ATHENS - DELPHI - OLYMPIA - MYCENAE - EPIDAURUS AND ZAKYNTHOS - HYDRA ISLANDS
CLASSICAL GREECE TOUR WITH ZAKYNTHOS & HYDRA ISLANDS
Classical Greece Tour with Ionian island Zakynthos & artists island Hydra
Athens is one of the world’s oldest cities. It’s recorded history spanning around 3.400 years and it is being inhabited since the 11th millennium B.C. Athens, the birthplace of democracy, arts, science and philosophy of western civilisation. Home of Plato, Socrates, Pericles, Euripides, Sophocles, Aeschylus.
Delphi. Ancient Greeks believed that Delphi was the Navel of the Earth, a place seen as a spiritual focal point for all Greeks; it included many sanctuaries and the most prestigious oracle in all of ancient Greece. This is where Pythia, the high priestess, uttered the divine advice of god Apollo to mortals who travel led from across the world to seek a prophecy.
Zakynthos (aka Zante).The flower of the East. The island chosen by two endangered animal species, namely the caretta caretta sea turtle and the monachus monachus seal One could say that Zante is synonym to superb beaches, great nightlife, beautiful scenery and ideal water sports destination. What more can you ask when on holiday?
Ancient Olympia. In western Peloponnese, in the so-called “valley of the gods”, Ancient Olympia grew to be the most celebrated sacred site of Ancient Greece, and the birthplace of the Olympic Games, the most important sports events in all antiquity: starting from 776 B.C. A UNESCO World Heritage Site and tour the impressive remains of buildings which the ancient Greeks used as worship areas, sports and symposium centers etc. Visit the archaeological museum with the masterpieces; statue of Hermes by Praxiteles; Nike (Victory) by Paionios, a plastic arts masterpiece; and the sculptures that used to decorate the Temple of Zeus.
Mycenae. The land of Heros and Myths. The legendary land of Agamemnon and Menelaus, Danaë and Perseus, Pelops and Atreus. The apogee of the Mycenaean, with their majestic architecture, inscribed monuments and sophisticated civilization, occurred in the Late Bronze Age, between 1350 and 1200 BC.
Epidaurus and the town’s Ancient Theater (340-330 B.C.) is a renowned monument included in UNESCO’s World Heritage Site list as part of the Sanctuary of Asclepius, the god of medicine for the ancient Greeks. The dramatic performances staged in this theater were watched by the god’s patients, during their stay at the healing center. Today the ancient open theater with the fantastic acoustic system is used for theater plays in the summer.
Hydra Island. A rich naval tradition and a cosmopolitan island ambience are the defining characteristics of picturesque Hydra – a popular island in the Argosaronic Gulf – which attracts every year many personalities and jet-setters from Greece and abroad.
Nafplio. One of the most beautiful towns in the area of Argolis (in eastern Peloponnese) as well as one of the most romantic cities all over Greece, Nafplio was the first capital of the newly born Greek state between 1823 and 1834. Frankish, Venetian and Turkish conquerors left their mark in the town and strongly influenced its culture, architecture and traditions during the centuries. The medieval Old Town, the narrow cobblestone alleys, the neoclassical well preserved mansions with the Bougainvillea trees adorning their yards and balconies and the Turkish fountains make Nafplio a picturesque city.
Tour Code: ACLGR-07ZH
Duration: 8 days / 7 nights
Season: All the year round
Location: Athens, Delphi, Peloponnese, Zakynthos, Hydra islands
Style: Island hopping – History – Photography
- Athens sightseeing with Acropolis and museum.
- Delphi site and museum
- Classical Greece Tour – Delphi, Olympia, Mycenae, Epidaurus
- Nafplio the first capital of Greece in modern history
- Zakynthos island – Zante; the flower of the East
- Caretta Caretta the Loggerhead sea turtle
- Hydra the artists island
- Transportation with Luxury car / minivan or bus
- Experienced En speaking driver
- Hotels 3*, 4*, 5* or traditional guesthouses (clients choice)
- Meals Breakfast (B,_,_)
- Entrance fees to archeological sites and museums
- Official En speaking local guides
- Ferry tickets to Zakynthos and Hydra
- Meet & Greet on the arrival at the Athens airport
- Dinner at a tavern in Zakynthos with local traditional music (kantades)
- Flight ticket (Flight tickets can be included upon request)
- Accommodation overnight tax (0.5€ per day per room for guesthouses -1.5€ per day per room for 3* hotels – 3€ per day per room for 4* hotels – 4€ per day per room for 5* hotels) paid directly by the clients to hotel.
