Best of Greece
Hedonists rejoice! Greece is ancient sun-bleached ruins piercing blue skies, the balmy Aegean lapping an endless coastline and a culture alive with passionate music, wonderful cuisine and thrill-seeking activities.
Cultural Treasure Chest
The roots of Western culture are in Greece. Step into the ring where Olympians first competed. Climb steps hewn out of stone to Meteora’s monasteries, perched atop towering rocks. Contemplate the oracle’s insights from the grandeur of Delphi, take in a starlit drama at an ancient outdoor theatre and be stunned by massive marble sculptures dredged up from the Aegean. But then you’ll encounter bold modern art, the melancholic throb of rembetika (blues songs) and artisans creating new work from traditional techniques. Greece has endless cultural pursuits and a calendar bursting with festivals, holidays and exhibits.
Whether you're a serious adrenalin junkie or dedicated beach bum, Greece delivers. Days melt from one to the next under wide open skies and a sea speckled with islands fringed with the white-sand, pine-tree shade beaches of your dreams. Wander along cobbled Byzantine footpaths, hike up volcanoes, watch for dolphins and sea turtles, and cycle through lush forests. Meander through olive groves, idyllic villages and petrified forests. Thrill seekers will discover world-class kitesurfing, wreck diving, and rock-climbing locations with dizzying views. Or simply hop on a boat and set sail into the glittering blue beyond.
The core ingredients of Greek cooking are often found in the chef's garden. Feta and olive oil are universal across the country, but unique regional produce and cooking styles make travelling here a culinary adventure. Taste herbs and mountain greens you've never heard of, mussels steamed in ouzo, bread baked with olives, and fish straight from the sea. Taste-test crumbling feta, honeyed soft cheeses and sharp, hard rounds. Find Italian influences in risottos and pastas and Turkish spices woven into delicate sweets. A traditional-cooking renaissance has chefs lifting time-honoured recipes to new gourmet heights.
Socialising is more than a pastime in Greece – it's a way of life. Cafes overflow with youngsters gossiping or older locals in heated debate. Restaurants are filled with long tables for big gatherings and friends amble arm in arm down the street. Squares are the focal point, where life unfolds collectively. Immerse yourself, whether it's a coffee, a shot of ouzo, a chorus on the bouzouki or a local celebration. Greeks are passionate and live life to the fullest, even at the most difficult times. The result is a country seemingly riddled with challenges, yet full of people loving life.
- Day 1
Upon arrival at Athens, meet & greet by our representative and transfer to hotel for check in
With equal measures of grunge and grace, Athens is a heady mix of ancient history and contemporary cool.
The magnificent Acropolis, visible from almost every part of the city, is the hub around which Athens still revolves. This temple city, built in the 5th century BC, serves as a daily reminder to Greeks of their heritage and the city's many transformations. All over the urban basin, rooftops and balconies angle toward the landmark, a block of milky marble atop a steep-sided hill. Pull up your own chair, settle in and allow time to appreciate the Acropolis' many moods, as the light shifts and the clouds cast their shifting shadows.
Layers of History
The cultural and social life of Athens plays out amid, around and in landmarks that are centuries old, if not millennia. The remnants of Ancient Greece get the most attention, of course, thanks to a little thing called democracy. Oh, and mythology, and drama, and philosophy. But don't overlook the 'later' years: thousand-year-old Byzantine churches, for instance, which squat, unruffled in the middle of streets and attached to hillsides. Ottoman traces can be seen in architecture and in food. And the neoclassical style of the 19th century adds elegance all over the centre.
Although Athenians have endured difficult circumstances since the start of the economic crisis in 2009, the city as a whole crackles with energy in art shows, political debates and even on the walls of derelict buildings, as Athens has become one of Europe's most noted spots for street art. Creative surprises lie around nearly every corner, so be sure to leave room in your schedule for spontaneous discovery: buy a ticket to that dance show that's just starting as you walk by, or sit down at the restaurant where the musicians are setting up. You'll be rewarded.
