Experience the best of ancient and modern Greece with this luxury tour that starts in Athens and combines cocktails, street art, and fine dining with tours of the Acropolis and the capital's landmarks. Fly south to Crete and visit the legendary Palace of Knossos, rounded off with a visit to the famous Boutari winery. Back on the mainland, you'll discover picturesque fishing villages and ancient sights, capped off with plenty of Greek hospitality and mouthwatering Mediterranean cuisine.


  • Admire the Acropolis at sunset as you sip cocktails in Plaka
  • Enjoy an afternoon of sun, sea, and snorkeling on the uninhabited island of Dia
  • Follow in the footsteps of Theseus with a trip to Knossos Palace
  • Step into the world of classical Greece with tours of Mycenae, Olympia, and Delphi
  • Discover ancient iconography in Meteora's sacred monasteries

Brief Itinerary

Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Athens, Tour the Acropolis, Cocktails in Plaka Athens
Day 2 Best of Ancient & Modern Athens, Tasting Menu at Aleria Restaurant Athens
Day 3 Fly to Heraklion, Sunset Cruise to Dia Island Heraklion
Day 4 Transfer to Chania, Knossos Palace, Local Villages & Winery Tour Chania
Day 5 Fly to Athens, Tour Mycenae, Highlights of Nafplio, Transfer to Olympia Olympia
Day 6 Walk in the Footsteps of Olympiads at Ancient Olympia, Transfer to Galaxidi Galaxidi
Day 7 Tour of Galaxidi, Highlights of Delphi & Amfissa, Transfer to Meteora Meteora
Day 8 Explore the Meteora Area, Vineyard Wine Tasting, Meteora Sunset Drive Meteora
Day 9 Discover Meteora's Monasteries, Transfer to Athens Athens
Day 10 Depart Athens  

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive in Athens, Tour the Acropolis, Cocktails in Plaka

Catch picture-perfect views of the Acropolis from your rooftop pool (photo courtesy of COCO-MAT Athens BC)

Welcome to Athens! With over 5,000 years of history and an eclectic mix of ancient and modern, Greece's buzzy capital acts as an outdoor museum to some of the world's most historic landmarks. Upon arrival at the airport, you'll take a private transfer to your downtown hotel. Your destination is the 5-star COCO-MAT Athens BC, named after the eponymous Greek organic bedding company whose philosophy of upscale, sustainable comfort runs through the hotel. Meanwhile, the location, just behind the Acropolis Museum, gives it one of Athens's best rooftop Acropolis views. 

Check into your deluxe room, furnished in warm and natural tones, and either decompress in the rooftop pool or head down to the spa for a relaxing post-flight treatment before heading out for today's private tour. Meet your guide and spend the next four hours following in the footsteps of Cleisthenes, Socrates, and Plato as you explore the Acropolis and the Parthenon. Along the way, your guide will share how the concept of democracy first developed in sixth-century BCE Athens and how the ancient city played a vital role in the story of civilization.

Continue down the hill, and you'll pass landmarks, including the National Observatory of Athens, before alighting in the historic Plaka neighborhood. Hear from your guide how the district developed over the millenniums and pass key landmarks, including the Lysicrates Monument, before strolling to the top of the Anafiotika neighborhood for sweeping sunset views of the city. You'll round off the tour at one of Plaka's best-kept secrets for cocktail tasting, and the rest of the night is yours to explore the city's first-class dining scene. 

Day 2: Best of Ancient & Modern Athens, Tasting Menu at Aleria Restaurant

The Temple of Erectheion
Tour the famous Acropolis, whose highlights include the revered Temple of Erectheion

If yesterday's tour gave you a taste of Athenian life and history over the millenniums, today, you'll take a deep dive into the city, both ancient and modern, with an all-day private guided tour. The Acropolis is always worth a second look, and this morning, you'll discover gems, including the temple of Athena Nike, dating back to 420 BCE, and the sacred Temple of Erectheion, regarded as one of the world's finest examples of classical architecture. Next is the Ancient Agora, the forum where the city's greatest minds and philosophers would gather to share ideas and socialize. 

