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Duration: 14 days Visiting: Greece
This tour should top every traveller's wish list. Tour the sun-kissed temples and time-worn towns of the mainland and visit two of the most romantic islands on earth, where relaxing on the beach or in local cafes is the order of the day.
Welcome to Athens!
Enjoy your complimentary private VIP door-to-door transfer to your UK departure airport. You will be met at the airport and transferred to your hotel where there is time to settle in and relax. Later, join your Tour Director for a Welcome Reception, and an opportunity to get to know each other over a pleasant evening of dinner and wine.
The Parthenon, Mycenae & on to Nafplio
The morning's sightseeing with a Local Expert reveals the Temple of Zeus, the Temple of Wingless Victory and Hadrian's Arch. The highlight is a visit to the Parthenon, built atop the mighty Acropolis. Then follow the shores of the Saronic Gulf to the Corinth Canal, which divides the Peloponnese from mainland Greece. Next is the ruined city of Mycenae, featured in epics of Homer. Walk with a Local Expert through the Lion Gate, visit the royal ‘beehive' tombs and see the giant Cyclopean stones used to build the city walls. Later, meet the artisans and view beautiful works of art at a family-run pottery studio. Continue to the elegant seaside town of Nafplio.
The Mountains of Arkadia to Olympia
Travel into the heart of Argolis and with a Local Expert, visit the Sanctuary of Asklepios at Epidaurus with its superb 4th century BC theatre. Visit the Asklepieion and discover one of the most spectacular collections of ancient findings in Greece at the Archeological Museum. Then a delightful drive takes you through the mountains of Arkadia to Olympia, birthplace of the Olympic Games. In the evening, join a local chef for an entertaining cookery demonstration followed by a dinner of authentic Greek flavours.
Delphi, Centre of the Ancient World
With a Local Expert, see the Olympic Stadium, where the original games were first held in 776BC, plus the athletes' gymnasium and the city's ancient temples. Then head north to Patras and cross the soaring Rio-Antirrio Bridge to the mainland. Follow the coast road before driving into the foothills of Mount Parnassus and on to your hotel.
The Sacred Way then to Kalambaka
Ascend the Sacred Way of Delphi with a Local Expert, once lined with offertory temples and statues to the honour of Apollo. Pass the Parian marble Treasury of the Athenians and superb Polygonal Wall to reach the legendary Temple of Apollo, where the mysterious Oracle of Delphi breathed her enigmatic ‘words'. Continuing north, stop at the pass at Thermopylae, site of one of history's most famous last stands in 480BC. Pass by the market town of Trikala to Kalambaka.
Scenic drive to the Monasteries of Meteora and to Athens
With a Local Expert, visit one of the amazing Meteora monasteries, incredibly perched on top of pinnacles of rock and enjoy stunning views over the Peneios Valley. Afterwards, cross fertile Thessaly, for a scenic drive along the coast to return to Athens. In the evening, enjoy a hearty Celebration Dinner in true Greek style, complete with wine and good cheer.
Across the Mediterranean to Mykonos
An early departure takes you to the port of Piraeus where your high-speed ferry awaits to whisk you over to the Island of Mykonos, playground of the rich and famous. On arrival, you are transferred to your hotel.
(Relaxed Start) You have two glorious days at leisure. Explore the town with its winding maze of walkways, white-washed houses, magnificent windmills and uninhibited nightlife. Perhaps watch the sunset at Shirley Valentine Beach or take a short boat ride to Delos?
Set Sail for Santorini
Board the high-speed ferry bound for the truly beautiful island of Santorini. You are met at the port and transferred to your hotel.
The Sunsets of Santorini
(Relaxed Start) With two more sun-drenched days on one of the most romantic islands on earth, you won't ever want to leave. Relax in clifftop restaurants, laze on the sun-soaked beaches or observe history unearthed at the site of Akrotiri.
Flight to Athens
In the morning, maybe take one last dip in the pool and grab your final glimpse over the lustrous Aegean and world-famous caldera. You are transferred to the airport for your return flight to Athens.
