The royal tombs of Vergina
Ephesus was the sacred capital of the ancient Macedonia. It also was the location of the royal tombs of the dynasty of the Argeades until the first century AD. Nowadays the place is called Vergina – it is a small city founded in 1923. You should definitely visit it!
There are two museums in this town. The first of them is Anaktoro – presumably the royal chambers with partially preserved mosaic decoration and fragments of the building. The second is the most interesting, since it is, in fact, the burial site of the kings of Macedon, including the tomb of Philip II, who was the father of famous Alexander the Great. Exhibits of this museum impress even the most disinterested visitors!
A travel to the Mount Olympus
Mount Olympus is the religious center of the ancient civilizations and the main residence of the Olympic gods. You will enjoy the breathtaking views of this place! It has two of the highest Greek peaks: Pantheon peak (2918 meters) and The Throne of Zeus (2909 meters). First of them is now called “Mytikas” and it was the location of the gods of the ancient Hellas. The Throne of Zeus (now it is known as Stefani) hosted solely the almighty Zeus, the leader of the gods.
The rich flora and fauna of the Olympus natural reserve, as well as the uniqueness of the landscape, works like a magnet for many alpinists, naturalists, and all kinds of scientists.
Other interesting showplaces of Olympus are picturesque mountain villages, scattered on the mountain slopes, that offer cozy traditional hotels built in the Swiss chalet style (so-called “Xenon’s”) and taverns with wonderful local cuisine. The most popular of them all is a little town Lithochoro, located on the eastern slopes of the Mount Olympus at an altitude of 300 meters above the sea.
At the foot of the Mount Olympus, you can find the archaeological complex of Dion – the cult center of ancient Macedonia, where the main religious celebrations were held in honor of Zeus of Olympus. This is the next stop in our journey.
The archaeological park of Dion – the city of Zeus
Dion has been founded hundreds of years ago and it always was the religious center of Greece. Nowadays it is not a real city, but a museum of archeology, where you can look at the ruins of the old temples, gymnasiums, baths, etc. Dion feels like a huge historical museum – but without any walls, located in the fresh air. It has very well preserved mosaic, murals, figures, and many more ancient treasures that you should see with your own eyes!
Transfer to Vergina/ The time may differ depending on the departure point.
Excursion to the Macedonian Royal Tombs Museum
Moving to the foot of Mount Olympus - Dion Museum
Excursion in the archaeological park of ancient Dion
Lunch in a traditional tavern in the town of Litohoro on the slopes of Olympus
Visit to the monastery of St. Dionysius
Visiting the "Stavros" - place with magnificient view on the slopes of Olympus. Height 960 m. above sea level
Return to Halkidiki
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Drinking water, money for food, souvenirs and entry tickets. Be ready to have a great time and enrich your spiritual life!
Comfortable shoes and a headgear.