After a morning in the past, your guide will bring you up to date with the best of modern Athens. Wander the trendy Psyrri district, home to the city's nightlife and known as the "Soho" of Athens. Then, it's off to the bustling stalls of the Monastiraki flea market, where you'll find everything from handmade silver jewelry to antiques and vintage vinyl. Pause for lunch at a traditional taverna in Plaka, then resume your tour and see the city's famous street art, up-and-coming independent design stores, and finally, the bustling Varvakios Market, full of sweet treats for an afternoon sugar hit.

Part ways with your guide and the rest of the afternoon is yours to enjoy the facilities at your hotel, book a massage, or cool off with a dip in the rooftop pool. In the evening, you'll have a dinner reservation at Aleria, where head chef Gikas Xenakis elevates modern Greek cuisine and seasonal Mediterranean produce to create standout dishes such as langoustines with pear and caviar and veal with Jerusalem artichokes and truffle. 

Day 3: Fly to Heraklion, Sunset Cruise to Dia Island

Check into your suite at the wonderful Amirandes Hotel
Take a dip in your private pool at a 5-star resort (photo courtesy of the Amirandes Grecotel)

It's a change of scene today as you swap the ancient ruins of Athens for Crete. Here on the largest of the Greek islands, you'll find a captivating mix of mountainous landscapes and gorges, rich history, vibrant culture, and superb cuisine. After a private transfer and short internal flight, you'll arrive in Heraklion, one of Greece's most important cities awash with medieval and Venetian architecture that offers a glimpse of the city's heritage. Your hotel is the Amirandes Grecotel Boutique Resort, which enjoys a beautiful location at the nearby beach town of Gouves, a short drive away. 

Check into your superior room or suite with either sweeping sea views or a private pool. The decor is calm and contemporary, with a neutral palette of whites and creams complimented by stone, wood, and marble structures that mimic the surrounding landscape. Service is exemplary. Unwind after your journey with a swim or a treatment in the spa, and later on, continue the relaxed vibe with an afternoon catamaran cruise to Dia, a nearby uninhabited island steeped in myth and legend.

Drop anchor at the island's bay, and the afternoon is yours to spend swimming, snorkeling, or standup paddleboarding in the turquoise waters before surfacing in time for a delicious Mediterranean dinner served on deck. Afterward, dive back in for one last swim in the sea or relax with a sundowner, then sail back to Heraklion as the sun sets over the horizon. 

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Day 4: Transfer to Chania, Knossos Palace, Local Villages & Winery Tour

Spend the morning touring the Palace of Knossos
Hear tales of Minoan Crete on today's tour of Knossos Palace

Spend the morning stepping back into Minoan Crete with a private guided tour of the Palace of Knossos, an incredible archaeological site excavated and restored over 35 years. Explore the maze of frescoed royal chambers, private apartments, and courtyards, home to King Minos and the legend of Theseus and the Minotaur, while your guide shares tales of the rise and fall of Minoan Crete. After a few hours, you'll part ways with your guide and head out on a private tour of northwestern Crete's local villages and wineries.

Start with a 10-minute drive to Skalani, known for its excellent local olive oil and vineyards, including the award-winning Boutari Vineyard. Tour the winery and enjoy a tasting of the acclaimed organic Cretan wines and savor local delicacies, including a selection of charcuteries and cheese. Your village hopping continues with a trip to the Venetian village of Melidoni, where you'll discover the eponymous cave steeped in legend. Your final stop is Argyroupolis, set among a lush green landscape and dotted with freshwater springs, waterfalls, and charming old mills. 

Pause for a mouthwatering lunch of traditional Cretan dishes, then continue to your overnight destination, Chania, a bustling harbor town and one of the most scenic spots on the island. Check into your hotel, the delightful Domus Renier Boutique Hotel, replete with 16th-century details, including large chandeliers, high ceilings, and intricate woodwork. Book a suite and enjoy ample space, sea views, and a Jacuzzi—perfect for unwinding after a full day of exploring. 

