Philippi, Amphipolis, Thessaloniki, Vergina, Veria, Pella, Mieza, Lefkadia, Dion, Pydna, Mount Athos, Olynthos
EN: Following Alexander the Great
The archaeological site of Philippi
The Lion in Amphipolis
The White Tower in Thessaloniki
The Aristotelous Square in Thessaloniki
The city walls of Thessaloniki
The Rotunda of Galerius in Thessaloniki
The statue of Alexander the Great in Pella
The archaeological site of Pella
The School of Aristoteles in Mieza
The archaeological site of Dion
The archaeological site of Dion
A monastery on Mount Athos
Welcome in Thessaloniki, the pearl of Makedonia! Meeting with our local tourist guide and transfer to Veria for accommodation, an information-cocktail and a common dinner.
Today’s excursion starts with a visit at Vergina. The town is better known for its remains of Aigai, capital of the kingdom of Lower Macedonia. It was here in 336 BC that Philip II was assassinated in the theatre and Alexander the Great was proclaimed king. The place became internationally famous in 1977, when the Greek archaeologist Manolis Andronikos unearthed the royal tombs, including the tomb of Philip II, father of Alexander the Great. Its discovery is considered to be one of the most important archaeological events of the century. On the way to Veria, you ‘ll stop for a visit at the historic monastery of Timios Prodromos, with a magnificent view on the Aliakmon river and the foothills of Vermio mountain. In Veria, you ‘ll have a walk through the Old Town’s streets and observe the traditional Macedonian architecture with the typical timber supported balconies, you will stand in front of a modern memorial, built at the spot where Apostle Paul was preaching the gospel to Veria citizens, you will visit the archaeological museum and admire numerous marble tombstones and funerary pottery finds, as well as remarkable sculptures and reliefs of the Classical, Hellenistic and Roman period. Finally return to hotel for accommodation and dinner.
Your tour starts with a visit at Pella, the Macedonian capital, where both Alexander and his father were born. The town, and its royal sites, have been archeologically rediscovered during the past fifty years, thereby allowing us to examine the place where the future conqueror spent his youth. A number of excavations of the site reveal the ancient city’s majestic grandeur. Among others you will visit the monumental palatial complex, the ancient agora and you ‘ll be impressed by the outstanding mosaic floors, reflecting how wealthy people became with Alexander’s conquests. Your next stop is at Mieza, the “shrine of the nymphs”, a village in Ancient Macedon. Mieza’s Temple of the Nymphs was chosen by Philipp II as a classroom where Aristotle was hired to teach his son, the young Alexander. Aristotle was more like a mental father of Alexander and opened the young boy’s eyes to the Hellenistic culture. Not far away, at Lefkadia, you will visit the archaeological site with the Macedonian royal tombs. Finally, you take the road to Katerini for accommodation and dinner.
Dion stands at the foot of Mount Olympus. it was the most important sacred city of the Macedonians. Brilliant festivals and celebrations were held by Archelaos, Philipp II and Alexander. It is best known for its ancient Macedonian sanctuary of Zeus and city, visible in the archaeological park and the Archaeological Museum of Dion. Your next stop is at Pydna, known for the battle of Pydna, which meant the subjugation of Macedonians by the Romans. On the way now to Thessaloniki for accommodation and common dinner.
Today you will spend your day in Thessaloniki, the second largest city of Greece. The city took ist name from Thessalonike of Macedon, half-sister of Alexander. Built at the back of the Thermaikos Gulf, Thessaloniki is considered an open-air museum of Byzantine art. Among others you have the chance to discover tourist sites like the ancient forum, the administrative center of ancient Thessaloniki; the triumph arch of Galerius and the neighboring Rotunda of St George; and the White Tower, the trademark and most recognizable point of the city. Finally, you will visit the archaeological museum and some marvelous Byzantine churches like Agios Dimitrios and Agios Nikolaos Orfanos.
Philippi was a city in eastern Macedonia, established by Philipp II, father of Alexander the Great. After founding this city, Philipp took control of the neighboring gold mines and a part of the great royal route of the Royal, between Amphipolis and Neapolis. The most important monuments in the area are the city walls, the acropolis, the theatre, the forum, Basilica A, Basilica B, and the Octagon. On your return to Thessaloniki, we make a stop at Amphipolis, to take a look at the Lion’s monument. Finally return to hotel for accommodation and dinner.
Today, you cross the northern part of Chalkidiki to reach Ouranoupoli’s port for a 3-hour-cruise around mount Athos, the „Holy Mountain“ where today over 2000 monks live an ascetic life, isolated from the rest of the world. On the way back, you‘ ll make a stop for a vist at Olynthos, the most important political center of Chalkidiki in the Classical period. Finally return to hotel for accommodation and dinner.
Full of memories and after a great and remarkable journey to the Greek world, you are ready for departure.