Can't choose between Greek antiquity and picture-perfect island sunsets? This 9-day itinerary, offering a mix of both, is for you. You'll start in Athens, spending a few days sightseeing and touring the Acropolis. Then you'll explore ancient ruins at Mycenae and visit Olympia to see the site of the first Olympic Games. Catch the ferry to Santorini on day six for a few days on the idyllic island, enjoying a sunset cruise and strolls through quiet villages. You'll head back to Athens for one last night in the capital city before the trip ends.

Highlights

  • Visit Athens' top museums and historic sites, including the Acropolis
  • Pass through the Lion Gate in the UNESCO-honored ancient city of Mycenae
  • Go on a sunset cruise off the coast of Santorini
  • Enjoy a hike through a wooded gorge to waterfalls
  • Walk around the site of the original Olympic Games in Olympia
  • Marvel at the ruins of the Temple of Apollo in Delphi 

Brief Itinerary

Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Athens & Sightsee Athens
Day 2 Tour the Acropolis Athens
Day 3 Visit Mycenae & Nafplio  Olympia
Day 4 Tour Olympia & Hike to Waterfalls Galaxidi
Day 5 Learn About Ancient Traditions in Delphi & Amfissa Athens
Day 6 Take the Ferry to Santorini Santorini
Day 7 Get to Know the Traditional Villages of Santorini Santorini
Day 8 Return to Athens & Enjoy Free Time Athens
Day 9 Depart Athens - End of Trip  

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive in Athens & Sightsee

Monastiraki Square and Sunset over Plaka
Monastiraki Square in Athens

Welcome to Greece! Your private driver will be waiting at the airport to transfer you to your hotel in Athens. In the afternoon, get out for some sightseeing. Those interested in history and mythology might choose to visit the National Archaeological Museum, the Museum of the Ancient Agora, or the Archaeological Museum of Kerameikos. View fine art at Benaki Museum, the Museum of Modern Art, or the National Gallery. You could also go off the beaten path at the Museum of Cycladic Art, where you can buy truly unique souvenirs, or the Museum of Ancient Greek Technology. You'll overnight in the city. 

Day 2: Tour the Acropolis

The Parthenon at the Athenian Acropolis

Today you'll visit the Acropolis, taking in views of the world-famous Parthenon. This temple, dedicated to the goddess Athena, has enchanted visitors since its construction was completed in 438 BCE. Afterward, the tour continues at the Athens Central Food Market (Varvakios Agora), where you'll sample regional delicacies made by Greek cheese-makers, pastry chefs, and food vendors of all kinds. The evening is free to relax or explore the city.

Day 3: Visit Mycenae & Nafplio

The Lion Gate in Mycenae
Today you'll tour the fabled Homeric city of Mycenae, a UNESCO World Heritage Site — and once the capital of one of the oldest civilizations in the world. Start your adventure into antiquity by walking under the famed Lion Gate into ruins that are part history, part myth. Follow in the steps of King Agamemnon as your guide explains the stories behind the imposing ruins of the citadel. You'll then head towards the historic seaside city of Nafplio, where a delicious lunch awaits you in one of the best restaurants in town. This romantic town, the old capital of modern Greece, is characterized by Venetian fortifications and a beautiful waterfront. After lunch, you'll visit local craftspeople, including a potter and a weaver at work in their workshops, to discover how they carry the traditions of the past into the present. You’ll also see a number of other local crafts and goods and a confectionery where traditional almond pastries are still made the way they were generations ago.
 
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From Nafplio, the trip will take you through the beautiful Peloponnesian countryside towards ancient Olympia. Along the way, you’ll stop at a honey farm to learn about world-renowned Greek honey from a working beekeeper. Spend the night in Olympia before heading out to tour the city on day four. 

Day 4: Tour Olympia & Hike to Waterfalls

The Millenia Tour: Ancient Olympia & Galaxidi Day 2
Walking around the ancient ruins of Olympia
This morning is devoted to Ancient Olympia, the most important athletic, religious, and political center of the ancient Greek world. Here your guide will let you into the secrets of the temples, the training area, and the original stadium where the ancient Olympic Games were held for centuries. The Archaeological Museum onsite displays world-class masterpieces and treasures, like a breathtaking statue of Hermes and the infant Dionysus sculpted by Praxiteles.

Then it’s time for an outdoor adventure and a memorable lunch. After an easy guided walk through a stunning gorge, you'll arrive at a pair of waterfalls. Your lunch will be served picnic-style, right by the river. You’ll have the chance to swim too! After leaving the waterfalls, you’ll travel to one of the most picturesque seaside villages of Greece, Galaxidi, where you will spend the night.

Day 5: Learn About Ancient Traditions in Delphi & Amfissa

A view over the valley of Amfissa

Today you'll start the day by exploring Galaxidi, once a thriving port and home to some of the most powerful families of seafaring merchants. Then head to the regional capital of Amfissa, where Greece's last handmade bell-maker will show you how livestock bells have been forged by hand in his family for generations. Afterward, stroll through the cobbled streets of the old leather-tanning district. Here, in one of Europe's last remaining tannery workshops, you’ll see what a tanner’s working life was, almost unchanged from a century ago up to today. Enjoy lunch under the shade of the large tree in the town square, where you will taste local delicacies prepared in the village.

After lunch, it’s off to Delphi, where you’ll marvel at the ruins of the Temple of Apollo and the Athenian Treasury. You’ll have plenty of time to soak up the magical scenery before visiting the Delphi Museum, home to some fine examples of ancient Greek art, including the world-famous bronze statue of the Charioteer of Delphi. Head north across the mainland towards the Meteora. A few miles before reaching your destination, you will have dinner in a traditional family-run restaurant in the foothills of Mt. Koziakas. You will spend the night in a charming family-run guest house in the pretty village of Kastraki, right under the towering rocks of Meteora.

Day 6: Take the Ferry to Santorini

Sunset in Santorini
Sunset in Santorini

Catch a ferry to Santorini. On arrival, you'll take in the island's central caldera — the site of one of the largest volcanic eruptions in history — rising above you. The island's volcanic history has led to the formation of some of the most unique beaches in the Greek islands, along with the dramatic cliff views on the island's caldera side. Spend your day relaxing at the beach or strolling on one of Santorini’s scenic walking routes. For dinner, sample the island's signature cherry tomatoes and white eggplant, typically served as side dishes with fresh seafood. 

Day 7: Get to Know the Traditional Villages of Santorini

Tables overlooking the water in Imerovigli

In the morning, visit Prophet Elias Monastery, the highest spot on the island. Walk around Megalochori, one of the most picturesque villages on the island. You'll also go on a walking tour of the village of Emporio. Take a break for lunch before heading to Red Beach, one of the most scenic and interesting beaches on Santorini. In the afternoon, you'll have the chance to sample wines at a local winery nearby. At sunset, catch the views of the Blue Dome Church at Firostefani and the spectacular landscape below.

Day 8: Return to Athens & Enjoy Free Time

Boats in the Aegean Sea
After breakfast, you'll enjoy the scenic ferry ride back to Athens. The afternoon and evening are yours to enjoy. One option is to go on a boating excursion to the majestic Temple of Poseidon at Sounio. This sacred site dating back to the Bronze age will take your breath away with its sweeping ocean views, impressive ancient columns, and intricate history. The boat ride back doubles as a sunset cruise before spending your last night in Athens. 

Day 9: Depart Greece - End of Trip

Ferry from Santorini to Athens
Ferry from Santorini to Athens
The trip comes to an end today. You'll head to the airport to catch a flight out. Safe travels!

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