Greece

Playground of the Gods.... These are some of my personal favourite places in Greece that I have enjoyed over the years!
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Crete - Typical Greek lunch by the sea. This is my perfect moment on any Greek journey: a plate of fresh Calimari and just-picked lemons, with a Greek Salad and a glass of local island wine. The table is close enough to the Aegean waters to hear them lapping at the harbour wall. And the sights and sounds of a busy little fishing harbour are spread out before me... Bliss!

Crete - Typical Greek lunch by the sea. This is my perfect moment on any Greek journey: a plate of fresh Calimari and just-picked lemons, with a Greek Salad and a glass of local island wine. The table is close enough to the Aegean waters to hear them lapping at the harbour wall. And the sights and sounds of a busy little fishing harbour are spread out before me... Bliss!

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Crete - Knossos. This is one site on Crete that you must not miss! Considered as Europe's oldest city, The palace of Knossos was the ceremonial and political centre of the Minoan civilization and culture. In Greek mythology, King Minos dwelt here and had Daedalus construct a labyrinth  in which to retain his son, the Minotaur.You can wander through this amazing site and get a graphic view of Cretan life in the Bronze Age provided by restorations of the palace's murals.

Crete - Knossos. This is one site on Crete that you must not miss! Considered as Europe's oldest city, The palace of Knossos was the ceremonial and political centre of the Minoan civilization and culture. In Greek mythology, King Minos dwelt here and had Daedalus construct a labyrinth in which to retain his son, the Minotaur.You can wander through this amazing site and get a graphic view of Cretan life in the Bronze Age provided by restorations of the palace's murals.

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Crete - Plains of Lasithi. The largest of all the Greek Islands (260 kms east to west), Crete provides history from the Early Minoan around 2,500 BC to the German invasion of WWII. It has mountains rising to over 8,000 feet, a spectacular coastline, Europe's deepest gorge (Samaria Gorge) and its best-kept secret: the The Lasithi Plateau, a fertile plain ringed by mountains at an average altitude of 2,760 ft. The plateau is famous for its white-sailed windmills that used to number over…

Crete - Plains of Lasithi. The largest of all the Greek Islands (260 kms east to west), Crete provides history from the Early Minoan around 2,500 BC to the German invasion of WWII. It has mountains rising to over 8,000 feet, a spectacular coastline, Europe's deepest gorge (Samaria Gorge) and its best-kept secret: the The Lasithi Plateau, a fertile plain ringed by mountains at an average altitude of 2,760 ft. The plateau is famous for its white-sailed windmills that used to number over…

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Kefalonia - Cave of Melissani. Kefalonia does not have the archaeological marvels of the other parts of Greece due to a massive earthquake in 1953, but it more than makes up for it with natural wonders such as this: Melissani Cave. With an entrance hidden by lush vegetation, you traverse a passage that opens out into this sky-blue semi-underground lake that seems bottomless as you gently boat across it, suspended between the real and the mythical worlds...

Kefalonia - Cave of Melissani. Kefalonia does not have the archaeological marvels of the other parts of Greece due to a massive earthquake in 1953, but it more than makes up for it with natural wonders such as this: Melissani Cave. With an entrance hidden by lush vegetation, you traverse a passage that opens out into this sky-blue semi-underground lake that seems bottomless as you gently boat across it, suspended between the real and the mythical worlds...

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Thassos - Theologos. If you want a get-away-from-it-all island off the main tourist track: this is it.  Thassos lies in the northern Aegean Sea, close to the coast of Thrace and is reached by ferry from Kavala on the mainland. This is real Greece with no fancy hotels or upmarket restaurants. Wander around the meandering streets of the villages or hire a bike as I did and circle the island, eventually coming to rest in the centre of the island in the ancient village of Theologos.

Thassos - Theologos. If you want a get-away-from-it-all island off the main tourist track: this is it. Thassos lies in the northern Aegean Sea, close to the coast of Thrace and is reached by ferry from Kavala on the mainland. This is real Greece with no fancy hotels or upmarket restaurants. Wander around the meandering streets of the villages or hire a bike as I did and circle the island, eventually coming to rest in the centre of the island in the ancient village of Theologos.

