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|3 day Classical Tour
of Greece visiting Epidaurus-Nafplion-Mycenae-Olympia-Delphi.
3 DAYS / 2 NIGHTS Dep.: 8:30 am
/ Ret.: 8:00 pm of the third day.
DAY 1. Begin the three-day classical tour of Greece at 08.45 am. Drive Southwards through the industrial city of Elefsis, home of the ancient Elefsinian Mysteries, the most important cult religion of antiquity before Christianity. After an hour's drive, you arrive at the Corinth canal. (short stop). The 6,346 m long isthmus, is one of the 4 pre 20th century, man-made waterways on earth. The canal was an old idea, when the ancient Corinthians were charging a lot of money for the ships, pulling them on greased tree trunks. The canal was finished and opened, only in 1893.
Continue driving on the
"Island of Pelops", the Peloponissos, and at +/- 12.00 am arrive at
EPIDAURUS, known in antiquity as a healing center,
the place where the god of medicine Asclepius was born and
Visit, the sanctuary of the god. The priests of the sanctuary,
were excellent doctors. Psychotherapy, hydrotherapy and brain
surgery were some of the treatments performed here. The sanctuary
was collecting a lot of money from the people that came here to
be treated. The management of the sanctuary decided to spend some
of the money for the entertainment of the patients. Between
340-330 BC, they decided to assign a local architect,
Polykleitos, to build a theatre. The amphitheatre of Epidaurus,
famous for its remarkable acoustics and symmetrical beauty, the
most perfect theatre of Ancient Greece, is a well preserved
monument, still in use today during the " Summer Athens'
Festival". It seems that the ancient Greeks, knew about
acoustics, much more than we think, that they did. Today, thousands of people visit the area
to admire its fantastic acoustics of the theatre.
After lunch continue to MYCENAE, one of the most significant historical monuments of Greek civilization. Mycenae was the kingdom of the mighty Agamemnon, leader of the Greek army during the Trojan war. With the tour guide, visit the remains of the ancient city, see the Lions' Gate, the circle graves, the cult centre, the Palace complex on the summit of the citadel, where Agamemnon was slaughtered by his wife, Klytemnistra, and at the end, visit the treasury of Atreus (the largest and best preserved of the surviving "tholos" tombs). Excavations begun in 1841 but it was 33 years later that the German Archaeologist Heinrich Schlieman unearthed tombs, pieces of Palaces, golden jewelry and other relics that were mentioned by Homer, proving that what Homer was writing, was based on facts and was not just myths. End of the day at Olympia. Dinner and overnight.
DAY 2. Spend the morning
exploring the ancient site of Olympia, where the ancient ideas of
unity, truce and fair play flourished. See the impressive ruins
of the temples of Zeus and the temple of Hera, in front
of which the Olympic flame is lighted and the torch relay starts,
the Gymnasium (for training of the naked
athletes), the Palestra (school and training
fascilities for the wrestlers), the Leonidaion Hostel,
the Workshop of the sculptor Pheidias, the Stadium
where the Olympic Games were held, the beautiful
aquaduct and the amazing 7 echo portico,
that bounced back the echo, 7 times (another acoustics miracle), and the statues of the cheaters. (Emperor Nero was the biggest cheater of the ancient Olympic Games, taking part in the chariot races, and the guitar event that he invented.
DAY 3. Delphi was known
as the centre of the world, the popular oracle of Apollo, who
spoke to the mortals through the priestess Pythia and was known
for the oblique nature of his prophecies. With the tour guide,
walk up the Sacred Way
of the Treasury houses to the Temple of Apollo,
next to which there was the exact spot that was believed to be
the navel (omphalos) of the earth,
and the Theatre, with the Stadium at the top of the hill.