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Must visit places in Greece –
Picture perfect whitewashed cliff-side houses, idyllic beaches, ancient ruins and towering mountains ranges, there is something for everyone in Greece. There even seems to be this unique sense of familiarity and exoticness whenever we think of her. Perhaps it’s because of the influence and mysteriousness of greek mythology on modern language and culture. Whatever it is, there is an undeniable attraction, and it is little wonder why Greece is on the travel radar of most.
Broadly split into Mainland Greece and the Greek Islands, here are 8 must visit places in Greece.
The ancient capital of the Greeks and birthplace of western civilisation, Athens is so full of culture that it’ll charm you over even if you are not a history buff. From the well preserved high city of Acropolis to the ruined marketplace of Agora, there is much to see and explore. Sip on a frappe me gala (coffee with milk), and people watch like the greeks do. Throw in some feta cheese and you’ll practically blend in! There are also tons of great restaurants and coffee houses to ease you into your greek holiday.
One of the most awe-inspiring religious buildings in the World, the six monasteries in Meteora tower above the surrounding landscape. One can only imagine how ancient greeks must have felt looking up to these seemingly inaccessible sites that are “suspended in air”, bridging the gap between them and the spiritual world. These days, there are numerous adventure related hikes around the area. You can cycle and even climb up one of the many rock faces around Meteora.
The postcard dream destination for any couple looking for a romantic getaway. Blue domed houses, breathtaking caldera views, and a relaxed atmosphere has turned Santorini into one of the most popular islands in Greece. It is slightly more expensive than the other greek islands, but this well oiled tourist destination is well worth it’s price. Rent a car or ATV to explore the island in the day, and dine at one of the many restaurants facing the caldera. For an unforgettable experience, go on a sunset cruise.
(4) Halkidiki Coastline
Halkidiki or Chalkidiki is another gem in the northern part of Greece. This trident shaped peninsula made up of Kassandra, Sithonia and Mount Athos is especially popular during the Summer months of July and August. Beach bar parties and nightclubs light up as many locals from nearby Thessaloniki travel down for some sun.
The most famous archaeological site out of Athens, the sanctuary of Apollo in Delphi used to be known as the centre of the world. It was also the place where the priestess of Pythia would give out oracle readings of the future. Backdropped against the spectacular Mount Parnassus, Delphi is a great site to take in the grandeur of ancient Greece at it’s peak.
The largest and most populous of all the greek islands, Crete has a fairly varied landscape with lots to do. Hang out at one of their beautiful beaches, get lost amongst ancient treasures of the Minoan Civilisation, or hike down the lush and magnificent Samaria Gorge. If you enjoy greek mythology, you can even hike to the birthplace of greek god Zeus! Of course, be sure to explore the famous local gastronomical delights and Cretan wine too.
(7) Mount Olympus
Home to the mythical Greek gods, Mount Olympus is the highest mountain in Greece and second highest in all of the Balkans. Revered by the greeks in the past, you can now attempt to scale the 2,917m high mountain to Mytikas peak if you are up for a challenge. It is not for the faint hearted, but it definitely sounds like something worth doing for a view of the Gods. You can even pretend to be Zeus and hurl imaginary thunderbolts down.
Located in the south west of Greece, the peninsula of Peloponnese is often overlooked by her more glamorous counterparts when short on time. Yet this region is one of that has a little of everything. From the ruins of Olympia (birthplace of the Olympic Games), the best preserved Epidaurus theatre, to the Byzantine enclaves of Mystra, there is a part of greek history everywhere. Not to mention the less crowded beaches at Lakkopetra and Killini, where it is still possible to find stretches of sand with no footprints.
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