Beaches and Ruins
Beyond Athens, down the Attica peninsula, are more spectacular antiquities, such as the Temple of Poseidon at Sounion and the site of Ancient Eleusis, as well as very good beaches, such as those near historical Marathon. Sure, you could zip across, west to east, in less than an hour, but it's far more fun to take a leisurely road trip to a thermally heated lake, say, or a monastery with dazzling Byzantine mosaics. If you'd rather not drive, most of these surprise sights (including great beaches) can be reached on public transport.
Remaining of your day at leisure for your first taste of Athens ... We recommend you to visit the super stylish Syntagma Square and Discover Plaka, the oldest district of Athens, located under the Acropolis, the only district a visitor may see the Greek capital as it was 100 years ago or enjoy your shopping at Ermou, Kolonaki and Voukourestiou streets
Overnight at Athens
- Day 2
ATHENS - SIGHTSEEING
After breakfast, Athens Sightseeing tour assisted by our guide
Explore the highlights of Athens in a private vehicle on this full-day tour. Depart from your hotel and make your way the the Acropolis, where you can stroll through the Odeon of Herodes Atticus, the Temple of the Athena Nike, the Propylaea, the Erechtheum, and the Parthenon. Take in views from Lycabettus Hill and explore the neighborhoods of Plaka and Monastiraki.
Acropolis - Sightseeing in Athens starts with the hill of Acropolis which will make your day. On the historical hill, you will have the opportunity to see the Odeon of Herodes Atticus, the Temple of the Athena Nike, the monumental gateway (Propylaea), the Erechtheum and of course the famous Parthenon, the main temple dedicated to the virgin goddess Athena.
Propylaea - The Propylaea is the monumental entrances to the sacred area dedicated to Athena, the patron goddess of the city. Built by the architect Mnesicles with Pentelic marble, their design was avant-garde. To the south-west of the Propylaea, on a rampart protecting the main entrance to the Acropolis, is the Ionian temple of Apteros Nike.
Parthenon - Parthenon, the main temple dedicated to the virgin goddess Athena, the eternal symbol of the Athenian democracy and the western civilization.
Temple of Olympian Zeus - After the Acropolis, we will head towards the Temple of Zeus, the biggest temple in antiquity, devoted to the King of the Gods, by way of Hadrian's Arch.
Panathenaic Stadium - We will visit Panathenaic Stadium where the first modern Olympic Games were held in 1896.
Mount Lycabettus - Then moving into the historical center of the city we will drive up the highest hill of Athens, Lycabettus Hill, where you’ll have the best panoramic view of the city, from the hill of Acropolis to the Aegean Sea.
Other places you will visit on this tour are : Temple of Hephaestus, Museum of the Ancient Agora, Plateia Syntagmatos, Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, Plaka. Acropolis Museum, etc.
Evening at leisure
Overnight at Athens
- Day 3
ATHENS TO MYKONOS / DAY AT LEISURE
Enjoy your early morning breakfast, transfer to port (Piraeus or Rafina) for your ferry to Mykonos ... 4 hrs. 40 mins. ride
Mykonos is the great glamour island of Greece and flaunts its sizzling St-Tropez-meets-Ibiza style and party-hard reputation. The high-season mix of hedonistic holidaymakers, cruise-ship crowds, buff gay men and posturing fashionistas throngs Mykonos Town (aka Hora), a gorgeous whitewashed Cycladic maze, delighting in its cubist charms and its chichi cafe-bar-boutique scene.
The island is maxed out with cashed-up (or spendthrift) visitors, hip hotels, beach bars and restaurants. There are a few provisos about visiting here. Come only if you are prepared to pay. And are intent on jostling with street crowds. And sitting bum cheek to cheek with oiled-up loungers at the packed main beaches. Oh, and partying relentlessly. Out of season, devoid of gloss and preening celebrities, Hora basically closes, with nothing but the occasional person and pelican wandering the empty streets.
Mykonos is the jumping-off point for the archaeological site of the nearby island of Delos.
On arrival at Mykonos Island, transfer from ferry terminal to your hotel for check in
Remaining of your day at your leisure to discover the cosmopolitan Island of Mykonos
Overnight at Mykonos
- Day 4
MYKONOS - WALKING TOUR
After breakfast, time at leisure on the beloved Island of the international Jet-Setters with its whitewashed cubic houses, windmills and chapels, the wonderful sandy beaches, shops, galleries and the incredible night life.
