In 2006 a Total Solar Eclipse tracked over the Libyan Sahara, and a tour was organized by the Toronto Centre of the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada. I eagerly joined that intrepid group, observing my first Total Solar Eclipse from deep in the Sahara Desert and spent a week in Libya.
The group itinerary also included a week in Italy, where we saw both astronomical and the regular sights in Rome, Florence, Venice, and Milan. The group then returned to Toronto, however I added an extra week to the trip by traveling onward to Athens, Greece. This gave me time to kick back and relax…and see a few of the sights on the Greek mainland near Athens.
- Milan to Athens – flying to and getting settled in Athens
- National Archaeological Museum – a world-class museum in Athens containing ancient Greek art and antiquities, which I visited twice
- Athens – Day 2, Day 5, Day 6 – Exharia, Olympieion, Hadrian’s Arch, Temple of Olympian Zeus, Zapion, Lykavitos Hill, Benaki Museum, Roman Forum, Tower of the Winds, Monastiraki, Library of Hadrian, restaurants, the Metro, farmer’s market
- Circle Tour – Corinth isthmus & Peloponnese peninsula – Corinth Canal, Ancient Corinth, Acrocorinth, Mycenae & the Treasure of Atreus, Castle of Palamidhi, Epidaurus
- Acropolis & Ancient Agora – the Parthenon, the Propylaia, the Temple of Athena Nike, Erechtheion (Old Temple) and Odeion of Herdes Atticus (Herodion) theatre
- Cape Sounio – Temple of Poseidon, coastline of the Saronic Gulf, New Olympic Stadium
- Returning home from Athens – flights – Athens-Milan-Toronto-Victoria
Please click on the top-most link under Itinerary (above) to get started. You can click on the “Next” links at the bottom of each page and find your way through the whole trip beginning to end. Also, feel free to click on any link that interests you to explore my travelogues on your own terms. If you just want to see my photos of Greece, click below:
Thoughts on Greece
So, what did I like best about Greece? The people are friendly and helpful, although not too many speak English. I didn’t try to speak Greek – I just don’t have much talent for learning languages, and find a smile and some pointing or gesturing gets the job done. I felt very comfortable and safe in Greece, despite the frequent protests happening in Athens. Online access was very inexpensive, however when using Internet Cafes, be prepared to sit among all the smokers!
Where to next in Greece? This first trip to Greece was limited mainly because I only had a week to explore. I chose to stay on the mainland close to Athens, which was the correct choice for this visit. Although the Acropolis and other world famous and very impressive mainland sites are must-sees, my plan for a return trip to Greece would be to travel to some of the islands and explore the Peloponnese peninsula more fully.
Other than the language, North Americans should experience very little culture shock when visiting Greece. The country is very modern, and has efficient and plentiful transportation and accommodation.