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. In Ancient Mycenae we will also visit 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. Free time in the city of Nauplio, to wonder in the picturesque alleys and enjoy dinner. Overnight in Nauplio.
Day 2: After breakfast we will visit the famous Palamidi, Castle of the Town, with the 999 steps and enjoy the amazing panoramic view. Palamidi is the fortress that dominates the city, in the sense that it almost floats on a hill over Nauplio. It is also considered one of the most impressive castles in Greece. Later on we will take a taxi boat to visit Nauplio’s trademark, the small island of Bourtzi, a fort at the sea which is at the entrance of the city’s harbor. Afterwards we will enjoy local specialities in the city center. Overnight in Nauplio.
Day 3: Today we will visit the city of Sparta, a mythical city that was the greatest military force in ancient times. There we will visit the «Museum of the Olive and Greek Olive Oil» and learn more about the importance of olives in Greek customs, mythology, economy, art and religion along with the prehistoric, Hellenic, byzantine oil mills. Our next stop will be at the breathtaking medieval ruins and the most important Byzantine monument of Greece, the castle of Mystras. The castle, the triple wall, the gates, the palaces, the churches, the mansions, the streets and the temples are excellent examples of a civilization that flourished in the past and will surely take you back in time in an era full of mystery. Overnight inside the castle of Monemvasia in 4* hotel (alternatively outside the castle in 5* hotel).
Day 4: Today we will explore the amazing Castle Town of Monemvasia. One of the most impressive places in Greece. Located on the south eastern side of Peloponnese, that was entirely carved on the back side of a sea rock in the Medieval times. We will wonder through the fairy-taled alleys of the castle town and we will visit Aghia Sophia church. At the end of the day we will enjoy dinner at the port of Gerakas. Overnight inside the castle of Monemvasia in 4* hotel (outside the castle in 5* hotel).
Day 5: After breakfast we are visiting Diros Caves, famous for its marvelous subterranean caves as a part of an underground river. About 5,000 meters have been exposed and accessible by small boats and through narrow passageways and one is surrounded by formations of stalagmites and stalactites. We can also visit the local neolithic museum. Τhen we continue to some of the most beautiful places of Northern Peloponnese, Castletown of Vatheia, set on the top of a hillside. Representative towers, tower houses and paved alleys make up a unique sample of fortress settlement. Dinner and overnight in a castle-hotel in Mani.
Day 6: We will leave our beautiful room in the castle to visit one of the most important excavated cities in Greece, the archaeological site of Ancient Messini. There we will be impressed with the view of temples, houses, walls, public buildings, sanctuaries, funerary monuments and fortifications which are preserved in such a great height and good condition. We will also visit the archaeological museum of Ancient Messini to admire the findings from the excavations of the ancient town and the marble statue of Hermes, known as the messenger of gods in Greek mythology. We will continue our trip to the seaside town of Pylos to visit the impressive and well-preserved castle of Pylos-Niokastro and its museums inside the walls of the castle. Pylos town holds historical significance as well since the famous ''Battle of Navarino'' took place there. We will have a short lunch break in the beautiful town of Pylos before reaching Ancient Olympia.Overnight in Ancient Olympia.
Day 7: Today 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 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. Our last stop will be the New Museum of Ancient Olympia, a great introduction 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 continue our trip and later we will cross over the amazing bridge of Rion – Antirion, one of the biggest in Europe and we will stop at the beautiful seaside town of Naupaktos to make a short stop at the Venetian Castle. The grandiose fortifications of Nafpaktos built in successive construction phases, climax from the ancient times to the Ottoman Empire and, in spite of the catastrophes and damage suffered remain as one of the most important and best preserved examples of castle architecture in Greece. After a full day of new experiences we will return back to Athens.
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