in 490 BC. Tonight, maybe join an optional dinner at a local restaurant.
Today’s Distance: 236 mi / 380 km
Transfer to the airport for your flight to Crete, the largest of the Greek islands. Later, dinner at a local restaurant awaits!
Today, discover Heraklion on a walking tour and see the legendary churches, fountains, monuments, and the LION SQUARE. Stop in a typical bougatsa pastry shop to taste LF the traditional bougatsa. An optional excursion to Knossos, center of the 3000-BC Minoan civilizations and to the archaeological museum is available.
Hop aboard a high-speed ferry this morning and cruise north across the Sea of Crete to the island of Naxos, inhabited continuously since the 4th millennium BC. Influenced over the centuries by the Greeks, Byzantines, Venetians, and Franks, the pretty port town is a showcase of cobblestone alleys lined with whitewashed houses and Venetian castles. Guided sightseeing shows you the highlights, including a visit to the ARCHAEOLOGICAL MUSEUM to see artifacts from all periods of Naxos’ long and fascinating history. Follow your guide to a local kafenio to LF taste the famous citrus spoon desert
The entire day is free to enjoy this lush, green island. You could spend time shopping for souvenirs; sampling the locally produced olives, grapes, figs, and citrus fruit; checking out the ancient Greek ruins; or heading to the beach for a refreshing dip in the sparkling waters of the Aegean!
This morning, a short ride on a high-speed ferry delivers you to Paros. The island was historically known for its fine white marble. Visit the 4th-century PANAGIA EKATONTAPILIANI, the “Church of a Hundred Doors,” founded by Constantine the Great’s mother, St. Helen, during her pilgrimage to the Holy Land. This evening, savor Greek specialties at a local restaurant.
After breakfast, board the ferry back to Athens. During your final day in this glorious city, you could catch up on some last-minute shopping or explore more of the city on your own. Tonight, how about an optional dinner at a local restaurant?
Your vacation ends with breakfast this morning.
It may occasionally be necessary to use alternative hotels of a similar standard to those shown.
Attractive 7-story Hotel situated near museums, 1 km from Larisis train station & 35 km from El. Venizelos Airport.
Neoclassical-style Hotel situated on tree-lined grounds with landscaped courtyards, 1 mile from city center.
This 147 room hotel is set in a beautiful Mediterranean landscape filled with olive trees. The spacious white marbled lobby affords endless views of the surrounding green scenery along with the open air terrace of the lounge café. Amenities include a restaurant, large outdoor seasonal swimming pool, spacious lounges and a lobby bar with fireplace. Free Wi-Fi internet access is available throughout the property.
Hotels Europa is built on the top of Drouvas Hill in Ancient Olympia (UNESCO World Heritage Site), at the foot of which is sited the Sacred Alti with brilliant monuments and the stadium of the Ancient Olympic Games.
At the foot of Mount Parnassus overlooking olive groves and the Ionian Sea, and just minutes away from the archaeological site and museum, the temple of Apollo, and Castalia spring. The modern guest rooms are air-conditioned and have Wi-Fi and minifridges. Other amenities include an outdoor pool and an inviting lounge bar with a fireplace, where guests can relax and take in the breath taking Delphian scenery.
Amalia Hotel is a beautiful setting just minutes away from the town of Kalambaka. The hotel is embedded on 14 acres of greenery and has been built with traditional materials to match its surroundings.
Hotel Capsis Astoria Heraklion is the ideal accommodation choice thanks to its central location and its fully renovated facilities. This hotel is set in the historical center of Heraklion, right next to the renowned Heraklion Archaeological Museum and within walking distance of the center's main services, landmarks, restaurants, and shops. It offers modern guestrooms with TVs and self-regulated climate control. Other amenities include a gym, two bars, and a restaurant. Free Wi-Fi access is available throughout. Chilling by the rooftop swimming pool that overlooks Heraklion and the old Venetian port is not to be missed.
Naxos Palace Hotel is located in a peaceful and panoramic spot, just a few steps away from the beach and within easy reach of the main town, the port, and the airport. This modern hotel, built in an environmental friendly way, provides guests with everything they need: a restaurant, two bars, a gym, a swimming pool, and even a Jacuzzi. The 77 air-conditioned guestrooms offer free Wi-Fi Internet access, satellite television, and safe deposit box.
Located just a 5-minute drive away from the airport and 8 miles from the main town and Paros port, this typical Cycladic-style hotel offers bright rooms with a balcony, satellite TV, mini fridge and safety box. Other amenities include a large seasonal outdoor swimming pool with a stylish poolside bar and a traditional restaurant. Free Wi-Fi access is provided throughout.
Our expert Tour Directors help you get the most out of every place you visit - and have a 96% customer satisfaction rating.
We’re delighted to have achieved the Good Housekeeping Reader Recommended endorsement for customer experience.
We are a member of ABTA and our flight-inclusive holidays are protected by ATOL. If your holiday is cancelled for any reason, you’ll receive a full refund.