Category Archive : Special Tours

Explore Macedonia, the land of Alexander the Great in a unique journey of 7.000 years of Greek history!

Description
Day 1: Leave the Capital by the towns of Thebes, Levadia and the picturesque village of Arachova. Arrival in Delphi.

Visit the most famous oracle of the ancient times, the Temple of Apollo, the Treasury of Athenians and the Museum where you will see Greek sculptures as the Sphinx, the famous athlete Aghias and the bronze Charioteer.

Departure for Kalambaka the picturesque town at the foot of the gigantic rocks, the famous Meteora. Dinner & overnight.

Day 2: Next stop is Meteora that means “middle of the sky”, seems to be “suspended in the air”. In Meteora you will visit ageless Monasteries and you will see first-hand unique specimens of Byzantine art.

Depart from Kalampaka to Thessaloniki along the longest river in Greece, Aliakcmon.

Arrival at Thessaloniki, the second largest city of Greece (dinner & overnight).

Day 3: At Thessaloniki, visit in the morning the era that throughout the Byzantine Empire was the “co-reigning” city. Visit the Museum of Byzantine Culture and the most characteristic churches of the Christian world. The rest of the day is free to explore more the city. Dinner & overnight.

Day 4: Departure for the historical Macedonia. Stop at Edessa where you will see the famous Waterfalls. Second stop at Naoussa where was the Aristotles School and the great philosopher taught the doctrines of morals and politics to Alexander the Great and the other Macedonians.

Next stop at Vergina (ancient Aigai) where you will see the royal tombs of Macedonia among others the tomb of King Philip II, Alexander’s father, and enjoy your visit at the unique museum.

You will visit Veria (Biblical Beroea) and the Saint Paul’s Bema and stroll through the old Jewish neighborhood and the market area.

Return to Thessaloniki. Dinner & overnight.

Day 5: Visit the capital of Alexander the Great, Pella and see the exquisite floor mosaics of the 4th century villas and the new Museum.

Next stop at the Archaeological Park of Dion, the sacred city of Macedonians cited at the foot of Mount Olympus, the highest Mountain of Greece and the residence of the 12 Gods of the Greek Mythology.

Return to Athens through Thessaly and the Valley of Tempi, pass by Lamia and see the Leonida’s Monument and Thebes.

Arrival at Athens: Late in the afternoon

The tour includes:

Overnight accommodation
Meals as per itinerary (Breakfast & Dinner)
Professional Guide
Entrance Fees
Pick-up service from your hotel (most of the hotels in Athens)
Transportation with luxurious air-conditioned coach
All taxes

Argolis – 2 Days

Spend an afternoon and a morning in Nafplion town the town that the Venetians called “Naples of Greece”

1st day: Corinth Canal – Mycenae (visit) – lunch – Nafplion, afternoon free. Overnight.

2nd day: Nafplion – Epidaurus (visit) – return to Athens.

Price:
Half board 4* hotel 178,00 € per person | Single supplement 4* hotel 36,00 €
Half board 3* hotel 153,00 € per person | Single supplement 3* hotel 29,00 €

The above rates do not include the New “City TAX” for overnights in hotels. The accommodation Tax will be payable by the guests prior to their check-out as following: 5* hotel: 4,00 € per overnight per room, 4* hotel: 3,00 € per overnight per room, 3* hotel: 1,50 € per overnight per room.

Delphi – 2 Day Tour…Daily from April 1st to October 30th


Departs 08.45 – Returns 19.00

1st day: Drive through the fertile plain of Beotia, crossing the towns of Thebes, Levadia and Arachova arrive in Delphi, the center of the Ancient World. On the slopes of Mount Parnassus, in a landscape of unparalleled beauty and majesty, lie the ruins of the Sanctuary of Apollo Pythios. Visit the Treasury of the Athenians, the Temple of Apollo and the Museum containing such masterpieces of Ancient Greek sculpture as the bronze Charioteer. Afternoon free. Dinner. Overnight.