Explore the towns' winding narrow streets, visit Paraportiani, one of the many churches on the Island, or enjoy a drink at little Venice
Later in the afternoon - A walking tour of Mykonos City Center
Discover the charm and history of Mykonos's white-washed churches, windmills, and narrow winding streets on this in-depth walking tour of old town. Learn about famous local figures, stroll through the island's 'Little Venice, and nibble tasty treats from a popular bakery. Venture off the beaten path as your guide shares local lore, and dig into the town's ancient and cultural roots with a visit to the Archaeological and Folklore Museums. Hotel or port pickup and drop-off is included.
Stop At: Church of Paraportiani The Church of Panagia Paraportiani is situated in the neighbourhood of Kastro, in the town of Chora, on the Greek island of Mykonos. Its name literally means "Our Lady of the Side Gate" in Greek, as its entrance was found in the side gate of the entrance to the Kastro area.
Stop At: Archaeological Museum of Mykonos The exhibition of the museum includes a large number of vases, ranging from the prehistoric to the late Hellenistic period (25th-1st century B.C.), grave statues..
Evening at leisure
Overnight at Mykonos
- Day 5
MYKONOS TO SANTORINI / DAY AT LEISURE
After breakfast, transfer to Mykonos port for ferry to Santorini ... 2 hrs. 30 mins. ride
If you approach Santorini from the water, it's hard not to be awed by the sheer cliffs that soar above a turquoise sea, by the fact that you're sailing in an immense crater of a drowned volcano and that before you lies an island shaped by an ancient eruption cataclysmic beyond imagining.
High above, the main villages of Fira and Oia are a snow-drift of white Cycladic houses that line the cliff tops and spill like icy cornices down the terraced rock. And then there are the sunsets, with crowds breaking into applause as the sun disappears below the horizon.
In peak season, Santorini becomes a playground for the very wealthy, and while this has resulted in some stellar restaurants and superb wineries, the strain on the infrastructure is a concern. Still, there's relative seclusion found at the island's ancient sites, on hiking trails and beneath the waves.
On arrival at the Island of Santorini, transfer from ferry terminal to your hotel for check in
Remaining of your afternoon at leisure to admire the spectacular caldera with white washed houses perched on the edge, created by the eruption of the islands volcano in the ancient times
We suggest a stroll around the Fira Town ... Santorini’s main town of Fira is a vibrant place, having bounced back since the 1956 earthquake. Its caldera edge is layered with swish hotels, cave houses and infinity pools, all backed by a warren of narrow streets packed with shops, more bars and restaurants. And people.
Admittedly, the admiring masses cannot diminish the impact of Fira’s stupendous landscape beyond. Views over the multicoloured cliffs are breathtaking, and come sunset, crowds gather at the caldera edge for the greatest free show on earth. Behind the cliffs, however, the prices of fame are exposed: frenetic vehicular activity, meandering pedestrians along the roads (there are few pavements), and frenzied development.
Fira sprawls north and merges into two more villages: Firostefani (about a 15-minute walk from Fira) and posher Imerovigli (about a half-hour walk from Fira).
Overnight at Santorini
- Day 6
SANTORINI - HALF DAY SIGHTSEEING
After breakfast,take a tour of volcanic island of Santorini, known world wide as the most romantic Island.
Santorini Volcanic Islands Cruise: Volcano, Hot Springs and Thirassia
This tour provides a stress-free overview of Santorini’s natural and historic beauty, making it ideal for first-time visitors and travelers with limited time. Board your traditional Greek Caique boat and venture out to the volcano of Santorini. Climb to the top and take in the views before sailing to the warm, sulfuric waters where you can have a dip. Visit Thirassia and enjoy free time to explore before heading back to Santorini,
Santorini Volcano - Walk an ascending path to the crater of the still active volcano and enjoy incredible sights.
Stop At: Nea Kameni - The Lava islet of the Volcano
Stop At: Palea Kameni - Jump off the boat and dive into warm thermal waters
Stop At: Thirassia - Visit the village of Manolas, which is accessed by winding stairs either by walking or riding a donkey.
