Greece is packed with ancient history and known for its plethora of ancient ruins; it is the birthplace of western civilisation, democracy and philosophy, not forgetting the origin of the Olympic Games… It has a significant culture and history like no other country. Today it is a major tourist destination, renowned for whitewashed buildings, sandy beaches, crystal clear waters and tasty cuisine. Here are the top 5 places you must visit in Greece to get the best experience of ancient culture and stunning coastlines.
If you were told to envision a picture of Athens, the Acropolis will almost definitely be the first thing you will think of. It is the most monumental complex that still exists to this day, and a universal symbol of ancient Greek architecture.
Meteora is a rock formation that is home to 24 monasteries.
A blanket of fog could be seen moving through Meteora, Greece, on December 1.
Minh Phan, a meteorologist traveling in Greece, captured the footage. Phan told Storyful, “Valley fog is common in and around these mysterious rock formations.”
The monasteries emerged on the countless summits of the rocks from the 14th until the 16th century, 6 of them remaining to be explored and admired by all.
These monasteries became the centers of the Orthodox creed in the Byzantine era, having produced some of the best pieces of religious art and craft and still possessing a collection of precious manuscripts, which today are on display in their museums.
There are hundreds of monasteries around the world, each belonging to various religious denominations. However some stand out in terms of breathtaking architecture, design and beauty. Location too plays a major role in inducing a tranquil atmosphere surrounding the structure. Taking in account such factors, here are the most beautiful monasteries in the world.
10. The Monastery of Gregoriou
Gregoriou Monastery is a orthodox Christian monastery located in the monastic state of Mt Athos in Greece Named after its founder St Gregory the Younger, this 14th century monastery features seventeenth in Athonite Hierarchy. Its stunning location on the northern peninsula of Athos enhances its beauty with a backdrop of craggy rocks rising behind it.
9. Meteora, Thessaly Greece
In Greek, it means ‘Middle of the sky’ or ‘suspended in air’.
The Byzantine castle town of Mystras is a must-see for anyone visiting the Peloponnese in Greece. Read more about this rarely visited UNESCO site in Greece.
The Byzantine castle town and UNESCO site of Mystras is a must-see for anyone visiting the Peloponnese in Greece. Spread out over three levels, Mystras is a Byzantine walled city which still retains an air of splendour to this day.
Mystras UNESCO Site in Greece
Mystras is a Byzantine castle town complex located in the Laconia region of the Peloponnese in Greece. Now a UNESCO World Heritage Site, its foundations were originally laid in 1249. Over time, it developed from a strong fortress to become a bustling city state, and a major place of trade within the Byzantine empire. Today, the remains of the fortress itself can be seen on top of Myzithra hill.
Local friends have offered to show me around, and they’ve planned an amazing 5-day Athens, Delphi, and Meteora itinerary. Here’s how it goes.
One of my favorite things about traveling is visiting friends. This is particularly true when said friends live in amazing places. And that’s why I’m so excited to fly to Greece. Local friends have offered to show my boyfriend and me around, and they’ve planned an amazing 5-day Athens, Delphi, and Meteora itinerary for us.
5-Day Athens, Delphi, and Meteora Itinerary
We’re going to be in Greece for two weeks and our aim is to get a mix of mainland culture and island relaxation.
It’s late October, so we’re hoping for good weather and no crowds (spoiler alert: we get both).
Mycenae is one of the most important archaeological sites in Greece. Once a major centre of ancient Greek civilisation, its history mixes together myth, legend, and fact. Now a UNESCO World Heritage Site, it is easily reached on a day trip from Athens, or as part of a bigger Peloponnese road trip. Read on to find out more!
As a kid, I was always fascinated by myths, legends, and ancient civilisations. This carried on through to my adulthood, and I make it a priority to visit archaeological sites whenever I travel. Being based in Greece for this last six months, has really seen me indulge myself! There are an endless amount of archaeological sites such as Delphi, Messene, and Ancient Olympia to visit. One important site which I hadn’t managed to tick off my list until now though, was Mycenae.
UNESCO advises travellers to Greece to visit 18 monuments that are an absolute must as World Heritage Monuments.
UNESCO has branded a total 1,073 sites as World Heritage Monuments, and 18 of them are located in Greece:
The Acropolis: The Parthenon and the other buildings on the Athenian hill – known also as “the sacred rock” – are masterpieces of classical architecture. Completed in 5th Century BC, they are still influential in blending harmonic architecture with natural surroundings.
Aigai (modern-day Vergina): The first capital of the Kingdom of Macedon, home of Alexander the Great, and burial ground of his father, Philip II of Macedon. It is decorated with mosaics and stuccoes and has a burial ground with over 300 and remains that are fairly well-preserved.
Delphi: The sanctuary of Delphi, home of the oracle of Apollo, sits at the foot of Mount Parnassus.
There are some places across Europe that just seem under-rated, not because of how popular/unpopular they are or even because of how beautiful (or otherwise) they are but instead because of how familiar they’ve become. Corfu is one of those places.
I’d been to Corfu several times as a kid with my family and (as you do when you’re a kid), I didn’t really spend much time thinking about the island… I think I was more concerned with ice-cream and making the most epic of sandcastles.
Looking back as an adult, I’ve really come to appreciate the beauty that is in this amazing Greek island. It’s definitely one of those places that needs to be added to your travel list! Here’s why… and what to do when you get there!
An archaeological wonder, a UNESCO World Heritage site, and one of the world’s most instantly recognizable landmarks, the Acropolis is the star attraction of ancient Athens. Dramatically perched on a jagged clifftop—the so-called sacred rock of Athens—the ruins overlook the modern city and date back to as early as 510 BC.
The Acropolis complex is one of the most visited attractions in Greece, included on most Athens city sightseeing tours and often combined with a visit to the New Acropolis Museum or other Ancient Greece sites, such as Epidaurus, Cape Sounion, and the Temple of Poseidon. The best way to explore the ruins is on a guided city walking tour, taking in highlights such as the iconic Parthenon, Propylaea (Propylaia), the Temple of Athena Nike, and Erechtheion.
As the weather cools, our gaze turns to the mountains, ski slopes, rivers and stone-built villages of Greece’s top wintertime destinations.
So, just in case there is any confusion, yes, Greece does have a winter. The dry-baked Cycladic islands turn green as the rains arrive; their inhabitants bundle up against temperatures that can sink to the low single digits when biting northerlies whip through the Aegean.
On the mainland, mountain villages are frequently covered in blankets of snow. Many of the peaks above are dressed in white from November to April.
In fact, it’s pretty great.
Winter is the time to swap the sandals for hiking boots, and the cold beachside beer for a brandy or warm rakomelo by the fireplace. Hearty, slow-cooked stews replace light summertime salads, and a whole host of different seasonal products begin to appear: wild mushrooms, juicy oranges,fat chestnuts.