2nd day: The whole morning is free for you to see more of the ragged grandeur of Delphi and take photographs to remind you of its beauty. Return to Athens by the same route.

N.B. 1) Clients staying at the coast will depart for their hotels from G.O.TOURS terminal around 19.30 hrs.

Price:
Half board 4* hotel 170,00 € per person | Single Supplement in 4* hotel 36,00 €
Half board 3* hotel 146,00 € per person | Single Supplement in 3* hotel 29,00 €

NOT INCLUDED: The New “City TAX” for overnights in hotels. The Tax is payable by the clients before check-out as following: 5* hotel: 4,00 € | in 4* hotel: 3,00 € | 3* hotel: 1,50 € per overnight per room.

City Tour + lunch + Cape Sounion

April to October: Daily service Dep. 08.45 – Ret. 19:00

You have the chance to observe the striking contrasts that make Athens such a fascinating city. Our expert guides will take you to see the Panathenaic Stadium where the first Olympic Games of modern times were held in 1896 (short stop). Continue and pass by the Temple of Olympian Zeus, the Hadrian’s Arch, the Parliament and the memorial to the Unknown Soldier, the Academy, the University, the National Library, the Constitution Square (Syntagma). On the Acropolis visit the Architectural Masterpieces of the Golden Age of Athens: The Propylaea, the Temple of Athena Nike, the Erechtheion and finally “the harmony between material and spirit”, the monument that “puts order in the mind”, the Parthenon. Continue and visit the place where at last the statues found their home and admire the wonders of the classical era: The new Acropolis museum.

Continue to a local restaurant for lunch.

After lunch drive along the coastal road, passing the wonderful beaches of Glyfada, Vouliagmeni & Varkiza to the most Southern point of Attica, Cape Sounion, where the white marble pillars of the Temple of Poseidon stand. On the way, you have a splendid view of the Saronic Gulf and the little islands offshore. After visiting the Temple of Poseidon, you have time to walk at leisure on the rocky promontory of Sounion.

N. B. Due to certain restrictions in the visiting hours of the new Acropolis museum the order of the program can be changed.

Price: 110,00 € per person

Athens City Tour With Acropolis
Half-day Afternoon Tour

What’s included
This tour gives you the opportunity to observe the striking contrasts that make Athens such a fascinating city. Our expert guides will take you to see the center of the city, the Constitution Square (Syntagma), the House of Parliament, the Monument of the Unknown Soldier, the Academy, the University and the National Library. On the way to the Acropolis you will make a short stop at the Panathenaic Stadium where the first modern Olympic Games were held in 1896, you will see the temple of Olympian Zeus and the Hadrian’s Arch. At the Acropolis, you will visit the architectural masterpieces of the Golden Age of Athens: the Propylaea, the Temple of Athena Nike, the Erectheion and finally “the harmony between material and spirit”, the monument that “puts order in the mind”, the Parthenon.

Price: 65,00 € per person

Schedule
Half-day Afternoon Tour

From May to October Every Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday

Dep. 15.00 – Ret. 18.30

A Night Out

What’s included
Your evening begins with a short panoramic drive through the city center and on the slopes of the sacred hill you will be able to see, admire and take photos of the illuminated Acropolis. Then a pleasant walk through the narrow picturesque streets of Plaka, the old city, will bring you at a Typical Greek Tavern where you will enjoy your dinner following a floor show with live music and Greek Folk Dances in traditional costumes.

Price: 66,00 € per person (drinks not included)

Organized:
From April to October every Tuesday – Wednesday – Thursday and Saturday

November to March every Saturday

Dep. 20.15 – Ret. Midnight

Sounion Half Day tour (afternoon)

April to October the tour is organized daily.
November to March it is organized on Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays, Saturdays.
Departs 15:00, Returns 19:00 (Oct-March – returns 18:30)

