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Greece entices visitors with its timeless treasures, which culminate in its capital city of Athens. In this Greek metropolis, antiquity and modern life coexist. A trip to the Museum of Greek Folk Art affords glimpses into Grecian living, while the Acropolis, home of the iconic Parthenon, provides a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Athens is a place where myths and modernity are equally embraced. A place where mopeds weave through traffic against a backdrop of renowned ancient ruins – and where art, music, dance, and laughter are served up nightly. And most of the time the city is just your introduction to the wonderful vacation destination that is Greece.
Here’s a brief summary of some of our favorite places to add to your list once you start looking at Greek tours. Whichever tour of Greece you choose, you’ll enjoy expert guides, enriching experiences, and VIP entrance at legendary sites. What are you waiting for? The treasures of Greece and its islands await your discovery.
Greece’s remarkable history and beauty stretch beyond the mainland to an archipelago of roughly 2,000 islands featuring untouched natural areas and incomparable Mediterranean retreats. Ionian tours, or Greek island hopper tours, will typically visit Santorini and Mykonos, to explore the islands where gleaming whitewashed buildings, cerulean blue domes, and tumbling cerise bougainvillea line high cliffs encircling beautiful azure bays. When most travelers visit the Aegean Islands or go on an Aegean cruise, they enjoy time lazing on the sun-soaked beaches of Santorini. Adventurers and photographers alike shouldn’t miss the chance to ascend the island's highest point for a stunning view of the iconic landscapes of the Cyclades. On Mykonos, grab a front-row seat to the goings-on in the old port. Sit perched on one of the brightly painted wooden balconies characteristic of the island's "Little Venice," or wander through the shopping streets of Chora village and see the 16th-century windmills of Kato Mili that look out over the bay. For history lovers, a visit to nearby Delos is a must to see the legendary birthplace of Apollo and his twin sister Artemis.
When you visit Central Greece, you’ll certainly want to go on a Delphi tour, and pay your respects at Thermopylae. On one of our Central Greece tours, you can tread in the footsteps of the ancient Greeks, who would descend on the sanctuary of Delphi to consult with the most important oracle in the classical world, and walk the Sacred Way to the 4th-century Temple of Apollo to view the statues immortalizing the strength of the athletes who once competed in the Pythian Games, held in honor of Apollo and the Arts. Stop to honor history in Thermopylae, famous for the heroic defense by Leonidas and his brave Spartans against the invading Persians. Travel just a short way north of Delphi, to stand in awe of the six Eastern Orthodox monasteries that cling impressively to immense, rounded rock towers, known as the Meteora, a UNESCO World Heritage site. When booking a tour expecting to see the best of Greece, make sure Delphi, Thermopylae, and the Meteora are on your itinerary.
The top spots to see when you visit West Greece are Corinth, Olympia, Nafplio, and the ancient city of Mycenae. Corinth is renowned for its long-standing pottery craft. And Olympia is home to the famed site where the Olympic Games were first held in 776 B.C. While there, check out the ruined Temple of Zeus, the athlete's gymnasium, and the Ancient Stadium of Olympia. Travel to the elegant town of Nafplio, known for its beautiful architecture, colorful shops and cafés. Most Western Greece trips will visit the ruined city of Mycenae. Walk through the Lion Gate, visit the royal beehive-tombs, and see the giant Cyclopean stones used to build the city walls.
Visit Crete, home to the birthplace of Zeus according to Greek mythology. Typically, Crete tours require a lovely short sail or ferry to the island. One of the best ways to experience the area is to book a tour with an Aegean cruise, so there’s no worry about figuring out sailings to and from the famous islands. On Crete, Europe’s oldest city comes to life on a visit to the Palace of Knossos in Heraklion. Walk through its imposing northern entrance and admire the bright wall paintings that were restored at the turn of the 20th century, revealing insights into Minoan civilization several thousand years before Christ. Explore the famous Bronze Age archaeological site, and learn of King Minos' labyrinth and the legend of the Minotaur.
Can't decide which cities and places you want to visit in our Greek tours? Make it simple and check out all of the top places to visit in Greece on our Best of Greece tour.
Because Greece is best enjoyed on sunny days cruising between the mainland and island, you’ll find that the best time to tour Greece is in the summer, from June to August. This guarantees you can experience the most beautiful weather during the most lively and inviting times. Truth be told, though, you’ll still find that the country is an incredible destination in early spring and into late fall.
Land of kings, gods, and empires, Greece offers something for all types of travelers. Famous for its history, sun-drenched Aegean islands and warm, hospitable people, it’s no wonder Greece remains a highly sought-after vacation spot. Ancient ruins dot the capital city, Athens, including the 5th-century Acropolis with the Parthenon temple, Temple of Olympian Zeus, and the Ancient Agora.
Elsewhere on mainland Greece, the pinnacles of Meteora, an incredible complex of Eastern Orthodox monasteries, Mount Olympus, the Sacred Way of Delphi, and the Temple of Apollo await those who seek to take a step out of time. And, it’s easy to imagine courageous Spartans fighting under King Leonidas at Thermopylae, or the original athletes of the Ancient Olympic Games in Olympia.
Those seeking some sun, fun, and relaxation should set sail on the sapphire waters of the Ionian and Aegean seas to discover the whitewashed windmills of Mykonos, picturesque Oia and the volcanic beaches of Santorini. On Crete, the largest Greek island, near Heraklion, you’ll find the Bronze Age site of Knossos, legendary for the mythical Minotaur and Minoan civilization.
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