Day 5: Fly to Athens, Tour Mycenae, Highlights of Nafplio, Transfer to Olympia

Pass through the Lion Gate and step into Mycenae's ancient ruins
Pass through the Lion Gate and step into Mycenae's ancient ruins

Be sure to walk around Chania's beautiful Venetian Harbor this morning before your driver transfers you to the airport for your flight back to Athens. Today marks the start of your grand tour of classical Greece, and you'll kick things off with a private trip to the fabled Homeric city of Mycenae. Follow in the footsteps of King Agamemnon as you step through the Lion Gate to explore the ruined citadel while your guide reveals the site's history. Afterward, you'll transfer to the coast and the seaside town of Nafplio, filled with Ottoman fountains and a splendid Venetian fortress. 

Pause for lunch at one of the town's renowned tavernas, and after a stroll along the seafront, you'll visit several craft workshops to see how traditional weaving and pottery techniques are still in use today. Finish your stroll through Nafplio with a visit to a local zaharoplastio (pastry shop), where the mouthwatering almond pastries are made to a centuries-old recipe. As you continue your journey toward Olympia, you'll stop at a picturesque honey farm where you'll discover the secrets of Greek honey and sample traditional diples (a honey dessert) under the shade of olive trees. 

Sit back and relax as your driver continues the 2.5-hour drive to Olympia, the modern city that's a stone's throw from the ancient archaeological site. Your accommodation for the night is the Olympion Asty Hotel, a bright and spacious complex nestled on the hillside of Olympia's beautiful forest. Check into your superior double or junior suite, then unwind with a dip in the pool or enjoy views of the valley with a sundowner on the terrace. You'll dine at the hotel's exemplary on-site restaurant with carefully chosen wines from the cellar.

Day 6: Walk in the Footsteps of Olympiads at Ancient Olympia, Transfer to Galaxidi

Ancient Olympia
Step back in time to Ancient Olympia on today's visit 

This morning belongs to the Archaeological Site of Ancient Olympia, classical Greece's most important athletic, religious, and political center. On a private guided tour, you'll discover the original stadium and birthplace of the Olympic Games as you tour the ruins amid countryside filled with wild olive and plane trees. Explore the grand temples and Sanctuary of Olympian Zeus, then visit the nearby Archaeological Museum of Olympia, which has treasures, including a splendid statue of Hermes and the infant Dionysus by Praxiteles. 

In the afternoon, you'll delve deeper into the area's natural beauty with a relaxed guided walk through a nearby gorge. You're headed for a scenic spot on the banks of two impressive waterfalls (perfect for an afternoon dip), where lunch— a delicious feast of home-cooked dishes from the local village—will be served picnic-style. In the afternoon, your driver will transfer you northeast to Galaxadi, a charming seaside spot where you'll overnight. 

Your hotel tonight is the lovingly restored Ganimede Hotel, a former 19th-century Arhontiko mansion and captain's house, situated a five-minute walk from the neoclassical buildings and bustling cafés of Galaxidi's colorful waterfront. Relax in your elegantly decorated room or suite, furnished in a warm palette of earthy tones with antique furnishings and sumptuous bronze beds. When you're ready, head out for a stroll and see sights, including the St. Nikolas Church, Maritime Museum of Galaxidi, and Kalafátis Beach.

Day 7: Tour of Galaxidi, Highlights of Delphi & Amfissa, Transfer to Meteora

Ancient city of Delphi
Go in search of the oracle at the sacred ruins of Delphi

Spend a relaxed morning exploring Galaxidi with your private guide and learn how this once-thriving port town was home to some of the most powerful seafaring families in the Mediterranean. Then, it's off to Delphi, whose fascinating ruins were once home to the priestesses of Apollo and the sacred oracle of the ancient Gods. Tour the ruins, whose highlights include the Treasury of the Athenians and the Temple of Apollo, then soak up the views of the Corinthian Gulf before visiting the Delphi Museum. Don't miss the exhibition highlight—the bronze statue of the Charioteer of Delphi.

