Day 01Friday, Feb 22
- Arrival Athens (D)
You will be picked up from the airport and transferred to the homestay. The house is located on the mountains, away from the urban center and there will be daily commutes towards Athens.
It is recommended that you arrive early as the days are short and from 5pm onwards it is already dark.
In the afternoon, we will head towards Plaka, one of the oldest neighborhoods of Athens and ramble around the picturesque alleys, observing the kaleidoscopic co-existence of the Ancient Greek, Roman, Byzantine, Ottoman, and modern Greek eras, represented in the ruins, the architecture, the houses, and the stories imprinted in each corner. It is an excellent opportunity to hone our photographic skills, experimenting with colors, angles, and meanings.
We will finish the day in the oldest Plaka tavern to dine on traditional local delicacies while singing and dancing – the Greek way.
Day 02Saturday, Feb 23
- Exploring the ancient history of Athens (B, L, D)
After breakfast, we will start the day walking around the ancient Peripatos path which passes by ancient shrines and ends on the top of the Acropolis Rock and the Parthenon. We will share stories and myths from the past, and we will understand the significance behind such eternal symbols. Then, we will cross the pedestrian road to the Acropolis Museum – one of the best museums in the world – and have lunch facing the ancient ruins, while, after lunch, we will have time to visit the halls of the museum as well.
In the afternoon, we will walk down the central Pedestrian road of Athens and end up in the neighborhood of Kerameikos where we will visit the interactive exhibition “Leonardo Da Vinci – 500 years of genius”.
We will end our day at the “Theatre Train at Rouf” where we will enjoy the performance: “The Jazz Express – Speakeasy Nights”: a tribute to two legendary figures of jazz, Louis Armstrong and Billie Holiday. The event takes place in the wagon of an old train (part of the famousOrient Express) and is suffused with the ambience of bygone times.
Day 03Sunday, Feb 24
- Nafplio town (B, L, D)
After breakfast, we will head towards Nafplio, a beautiful sea town with a strongly Venetian ambiance.
On the way to Nafplio, we will briefly stop at the Isthmus point to marvel at an engineering accomplishment of the end of the 19th century.
When in Nafplio, we will explore the Castle of Palamidi, hiking up and down its 999 stairs, amble around the picturesque alleys and enjoy lunch at a local tavern.
Nafplio is so charming that we may decide to spend the full day there. If, however, we return to Athens early enough for dinner, we will visit a part of the Athenian Riviera and dine by the sea.
Day 04Monday, Feb 25
- Food tour to explore modern Athens (B, L, D)
We will start the day by visiting the farmers’ market and shop the necessary ingredients for the cooking class that will take place the next day.
Later, we will use the itinerary of a food tour that will start in the morning and will finish at night in order to explore some of the areas of modern Athens that are not usually visited by the tourists, while understanding the history and culture of the country’s last 200 years. We will pass by bakeries that have been defining the morning ritual of Greeks for ages; we will stop at traditional cafes and discuss the role that the “kafeneio” played in the development of the modern local (and European) society; we will visit old taverns that are hidden from the eyes of the many and are known only to a few, and we will try to taste a variety of flavors and dishes outside the typical tourist choices. In parallel, we will walk a lot, crossing the aristocratic Kolonaki neighbourhood, passing in front of the Athenian Trilogy, exploring the Monastiraki square and the Psirri neighbourhood with its controversial street art, and visit buildings and areas of importance to the modern Greek history.
Day 05Tuesday, Feb 26
- Kaisariani Monastery/Mt Ymittos walk/Cooking class (B, L, D)
After breakfast, you will head to Ymittos Mountain and the old monastery of Kaisariani, where, after a short visit to the Byzantine monuments, you will walk around the mountain, discovering ancient temples hidden amidst cluster of trees.
After lunch at a local tavern, you will complete the necessary preparations (shopping) for the cooking class and you will head to the leader’s house to learn how to prepare a three-course meal.
Day 06Wednesday, Feb 27
- Departure (B)
This is our last day in Athens, so after breakfast, we will head to the airport.