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  • Departing from?Dublin + 3
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  • When?March 2015
  • How long for?7 nights
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Greece - In the Footsteps of Alexander the Great
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Greece - In the Footsteps of Alexander the Great

  • 7 Night Holiday
  • B&B / Half Board
View Dates & Prices

Take a step back in time on this awe-inspiring 7 night holiday to Athens and Thessaloniki. Experience the timeless history of Ancient Greece and walk in the footsteps of the infamous King Alexander the Great.

Explore the ancient highlights of Athens on a guided city tour where you’ll take in the Acropolis, the Parthenon and the Erecthion. Enjoy breathtaking panoramic views of the Acropolis, learn the history of the beautiful marble monuments and temples, visit the magnificent Panathinaiko Stadium and see the Temple of Zeus with its Corinthian pillars up close and personal. You’ll also have some free time to enjoy this unique city at your own pace. Why not relax and enjoy a coffee in one of the traditional taverns and cafés or take the opportunity to enjoy some local shopping.

The second half of this historic adventure will be based in Thessaloniki, the cultural capital of Greece. This city is bursting with over 3,000 years of history and tradition from its Roman, Byzantine, Ottoman and Jewish past. You’ll have ample time to discover the seafront boulevard, the White Tower, the Statue of Alexander the Great and the UNESCO world heritage church of St Dimitrious on a guided city tour. You’ll also have the opportunity to visit the ancient city of Pella on a full day excursion. Best known as the historical capital of Macedon,  Pella is also the birthplace of Alexander the Great.

Finish your holiday with a drive through central Greece taking in the Meteora region, known as the ‘Garden of the Rocks’, a UNESCO World Heritage site full of history and uniqueness just waiting to be discovered.

 

Practical Information for this holiday

Currency
Euro (€)
Local Time
Ireland/UK Time +2 hour
Passport
A valid passport is required for this holiday. EU citizens do not need a visa, however non-EU citizens should check their requirements.
Airport
Athens Airport is around a 30 minute drive to your hotel.
Climate

Greece has a typically Mediterranean climate. Greek summers are generally dry, but rain does occur all year round. July and August are the hottest months, but relief can be found in the meltemi, a northerly wind that sometimes sweeps across the Aegean Sea.

Food & Drink

Your hotel will provide simple, informal evening meals (if you are on half board basis) with a set menu or small buffet, featuring dishes based on local ingredients and cooking methods. If you choose to dine out independently, eating out in a typical taverna is an experience that enhances any holiday in Greece. To begin, try the ‘meze’ ; a selection of small plates that might include olives, stuffed vine leaves, feta and spinach pies, courgette fritters and tangy yogurt based dips with pitta breads. Follow that with spit-roasted or slow cooked meats, grilled fish dressed with lemon and olive oil, or a tempting moussaka. Lighter dishes such as stuffed tomatoes and Greek salad can be a good lunchtime option, especially on hot days. When it comes to dessert, the classic Greek baklava, made with layers of filo pastry, honey and nuts is a real treat. Ouzo is the national drink, so make sure you try a shot!

Average Prices for Region

Coffee: €1.45

Beer: €4.00

Glass of wine: €3.50

Light Meal: €10.00

Soft Drink: €2.00

Bottled Water: €0.50

Packing List

We advise you to bring:

  • Your valid passport
  • Sun cream
  • A continental plug adaptor
  • A small backpack
  • A sun hat
  • Comfortable shoes
  • Camera
Recommended Reading

Captain Corelli’s Mandolin by Louis de Berniéres

The Odyssey by Homer

The Greeks Have a Word for It by Barry Unsworth

Holiday highlights

Athens - The Acropolis

The Acropolis stands sentinel over Athens. The city was once a showcase of colossal buildings, lavishly coloured and gilded, and of gargantuan statues, some of bronze, others of marble plated with gold and encrusted with precious stones. Now in ruins, the cool grandeur of the bare marble is still breathtaking.

Athens - The Parthenon

This is a temple of the Greek goddess Athena, built in the 5th century BC on the Athenian Acropolis. It is the most important surviving building of Classical Greece. The Parthenon is regarded as an enduring symbol of ancient Greece and of Athenian democracy, and one of the world's greatest cultural monuments.

Dion

Today, Dion is a unique Greek village but it was once referred to as the sacred city of Macedon. Located at the foot of Mount Olympus, it was known as the “Home of the Gods” with sanctuaries dedicated to various Gods including Zeus, Artemis, Demeter, Isis and Asklepios. Highlights of the region include the ancient Macedonian sanctuary of Zeus and the Archaeological Park of Dion.