Your journey comes to an end with a transfer to Athens airport. On arrival at your UK airport, your driver will greet and escort you to your waiting car for your return private VIP transfer home.
Most Insight tours already include a host of bonus highlights and comprehensive sightseeing. There may also be an exciting array of Optional Experiences which will turn an already amazing experience into the trip of a lifetime! These are entirely optional and can be booked through your Tour Director/Local Representative at the commencement of your tour. Please note, many Optional Experiences are operated by independent third party suppliers, not Insight Vacations. The Optionals and pricing listed here are a guideline only and subject to change.
We take a boat ride to Delos, once a Sacred Island, the legendary birthplace of God Apollo and his twin sister Artemis. Today Delos is one of the most important archaeological sites of the eastern Mediterranean. We see amongst others, the remains of the Temple of Apollo, the sanctuary of Artemis, the old city and the theatre and then walk down the celebrated Lion Street. In the museum of Delos one can admire Archaic, Classical, Hellenistic and Roman Sculptures, a collection of vessels from all periods as well as small items of everyday use. Transfers to/from port and entrance included.
Adult Price: EUR 65.00
A walking tour through Mykonos town takes us through the labyrinth of windy streets, boasting beautifully white washed cubed architecture with iconic blue shutters and blue domed churches. See the old port with little fishing boats and stunning yachts while walking towards “little Venice” to see the picturesque famous windmills. We might just see Petros the Pelican- Mykonos’ mascot the the secrets of the cosmopolitan yet traditional town are revealed. We explore the island, visiting some of the most beautiful beaches and viewing the landscape of inland Mykonos. Visit “Ano Mera” and its famous Monastery, and Kalafatis beach, to perhaps enjoy a swim in the beautiful Aegean Sea.
Adult Price: EUR 37.00
We drive to the highest point of the island - Profitis Ilias for stunning views of the island, and make our way to the village of Pyrgos, to see the iconic blue domed churches and classic Cycladic architecture. Afterwards we visit the prehistoric Akrotiri – a Bronze Age settlement destroyed by a huge eruption during the 17th century BC and buried under the volcanic ash, preserving the whole city in perfect condition. It is often referred often as “Prehistoric Pompei”. Afterwards we head for the black sand beach of Perivolos, passing picturesque villages. Enjoy a time at leisure on the beach where we can swim, have lunch or do both. Entrance to Akrotiri included.
Adult Price: EUR 52.00
We head to the Baxedes region of Santorini to visit our acclaimed local winery. We will enjoy a variety of local “meze” (Greek hors d’oeurves) which will enchant your taste buds; sample the stunning locally produced wines, walk in the vineyards, see the “kalathies” vines and the unique way that locals have been growing grapes for centuries. We take a short drive to the spectacular village of Oia. Walk through the marble streets and have time at leisure in the village for magnificent photos. We will stroll to our chosen spot to marvel the sunset and perhaps enjoy local delicacies at one of the local restaurants. We are sure Oia will delight your senses! Wine tasting and light snack included.(Dinner not included).
Adult Price: EUR 40.00
This afternoon we board our large wooden “ caique” and set off to the Volcano. Take the opportunity to climb up to the top of the volcano and experience a real active volcano, or perhaps stay on board, relax and enjoy the amazing view. Afterwards we can swim in the hot springs and enjoy the natural spa like feeling of the thermal waters. We enjoy a casual dinner with wine on board accompanied by music, and marvel at the sunset and the breathtaking village of Oia high above on the Cliffside. Dinner with wine included.Volcano entrance of €2.00 per person is not included.
Adult Price: EUR 70.00
This evening you are invited to take part as a guest in a traditional Greek wedding. A life changing ceremony, a group celebration. Be part of the story. Meet the family. Eat, drink, dance, and break plates. The custom is traditional. The experience is not! This Greek Wedding Show is not only a Greek Night, but an unforgettable interactive musical experience!