Enjoy a ride along the beautiful Saronic gulf coastline, in a guided tour to Cape Sounio and watch an amazing sunset at the Temple of Poseidon. Enjoy the drive over the sea and watch the reflections of the sun on the waters, and the beauty of the scenery!
On the way to Cape Sounio, you drive along the coastal road past the beaches of Glyfada, Vouliagmeni, Varkiza and countless coves. The crowning feature of the tour, Cape Sounion is dominated by the spectacular Temple of Poseidon overlooking the Aegean Sea. Your licensed guide will give you details about the area of Attica and especially the mines of silver in Lavrio, which were the source of wealth of Ancient Athens.
As soon as you arrive at Cape Sounio, you will immediately enter the archaeological site of the Temple of Poseidon for a detailed tour with your licensed guide. Take pictures of the Temple of Poseidon and the sea during sunset. Capture magnificent photos with the sky dyed in deep yellow, orange and red colors, creating the most beautiful canvas!
Entrance fees to the archaeological site are included in the price. The duration of the whole tour is 4 hours.
We have pick up service from most of the central hotels. Departure time varies depending on the season and the hour of the sunset.

April – October, the tour is organized on Mondays-Tuesdays-Wednesdays-Thursdays & Saturdays
November-March, the tour is organized on Tuesdays-Thursdays & Saturdays. NB: The negative point in low season is that Sites & Museums close at 15:00

Argolis is one of the longest occupied regions in Greece, with evidence of Neolithic settlements. Attractions such as Agamemnon’s fortress at Mycenae, the amazing theatre of Epidaurus, and the elegant city of Nafplion, draw huge crowds of people.

Highlights


Highlights of this tour: Corinth canal(photo stop), visit the mythical fortified city of Mycenae, walk in through the Lions’ Gate, see the palace of Agamemnon and the tomb of Atreus. In Epidaurus, visit the sanctuary of Asclepius(the god of medicine) and his daughter Hygeia, and experience the amazing acoustics of the 2500 years old theatre of Epidaurus. Contnue for a short photo stop in the romantic and beautiful “Venetian” old town of Nafplion.

Legendary MYCENAE – the city – founder of Mycenaean civilization
Mycenae was the kingdom of mythic Agamemnon, leader of the Greek troops in the Trojan War.
Myths related to legends and history have inspired poets and writers over the centuries from Homer and the Greek tragedians of the classical period.
The site was uncovered in 1874 by Heinrich Schlieman, who also found and excavated the site of Troy.
You enter the citadel through the famous Lions’ Gatestanding on lintleof 10 tons.

Beautiful NAFPLION – the “Venice of Greece”
Modern architecture hasn’t spoiled the old town of Nafplion, which is a feast for the eye. It was the capital of the Greek state in the early 1830s. Here, is the first residential place for the young Bavarian Prince, Otto, the first king of the new country after the revolution against the Turks. The old town is beautiful, with old mansions and paved roads. The town’s fortresses, the Palamidi and the Acronafplia, played a key role during the war of independence. The Venetian influence is everywhere justifying the town’s name as the “Greek Venice”.

The Amazing open theatre of EPIDAURUS
The priests of the sanctuary of god Asclepius were excellent surgeons. The administration of the sanctuary decided to build a theatre on the ground of the sanctuary, to entertain the patients.
Today, next to the sanctuary of Asclepius, there is a small museum, displaying the instruments and tools used by the priests to perform brain operations.

Itinerary, map and prices

TIME TOUR PLAN SERVICES
07:30 Start the pick up from the hotels. Departure from the terminal at 08.30
10:00 Arrival at Corinth canal. Short photo stop
11:15 Arrival in ancient Mycenae. Visit ancient site & museum
13:00 Lunch in a local restaurant. Lunch is optional. See the price paid.
14:15 Drive on to “Venetian” Nafplion. Short photo stop at Nafplion
15:15 Arrival at the site of Epidaurus. Visit the museum & the theatre
18:30 Arrival in the centre of Athens. Drop off at your hotel by 19:30

All the guided tours in Greece are organized by 3 big tour Operators and the travel agents sell the same tours at discounted prices.
Our discounted offers for the 1 day guided tour to Argolis, are:
1) The adult price, for the guided tour, NO lunch and NO entrance fees = 59.00 €
April-October entrance fees cost 24.00 euro extra. November-March entrance fees cost 12.00 euro extra.
Lunch costs 7.00 euro extra, added to the adult price.
2) The student price, for the guided tour, NO lunch and NO entrance fees = 49.00 €, (Student’s enabler price),
To avoid misunderstandings, please, CLICK and read what “enabler student” price means.
ONLY holders of International Student Identity cards are eligible to this price.

