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NORTHERN WINES

...A sip of greek culture, hospitality and elegance, paired with the flavours of an enchanting past and intriguing present...
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Day1: Meeting – Thessaloniki

Arrival at ‘Makedonia’ Airport on Thessaloniki, meeting and orientation with our representatives. Transfer by bus to Thessaloniki city center and check-in our hotel. Thessaloniki is one of the world’s eternal cities, having enjoyed an urban existence from Classical Greece onwards, through Hellenistic, Roman and Byzantine times… Today is a major Balkan city. The many churches, the agora, the palace, the hippodrome, the castle, the baths, the shrines, the Art Deco buildings all bear witness to its timeless age and beauty. Thessaloniki’s many pleasures start from its high grounds at Seih Sou, onto the hills of the Saranta Eklisies down to the Hippodrome and from the Vardaris and port area to the seaside district of Krini. Thessaloniki is a city of food lovers and self-declared gastronomes, transforming food and drink into a pure cultural experience.   Our wine route goes through the seaside resort of Agia Triada and leads southeast, to Epanomi. Along the way it heads to Akrotiri, at the edge of the Thermaikos Gulf, where surfers sail. You can gaze at the birds from the wetlands next to the sand dunes and enjoy a quick late afternoon swim near the old shipwreck... or a dip into the seafood meze at the tavernas nearby. On the slopes of Epanomi, a few kilometres from the city of Thessaloniki, a meticulously-tended vineyard surrounds the modern winery, where the renowned Ktima Gerovassiliou wines are produced. A visit to the well-maintained Domaine Gerovassiliou should not be missed. Beyond the great wines and gorgeous grounds, it houses an impressive collection of antique cork screws and a wine museum. The creation of the Wine Museum, in combination with its various organised activities, further contributes to the diffusion of wine-growing culture. It includes visits, wine tastings, educational programs, seminars, publications, lectures, theatrical, and musical performances. Return to Thessaloniki for some great food in the eternal city where the options are endless. Free time and overnight stay.  
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Day 2: Thessaloniki

Breakfast and a day dedicated to Thessaloniki and its unparallel cultural heritage. Not necessarily in this order, we will visit a wide variety of important sightseeing places such as The White Tower, the Archaeological & Byzantine Museum, the City Walls (Triangular, Eptapirgio, Acropolis), the  Ancient Market , Galerios’ Arch, the Rotonda and a variety of Byzantine temples in Thessaloniki including St.Dimitrios. Thessaloniki is full of tavernas and traditional restaurants. Whether its Ladadika or Kalamaria, the Port or the traditional alleyways, we will gave stunning lunch wherever we go to. After a long day full of culture and history we return for some well deserved rest to our hotel. Free time, dinner & overnight stay.
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Day 3: Thessaloniki – Halkidiki

Kassandra, Sithonia and Athos. Three peninsulas, three different natural landscapes, three different types of natural charm. In Kassandra we calmly travel along pine forests and dive into peaceful blue waters. Sithonia enchants us with its lush greenery, its secluded inlets and its fishing villages. The mysterious charm of Mt Athos weaves a beautiful tapestry that blends man and nature. Add the beauty of its mountainous regions and the promise of moonlit nights with fish and wine by the sea…  and Halkidiki simply becomes a bewitching destination.   After breakfast we shoot off to Halkidiki and straight to the cave of Petralona, where the oldest human skeleton in Europe was found. Moving on we will visit the Tsantali Winery, one of the largest in Greece. With its 125 years of tradition and expertise it is the 4th generation of the Tsantali family that continues to carry on with the family tradition and produce wines that are exported in 55 different countries around the globe.   Back on the bus and off to Kallithea for some food and a stroll. A great place to visit, graced with crystal clear waters and a quiet picturesque village that will take your breath away. Kallithea is so stunning that thousands of tourists flood it every year. It’s a great place to visit and encapsulates all the magic Halkidiki has got to offer.   Overnight stay at Poligyros the capital of Halkidiki. Free time & dinner.    
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Day 4: Halkidiki - Sithonia