Your next stop is the regional capital of Amfissa, where you'll visit the workshop of one of Greece's last handmade bellmakers and stroll through the cobbled streets of the old leather-taking district. After working up an appetite, you'll lunch under the shade of a large plane tree in the picturesque town square, dining on home-cooked delicacies, local cheeses, and Amfissa olives. Afterward, you'll head north with your driver across the mainland toward Meteora.

Your hotel for the next two nights is the Ananti City Resort, situated atop a hill with sweeping views over the Thessalian plain and the bustling city of Trikala. Rooms are bright and modern, while suites are spacious and stylish with thoughtful additions such as an espresso maker and hydromassage shower cabins for two. Check in, and you'll have the rest of the day to explore the hotel's facilities. Treat yourself to a massage in the on-site spa, take a dip in the infinity pool overlooking Trikala, or head to the rooftop restaurant and bar for an excellent meal with a view. 

Day 8: Explore the Meteora Area, Vineyard Wine Tasting, Meteora Sunset Drive

Savor the sunset views over the majestic Meteora pillars
Savor the sunset views over the majestic Meteora pillars

Today, you'll discover the magnificent scenery surrounding Meteora in the Aspropotamos (White River) region. Start with a private guided tour where you'll head to a local traditional village for a second breakfast of local Greek yogurt made with homemade preserves and the perfect Greek coffee. You'll spend the rest of the morning touring the mountainous terrain, deep gorges, and dense forests dotted with Byzantine churches, old stone bridges, and medieval castles to explore. 

The region is also known for its vineyards, and in the foothills of Meteora, you'll find a locally family-run winery. Spend a relaxed couple of hours touring the vineyard and learning about Greek viticulture. Afterward, enjoy tasting the estate's varietals accompanied by small plates of cold cuts and local cheeses. You'll get a chance to savor another glass or two of the local wine at a nearby village taverna, entirely off the beaten path, where you'll feast on regional specialties such as wild mountain greens and juicy lamb ribs. 

Later on, as golden hour sets in, you'll embark on an enchanting sunset tour of the Meteora Rocks, with plenty of Insta-worthy photo opportunities as the sun sets behind the mountains. Return to your hotel, and the rest of the evening is yours to spend at leisure. 

Day 9: Discover Meteora's Monasteries, Transfer to Athens

Discover the iconography inside Mateora's monasteries
Discover the iconography inside Meteora's monasteries

Meteora's towering sandstone columns, formed over millions of years, have been the remote dwelling places of Christian Orthodox monks since the 11th century, with large monastic communities flourishing on the vast pillars since the 14th century. Today, you'll visit two of the six remaining monasteries on a private guided tour. Immerse yourself in the spiritual atmosphere and visit the ecclesiastical displays, home to a variety of religious artifacts, including ancient manuscripts, liturgical objects, and rare printed books. 

The views here are truly remarkable, and after a wander around the site, you'll take a scenic drive down to Kalambaka for lunch at a nearby taverna. Afterward, you'll visit the workshop of a local icon painter whose family has painted the Meteora monasteries iconography for generations. You'll get the opportunity to try out icon painting yourself and customize your own Orthodox icon to take home as a keepsake. Your last stop is a tiny book museum where you'll meet the owner and learn about the Greek classrooms of the past while trying your hand at Greek handwriting. 

It's a four-hour drive back to Athens, so sit back and enjoy the views as your driver transfers you back to the capital and your hotel, the 5-star Electra Metropolis. Centrally located just a few blocks from Syntagma Square, the hotel's chic and contemporary interior is light and airy, with plush, elegant bedrooms. As night falls, head out to a neighborhood taverna or enjoy dinner at the hotel's restaurant, with panoramic views of the Acropolis.

Day 10: Depart Athens

Savor one last view of the Acropolis from the Electra hotel's terrace
Savor one last view of the Acropolis over breakfast (photo courtesy of the Electra Metropolis Athens Hotel)
It's time to say goodbye to Greece. Take one last dip in the rooftop pool or relax with a coffee and soak up the sights of the Parthenon from the terrace. At the designated time, you'll take a private transfer to the airport in time for your flight home or onward journey. Safe travels!

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Map of Luxury Journey Through Ancient Greece: Athens, Crete & Peloponnese - 10 Days
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