DAY 1: Pick up from your Hotel in the morning and we drive along the coastline from Athens to Peloponnese. First short stop after about 45 minutes at the breathtaking Canal of Corinth of 6 km length and 80m height! After this great photo stop, we continue and soon arrive at the unique Ancient Theater of Epidaurus, the most perfect ancient Greek theater, with regard to perfect acoustics and aesthetics, and with capacity of 14,000 spectators, attracts from ancient years till nowadays, millions of visitors for the performance of ancient drama plays.
After that, we will soon reach at the site of Ancient Mycenae, with the Great Cyclopean walls surround the almost triangular acropolis, and with the famous ‘’Gate of Lions’’ and ‘’Atreus King Tomb and Treasure''! In the second millennium BC, and with peak in 1350 BC, Mycenae was one of the major centres of Greek civilization, a military stronghold which dominated much of southern Greece, Crete, the Cyclades and parts of southwest Anatolia. The period of Greek history from about 1600 BC to about 1100 BC is called Mycenaean in reference to Mycenae. We finish our visit in Ancient Mycenae with the Museum of Mycenae where you can see the Golden funeral mask of King Agamemnon!
We will continue our tour and you can have your lunch at one of the most beautiful towns of Greece, the first capital city at the modern Greek history, the amazing and picturesque Nauplio, next to the sea, with the traditional narrow streets and the old Byzantine churches. We will finish our first day at the town of Ancient Olympia. Overnight : Ancient Olympia
DAY 2 : We will visit the birthplace of Olympic Games, Ancient Olympia. We will visit the Ancient Stadium, where first Olympic Games took place on 776 B.C., the Temple of Zeus and Hera, and also the Workshop of Pheidias, who was the great sculptor crafted the gigantic chryselephantine statue of Zeus, listed as one of the Seven Wonders of the ancient world, after Pheidias completed the sculptures for the Athenian Acropolis.
We will finally visit the New Museum of Ancient Olympia, that was re-organized in 2004, and the visitor is introduced to the history of the great Pan-Hellenic sanctuary from the Early Bronze Age to the sixth-seventh centuries AD. The sculpted decoration (metopes and pediments) of the temple of Zeus, the most important example of the Severe Style in Greek art, the statue of Nike by Paionios and the Hermes of Praxiteles are the museum's pieces de resistance. Equally important is the bronze collection, the richest of its kind in the world.
We leave Ancient Olympia and we will go over the Corinth Gulf crossing the bridge of Rio - Antirio, one of the biggest and most impressive bridges in the world! We soon reach at another traditional and beautiful town of Greece, Nafpaktos, with its picturesque Port and the Venetian fortress, and here you can have a light lunch and a break. We leave Nafpaktos and in the afternoon we will reach Arachova, at 1000 meters altitude the best winter resort in Greece, and last town before Delphi. Free time to explore this beautiful small town and its secrets! Overnight : Arachova or Delphi
DAY 3 : Last day of our tour, and in the morning we visit the unique site and museum of Delphi! As per Unesco's World Heritage Center ''The pan-Hellenic sanctuary of Delphi, where the oracle of Apollo spoke, was the site of the omphalos, the 'navel of the world'. Blending harmoniously with the superb landscape and charged with sacred meaning, Delphi in the 6th century B.C. was indeed the religious centre and symbol of unity of the ancient Greek world.'' You will visit the Temple of Apollo and the Ancient Oracle, the Ancient Stadium, the Ancient Theatre where could seat more than 5000 spectators, the Sacred Way, and of course The Tholos of the sanctuary of Goddess Athena, that is perhaps the most characteristic monument at Delphi and a masterpiece of Classical architecture!
Next we will visit the Museum of Delphi, where you can admire the ‘’Charioteer’’, one of the best pieces of the classical art sculpted in bronze! Here you will also see the sacred symbol of Delphi, the Omphalos (navel) that signified the center of the earth, was kept in Apollo's temple and may other masterpieces from the excavations in the sanctuary of Delphi!
We leave Delphi and we continue our tour and we will arrive at Meteora and the small town of Kalambaka in the afternoon. Free time to explore this small but really beautiful town located on the foot of Meteora Monasteries! Overnight : Kalambaka
DAY 4: After your breakfast we continue our tour, visiting 2 or 3 out of the 6 great monasteries in Meteora that are included in the UNESCO World Heritage List. This depends of the day of the tour and which monasteries will be open that day. Most famous Monasteries are the ''Megalo Meteoro'', the ''Monastery of Varlaam'' and the ''Monastery of Holy Trinity'' where the production of famous film of James Bond ''For your eyes only'' filmed many scenes!!
As we can read at Unesco's official website regarding Meteora ''In a region of almost inaccessible sandstone peaks, monks settled on these 'columns of the sky' from the 11th century onwards. Twenty-four of these monasteries were built, despite incredible difficulties, at the time of the great revival of the eremetic ideal in the 15th century. Their 16th-century frescoes mark a key stage in the development of post-Byzantine painting''.
We ''take'' with us as many as possible breathtaking pictures of Meteora and we start our trip back to Athens. You can have lunch at the town of Kalamabaka or later, at a next stop that you may wish to make. We return to Athens late in the afternoon.
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