After breakfast, and according to travelling schedules, we can pay a closer visit to Halkidiki with a half-day tour of Sithonia peninsula. Sithonia looks like a typical Greek island as it’s surrounded by the Aegean Sea. To the east it borders with the Gulf of Agion Oros  (Holy Mountain) and to the west with the Gulf of Kassandra. In the southern part of Sithonia is Mount Itamos (753 meters high) which is completely covered with pine trees, while the beautiful sandy beaches are mesmerizing. We will make a full tour of Sithonia and stop in two of the most famous sea-side resorts, Sarti and Neos Marmaras. Food, sightseeing and return home…  
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END OF TOUR

NORTHERN WINES

€380

per person

…A sip of greek culture, hospitality and elegance, paired with the flavours of an enchanting past and intriguing present…

A look through the ages… Wine in Greece

Greece is one of the oldest wine-producing regions in the world and the first wine-producing territory in Europe. The earliest evidence of Greek wine has been dated to 6,500 years ago where wine was produced on a household or communal basis. In ancient times, as trade in wine became extensive, it was transported from end to end of the Mediterranean. Greek wine had especially high prestige in Italy under the Roman Empire. In the medieval period, wines exported from Crete, Monemvasia and other Greek ports fetched high prices in northern Europe.

Evidence confirm that Greece is home to the second oldest known grape wine remnants discovered in the world and the world’s earliest evidence of crushed grapes. The spread of Greek civilization and their worship of Dionysus, the god of wine, spread Dionysian cults throughout the Mediterranean areas during the period of 1600 BC to the year 1. Hippocrates used wine for medicinal purposes and readily prescribed it. Greek wines and their varieties were well known and traded throughout the Mediterranean.

The Ancient Greeks introduced vines such as Vitis vinifera and made wine in their numerous colonies in Italy, Sicily, southern France, and Spain. The Vitis vinifera grape which thrives in temperate climates near coastal areas with mild winters and dry summers adapted well and flourished in the Northern Mediterranean areas. The most reputable wines of ancient Greece were Chian, Coan, Corcyraean, Cretan, Euboean, Lesbian, Leucadian, Mendaean, Peparethan wine, Rhodian and Thasian.

In 1937, a Wine Institute was established by the Ministry of Agriculture. During the 1960s, retsina suddenly became the national beverage. With rapidly growing tourism, retsina became associated worldwide with Greece and Greek wine. Greece’s first Cabernet Sauvignon vineyard was planted in 1963. In 1971 and 1972, legislation established appellation laws.

 

Our Wine Route…

Thessaloniki

Thessaloniki is easy to fall in love with – it has beauty, organized chaos, history and culture, a remarkable cuisine and wonderful, vast sea views. This is Greece’s second city with the streets bursting full of life and vibrancy.

The different neighbourhoods are little worlds unto themselves, and when you climb up to the Byzantine walls and take in the whole of Thessaloniki at sunset, you see what a sprawling, organic city it is. Old and new cohabit wonderfully: the Arch of Galerius, an intricate 4th-century monument, overlooks the busy shopping drag of Egnatia, while Thessaloniki’s most famous sight, the White Tower, anchors a waterfront packed with cocktail bars. The New Waterfront has breathed life and opened up space for long walks and cycling. By night, the city reverberates with music and nightlife.

Halkidiki

The shores of Greece elicit blissful sighs, even from suntan-averse travellers. Halkidiki – the three-pronged region in Greece’s north – is especially rich in sparkling sands. They say that nowhere in Greece can boast beaches like those of Halkidiki. The region has the perfect combination of that distinctive Greek light, unspoiled landscapes, colours and fragrances. And the glorious natural setting is complemented by the rich culinary fare of the region and the living religious traditions of its people. These are manifested in a host of feast days and other ceremonies and rituals.

This is a place here all your senses will come to life. Whether on the endless expanses of sand of the fashionable, cosmopolitan beaches, or in the intimacy of the many secluded bays and coves. The scent of the pine trees and the salt brine of the sea combine to relax the body and spirit. Thus, leaving you at peace to enjoy the grandeur of the regions famed sunrises and sunsets.