Pella

Pella is an ancient city located in Central Macedonia, best known as the birthplace of Alexander the Great. Pella replaced Aigai as the capital of the Macedonian kingdom at the end of the 5th century BC and became one of the most important political, and cultural centers of Greece. You’ll have the opportunity to view a wealth of excavation discoveries at the Archaeological Museum and you’ll also take in The Agora, one of the biggest public areas of the ancient Greek world, revealed during recent excavations.

Practical Information for this holiday

Currency
Euro (€)
Local Time
Ireland/UK Time +2 hour
Passport
A valid passport is required for this holiday. EU citizens do not need a visa, however non-EU citizens should check their requirements.
Airport
Athens Airport is around a 30 minute drive to your hotel.
Climate

Greece has a typically Mediterranean climate. Greek summers are generally dry, but rain does occur all year round. July and August are the hottest months, but relief can be found in the meltemi, a northerly wind that sometimes sweeps across the Aegean Sea.

Food & Drink

Your hotel will provide simple, informal evening meals (if you are on half board basis) with a set menu or small buffet, featuring dishes based on local ingredients and cooking methods. If you choose to dine out independently, eating out in a typical taverna is an experience that enhances any holiday in Greece. To begin, try the ‘meze’ ; a selection of small plates that might include olives, stuffed vine leaves, feta and spinach pies, courgette fritters and tangy yogurt based dips with pitta breads. Follow that with spit-roasted or slow cooked meats, grilled fish dressed with lemon and olive oil, or a tempting moussaka. Lighter dishes such as stuffed tomatoes and Greek salad can be a good lunchtime option, especially on hot days. When it comes to dessert, the classic Greek baklava, made with layers of filo pastry, honey and nuts is a real treat. Ouzo is the national drink, so make sure you try a shot!

Average Prices for Region

Coffee: €1.45

Beer: €4.00

Glass of wine: €3.50

Light Meal: €10.00

Soft Drink: €2.00

Bottled Water: €0.50

Packing List

We advise you to bring:

  • Your valid passport
  • Sun cream
  • A continental plug adaptor
  • A small backpack
  • A sun hat
  • Comfortable shoes
  • Camera
Recommended Reading

Captain Corelli’s Mandolin by Louis de Berniéres

The Odyssey by Homer

The Greeks Have a Word for It by Barry Unsworth

Trip Itinerary - Day by day

Day 1 - Travel to Greece

Morning

Travel to Greece

On arrival in Athens, you will be met our local representative who will assist you in the transfer to your hotel.

Afternoon

At Leisure

You will have the rest of the day to relax and explore your surroundings.

Day 2 - Athens

Morning

Athens

Begin your Greek adventure with a half day guided sightseeing tour of Athens. Today you see the breath-taking Acropolis (entrance included), an ancient citadel perched on a hill top overlooking Athens. This wonderful settlement is home to the Parthenon, a beautiful Doric temple, and the Erechtheion, a temple dedicated to Poseidon. You will also see the Panathinaikos Stadium, host of the first modern Olympic Games and the only stadium in the world that is entirely built of marble.

Afternoon

At Leisure

You will have the afternoon at leisure to discover the city at your own pace. Your guide will be delighted to suggest places of interest; you could visit the Parliament for example and see the change of the guards that take place every hour on the hour. Explore Plaka, a historic district known as the "Neighbourhood of the Gods", where you can enjoy a coffee or aperitif in one of the cafés and sample some Greek culinary delights at a traditional tavern.

Day 3 - Dion & Thessaloniki

Morning

Transfer for Thessaloniki

After breakfast, depart to Thessaloniki, making a stop en-route to visit Dion. At the foothills of Mt. Olympus (the mountain of the gods of Greek mythology) this sacred city of the Macedonians is surrounded by one of the biggest archaeological parks in Greece. In the afternoon continue to Thessaloniki, where you can take some time to relax at your hotel before joining your fellow travelers for dinner (included for each night of your stay in Thessaloniki).

Day 4 - Thessaloniki

Morning

Thessaloniki

After breakfast, depart from your hotel to visit the historical centre of the city. Thessaloniki, being the second-largest city in Greece and the capital of Central Macedonia, is considered Greece's cultural capital. With over 3,000 years of history, there is plenty to explore, with monuments and traditions dating back to Roman, Byzantine, Ottoman and Jewish civilisations. Many of the churches are included in UNESCO's World Heritage list. The tour takes in the seafront boulevard, the White Tower, the statue of Alexander the Great and on a drive through the Aristotelis University and the campus area, there will be an opportunity to admire magnificent views of the city and take photos. From the old city, you’ll descend to the church of St. Dimitrios, patron saint of Thessaloniki, passing Egnatia street, the Rotonda monument, the Arch of Galerius and St. Sophia.

Afternoon

At Leisure

The afternoon is free, for strolling and shopping in the city centre.

