Trying to speak a few words of Greek with local people. Maybe walking across the Olympic track field at Olympia...of course the Parthenon at sunset...a magical night on our own in Hydra...Delfi...walking the Agora on our own...and simply learning from Danae about how Greek mythology, religion and everyday life intermingle. The itinerary is excellent. "Food and music in the non-tourist restaurant in Nafplio.". The tour guide was very knowledgeable and flexible when the a mudslide change our plans. "Way, way too many wows to list just one.". Each day built on previous days. The tour was very organized and we made the most of our time.. The weather was hot, but manageable. I would highly recommend this tour to anyone. I had never been on a tour before because I usually just travel alone. I loved it. Greece provides amazing history, beautiful museums, interesting outdoor ruins, delicious food, and hospitable residents. Plus, Greece is a beautiful country and I was happy to listen to my audio book and stare out the window at the countryside. "I don't know if this qualifies as my favorite 'wow' moment, but Maria was continually informative, energetic and impressive. We enjoyed the tour immensely! I enjoyed the sites and the Greek culture. Very knowledgeable Our tour guide was exceptional. Greece surprised me with how mountainous the terrain was in the Peloponnese. Our guide Maria was outstanding. "The variety of the landscapes in Greece! Kardamyli was a nice respite and a testament to how quickly our group came together when, by word of mouth, we arranged an unplanned seaside dinner for all of us. I loved all the archeological sites and museums. I'd always wanted to go to Greece, and this tour was perfect. I was completely won over. Later seaside stays were more laid back, but equally interesting. The whole idea that history recorded in the buildings and rocks of Greece go back to the 6th Century BC.". We also got to experience the cuisine that Greece offers, and even to enjoy and participate in their music. But we did 2 back to back tours. This tour was everything that we expected! We have traveled extensively on Viking River Trips and an Ocean trip. Accommodations and food were top notch. At 6 p.m. we'll gather at our hotel for a "Welcome to Athens" group meeting. You might hike along the ancient cobbled paths that wind their way through the nearby hills — or just relax on the beach — and end your day with a grilled seafood dinner and a view from the little taverna you've discovered. We had an extremely skilled bus driver; those roads are not easy to navigate! We loved walking around the Acropolis, visiting the markets in Athens, walking around the first Olympics arena, staying in wonderful local hotels, and eating the best food. . The bus driver (George) was a wonder. Learning about the Greek culture and how they take care of each other and especially family. The many beautiful Aegean Sea locations, especially Monemvasia and Hydra.". I was teasing him that he should show us some Greek dances. I like that he was "local". The food was incredible. Since 1973, Rick Steves has spent about four months a year exploring Europe. The cities, food, people we met and on the tour with us were wonderful. As usual the accommodations were excellent, and the hosts very friendly and helpful. My husband and some other men in our group arranged a fishing excursion. The country sites especially the mountains and sea was beautiful!". Also I made a very poor choice of a roommate which was a disaster and an emotional drain as well as the physical and mental. This was our first guided tour of any type and we certainly hope it won't be the last. I was the slowest but, our guide had an abundance of patience! The people in our group all got along well and enhanced the tour. Rick Steves provides all of the essential information needed by visitors to Greece. Her knowledge of history, culture & mythology and her first hand experience as a resident of Greece added enormous insight throughout the trip. "I loved climbing up to the top of Monamvasia. Our guide made sure that we appreciated the complexity and extent of Greecian antiquity but also understood life in Greece today. I felt so cared for and safe so I could relax and have the time of my life. I was the hold out for going to Greece. Surrounded by olive groves, orange groves and the blue, blue water, I fell in love with the country. Your entire day is free to soak up the whitewashed architecture as you wander Hydra's narrow streets and harbor promenade. Local guides with exception of Penny were below my expectations. When I thought of Greece, I thought of islands. The countryside, from mountain to vineyard to seaside as outstandingly beautiful. We suggest arriving a day or two before your tour begins to allow ample time to get over jet lag and be well-rested for the first few days of your tour. Colin was very knowledgeable about the history and people of Greece. Both were very active. "A few favorites: Standing at the Acropolis and surrounding sites. Eating mushrooms at a restaurant in Nafplio. Athens & the Heart of Greece in 14 Days Tour. It took my breath away. The tour held many wonderful surprises and unique experiences I will never forget. The thief reached up under the buckle, unzipped a small pocket, and lifted my wallet apparently from behind as it rode on my shoulder, and I never felt a thing. Our only regret was the tour having to end early due to Covid-19. "It is difficult to choose from among so many great experiences, but the greatest wow moment for me was the night after the tour, when we saw YoYo Ma perform in the Odeon of Herodes Atticus. We cannot say enough about what an incredible job he did and experience he gave us. Greek tour guide Anastasia Gaitanou tells Rick how Athens has grown into a visitor-friendly destination, complete with a new Acropolis museum. Our guide, Phillipois was excellent and provided us with a memorable experience that will last a lifetime. This was my first Rick Steves tour, and it far exceeded my expectations. I had high expectations of this tour and they were exceeded. "Gazing upon the Parthenon was a dream come true.". "Meeting and interacting with the local people who were very friendly and giving. This was my second trip to Greece this year. It exceeded way beyond my highest expectations. I would love to return to Hydra. Depending on the length of your trip, and taking geographic proximity into account, here are my recommended priorities. Greece surprised us at many turns. Be sure to check your junk mail folder for this email. We learned so much each day, then had dinner and lots of wine with all