The prices quoted in the above price list, are in euro, per person, and include:
– transportation on modern air-conditioned buses
– Pick up / drop off from your hotel or near your hotel (See the list of hotels at the footer of the website)
– Services of the professional tour guide.

– Lunch and entrance tickets are optional and depend on the price that you decide to pay.

This ONE DAY TOUR TO ARGOLIS can be organized also as a private tour (cost shared between the passengers):
Transportation of 1-4 passengers = 260.00 euro. 5-8 passengers the extra cost is extra 10.00 euro per person.
In this private tour a) entrance fees, lunch, and drinks are not included in the price, and
b) a local professional tour guide, can be arranged to meet you at the extra cost.

In this private tour, entrance fees, lunch, and drinks are not included in the price.

Please, read the rules on HOW TO BOOK AND SECURE a booking that you find in the footer.
When we receive the message that the money have been deposited, we shall send you the voucher.
There is a cancellation deadline if the bookings are not paid on time.

 

 

History of Mycenae


Mycenae, the home of the Atreides royal family, is situated on a hill-top on the road leading to Corinth and Athens. The site was inhabited since Neolithic times (about 4000 BC) but reached its peak during the Late Bronze Age (1350-1200 BC), giving its name to a civilization which spread throughout the Greek world. During that period, the acropolis (= highest point of a city) was surrounded by massive “cyclopean” walls which were built in three stages (1350, 1250 and 1225 BC). The outer fortifying walls, are large stones and must still look similar to 3500 years ago when they were built.

We enter the citadel of Mycenae through the famous Lions’ Gate, because of the two lions above the entrance way, the first monumental sculpture in Europe (13th century BC). Immediately on to our right we come to Grave Circle A, a royal cemetery in which Schliemann found six shaft graves, 19 skeletons, and the incredibly rich burial furnishings which made his discovery one of the great archaeological finds of all time. This is where Schlieman found the ancient mask, which he called “the Mask of Agamemnon” but turned out to be the face of an unknown king from a period 300 years earlier. That mask is probably one of the most recognized ancient artifacts in the world and is still unofficially known as “the mask of Agamemnon”.

The rest of the site is interesting if you know what you are looking at, so take the time to read the material available in guidebooks. A ramp and stairs lead up from the grave circle to the palace on the top of the hill; unfortunately little remains of the palace except for a Great Court and a megaron (a room with central hearth and inner columns). The view when you get to the top of the hill is spectacular. You are really commanding the valley all the way down to Argos and Nafplion. From here you can follow a path down the back of the site to the Postern Gate and the Secret Cistern, a pitch-dark tunnel leading down some 80 steps through the solid rock. We can then return to the Lion Gate around the north side of the hill.

Outside the city walls, and across the road from Mycenae is the Royal grave or treasury of Atreus, which is one of the most impressive parts of ancient Mycenae. You walk through a passageway into an enormous bee-hive tomb dug into the ground. This is known as “a Tholos tomb” and this was the way the ancient Mycenaean’s began to bury their dead after the 15th century BC. The size of this tomb is incredible, and the stones are so massive that it’s believed that engineers who built Egyptian pyramids must have served as consultants when the Mycenaeans began constructing these “treasuries.”

A second tholos near the grave of Atreus was excavated by Mrs. Schliemann and is called the Tomb of Klytemnestra; it is one of the latest and most finely constructed of the tholoi. The third one called the Tomb of Aegisthus. is much earlier and its roof has collapsed. Returning down the modern road about a km we come to the most famous tholos, the Tomb of Agamemnon; the half-columns, which decorated its doorway, are in the Mycenaean Room of the National Museum.