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Kos - Asklepeion. I was on the very first charter flight to this island from the UK many years ago. Then, it was an undiscovered backwater. Now it is a vibrant and very busy mainstream tourism destination, but the charm of its small villages and the magic of its ancient sites remains intact. This focal point of the Dodecanese Island grouping is celebrated as the birthplace of Western medicine: here Hippokrates founded the first medical school in the 5th century BC here at the Aslepeion.

Kos - Asklepeion. I was on the very first charter flight to this island from the UK many years ago. Then, it was an undiscovered backwater. Now it is a vibrant and very busy mainstream tourism destination, but the charm of its small villages and the magic of its ancient sites remains intact. This focal point of the Dodecanese Island grouping is celebrated as the birthplace of Western medicine: here Hippokrates founded the first medical school in the 5th century BC here at the Aslepeion.

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Thessaloniki - The White Tower. Greece's second largest city with a population nearing 800,000, this bustling metropolis has a history spanning 2,300 years from its founding  in 315 BC by Cassander of Macedon. The city is a great alternative to Athens and is peppered with historic attractions. In fact, Thessaloniki has more UNESCO World Heritage Sites listed than any other city in Greece - a total of 15 monuments. Here is the famous White Tower, built by the Ottomans to defend the port.

Thessaloniki - The White Tower. Greece's second largest city with a population nearing 800,000, this bustling metropolis has a history spanning 2,300 years from its founding in 315 BC by Cassander of Macedon. The city is a great alternative to Athens and is peppered with historic attractions. In fact, Thessaloniki has more UNESCO World Heritage Sites listed than any other city in Greece - a total of 15 monuments. Here is the famous White Tower, built by the Ottomans to defend the port.

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Rhodes - Lindos. The largest island of the Dodecanese has it all: breathtaking beaches, history in every stone and an island culture all of its own. The Colossus of Rhodes, one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World, once stood astride the Harbour of Rhodes Town whose Old Town is now a UNSCO World Heritage Site. Go to Lindos, for the perfect combination of beach, picturesque white-and-blue village, all topped by a Doric Acropolis with a Knights of St. John medieval fortress for good…

Rhodes - Lindos. The largest island of the Dodecanese has it all: breathtaking beaches, history in every stone and an island culture all of its own. The Colossus of Rhodes, one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World, once stood astride the Harbour of Rhodes Town whose Old Town is now a UNSCO World Heritage Site. Go to Lindos, for the perfect combination of beach, picturesque white-and-blue village, all topped by a Doric Acropolis with a Knights of St. John medieval fortress for good…

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Poros, the Saronic Islands. Just two and a half hours by the regular ferry from Athens, Poros makes a lovely day trip from the capital. A narrow channel separates the island from the mainland and there is lots of activity in the harbour. This a stroller's paradise and you can walk to secluded coves or to the remains of the Temple of Poseidon where the famous Athenian orator Demosthenes committed suicide in 322 BC rather than surrender to a Macedonian general.

Poros, the Saronic Islands. Just two and a half hours by the regular ferry from Athens, Poros makes a lovely day trip from the capital. A narrow channel separates the island from the mainland and there is lots of activity in the harbour. This a stroller's paradise and you can walk to secluded coves or to the remains of the Temple of Poseidon where the famous Athenian orator Demosthenes committed suicide in 322 BC rather than surrender to a Macedonian general.

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Athens - View to Acropolis from Monastiraki Square in Athens. Give yourself time in this city. It's one of the great Travel Cities of the World and time has a special quality here. Above the loud and colourful city streets rises the ancient citadel of the Acropolis and atop this rampart of a hill are the exquisite buildings that include the Parthenon. Here midst 2,500 years of history, you can gaze down upon the sprawl that is modern Athens and dream about Civilisation's stirrings...

Athens - View to Acropolis from Monastiraki Square in Athens. Give yourself time in this city. It's one of the great Travel Cities of the World and time has a special quality here. Above the loud and colourful city streets rises the ancient citadel of the Acropolis and atop this rampart of a hill are the exquisite buildings that include the Parthenon. Here midst 2,500 years of history, you can gaze down upon the sprawl that is modern Athens and dream about Civilisation's stirrings...

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