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Greece – In the Footsteps of Alexander the Great

From £1399.00
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Thessaloniki
Departing by Air
Duration 8 Days
Available Until September 2022

 

Take a step back in time on this awe-inspiring 7-night group holiday to Athens and Thessaloniki.

We’ll explore the ancient highlights of Athens on a guided tour where you’ll take in panoramic views of the Acropolis, learn the city’s rich history, and visit the magnificent Temple of Zeus.

On the way to our next stop, Thessaloniki, we’ll drive through central Greece, taking in the Meteora region, known for its immense pillar-like rock formations.

The second half of our adventure will be based in Thessaloniki, where we’ll have ample time to discover the city’s seafront boulevard, White Tower, and Statue of Alexander the Great.

From Thessaloniki, we’ll take guided trips to several sites that were historically important to Alexander the Great including Pella, his birthplace; Vergina, the final resting place of his father; and Veroia, the location of the “School of Aristotle”, where he was educated.

What You’ll Love

  • Experience the most breathtaking views & historical sites of Greece on this 7-night guided holiday.
  • Stay 3 nights in the most famous city in Greece, Athens & 4 nights in the seaside town of Thessaloniki.
  • Explore Athens on a half day guided tour including the Acropolis, the Parthenon & the Panathinaiko Stadium.
  • Discover Greece’s stunning landscape on visits to Meteora’s Garden of Rocks & the waterfalls of Edessa.
  • Walk in the footsteps of Alexander the Great on trips to Pella, his birthplace & Veroia, where he studied.
  • Includes 3 nights on a bed and breakfast basis and 4 nights on a half board basis in Thessaloniki.

Subject to availability. Single supplements apply. To check latest availability, call 0131 608 1238 quoting “DC Thomson Travel”

Itinerary

Day 1 – Travel to Athens Greece

We have arrived! We meet our local representative and transfer to our hotel.

Let’s enjoy the rest of the day at leisure; perhaps a visit to one of the many museums like the National Archaeological Museum, or Settle in, relax, and get to know our surroundings.

Day 2 – Athens Guided Excursion

Let’s uncover Athens on a half day guided excursion. We step back in time and discover the awe-inspiring Acropolis of Athens, an ancient citadel perched on a hilltop overlooking the city. This wonderful settlement is home to the Parthenon, a beautiful Doric temple, and the Erechtheion, a temple dedicated to both Athena and Poseidon. A perfect opportunity for those Instagram shots!

See more of Ancient Athens; we stop and view from the outside, the Panathinaikon Stadium, host to the first modern Olympic Games, and drive by Syntagma Square passing the House of Parliament before returning to our hotel.

Fall in love with Athens; stroll through the atmospheric Plaka district, savour a Greek coffee at one of the pavement cafes, relax and enjoy the atmosphere.

Take time out to visit the House of Parliament to see the tomb of the unknown soldier and experience the hourly changing of the guards (get there early to have the best viewing spot).

Our expert local guide will be happy to recommend places of interest to see and visit.

Day 3 – Discover Meteora and Transfer to Thessaloniki

After breakfast, we depart early on a full day of adventure as we make our way to Thessaloniki. En-route we discover the region of Meteora fondly known as the “Garden of Rocks “where we will visit one of the monasteries (entrance is included) a UNESCO World Heritage site. Today there are six surviving monasteries from the twenty-four original in this region; the monasteries became the centre of Orthodox faith during the late Byzantine and Ottoman periods.

This area is also a Natura 2000 Ecological zone for the protection of rare species of birds and flowers.

In the afternoon, we continue to Thessaloniki, and arrive in late in the evening in time for dinner.

Join us for dinner!

Tonight, and each night of our stay in Thessaloniki we join our fellow travellers for dinner.

Day 4 – Thessaloniki Tour

This morning we discover Thessaloniki with a visit to the historical centre of the city on a half day tour. 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. See more as we pass by 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, we descend to the church of St. Dimitrios, patron saint of Thessaloniki, passing Egnatia street, the Rotonda monument, the Arch of Galerius and St. Sophia.

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

Day 5 – Uncover Pella & Edessa

This morning we set off on a full day guided excursion to Pella and Edessa.

First stop we uncover Pella, the birthplace of Alexander the Great. The archaeological site of Pella is one of the most important political and economic cultural centres of Greece. We 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.

Fall in love with the picturesque Edessa, famous for its waterfalls. Here we enjoy 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 as we gaze upon Edessa’s star attraction from a distance.

We depart Edessa and make our way back to Thessaloniki, where we will have the rest of the evening at leisure to relax and unwind after a full day of exploring.

Day 6 – See More – Vergina & Veroia

Enjoy a full day exploring Aigai (modern Vergina). Aigai was the first first capital city of the kingdom of Macedonia; and it is known as the place of assignation of King Phillip II, Alexander the Greats father. We uncover more of this story on our visit to the museum where we see the Tomb of Phillip II, the second most important archaeological discovery of the 20th century, after the Tomb of King Tutankhamun in Egypt.

After lunch (not included) we 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. See more of Veroia as we visit 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.

We return to our hotel in the evening and enjoy a final dinner together.

Day 7 – Transfer to Athens

This morning we say a fond farewell to Thessaloniki as we depart for Athens. En-route we enjoy a visit to the sacred city of the Macedonians – Dion. Dion lies at the foothills of Mt. Olympus (the mountain of the gods, of Greek mythology) this ancient city is surrounded by one of the biggest archaeological parks in Greece. We take time to walk in the footsteps of the ancients and marvel at history of this other worldly site before continuing to Athens.

We arrive late in the evening in Athens (approximately 7:30pm) and enjoy a last night to soak up the sights and atmosphere of this remarkable city.

Day 8 – Return Home

It’s time to say farewell to our Greek adventure and set off for home from Athens Airport.


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