Do not leave from the site without a visit to the museum of Mycenae. From the jewellery found in the graves some are displayed at the site’s museum and some in the Athens Archaeological Museum.

The myth of AGAMEMNON

In myth Mycenae was the home of Agamemnon, commander of the Greek army, which fought against Troy, and historically it was the most powerful Greek state during the last third of the Bronze Age (1600-1100 BC), which is why this period is called Mycenaean. Heinrich Schliemann excavated here in 1874-76 and found in Royal Grave Circle A the rich treasures which proves that Agamemnon really lived and that Homer’s story of the Trojan War was history, not myth.

The myth of Mycenae is the story of the Pelopid dynasty. Pelops, who gave his name to the Peloponnese (=Island of Pelops), had two sons, Atreus and Thyestes. Atreus, being the older son, became king of Mycenae but later he punished his brother, who had an adulterous affair with Atreus’ wife Europe, by forcing him to eat his two sons for dinner.

Atreus had two sons, Menelaus and Agamemnon, who married 2 sisters; Menelaus married Helen(the beautiful Helen of Troy) and Agamemnon married Klytemnestra. When Helen ran off with the Trojan prince Paris, Agamemnon and Menelaus became commanders-in-chief of the great expedition, which fought and won the Trojan War. When Agamemnon returned from the war, Klytemnestra was not overjoyed to see him; she had taken a lover (Thyestes’ son Aegisthus) and Agamemnon, who had earlier, at the beginning of Trojan war, sacrificed his daughter Iphigeneia so that favourable winds would blow his fleet to Troy, now drove up to the palace with his new concubine, the Trojan princess Kassandra. Klytemnestra therefore invited Agamemnon to come in and take a bath; she gave him a garment to put on (with no holes for his head and arms) and while he stood there with this bag on his head she killed him with three blows of an axe. Later Orestes, the exiled son of Agamemnon and Klytemnestra, returned to Mycenae and killed his mother to avenge his father; for his crime of matricide he was driven mad by the Furies (mythic emblems of guilt) until finally, in the Attic version, he was acquitted at the first Areopagus trial, under the Acropolis.

Video

Sparti: One of the two most powerful city-states in Classical Greece, Sparta is located in the Evrotas river valley, almost completely surrounded by mountain ranges. Unlike most of the other Greek city-states, Sparta was not a fortified city-state center with huge religious and civic buildings, but it was a loose collection of smaller villages spaced over a large rural area. Traditionally, Sparta’s founding is given at the middle of the 10th century B.C. by the Dorian Greeks. By the 7th century the warlike Spartans had conquered all of the surrounding Laconia and Messenia, and by the next century much of the remaining Peloponnese was under Spartan control. In the 5th century Sparta allied herself with Athens and other city-states in order to repulse the Persian aggressor, but soon after this the two city-states fell out, embarking on a century-long struggle for supremacy in the Peloponessian War, which ended with Spartan victory in 405 B.C. By the 4th century, however, Spartan power declined with its defeat by Thebes in 371 B.C., and, by 193 B.C., she had entirely lost her territorial possessions. Sparta thrived briefly under Roman Imperial rule, but was sacked by the Goths in 395 A.D and completely abandoned.
We will visit the archeaological remains of ancient Sparta, including the 2nd century BC theatre, the sites most discernible ruin (virtually nothing remains of the ancient city). The monuments on the site have not been restored yet but there are plans in the works for this under the auspices of the European Union. Important monuments of the site include the temple of Athena Chalkoikos on the top of the acropolis ; the ancient theatre, dating from the early Imperial period, the orchestra and walls of which still stand; a circular building of unknown use, which some scholars think was some kind of assembly; remains of shops, constructed in the Roman Imperial period, which served visitors to the theater; and finally, the remains of a Basilica of the Middle Byzantine period, dated to the 10th century A.D.
Mystras: Mystra enjoys one of the most beautiful situations in Greece, lying along a steep slope of Mt. Taygetos. At the top is the Kastro (fortified citadel), and on successive levels below are several Byzantine churches (most notably the Pantanassa), the Palace of the Despots, and everywhere spectacular views.
Few kilometers west to the Byzantine town Mystra on the slopes of Mt. Taygetos, an impregnable fortress, built by Guillame de Villehardouin in 1249. When the Byzantines won back the Morea from the Franks, Emperor Michael VIII Palaeologus made Mystra its capital and seat of government and Mystras became the leading city of the Peloponnese. It was governed by a Byzantine Despot, usually either a son or a brother of the Emperor in Constantinople.It soon became populated by people from the surrounding plains seeking refuge from invading Slavs. From this time, until the last despot, Demetrios, surrendered it to the Turks in 1460, a despot of Morea (usually a son or brother of the ruling Byzantine emperor) lived and reigned at Mystra. Mystra declined under Turkish rule. It was captured by the Venetians in 1687 and it thrived once again with a flourishing silk industry and a population of 40,000. It was recaptured by the Turks in 1715, and from then on it was downhill all the way. It was burned by the Russians in 1770, the Albanians in 1780 and Ibrahim Pasha in 1825. Not surprisingly, at the time of Independence it was in a very sorry state, virtually abandoned and in ruins. Since the 1950s much restoration work has taken place. Once inside Nafplion Gate, the tour will see the main sites of this ancient city such as the Palace of the Despots.