 

  • Departure
    Thessaloniki

Tour Location

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INCLUDED:

  • Accommodation based on sharing a twin or double bedded room.
  • All transfers from/to the airport.
  • All transfers/tours as per the program.
  • Choice of selected Hotels.
  • Half-board (Breakfast & Dinner).
  • Experienced Tour Guide.
  • Civil Liability Insurance.
  • Entrances to all museums and archaeological sites as per the program.
 

NOT INCLUDED:

  • Drinks, souvenirs and personal expenses.
  • Whatever is Optional as per the itinerary.
  • Tips and gratuities.
 

NOTES:

  • Air fares are not included in the price. Return Airfare can be arranged/included upon agreement.
  • Prices are based on groups of 25 travelers.
  • Prices can/will be subject to change depending on the number of participants and the duration of the journey.
  • The program might be altered on the day but no visits/tours shall be missed.

INFORMATION:

Here you'll find useful information for preparing your trip to Greece. We give you practical tips on documentation, safety, healthcare, what clothes to pack, currency, tourist cards, public holidays… so you're all set when you arrive.    

General Information

Capital of Greece: Athens Official language: Greek The currency: Euro (€) Climate: Mediterranean Population: 11.306.183 (2010 estimate) The country is a Presidential Parliamentary Democracy Calling code: The international calling code of Greece is +30  

Exchange Currencies

Greece is a Member-State of the European Union and uses its uniform currency – the Euro (€). Greece, as is the case with the other Member-States of the E.U. uses eight coins as follows: 1, 2, 5, 10, 20 and 50 cents (lepta in Greek) and 1 and 2 Euros. The banknotes are issued in the following denominations: 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 200 and 500 Euros. Currency exchange rates are clearly displayed in every bank that accepts currency exchange, while credit card holders may acquire money from the ATMs of the collaborating banks. Greek banks are open for the public from 8:00 to 14:30 Mondays to Thursdays and from 8:00 to 13:30 on Fridays. They are closed on Public Holidays. Euros can also be exchanged for notes of other foreign currencies at exchange offices that are situated at the airport and certain main ports, in the larger cities, as well as at many tourist destinations. A passport is required when exchanging currencies.  

Time Zone

Time Greece: GMT +2  

National celebrations and Holidays 

New Years Day: 1st of January Epiphany: 6th of January. Sea water is consecrated in the area of Piraeus. The priests throw the Cross into the sea and young men dive to catch it. Ash Monday: 41 days before Easter. It is the day people begin the Lent. On Ash Monday Greeks fly kites, eat meatless food and celebrate Koulouma. Athenians gather on Philopappou Hill. Independence Day & Celebration of Evaggelismos: 25th of March. Military parade. Easter: From Holy Friday until Easter Monday. On Holy Friday evening every church decorates the Epitaph (Bier of Christ). During the procession of the Epitaph the streets of every city or village in the country are full of people. It is a religious procession where everybody holds lit candles in their hands and sings hymns. Night of the Resurrection: It is celebrated in midnight before Easter Sunday with fireworks and candles. Easter Sunday: On Easter Sunday Greeks eat barbecue lamb. The celebrations include singing and dancing all day long. Labor Day: 1st of May. Flower feasts all around Athens. Pentecost: It is celebrated 50 days after Easter. Assumption of the Virgin Mary: 15th of August. 28th of October: National Celebration. Military parade. Christmas: 25th-26th of December.  

Health & Safety

In order to have access to necessary health care, tourists from member states of the European Union (EU) wishing to visit Greece must be holders of the European Health Card (EHIC) or any other legal Community document issued by their competent social security agency. In these cases, the necessary treatment in Greece is provided by Social Security Institute Health Units (polyclinics) or doctor’s offices in the region; Regional clinics (former rural clinics) or the Health Centres of the National Health System; and the outpatients’ departments of the hospitals on contract. In order to have access to necessary health care, tourists from countries other than the member states of the European Union wishing to visit Greece must consult their social security agency for information before travelling.  

Useful Numbers:

Ambulance Service: 166 SOS Doctors : 1016 Duty Hospitals and Clinics: 1434 Pharmacies: 1434 Open Line for alcohol drug Addiction: 210 36 17 089 Poisoning First Aid: 210 77 93 777 Police: 100 Tourist Police: 1571