Day 1: Athens arrival (_,_,D)
Arrival to Athens. Meet our staff at the airport – welcome. Transfer to your hotel. In the evening walk to Plaka, Athens old town and Monastiraki area. Enjoy a dinner at a local tavern with Gyros, souvlaki and shish kebab dishes.
Day 2: Athens Sightseeing with Acropolis and Acropolis museum. (B,_,_)
Meet your guide and start the panoramic tour (aprox.5 hrs) of the Athenian Neoclassical Center: the Parliament, the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, the University, the Library, and National Academy, the Temple of Zeus and Hadrian’s Gate, the Panathenaic Stadium where is famed for holding the first modern Olympic Games in 1896, and many other monuments and sites of great interest. You will learn all there is to know about their history and background from the licensed Tour Guide. Next stop the “sacred rock”, the spectacular, unique and magnificent Acropolis – Propylaea, Temple of Athena Nike, Erechtheion, and finally Parthenon, any cevilized person has to visit. The tour completes the visit to Acropolis museum one of the best in the world. After a short time for lunch and shopping;drive to Delphi for overnight.
Day 3: Delphi the Navel of the World. (B,_,_)
In the morning, guided visit the archaeological site of Delphi, a UNESCO World Heritage site and the center or ‘navel’ of the ancient world. It was here where the renowned Oracle of Delphi, a counselor of kings and pilgrims, found. We’ll see the Temple of Apollo, theater, market and the famous Omphalos (navel of the earth) and the Delphi museum with the “Bronze Charioteer” and other fascinating masterpieces of Greek sculpture. Continue with a long drive along the seaside of Central Greece and passing the Corinthian bay over the Cable-stayed bridge we arrive to Kylini where we embark the ferry to Zakyntos island.
Day 4: Zakynthos island. (B,_,D)
Explore Zakynthos – Take a full day boat tour to Zakynthos highlights with stops for swimming. Visit a selection of beautiful beaches—such as Xigia Sulfur Beach, Makris Gialos Beach, Shipwreck Beach (Navagio), the Blue Caves, and Bochali viewpoint and others.In the evening dinner at a local tavern with local traditional music and songs (cantades)
Day 5: Turtle island and keri caves (B,_,_)
Free day. Zakynthos is known as a breeding ground for the endangered loggerhead (Caretta Caretta) sea turtle. Optional take a HD tour to Turtle island and keri caves. Visit the nesting beach of Kalamaki, look for turtles from a glass-bottom boat, and swim at Marathonisi (Turtle Island) and the Keri Caves. Wrap up with a photo stop at Cameo Island and a visit to the Aristeon Ecological Olive Press.
Day 6: Ancient Olympia the Cradle of the Olympic Games (B,_,_)
Morning get the ferry to Kylini. Drive to ancient Olympia. Guided visit to Ancient Olympia archaeological site, another interesting UNESCO World Heritage Site. See the Temple of Zeus, Temple of Hera, the altar of the Olympic flame, the Olympic stadium, where the first Olympic games took place in 776 B.C and the archaeological museum with the famous sculpture of Hermes and the infant Dionysus of Praxiteles. Continue driving through the Central Peloponnese to beautiful traditional village of Langadia (stop for coffee), Vitina, Mantineia where we can visit a winery for wine testing and we arrive to Nafplio.
Day 7: Hydra the island of Artists (B,_,_)
Morning drive to Metochi and get the small boat to Hydra, the picturesque island. Henry Miller, Patrick Leigh Fermor, Lawrence Durrell, Norman Mailer, Edmund “Mike” Keeley, Giorgos Seferis, Henri Cartier-Bresson, Le Corbusier, John Craxton, Rex Warner and Cyril Connolly, Leonard Cohen and others were greatly inspired by the island’s unique scenery, as evidenced in their work. The island’s great beauty was appreciated also by celebrities such as Maria Callas, Pablo Picasso, and Sophia Loren. Stroll about the streets of the picturesque Hydra town and the harbour; sheep a drink in one of the numerous bars with fantastic sea views and take a donkey taxi to trip in the countryside. There are 300-donkey taxi in this car free island. Return to Metochi and drive back to Nafplio.
Day 8: Mykenae, Epidaurus – Departure
Morning guided visit a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Homeric city of Mycenae (1300 B.C.), home place of King Agamemnon, leader of Greeks in the Trojan war, to see the Cyclopian wall, Lion Gate, the Treasury of Atreus, the vaulted tomb of King Agamemnon. Continue to another UNESCO World Heritage Site, Epidaurus. You can trace the history of early European medicine at the Asclepius Sanctuary and relax in the nearby well-preserved open Theater of Epidaurus (4th century B.C.) famous for its acoustic system. On the way back to Athens airport we’ll stop at Corinth canal for some stunning photos.