Evening at leisure
Overnight at Santorini
- Day 7
SANTORINI - SIGHTSEEING
After breakfast, embark on Santorini Day Tour with Sunset in Oia
Enjoy a day of discovery on Santorini island on this tour from Fira. With an itinerary that covers all the must-see sights, the tour lets you find your own favorite spots on the island. Visit the volcanic Red Beach, Akrotiri Archaeological Site, a winery, the Prophet Elias Monastery, and then finish on a high note as you watch the sun slip into the sea from Oia village. A tasting of Santorini’s distinctive wine is included.
Pass By: Akrotiri Enjoy the views by this village as you are getting driven inside its narrows streets
Stop At: Akrotiri Archaeological Site Guided Tour in exchavation site by Archaeologist.
Stop At: Red Beach Short photo stop at the famous volcanic beach, well known for its soaring red lava cliffs and clear green waters.
Stop At: Castelli of Emporio Walking tour in the medieval village of Emporio
Stop At: Perissa Free time for relaxation, lunch or swim
Pyrgos: Admire panoramic views of this medieval village and learn its history as you are driven around it.
Stop At: Monastery of Profitis Ilias Stop for photos at the highest point of the island (567mtr)
Stop At: Wine Museum Koutsogiannopoulos Visit to Local Winery
Stop At: Sunset in Oia Convinient transfer to Oia Village and back for free time to enjoy the famous sunset of Oia
Overnight at Santorini
- Day 8
SANTORINI TO CRETE / DAY AT LEISURE
After breakfast, transfer to the port of Santorini for your ferry to Crete ... 3 hrs. ride
Crete is a tapestry of splendid beaches, ancient treasures and landscapes, weaving in vibrant cities and dreamy villages, where locals share their traditions, wonderful cuisine and generous spirit.
There’s something undeniably artistic in the way the Cretan landscape unfolds, from the sun-drenched beaches in the north to the rugged canyons spilling out at the cove-carved and cliff-lined southern coast. In between, valleys cradle moody villages, and round-shouldered hills are the overture to often snow-dabbed mountains. Take it all in on a driving tour, trek through Europe’s longest gorge, hike to the cave where Zeus was born or cycle among orchards on the Lasithi Plateau. Leave time to plant your footprints on a sandy beach, and boat, kayak or snorkel in the crystalline waters.
Rich Historical Tapestry
Crete’s natural beauty is equalled only by the richness of its history. The island is the birthplace of the first advanced society on European soil, the Minoans, who ruled some 4000 years ago. You’ll find evocative vestiges all over, most famously at the Palace of Knossos. At the crossroads of three continents, Crete has been coveted and occupied by consecutive invaders. History imbues Hania and Rethymno, where labyrinthine lanes are lorded over by mighty fortresses, and where gorgeously restored Renaissance mansions rub rafters with mosques and Turkish bathhouses. The Byzantine influence stands in magnificent frescoed chapels, churches and monasteries.
If you’re a foodie, you will be in heaven in Crete, where ‘locavore’ is not a trend but a way of life. Rural tavernas often produce their own meat, cheese, olive oil, raki and wine, and catch their own seafood. Follow a gourmet trail across the landscape and you’ll delight in distinctive herbs and greens gathered from each hillside, cheeses made fresh with unique village- or household-specific recipes, and honey flavoured by mountain herbs. The Cretan diet is among the healthiest in the world. Pair your meal with excellent local wine, and cap it off with a fiery shot of raki.
Untouched by mass tourism, villages are the backbone of Cretan culture and identity – especially those tucked in the hills and mountains. The island's spirited people still champion many of their unique customs, and time-honoured traditions remain a dynamic part of daily life. Look for musicians striking up a free-form jam on local instruments, such as the stringed lyra (lyre), or wedding celebrants weaving their traditional regional dances. Meeting regular folk gossiping in kafeneia (coffee houses), preparing their Easter feast, tending to their sheep or celebrating during the island’s many festivals is what makes a visit to Crete so special.