of our new friends. After watching RS shows on PBS for years we had great expectations about our first trip. Meeting several locals along the way, and feeling like I was connecting with them. Greece is a lovely place to visit with lots of phenomenal history. It was fun to see our fellow guests join in an have a marvelous time. I am still thrilled about that!!". "Hard to pick. 2. "Our tour guide, Maria, pulled everything together and told the background myths in an enchanting way as we approached various historic sites.". Good choice of ruins etc. The museum construction itself is amazing - built over top of ruins. The people we traveled with were a highlight. "That's not a fair question on a tour that hits the Parthenon, Delphi and Mycenae, all epic wows. Our tour guide, Apostolos, made ever effort to give us a true Greek experience, he was wonderful. "It's really difficult to pick one "wow" moment. Our guide was fantastic, and his insights into history vs modern Greece added greatly to the trip. Overall the trip was outstanding because of our guide, Apostolos and select guides, who provided a historical context for each day of the trip. "Seeing the Acropolis, especially at night.". Having done all our traveling on our own, we were a little apprehensive about joining a tour. Sleep with street noise and no (or weak) air conditioning. Although the temple was not so much the site was fascinating with the hospital and hotels for those who wanted to be healed.". Our tour was more comprehensive than I had imagined and there was not one day that didn't hold an unexpected surprise. Rick Steves’s guidebook to Greece is of course loaded with practical advice for trip planning and for consulting during a trip, but it also has a large narrative thread commenting on the history, culture, and character of Greece and its people, and it has many … How to choose? The food, how easy it was to see so many things, our guide, the people in our group, the hotels. The tour was wonderfully planned. It definitely exceeded my expectations. Our 4th RS tour. To try and pick just one would not do justice to the sights and events this tour provides.". The nite of Greek dancing and seeing Danae join them and tour group dancing with them. Similar interactions occurred in other small villages. We enjoyed sharing meals, wow moments. "The highlight of the trip for me was the experience I had on Monomvasia, starting with the sunrise behind "the rock". To start with the Parthenon and then visit so many ancient sites, and finally end back in Athens at the National Archeological Museum was brilliant. Attach a photocopied calendar page of your itinerary. My first tour was Spain, and my second was the 21 day Best of Europe Tour. We saw some of the most important sites but also some of the less traveled but still fascinating places. I was surprised and grateful for the "vacation" within the vacation that allowed us the time to go the the beach during a heat wave. I can honestly say that many of the best days of my life have occurred on these tours, and I have loved them all! Our guide, Nikki (?) The balance of guided sightseeing to free time was perfect. This is my fourth tour and the breakfasts were the best. Oh and I loved the town of Limeni, the water was beautiful. This tour, however, just had the right combination of great guide, great scenery, great culture and history, great food, and great tour group that made it a very special trip. We loved running on the track and seeing where the Olympic torch ceremony starts.". This was our first Rick Steve's tour and we were not sure what to expect. The combination of his passion for his home country and knowledge of history, art, architecture, ... made for a wonderful experience. The 'trout farm' lunch and the seafood lunch situated right on the water. I loved the mix of ancient sites, medieval places, natural beauty (mountains, cliffs, and beaches), quaint villages, and modern cities and museums. "As much as it was the most strenuous part of the tour, the views from climbing Monemvasia fortress was well worth it.". Local guides were excellent. Only wish I brought hiking shoes to tackle the mountain climbs. This is the most picturesque archaeological site I have ever seen, and our guide was excellent.". Of course it brought back all those classes filled with Greek mythology, but seeing the temples, theaters and other structures gave life to the people who lived that mythology. "My wow moment was visiting Olympia where our guide explained the reasons behind creation of the ancient Olympic games in 776 BC as a means to train warriors for battle and to unify the city states against the common enemies.". I really enjoyed the town of Kardamyli on the beautiful Mani Peninsula, very relaxing and scenic area.". I lost a wallet with credit cards only. What more could you ask for?". Sleep in mainland Monemvasia. I could go on and on because there were more than one wow moment a day.". I've been on 4 other European tours (one with RS to Prague and Budapest) and this was by far my favorite. The view from there, with the Aegean Sea, and the beautiful architecture fit my picture of Greece perfectly. Select a region to find the Rick Steves guidebooks, Snapshot guides, and Pocket guides — and phrase books — that can help you get the most out of every day and dollar. Daniela leads Rick Steves tours in France, Germany, and Italy. "There were a couple actually. Apostolos was always the gracious and giving host while keeping balance for our tour members various needs. We have used Rick Steves' tour books for other trips we have taken. Supplement $675. I was impressed by the variety of the terrain that we saw and the beauty of the coastline. "Of course being on the Acropolis in Athens is the highlight but the most fun thing we did were Filippos's add ons (Nafplio non tourist town restaurant with singers and the dancers at the Delphi hotel). Yet, visualizing authentic artifacts of the founders of western civilization was an unexpectedly spiritual moment for my analytical personality.". I am still in awe of how outstanding this tour was. Very relaxing, with enough activity to burn off those extra calories. "My wow moment was seeing the Lion Gate and all the other antiquities. The space of 3000 years seems to shrink and "ancient" history starts to feel much closer to us.". "Maybe it was when we stopped at a remote mountain restaurant by a small stream and had fresh grilled trout on the terrace. 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One of the ruins, gods, goddesses, ouzo, & fava salad... Air and tour the sleek new Acropolis museum, followed by lunch together. `` the...