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Luxury Villas in Mainland Greece
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Home to western civilization, the Greek mainland is rich with ancient wonders from the vast city of Athens to the peaceful bywaters of the Peloponnese. The region is graced with attractive beaches as well as ancient sites to explore.
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Lagonisi is situated to the south of the capital, perfectly placed between the sea and the countless attractions of modern and ancient Athens. It is an area full of outdoor activities including boat cruises, Scuba diving, helicopter trips and golf. A short distance along the coast lies Cape Sounion, a dramatic steep walled promontory, home to the Temple of Poseidon. The cape offers some of the best views in the Greek mainland, particularly in the late afternoon sun when the light creates dramatic contrasts on the sanctuary. To the north lies the ancient capital of Athens, home of the philosophers, politicians and other founders of western civilization. The city is dominated by the ancient Acropolis, with the Parthenon standing watch as it has for some 2,000 years.
The Peloponnese peninsula juts out of the southern Greek mainland, like a hand extending welcome, separated only by the narrow isthmus at Corinth. The region is rich with citrus groves and orchards and you can easily reach the countless Greek and Roman ruins that populate the Peloponnese, such as Nafplion, Epidaurus and Ancient Mycenae, declared a World Heritage Site in 1999. Galatas is located on the most eastern tip of the Peloponnese. From the waterfront you can sip a glass of ouzo whilst viewing the comings and goings of nearby Poros, merely a stone's throw away across a narrow strait.
- Independence Day – a national holiday commemorating freedom from the Ottoman empire.
- Festivals – various festivals take place during the three weeks leading up to Lent, with costumed balls and parades in many Greek towns and cities.
- Sound and light performances take place at the Acropolis in Athens, telling the story of Greek history through music, drama and light. Performances run until October and run nightly.
- The Athens Festival takes place at the Odeon of Herodes Atticus from June until September, with productions of drama, opera, orchestra, ballet and modern dance.
- The Epidaurus Festival starts and continues until September. The programme of classical Greek drama is held is the famous ancient amphitheatre.
- Assumption of the Virgin Mary. A national holiday and a widely celebrated feast day in Athens.
- Ochi Day, a national holiday throughout Greece when patriotic parades and dancing take place. The day commemorates Greece declining Mussolini’s demand for surrender in 1940 – ‘ochi’ means ‘no’ in Greek.
SUGGESTED GENERAL ACTIVITIES
- Take a boat across to the island of Poros (from Galatas)
- Take a boat across to the island of Hydra (from Galatas)
- Explore the ancient Acropolis with your own private guide. The site includes the famous Parthenon, the Acropolis Museum and the Theatre of Herodes Atticus
- Take an excursion to Corinth to see the Temple of Apollo and the famous Corinth Canal
SUGGESTED SPORTING ACTIVITIES
- Scuba diving
- Water sports
SELECTION OF LOCAL ATTRACTIONS:
- Athens, National Archeological Museum
- Athens, Museum of Cycladic Art
- Athens, Benáki Museum
- Nafplion, Archaeological Museum (from Galatas)
- Epidauros, Sanctuary of Asklepios (from Galatas)
- Sounion, Temple of Poseidon (from Lagonisi)
Greece operates on GMT + 2 hours.
Modern Greek (as opposed to Ancient) is the national language of Greece. Vernacular speech contains many borrowings from foreign languages, including Italian, French, Turkish and English, so you may hear some familiar words in everyday speech. “Tourist Police” whose lapel badges picture a Union Jack or American flag speak English. In Greece, people whose work brings them into contact with visitors from overseas are generally excellent English speakers.
The Euro, divided into 100 Cents.
Travellers cheques can easily be converted into Euros; some larger stores will take them as payment. Smaller denominations are preferred. Major credit cards are widely accepted (though American Express less so) and ATM access is widespread.
Like most European countries, tipping in restaurants is common, with a recommended 10% on a discretionary basis according to service. Check that a service charge has not been added to your bill before deciding whether to tip. Taxi drivers do not usually expect a tip but it is common practice and considered polite to round up taxi fares.
Greece enjoys a typically Mediterranean climate, with hot, dry summers and cool, occasionally wet winters. Summer temperatures can reach the upwards of 90 degrees Fahrenheit and sun protection in the form of sun cream, a sun hat and lightweight clothing is recommended.
Style is fairly casual throughout Greece though in more rural areas and during Easter more conservative dress may be observed, for example covered shoulders. Cathedrals, churches and other religious sites require conservative dress. Both sexes should cover their arms, legs and shoulders. Cotton and other light fabrics are comfortable choices for summertime as the heat can be extreme during summer months. You are advised to take lightweight light coloured items, including a sun hat to protect your skin from the affects of sun damage. Spring and autumn temperatures dictate light to medium-weight clothing selections and in winter you will need a pullover and a coat. When dining at better restaurants and for any special occasion during your journey, dress is more formal. For gentlemen, a “jacket and tie” standard is appropriate, with an equivalent standard of eveningwear for ladies. Bring comfortable walking shoes with low or no heels.
For up to date information on latest health and vaccination recommendations, please contact your doctor.
Electrical service is supplied at 220 volts/50 hertz.
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