Marathon, Greece and the Ghosts of Ancient Warriors

Monument to marathon runners

I stand on the deserted beach of Marathon, Greece, a long crescent of stones and sand. Surf spills over the pebbles, spray bursts like a shower of gold-dust reflecting the dazzling Greek sun. On this beach, with the surf hissing over pebbles red as blood and white as bone, I hear the wind moaning like the voices of the ancient dead, as though the spirits still linger in the shade of the pine ... Read Full Article

Six of the Sunniest European Winter Destinations

Turkish Aegean is one of the Sunniest European Winter Destinations

Let's take a look at some of the most desirable, sought after and sunniest European winter destinations. Those accustomed to stunning sunsets and balmy eves during their European getaways might balk at the thought of traveling to the Old World during the long, cold winter. But you might be surprised that, from December to March, not all of the continent is covered in wild snow and sleet. In fact, ... Read Full Article

Greece’s Mysterious Lichadonisia Islands

The beach at Lichondisi island

It’s an overcast, gray October day and the gulls mewling over the sombre sea makes it seem even gloomier. I am standing at the marina at Kamena Vourla, a resort town on the north-east coast of Greece noted for its hot springs. I’m with a group of seniors who have traveled up the coast from Athens on a mystery trip, one that we will take by boat to visit a cluster of little islands known as the ... Read Full Article

Old Athenian Hangouts Take a Modern Twist

Music concert at Second Skin nightclub in Athens' Psirri district

Ancient Athens’ golden glory may be the reason why the city’s vibrant present is often overlooked by visitors. Its inhabitants, though, don’t like to dwell on the past. Well, sort of.. It’s been a few years now that the city’s modest old neighbourhoods, like the once unwelcoming industrial Gazi (Gas in English), have been given a new lease of life courtesy of a vast choice of modern restos ... Read Full Article

Thessaloniki, Greek Macedonia: The Paris of the North

White Tower

Once known as the ‘Paris of the North’, Thessaloniki (Salonika) definitely has a different ambience than Athens. Maybe it’s the city’s close proximity to the sea and the elegant Parisian-style buildings. Or perhaps it’s the vibrant ‘youthful’ feel because of the young people who stroll the plateias and crowd the sea-side tavernas. Thessalonki is, after all, a university city so a large portion of ... Read Full Article

On the Road From Athens to Corinth

Corinthian Columns

The road from Athens to the Peloponnese traverses the coastline past factories and shipyards then climbs high above the sea rewarding us with panoramic views of the sparkling blue Saronic Gulf. My friends and I on our way to visit Corinth, the ancient city that was once a strong rival of Athens. As we descend the pass, we reach a low, flat barren track of land known as the Isthmus that connects ... Read Full Article

Greek Food: A Taste of the Ancient Past

Typical Greek Fish dinner

Did you know that when you sit down to a hearty meal of Greek food that you are often eating exactly the same dishes their ancestors did in ancient times? The first cookbook was written by a Greek, Archestrolus, in 350 BC suggesting that food was always an important part of Greek life. Some of these ancient dishes include dolmades (stuffed grape leaves) and many of the same fruits, vegetables and ... Read Full Article

Ghosts, Legends and a Glimpse of Atlantis in Santorini

Distant cliff view Santorini

On Santorini, the village folk tell stories of ghosts. Old men sipping ouzo in the tavernas say they’ve heard the music of Pan’s pipes and the clicking of little hooves in the branches of the plane trees. There is a feeling that something mysterious lingered behind after the great explosion that destroyed Santorini during the Bronze Age, and you can’t question the superstitions of the ... Read Full Article

Greece: The Mystical Oak Shrine of Dodoni, Epirus

Castle_Gate

Most people who visit Greece have made a pilgrimage to Delphi, the most important oracle of the ancient world on Mt. Parnassos. However, not many people know about Dodoni, the country’s second most important oracle, tucked away in the mountains of Epirus, in north-east Greece. I’ve visited Dodoni on several occasions. The best way to reach the ancient site is via Ioannina. Once an Ottoman city ... Read Full Article

Anafiotika: The Hidden Village under the Acropolis

View with Lykevettos Mountain

The great city of Athens, Greece is made up of numerous small villages that have melded together over the years. Plaka is the most ancient, original part of the city where most of the archaeological sites are located. Just up on the hill above Plaka, under the flank of the Acropolis (“the high city”) there is the tiny village of Anafiotika, unique because of how it came to be. In 1841, King ... Read Full Article