Greece, the birthplace of western culture, governments, philosophy, mathematics, theater, has an extraordinary amount of wonderful places to visit. Monuments, nature, cuisine and more put this endlessly fascinating country on many bucket lists for a variety of reasons. Well known for its legends, Greek myths attempted to explain the origins of the world, as well as represented a form of history. Many of these ancient relics are scattered throughout the Grecian Islands in forms of temples, museums, and remnants. Whether you visit to glimpse the ancient civilizations, the warm wonderful beaches, or the delicious mix of ingredients in Greek cuisine, you will find it all here.
The pinnacle of a Greece vacation begins in Athens. Athens is one of the oldest cities of the world and therefore offers a wealth of history, architecture, culture and both ancient and modern civilization. Visit the Acropolis perhaps the best-known symbol of Athens and thus a main attraction. The Acropolis citadel contains the remains of several temples, including the Parthenon, Temple of Athena Nike, Odeon of Herodes Atticus, and the Theatre of Dionysus among many other ruins. Nearby find the New Acropolis Museum, housing nearly 4,000 sculptures and artifacts found in and around the Acropolis. Outside of the Acropolis, the city of Athens has more theaters than any other city in Europe playing host to a number of shows and musical acts. Just out of the city, Cape Sounion is the appropriate home to the Temple of Poseidon, along the Athenian shoreline. A number of spectacular beaches display a stunning sunset over the Saronic Gulf on the drive out to Cape Sounion.
Olympia, Greece hosted the ancient Olympics for over 900 years. You can participate in your own Olympics in the remains of the old stadium and track and field sites. Olympia sits in the valley of Mount Kronos, making it an excellent hiking location. Discover the Temple of Zeus remnants, once an ancient wonder of the world.
Mykonos is a charming Greek island with picturesque whitewashed buildings, narrow cobbled streets mixed with a bustling nightlife and popular beaches. If you are looking for a thriving nightlife and liberal atmosphere, head to Paradise Beach for laissez-faire sunbathing and hot nightclubs. Mykonos does offer more than just club hopping however and many cosmopolitan areas offer fine dining, upscale shopping, and luxury accommodations with majestic seaside views.
Santorini is fast becoming the top choice for visitors to Greece for its iconic white domed buildings with bright blue accents descending from the mountains to the azure sea. Beaches here are a remarkable sight. Volcanic activities tint the cliffs and sand a deep brick red color. The white washed buildings sparkle against the deep colored cliffs and the cobalt Aegean Sea. Santorini’s rich volcanic soil also produces deeply flavored foods and wine.
The island of Crete, the southernmost island of Greece, is popular for its warm Mediterranean climate, plentiful beaches, and unique history. Chania in Crete exhibits old world charm in a city that was once caught in the middle of rival civilizations. Here you will find both Turkish and Venetian influences, as well as structures dating back several centuries. Crete has an abundance of natural beauty in flora, fauna and wildlife as well as mountain vistas and long sandy stretches of shoreline.
Rhodes is the easternmost island in Greece, just 11 miles south of Turkey. The island has its own share of ancient historical sites, as well as tranquil beaches, hip nightclubs, and delicious eats. A visit here is worth exploring the town of Lindos, with its own acropolis and picturesque harbor homes.
Theatre was central to Grecian life from around 500 BC and continues today. Considered the founders of our modern comedy and tragedy, the genres did not mix. However, satyrs would tell the tragedy myths in a comedic manner. Many of the great Greek theatres still exist today. The Theatre of Dionysus and Odeon of Herodes in Athens are open to visitors. These open-air stadiums, in their circular pattern, led the way for modern stadiums.
While many travel to see the ancient relics of Greece, the country also has some extraordinary natural monuments to visit as well. If time allows, plan a visit to Vikos Gorge in Vikos Aoos National Park. The deepest gorge and canyon in the world is part of the Pindus Mountain range in Northern Greece. Or trek to Mount Olympus, home of the mythological gods. Of course, with extensive miles of shoreline, Greece offers a number of exotic and breath-taking beaches. Volcanic activity created the Red Beaches in Santorini and Crete. Athens is near to many beaches and each island has a beach that caters to any style, from lively to relaxed.
Mediterranean Greek cuisine features savory ingredients such as tomatoes, peppers, feta cheeses, olives, and the finest oils. Prominent olive trees throughout the region lend to the frequent use of various types of olive oils in most Greek dishes. Enjoy the original Greek salad, spanakopita, tzatziki, moussaka, and souvlaki in any café or restaurant in the region. Sample different olive oils as each brand is distinctive in taste.
Because Greece is surrounded by the Aegean, Mediterranean and Ionian seas, one of the best ways to see Greece is on a luxury cruise. Many premiere cruise lines’ itineraries include stops in Crete, Mykonos, Santorini, Athens, and Rhodes with excursions to places such as Olympia.
To plan your vacation to the ancient civilizations of Greece, with stops at beautiful beaches and natural monuments, contact the Luxe Travel team at 1-866-365-8747 or firstname.lastname@example.org.