Adult Price: EUR 45.00
Enjoy a lovely dining experience at a wonderful restaurant located in the lively area of Psiri. Dining is “meze style”, giving you the opportunity to taste many Greek cuisine dishes, which are served in the centre of the table. Also enjoy the local free-flowing wine! After dinner we are whisked away on our wheeled mini train for a fun ride up one the most famous streets in Athens for a fantastic photo opportunity of the Acropolis illuminated so beautifully (Casual dress).
Adult Price: EUR 54.00
This is an evening excursion to a taverna in the centre of Athens. Excellent traditional Greek food in a lively atmosphere, entertained through dances and music from all parts of the country. Wine, beer and soft drinks are also included. Although the venue does have an official ending time, guests are more than welcome to stay on in the taverna, to join in with the local residents! (Casual dress)
Adult Price: EUR 55.00
Olympia (Scenic) - Greece
Antonios/Arty Grand Hotel/Amalia, Olympia
Delphi (Scenic) - Greece
Amalia Delphi/Aegli Resort & Spa (Arachova)/Apollonia, Delphi
Kalambaka (Contemporary) - Greece
Athens (Central) - Greece
Divani Caravel/Crowne Plaza, Athens.
5 out of 5
10/17/2016 Hwang Sim, Wheelers Hill, Australia
Had the most awesome 14 days in Greece, with the last week spent on Mykonos and Santorini. Though there were not as many places to visit in Athens (compared to when we just been to Rome), outside Athens made up for it. We not only learn about the food and culture, i just realised that the history of Greece back dated to prior Christ was born! It was a trip to remember.
5 out of 5
6/19/2015 Davese Gallarini, Orange, United States
We took our dream trip for two weeks to Greece. Insight vacations is absolutely outstanding. Nickos, our tour guide was phenomenal and took care of every single detail and concern. He went overboard with coffees, cakes and treats. He has a true gift of working with people and made our trip what it was. With out him it wouldn't have been as good. Every day went perfect and we can't wait to travel with insight again. Thank you Miles and Davese Galla-Rini 239 S. Willow Springs Rd Orange Ca. 92869 714-244-6567 Gallarinis@sbcglobal.net
4 out of 5
6/16/2014 Ann Barker, Maroochydore, Australia
the whole tour was well planned and organised.the group was happy and harmonious with different but compatable personalities . the insight staff were very knowledgeable and professionable and helpful. i expected that all the hotels selected would have free access to the wifi in our rooms or the lobby which seems standard now days,but this was not so. no tea making facilities in some rooms /hotels. the hotels all were good and staff helpful. some more more so than others .the hotels i mean. the buses and drivers were clean and comfortable with no difficulties... the tour had more walking than i personally expected and welcomed, but i realise greece is a land of history and wars and ruins and people have to walk thru these to see and appreciate them. we had been told that our bags would be transferred to brisbane from athens and were very happy that this happened in spite of changing airlines. please advise NICOS our greek guide.very helpful and professionable. thank you kevin barker
5 out of 5
6/16/2014 Donald Titus, Salmon Arm, Canada
Not sure how we would handle a 'bus tour', we booked in the hopes of a positive experience. We were not disappointed. Now realize it was 'the only way to go'. Greece has so much to offer, it would have been a mistake to try it on our own. I realize we probably just 'scratched the surface', but the sights we saw and the things we learned gave us a huge insight of what this beautiful country has to offer. Our tour director was very knowledgable, well organized; our driver amazingly skilled and the local guides were excellent. Our hotels were very comfortable and the meals provided were very good. Great trip !!
5 out of 5
6/1/2014 Leslie Tod, Woodcroft, Australia
Great tour. Tour director Lisa Tigkaraki was outstanding. The sites visited, Delphi, Delos, Mycenae, Temple of Zeus, Thermopylae, took one's breath away. The islands, Mykonos and Santorini were wonderful, the latter really lives up to the tourist brochures. Athens was a bit run-down and dirty because of austerity cuts, but the Greek people were welcoming, pleasant, courteous and many spoke English. And Lisa was always there to smooth the way. This was our fourth Insight tour - would not travel with anyone else. Thanks, Lisa. Les and Lyn
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