From the cradle of Western civilization to island hopping across the Aegean, welcome to two weeks of chic cafes, charming villages, lively heritage, and magnificent old ruins. Mix the classical past with the relaxed coastal present, then travel into time-warped settings, where you live out mythical tales. Handcrafted to incorporate a complete variety of Greek highlights, this is the very best of the mainland and island Greece in two weeks.
Athens – Keeping it Local in Plaka
Local tavernas entice you with aromas and clinking plates while artisanal shops engage through splashes of color and antiques. Decadent buildings juxtapose with 3,000-year-old relics showing their age. You will be in Plaka, a bustling local neighborhood beneath the glowing Acropolis. Time has moved slowly here, and it may seem that you are still in the 17th or 18th century, especially when you get lost in a whitewashed maze. In some ways, Plaka looks as you might imagine a blue and white Greek island village, however, it has a gritty local edge that most visitors find to be utterly charming. Your guide will meet you at the airport for your short transfer to your boutique hotel in Plaka. After a brief orientation, tour, you will have a free evening to make up your own impressions.
Athens – The Ancient Acropolis and More
Athens – Lesser Known Athens Highlights and Heritage
Nafplio – Legendary History On Route to the Coast
Nafplio – Exploring Psaromachalas Fishing Village and Epidaurus Theater
Meteora – More Venetian Charm and Mountaintop Monasteries
Santorini – A World-Famous Sunset and Setting
Santorini – Vineyards and Villages
Santorini – Catamaran Cruising and Coastal Highlights
Day 10 - 11
Koufonisia – Off the Beaten Track Beach Indulgence
Mykonos – Chic Mazy Wonder of the Cycladic Island
Mykonos – Discovering the Wonder and Mystique of Delos
Mykonos – Departure
- Dive into 4,000 years of history with a two-night stay in Nafplio on Peloponnese
- Watch the famous Santorini sunset from your own infinity pool
- Explore the ancient world’s magnificence with a private tour of the Athens Acropolis and Agora
- Escape to Koufonisia and an off the beaten track island beach break
- Soak up the chic and charm of Mykonos, Greece’s celebrated island destination
- Ascend to the dramatic mountaintop monasteries of Meteora, islands in the sky that defy description
- Watch a summer performance in the fabulous Epidaurus Theater
- Savor the traditional Greek atmosphere, especially during three nights in Athenian Plaka and a stay in Oia, Santorini
- Connect the ancient eras by exploring Corinth and Mycenae
- Discover the mystical, sacred island of Delos, home to many Greek gods and fabulous old ruins
Quintessential Greece is difficult to describe. It could be the remains of a classical era, found when exploring monuments like the Acropolis or Epidaurus Theater. Or it could be feeling the Greek heritage in blue and white neighborhoods, like Oia on Santorini or Plaka in Athens. For some, Greece is all about island hopping and beaches, along with a sunset cruise and some seafood indulgence. Others point to the uniqueness of destinations, such as Meteora’s mountaintop monasteries and Venetian histories in Nafplio. Ultimately, Greece is a destination that covers over 4,000 years, meaning ideas of quintessence are different for everyone.
This two-week highlights tour has been handcrafted for first-time visitors to Greece. It covers many of the major highlights, mixing six nights on the mainland with seven nights of Aegean island hopping. You will dive into the cradles of Western civilization, before jumping forward into the late-medieval charm of a whitewashed village. You will experience the chic contemporary atmosphere of changing villages, particularly on the island of Mykonos. In some places, you will be completely alone with history, marveling at how the stories have been preserved. In other places, you will be nearly alone on the beach or coast, watching the sunset or wiling an afternoon away.
Greece provides something for every kind of traveler, and this two-week itinerary ensures you fully explore what is on offer. Beginning in Athens, you can travel back in time, with the Acropolis and Agora beyond comprehension. The lively Plaka neighborhood provides an immediate immersion in the Greek tradition, and you will find that there is more to Athens than the famous temples. Travel to the Peloponnese peninsula on day four, stopping at the ruins of Corinth and Mycenae on route to Nafplio, a charming coastal town with 4,000 years of history. Meteora is your final mainland stop, where monasteries cling to rocky pinnacles as if they’ve been created by a fairytale.
Santorini is covered with whitewashed houses with bright blue shutters and domes, your bewitching setting for the next three days. Explore volcanoes and vineyards, walk the pedestrianized villages, find more boggling ruins, and take a cruise at sunset. Koufonisia is Greece from the past, a tiny island yet to be popularized by tourism. Spending two days here is all about lounging on the beach and doing very little, which is quintessential Greece in its own little way. End the vacation on Greece’s most famous island, Mykonos, where there are lively cafes and famous windmills, plus a day trip to the sacred island of the gods, Delos. Looking for the best Greece vacation ideas? Consider browsing our Greece travel reviews page.
$4,545 per person (excluding international flights)
Your Zicasso trip is fully customizable, and this sample itinerary is a starting place for your travel plans. Actual costs are dynamic, and your selection of accommodations and activities, your season of travel, and other such variables will bring this budget guideline up or down. Throughout your planning experience with your Zicasso specialist, your itinerary is designed around your budget. You can book your trip when you are satisfied with every detail. Planning your trip with a Zicasso travel specialist is a free service.
- In-country transportation
- Some or all activities and tours
- Expert trip planning
- 24x7 support during your trip
Your final trip cost will vary based on your selected accommodations, activities, meals, and other trip elements that you opt to include.
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