On arrival at Crete Island, transfer from ferry terminal to your hotel for check in
Rest of day at leisure to visit the beach at Crete
Overnight at Crete
- Day 9
CRETE - SIGHTSEEING
After breakfast, embark on a tour covering the best of Crete ... Zeus Cave, Traditional Villages, Old Wind Mills & Olive Oil Factory
Spend a full day exploring Crete with a local guide. Visit Psychro Cave, the birthplace of Zeus, and a platanus tree that is according to local legend, the oldest tree on the island. You’ll also tour the villages of Mochos and Krasi and enjoy a traditional Cretan lunch in a local restaurant.
Stop At: Malia Visit olive oil factory to learn about how olive oil is made with the modern machinery and with the old machinery.
Stop At: Diktion Antron We visit the Cave of Zeus and can enjoy a refreshing drink . Note : there is 10-15 min walk uphill to reach to Cave and then we have around 100 steps down explore the Cave and look around to find Zeus . (I am still looking for him after many years)
Stop At: Alternative Crete We visit the old village of Mochos with its beautiful churches and narrow streets, old buildings and then we are going to enjoy a Cretan traditional lunch in one of its local restaurants
Stop At: Platanus Tree We visit the village of Krasi , walk around the stone narrow streets and old houses, of course have a few photos at the oldest and biggest Platanus tree in Crete
Evening at leisure
Overnight at Crete
- Day 10
CRETE - WATER SPORTS
After breakfast, day at leisure to relax on the beach
Alternatively, we recommend a Snorkeling and Boat Tour
Snorkeling is very relaxing and at the same time a very exciting activity which is suitable for all ages. Join us in a daily (morning or afternoon) guided “snorkeling” trip, take the mask, fins, snorkel and shorty wet suit from us, board on our 10 meters shady rib boat and take the chance to relax watching the marine life of our island.
We always visit two different spots with a lot of marine life, such as caves and an open water area always depends on the weather conditions
Stop At: Chania Diving Info Office An amazing experience if you like swimming on the surface. You will enjoy a really nice boat trip with two different stops. You will have the opportunity to snorkel into a Crystal Cave and in an open water area with a lot of marine life.
Evening at leisure
Overnight a Crete
- Day 11
CRETE TO ATHENS / FLIGHT
After breakfast, day at leisure ...
Later in the afternoon, transfer to Crete airport for flight to Athens ... 1 hr. flight
On arrival transfer to hotel for check in
Rest of the day at leisure to explore the vibrant streets of Athens
Syntagma is the heart of modern Athens, a business and bar district with Plateia Syntagmatos (Syntagma Sq) its historical meeting point, political centre and transport hub. Adjacent to the square is the National Garden; a short stroll southwest is Plaka, the heart of old Athens, virtually all that existed when the city was declared the new Greek nation's capital in 1834. With narrow streets winding by neoclassical mansions, Byzantine churches and telegenic tavernas, Plaka is ground zero for Athens tourism. Lifelong residents and splashes of graffiti keep its soul strong.
Overnight at Athens
- Day 12
After breakfast, morning at leisure
Later transfer to Athens airport for onward flight
Round the Year Destination ... Extention available to Turkey & Other Countries across Europe
Tour Inclusions [Greece]
- 2 nights Athens
- 2 nights Mykonos
- 3 nights Santorini
- 3 nights Crete
- 1 night Athens
- Ferry & flight tickets for inter-island travel
- Daily breakfastat at hotels
- All transfers, sighteseings and excursions throughout the itinerary as stated
- Services of english speaking guide during sightseeings
Notes on itinerary
All our itineraries are "Just for Ideas" ... We will get to know you and customise an itinerary just for you that matches your requirements ... dates of travel, category of hotels, preferred airline, flexibility in choosing sightseeing, mode of travel between cities, etc.
Many of our clients have us design more relaxing, slower paced holidays with more in-depth experiences whereas some simply want to visit various destinations and cover only the highlights.
Together, we will determine the ideal route, pace of travel, accommodations, levels of pampering, style of touring, sightseeing to be included, dining preferences, adventure levels, options to meet locals, dates of travel & much more ! and based on this arrive at a price.
Do feel free to get in touch with us by a quick call on +91 79 29602961 or a short mail on firstname.lastname@example.org ... Looking forward