Thessaloniki & Athens
You arrive in Thessaloniki where you will be met by our representative and escorted to your hotel. Dinner and overnight.
Today you can get acquainted with the city of Cassander, brother-in-law of Alexander the Great, which was built in 315 B.C. and named after his wife, the princess Thessaloniki. Drive around the center of Thessaloniki to see some of its most famous monuments like the White Tower, the Arch of Galerius, the Acropolis area with the Byzantine Walls and others. Visit the excellent Archaeological Museum to see splendid treasures from excavations all over Northern Greece and one of the majestic early Christian churches of Thessaloniki, the basilica of St Demetrious (5 th century A.C.) The afternoon is free and you can explore more of the ancient or classical sites of the city. Dinner and overnight.
You leave Thessaloniki and drive to Pella, the birthplace of Alexander the Great and the second capital of the ancient Macedonian kingdom, where you see the fantastic Hellenistic mosaic floors, made of natural pebbles, in the museum and the excavational site. From Pella you continue to Lefkadia to get a first taste of the impressive Macedonian tombs and then on to Vergina (ancient Aiges), the first capital of the ancient kingdom of Macedonia. Here you see the tombs of Vergina and the breathtaking collection of golden artifacts that were found inside the two unlaundered tombs of Philip of Macedon and the Young Prince. Return to Thessaloniki for dinner and overnight.
Today you explore eastern Macedonia and especially the ancient cities of Amphipolis and Philippi, both associated with the royal dynasty of Philip II and his son Alexander the Great. Follow Via Egnatia, the Roman highway, and arrive at Amphipolis where you visit the lovely small museum, the Lion of Amphipolis and the excavations. Continue to Philippi, the city that was named after Philip of Macedonia. See the Forum, the Christian Basilicas, the Theater and the Acropolis. Back to Thessaloniki for dinner and overnight.
Day free for exploration of the city. Dinner and overnight.
This morning drive back to Athens. Pass through Thermopylae pass (seen in the movie “300”) where Leonidas and his 300 Spartans fought against the Persians. Late afternoon arrival in Athens. Overnight.
In the morning, walk with your guide to the world-renowned Acropolis to see the architectural miracles of the Golden Age of Pericles: the Propylea, the Erechtheum and, above all, the Parthenon (temple of Athena, goddess of wisdom). Take in a panoramic view of the city and observe the Agora (marketplace) where many ancient philosophers spent their time. Continue to the center of Athens and admire the National University, the National Library, the Academy, the Temple of Olympian Zeus, Constitution Square with the House of Parliament and the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. Afternoon is free. Overnight in Athens.
Day free for exploration of the city. Overnight in Athens.
Day free for exploration of the city. Farewell dinner in Plaka. Overnight in Athens.
You bid farewell to Greece and fly back home.