Southern Greece archeological walking holidays; Peloponnese and Delphi

PEL 1R HikingCulture DelfiOlympiaMycenaeAncient EpidaurusNafplioAthensArkadia
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8 DAYS
LEVEL 1

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Athens: cradle of the western civilization
  • Hosios Loukas: Byzantine monastery with magnificent golden mosaics
  • Delphi: the navel of the world
  • Olympia: cradle of the Olympic Games
  • Mycenae: the citadel of Atrides
  • Nafplio: the first capital of modern Greece
  • Epidaurus: the ancient theatre, a marvel of acoustics and harmony
  • Arcadia: hiking in the wild nature of a land full of myths and legends
This walking archeological tour will allow you to visit the main historical and cultural highlights of Southern Greece: Athens’ Old Town around the Acropolis, Apollo’s Oracle in Delfi, Zeus’s sanctuary and the stadium of ancient Olympic Games in Olympia, the location of Homeric Mycenae, the famous theatre of Epidaurus and also the monastery of Hossios Loukas with its splendid mosaics. Join us in this beautiful hiking adventure to regions full of myths and legends…

ITINERARY

Day 1: Welcome in Athens!

Arrival in Athens and transfer to the hotel. 1 overnight.

Day 2: Athens; Walk around the Acropolis. The byzantine monastery of Saint Lukas. The Corycian Cave

Walk to Athens’ historical center, around the Acropolis. Departure to Delphi. On the way, visit of the monastery of Saint Lukas (Hosios Loukas) in Boeotia, with its beautiful mosaics. Hiking along the slopes of Mount Parnassos, to the Corycian Cave, dedicated to the cult of Pan and the Nymphs. 1 overnight in Delphi.
- Walking: Forth-Back, 1h30min, 5km, ↑↓ 200m, easy
- Transfer: 230 km, 3h15 min

Day 3: Discovering Delphi. The “Navel of the World”

Delphi is lovely provincial town, built on the slopes of Mount Parnassos, over the plain of Amphissa and the Corinthian Gulf. Known for Apollo’s oracle and Pythia’s prophecies, Delphi was during Antiquity the “navel of the world”. The hike of the day is an archeological walk on the Sacred Way through the shrines of ancient gods towards the theater of Delphi and the stadium of the Pythic Games. We will visit the archeological museum with the famous bronze Charioteer, sculptures of Siphnos treasure, colossal statues of kouroi from Argos and the remains of three gold and ivory statues. Lunch pause and departure to the Peloponnese. We take the coastal road along the Corinthian Gulf, we cross the Rio-Antirrio straights and we arrive to Olympia. Diner and 1 overnight.
Transfer: 241 km, 3 h 15 min

Day 4: Olympia; cradle of the Olympic Games. Arcadia; Mount Aphrodision and Ladon River

In Olympia since 776 b. J.-C. and for over a millennium, the Olympic Games had been organized there every four years until the day when the Byzantine Christian Emperors had decided to ban them because of their pagan character. It took 1500 years for the organization of the first modern Olympic Games, in 1896. We will visit Zeus’s sanctuary with its temples, its stadium and the palestra. In the museum we will discover the sculptures from Zeus’s temple, the victory (Nike) of Paionios and Hermes of Praxiteles. Departure for Arcadia. We take the mountain road through wild landscapes and abandoned villages. Circular hike from the picturesque village of Dimitra to the old arc Bridge of Ladon River. Diner and 2 overnights in Vitina.
- Walking: 2h, 6km, ↑↓ 300m, easy
- Transfer: 126 km, 2h45min

Day 5: Arcadia- the gorge of Lousios, Prodromos’s and Philosopher’s monasteries, Stemnitsa and Dimitsana

Hiking through the gorge of Lousios River, from Stemnitsa to Dimitsana; the "stone jewels" of Arcadia with their stone mansions and stone paved paths, in perfect harmony with the beautiful lush landscape; passing by the monastery of Prodromos and Philosophou (the "Philosopher’s"); both "hanging" on the rocky cliffs. Return to Vitina.
- Walking: 5h, 12.5 km, ↑1240, ↓1330 m, moderate
- Transfer: 60 km

Day 6: Arcadia- Mount Mainalon. Argolis- Land of heros and legends. The acropolis of Mycenae

Transfer to the hut of the alpine club of Tripolis, at 1600m, on Mount Mainalon. We hike to the pick of Ostrakina, 1981m and back by the same or via an alternative path. Departure to Argolis and Mycenae, homeland of Agamemnon, the military chef of Greeks during the Trojan War. We will visit the acropolis with the famous Lion Gate, the Cyclopean Walls and the Domed Tombs. Diner and 2 overnights in Nafplion or Tolo, on the gulf of Argos.
- Walking: 2h, ↑↓ 400m, moderate
- Transfer: 110 km, 2h

Day 7: Argolis- Epidaurus and Nafplio

During the Antiquity, pilgrims were arriving to Epidaurus from the entire Greece, in order to find cure in the sanctuary of Asclepius, the healing god. The ancient theatre of Epidaurus is famous due to its acoustics. Nafplio, the first capital of the Modern Greek state, is a picturesque old city that preserves its Venetian and neoclassical character. We will walk around the Acronafplia and below of Palamidi forteress towards the beach of Karathona forth and back.
- Walking: 1h30 min, 5km, flat, easy
Transfer: 57 km, 1h15min

Jour 8: Goodbye!

Transfer to Athens International Airport (about 168km, 1h50 min), or extension of your holidays.

TRAVEL NOTES

ACCOMMODATION AND MEALS

- 7 overnights in **, ***, **** well placed hotels
- Breakfast in the hotel
- Diner in the hotel or in a tavern*
- Lunch: picnic or light meal in a tavern*

HIKES

- 5 hikes: 2 moderate and 3 easy
- Equipment: hiking boots, hiking sticks (very useful), day back-bag and maybe a raincoat

RATES

From: 1300 € /person in double room
Single room supplement: 150 €

SERVICES

- Transportation and visits as described
- 7 nights HB in 3-star hotels
- Tour leader
- Professional liability insurance
- VAT 24% & all applicable taxes

NOT INCLUDED

- Flights to/from Greece
- Entry fees to museums and archeological sites
- Cultural guide for the archeological sites (on request)
- Lunch, dinner (arranged on the spot, during day1)
- Travel insurance
- Drinks/beverages
- Tips, other extras

ARCHEOLOGICAL SITES

Entry fees: Hosios Loukas 4€, Delphi 12€, Olympia 12€, Mycenae 12€, Epidaurus 12€

EXTRAS

- Single room
- Cultural guide
- Lunch, diner
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  • Delfi
  • Olympia
  • Mycenae
  • Ancient Epidaurus
  • Nafplio
  • Athens
  • Arkadia
 
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