Day 5 - Pella & Edessa

Morning

Pella & Edessa

Set of on a full day guided excursion to Pella and Edessa. The archaeological site of Pella is one of the most important political and economic cultural centres of Greece. It was here in Pella that Alexander the Great was born. Here you can admire the mosaic floors of houses dating back to the 4th century BC and part of the Agora, one of the biggest public areas of the ancient Greek world. Continuing from Pella, there will be a stop at picturesque Edessa, famous for its waterfalls. There will be free time for lunch as well as a chance to explore the old part of the city and the park of waterfalls, with several viewing points.

Day 6 - Vergina

Morning

Vergina

Enjoy a full day exploring Aigai (modern Vergina), the famous museum site where you will see the tomb of Phillip II. This is the second most important archaeological discovery of the 20th century, after the Tomb of King Tutankhamun in Egypt. There will be a visit to the small theatre where King Phillip II was killed and the recently reconstructed Macedonian palace of Aigai which enjoys a setting of outstanding natural beauty.

Afternoon

Veroia

Visit the nearby city of Veroia to see the Bema of St. Paul, a monument erected to honour the Apostle of the Nations and his close ties with the city. Our next stop will be at the archaeological site of the “School of Aristotle” where it is believed that the famous philosopher spent seven years as the tutor of the young prince Alexander and inspired Alexander’s great love for literature.

Day 7 - Athens

Morning

Transfer to Athens

After breakfast at your hotel, depart for Athens. Your journey will take you through the region of Meteora, also known as the “Garden of the Rocks” and home to rare species of birds and flowers. There will be a visit to the UNESCO-listed Monasteries site, with entrances to two monasteries included. The spectacular pillars of rock emerged millions of years ago from the bed of a prehistoric lake following strong tectonic movements. Later they became shelters for hermits whose strong religious faith compelled them to create the first monastic communities on some of the precipitous peaks.

Afternoon

At Leisure

Arrive in Athens in the late afternoon. Enjoy a last evening to soak up the sights and atmosphere of this remarkable city

Day 8 - Return Home

Morning

Return Home

Transfer from your hotel to Athens Airport for your flight home, with guide assistance.

* Please note that the order of your excursions on the itinerary above is provisional and subject to change

Customer reviews

Hotel & accommodation available for this trip

Hotel Zafolia 4

Hotel Zafolia is a modern structure situated in downtown Athens. With a magnificent view of Lycabettus Hill, it is within walking distance of the Athens National Museum. The pleasing decor and comfortable rooms, along with a panoramic rooftop pool and terrace bar, ensure a memora... read more read more read more

Hotel Zafolia is a modern structure situated in downtown Athens. With a magnificent view of Lycabettus Hill, it is within walking distance of the Athens National Museum. The pleasing decor and comfortable rooms, along with a panoramic rooftop pool and terrace bar, ensure a memorable stay in Greece's capital.  

Hotel address
Hotel Zafolia
Alexandras Avenue 87-89


Athens
View available dates for this hotel

Hotel Lazart 5 Star

The stylish Hotel Lazart offers a welcoming stay in Thessaloniki,  2 km from the historic centre.   With spacious rooms decorated in contemporary style, plus a range of onsite leisure facilities to choose from, it is an ideal choice for relaxing and sightseeing in ... read more read more read more

The stylish Hotel Lazart offers a welcoming stay in Thessaloniki,  2 km from the historic centre.   With spacious rooms decorated in contemporary style, plus a range of onsite leisure facilities to choose from, it is an ideal choice for relaxing and sightseeing in Greece’s vibrant second city.

Hotel address
Hotel Lazart
Kolokotroni 16, Stavroupoli 564 30


Thessaloniki
View available dates for this hotel

Hotel Capsis 4 Star

This stylish hotel in the heart of city offers comfort and style, relax at the roof top pool and enjoy the views over the upper town, it is an ideal choice to explore Thessaloniki, with its cafes and restaurants, and nightlife close by.... read more read more read more

This stylish hotel in the heart of city offers comfort and style, relax at the roof top pool and enjoy the views over the upper town, it is an ideal choice to explore Thessaloniki, with its cafes and restaurants, and nightlife close by.

Hotel address
Hotel Capsis
Monastiriou 16, Thessaloniki 546 29, Greece


Thessaloniki
View available dates for this hotel

* Some hotel facilities may be seasonally operated or under maintenance and therefore unavailable at the time of your stay. Charges may apply for certain facilities.

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Price, taxes, flight times & availability are subject to change. E&OE. Price based on per person, sharing. Single Supplement cost may apply.

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  • Single Supplement from €149.00
  • Baggage from €40.00
  • Insurance from €12.50

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