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Athens

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FAST FACTS

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03:22 GMT

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OVERVIEW

Athens' naming rights were won, legend says, when Athena trumped Poseidon's proffered well with a gift of an olive tree. The city's devotion was worth winning. Always famously lively, Athens is again at the cultural fore. Since its pre-Olympics revamp, the city has gone on re-creating itself. For visitors, there are plenty of novel pleasures: explore up-and-coming neighborhoods, find a few new galleries and bars, or mix with the city's cinephiles. That said, Athens' classic attractions have not faded. When the sun hits the Acropolis' high, stony hill, many other cities are left in the shade.

 

HIGHLIGHTS


Parthenon

The Parthenon (Parthenonas), one of the world's most famous buildings, represents a high point in ancient Greek architecture. Built around 440 BC, the Parthenon's classical architecture has influenced buildings ever since - and still does today. 

Built for worship of the goddess Athena, it was to give thanks for the salvation of Athens and Greece in the Persian Wars. Officially it is called the Temple of Athena the Virgin; the name Parthenon comes from the Greek word for virgin.

 

Delphi

Delphi is the second-most important archeological site in Greece (after the Acropolis in Athens). In ancient times Delphi was considered the place where heaven and earth met so the gods were close-by. Established around the 7th century BC, Delphi was a sanctuary to the god Apollo. It was here that the Oracle of Delphi was situated, the most trusted oracle in the ancient world from which the spirit of Apollo gave advice on everything from domestic matters to wars.

 

Santorini

Santorini is among the best-known Greek islands, mainly for its natural beauty. Santorini is all clear ocean, white-walled buildings and blue-domed churches. In addition, it claims to have some of the best sunsets in the world.

 

Helicopter Flight over Mykonos and Delos

Take to the skies above Mykonos on this private, 30-minute helicopter tour. With your professional pilot pointing out all the main sights, drink in breathtaking panoramas of the Aegean Sea and Mykonos’ golden coastline. Then, fly over the tiny, UNESCO World Heritage–listed island of Delos, part of the Greek Cyclades Islands, and be wowed by bird’s-eye views of its well-preserved ruins.