Kyparisia: about 40 miles southeast from Mystras, through some of the most striking and at times hair-raising scenery in Greece, to Kalamata, and from Kalamata it’s another 32 miles to Kyparissia. Kyparisia: In his “description of Greece” Pausanias describes Kyparissia in these words: “having come to Cyparissiae we see a spring below the city near the sea. They say that Dionysus made the water flow by smiting the earth with his wand; hence they name it the spring of Dionysus. There is also a sanctuary of Apollo at Kyparissae, and another of Athena surnamed Kyparissian…there is a temple of Aulonian Aesculapius and an image of him” (4.36) Today, the Spring of Dionysus can still be seen on the beach of Ai Lagoudia in Kyparissia, a town on the south-western Peloponnese, but of the temples little remains. In Byzantine times Kyparissia was called Arkadia because of the Arkadian people who came to live there. The Arkadians built a massive castle on the site of the old acropolis, which was later rebuilt by the Franks. The castle and the ancient harbor are the main monuments on Kyparissia today. However, the town is a popular summer getaway because of its attractive beaches and summer festivities.

Pylos: The home of Nestor, the “elder statesman” of the Greek warriors at Troy, Pylos is located on the hill of Epano Englianos, near Navarino Bay, the southwest coast of the Peloponneseus. Occupied as early as the Middle Bronze Age, the site is dominated by a monumental structure, known as Nestor’s palace, which is the best preserved of the existing Mycenean palaces. Built in the Late Bronze Age (ca.1300 B.C.), the palace consists of 105 ground floor apartments. The most important compartments of the palace are the the big “throne room”, with its circular heath, a room with a clay bath tube, and stores with numerous storage jars. The walls of the palace were decorated with beautiful frescos. Thousands of clay tablets in Linear B script were found in the palace. (The Linear B script has been found to be based on the Greek language and was deciphered by a British archaeologist, Michael Ventris, in the 1950s).The palace was destroyed by fire in the 12th century B.C., and by a happy accident of chance, the linear B tablets were preserved by baking in the fire.
Spending the day in and around Pylos, visiting the Venetian castle at Methoni, the Mycenean palace at Pylos (called the Palace of Nestor, the garrulous old advisor in the Iliad), and the Pylos Museum. The Palace of Nestor was first excavated by Carl Blegen of Cincinnati in 1952 and was destroyed by fire at the end of the Mycenean period (around 1200 BC). It is quite a bit smaller than Mycenae, and it is here that the first Linear B tablets found on the Greek mainland were discovered in 1939.