Greeks don’t call their country Greece. It is Ellada. The official name of Greece is the Hellenic Republic.
The whole population of the country of Greece in 2015 was 12 million. That’s less than the city of Los Angeles in California
The largest population distribution lives in the capital, Athens (Athina). Other major cities include Thessaloniki, Patras and Heraklion.
Greek is the official language spoken in Greece, however most everyone speaks a second and third language.
Greece is a member of the European Union and uses the Euro as its currency.
Greece features 6,000 islands, but only 227 are inhabited. Some of these like Santorini and Mykonos are world class vacation destinations.
Greece is one of the most mountainous countries in Europe with Mount Olympus (home of the ancient Gods) reaching 2917 meters.
Ancient Greece laid the foundation for democracy, theatre, medicine, cooking, and philosophy
Check out how in one day (from Athens) you can experience ‘three’ Greek islands, Hydra, Poros and Aegina. How fun is that? Three totally different looks and feels. Explore one, have a Mediterranean feast at another and at the third be taking to an ancient temple. Sit back and enjoy our YouTube video of 3 Greek islands.
Thinking of a Mykonos vacation? Check out this short interesting video showing you how much there is to do on this dynamic island. Of course, there are award winning beaches and the little island 20 minutes away called Delos which is a sacred place, and the sunsets are spectacular as you sit seaside and toast to ‘living like this forever’. The Greek island experience is not just a dream… Make it happen… We can help. Enjoy.
How fun, You’re visiting the ancient mecca of thought, Athens. You’ve perhaps gone to the legendary perfect architectural masterpiece of the Parthenon and visited a museum or two. Now what? Let me suggest doing what my cousin and I did upon her visit.
In one day you take a fabulous boat ride (capacity about 140) to three truly different Greek islands. The first we experienced, (the order may change), was Hydra with it’s ‘donkey instead of car’ policy. Charming, clean, tons of great shops for souvenirs, delightful port side cafes, and beloved vacation spot for many Athenians. (and they have their choice)
Next after sailing, getting some sun and fresh air on the deck we reach Poros for a Mediterranean buffet lunch and exploration time.
Then the finale for us was Aegina, once the ancient capital of Greece. Gorgeous, pistachio ice cream, sunsets over the ruins of the ancient temples are just a few of the many plus marks we gave Aegina. All for one low price, the boat trip, the lunch, the entertainment on the boat. For further info:
If you’ve ever been nervous, or twittled your fingers, or perhaps grabbed a cigarette just for something to do with your hands, then let me introduce an age old remedy… The Greek Worry beads.
When walking around the various shopping areas in Greece, you will see every age, size and shape male standing close to their shop entrance talking with each other while twirling their worry beads with one hand. It passes the time and is therapeutic for stress relief.
The history of the worry bead (Komboloi) dates back to a time when the Mount Athos monks began making strands of beads by tying knots at regular interval for saying their prayers.
Now, however, you will find the beads used for fun and stress release instead of praying. NOTE: a fun game is to have the children you are traveling with (if you are) count how many shop owners are standing outside their shops twirling their worry beads.
Worry beads come in all colors and various sizes. They pack easily, are inexpensive and serve quite a pleasant purpose.
The most common of the many stones used for worry beads is amber plus other organic beads. Take your time to buy a ‘hand made Komboloi as the beauty and prices vary immensely. Prices can be only a few euros up to 1,000 euros. Try the Plaka and the Monasteraki for 1000’s of choices. Many stores are equipped to ship your orders back to your home.
You can learn the various ways to flip the beads. One way is a quiet way for indoors and not bothering anyone and the other is a noisy way when you are outside. If you are touring on a day trip from Athens to Nafplion, you will be able to go to the unique Komboloi Museum that was created in 1981.
Other helpful interesting links:
Hi everybody. Happy springtime. Love this time of year watching the Greek flowers burst open and peoples’ attitudes become lighter. Is this the year you say, that’s it I’m going to vacation in Greece, sip ouzo and watch the sunset over the Santorini Caldera, feel the Cape Sounion Temple of Poseidon, or soak up a Mediterranean tan on one of the 393 Blue Flag beaches? All I can tell you, is DO IT!! For your own sake, it’s my advise to start your planning NOW.
It’s palpable, Cape Sounion’s magnificence
Travel broadens ones scope of thinking and tastes. I always seem to meet the most interesting people while traveling. Seem like you are never alone in this world and ‘someone’ always knows where you are so it’s a bit hard to get lost….know what I mean?
There are many experienced agencies that have pre-set tours that you just hop on a bus with lots of strangers and go to places like the Delphi (think the Oracle of Delphi) or a fun day of seeing 3 Greek islands on the 3 Island Tours: Poros, Aegina and Hydra. Or, of course a private guided customized tour lets you choose your own itinerary and your licensed guide teaches you all about it. Your can choose what ever sails your boat (translation, make yourself happy)
Be adventuresome: the foods you find on the street of Greece in the villages an or Athens are great. The (yero yero-shaved pork in a pita and the (Souvlaki meat sticks) are inexpensive and delicious.
Try cooking Greek before you go: watermelon- feta cheese – mint as a salad for the summer (add grapes and pumpkin seeds if you want)
Greek Quotes: “Happiness depends on ourselves” Aristotle
Fun Fact about Greece: Thousands of English words come from the Greek language, sometimes via the Roman adaptation into Latin and then to English. Common English words from Greek include “academy,” “apology,” “marathon,” “siren,” “alphabet,” and “typhoon.”
Cultural tip: Had a horrible experience and feel ripped off? Contact the local ‘Tourist Police’ office. They exist to handle complaints and assist tourists – not to arrest them!
Greek words of the week: Oraio, which means beautiful. Parakalo, which means please. Efharisto, which means thank you. Kali Mera, which means good morning and Posa Kani Afto, which means how much is it.
Interesting links: http://www.archaeologous.com/blog/195/santorini-year-gastronomy/
http://www.archaeologous.com/blog/192/athens-fish-and-meat-market-by-archaeologous/ http://www.archaeologous.com/blog/82/corinth-favorite-tours-greece-by-Archaeologous/ http://www.archaeologous.com/blog/88/archaeologous-customized-multi-day-vacations/
SEASON GREETINGS from our Archaeologous staff to you and your family. It was a pleasure getting to show so many many around Greece and Turkey this year.
As you may know, the legend of ole St. Nick, presents in the stockings, the tradition of carrying a bag and pockets full of candies, fruits and little toys originated from a real man in Turkey. Go to http://www.stnicholascenter.org/pages/who-is-st-nicholas/ to read about some of the history, and miracles attributed to St. Nicholas.
XRONIA POLLA!!! in Greek it is the saying that is appropriate now during the holidays and it means, many years are wished for you. The time to exchange presents in Greece is traditionally December 31st. As the western influence slowly creeps into Greece, more and more however, you will see decorated trees with gifts for a longer period of time. One tradition that I love is the singing from house to house, picking up new people at each stop. This had been known, on some of the Greek islands, to last for 17 hours. the songs are
mostly about the good health and fortune that is wished upon the occupants being honored with the visit by the musicians and singers. Of course, there is a table loaded with great foods and desserts.
We firmly believe here at archaeologous.com that travel and becoming knowledgeable and aware of new cultures can create a harmony amongst the people of the world. We’d love to help you when you travel to the magnificent Mediterranean in 2014.