North Greece Tour – Saint Paul Footsteps & Alexander the Great (All Included)

  • 1 - 4 Persons

  • Dinner

  • Hotel

Athens Taxi Travel provides this specially designed 3-day private tour that offers an experience of a lifetime! Visit the place where Saint Paul first visited in Europe along with all historical sites where Alexander the Great lived. Starting from Athens we are going to visit Veria, Amfipolis, Kavala, Thessaloniki and return back to Athens. A very special private taxi tour with the valuable knowledge of our licensed tour guide.

1St Day: Athens – Meteora – Veria – Vergina

The Meteora is a rock formation in central Greece hosting one of the largest and most precipitously built complexes of Eastern Orthodox monasteries, second in importance only to Mount Athos. The six monasteries are built on immense natural pillars and hill-like rounded boulders that dominate the local area. It is located near the town of Kalambaka at the northwestern edge of the Plain of Thessaly near the Pineios river and Pindus Mountains. Meteora is included on the UNESCO World Heritage List. The name means “lofty”, “elevated”, and is etymologically related to meteor.

Meteora01 By Fingalo – Own work, CC BY-SA 2.0 de

Monasteries

Monastery of Great Meteoron
This is the largest of the monasteries located at Meteora, though in 2015 there were only 3 monks in residence. It was erected in the mid-14th century and was the subject of restoration and embellishment projects in 1483 and 1552. One building serves as the main museum for tourists. The Katholikon (main church), consecrated in honour of the Transfiguration of Jesus was erected in the middle of the 14th century and 1387/88 and decorated in 1483 and 1552.

Monastery of Varlaam
The Monastery of Varlaam is the second largest monastery in the Meteora complex, and in 2015 had the largest number of monks (seven) of the male monasteries. It was built in 1541 and embellished in 1548. A church, dedicated to All Saints, is in the Athonite type (cross-in-square with dome and choirs), with spacious exonarthex (lite) is surrounded by a dome. It was built in 1541/42 and decorated in 1548, while the exonarthex was decorated in 1566. The old refectory is used as a museum while north of the church is the parekklesion of the Three Bishops, built in 1627 and decorated in 1637.

Monastery of Rousanou/St. Barbara
It was founded in the middle of the 16th century and decorated in 1560. Today it is a flourishing nunnery with 13 nuns in residence in 2015.

Monastery of St. Nicholas Anapausas
The monastery was built in the 16th century, has a small church, decorated by the noted Cretan painter Theophanis Strelitzas, in 1527. There was one monk in residence in 2015.

Monastery of St. Stephen
The Monastery of St. Stephen has a small church built in the 16th century and decorated in 1545. This monastery rests on the plain rather than on a cliff. It was shelled by the Nazis during World War II who believed it was harboring insurgents and was abandoned. The monastery was given over to nuns in 1961 and they have reconstructed it into a flourishing nunnery, with 28 nuns in residence in 2015.

AgiaTriada By Napoleon Vier from nl, CC BY-SA 3.0

Monastery of the Holy Trinity
The Monastery of the Holy Trinity is on top of the cliffs. It was built in 1475 and was remodeled in 1684, 1689, 1692, 1741. There were four monks in residence in 2015.

First we are going to visit Veria. Veria is a city in Macedonia, northern Greece, located 511 kilometres (318 miles) north-northwest of the capital Athens. There we will visit the extensive archaeological site of Vergina (ancient Aegae, the summer capital of Macedon), a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The site was discovered in 1976, and excavated during the 1977/8 season in a campaign led by Manolis Andronikos, which unearthed the burial site of the kings of Macedon, including the tomb of Philip II, father of Alexander the Great which unlike so many other tombs had not been disturbed or looted. It is also the site of an extensive royal palace and of many rich ancient tombs. The objects and paintings found in the tombs at Vergina are of extraordinarily high quality and historical importance.

Facade_of_Philip_II_tomb_Vergina_Greece

By Panegyrics of Granovetter (Sarah Murray) Public Domain

 

2nd Day: Amfipolis – Philippoi – Kavala

Amphipolis_Lion By Kkonstan – Own work, CC BY 3.0

 

Amphipolis is best known for the magnificent ancient Greek city (polis), and later Roman city, whose impressive remains can still be seen. It is famous in history for events such as the battle between the Spartans and Athenians in 422 BC, and also as the place where Alexander the Great prepared for campaigns leading to his invasion of Asia. Alexander’s three finest admirals, Nearchus, Androsthenes and Laomedon, resided in this city and it is also the place where, after Alexander’s death, his wife Roxane and their small son Alexander IV were exiled and later murdered.
The Lion of Amphipolis is a 4th-century BC tomb sculpture that was set up in honor of Laomedon of Mytilene, important general of Alexander the Great. In Amfipolis the oldest wooden Bridge (275 meters) of the Wold was also excavated.

Our tour will proceed to Philippi the site where St. Paul visited and was prisoned.  We will visit also the village of Lydia where the first Christian of Europe Lydia was baptised. Philippi, is located near the ruins of the ancient city and is part of the region of East Macedonia and Thrace in Kavala, Greece. It was made a World Heritage Site in 2016. The New Testament states that in AD 49 or 50, the city was visited by the apostle Paul (Acts 16:9-10). From the Acts of the Apostles (Acts 16:12) and the letter to the Philippians (Philippians 1:1), early Christians concluded that Paul had founded their community. Accompanied by Silas, Timothy and possibly Luke, the author of the Acts of the Apostles, Paul is believed to have preached for the first time on European soil in Philippi (Acts 16:12-40). According to the New Testament, Paul visited the city on two other occasions, in 56 and 57. The Epistle to the Philippians dates from around 61-62 and is believed to show the immediate effects of Paul’s instruction.

Ancient_theatre_-_Philippi By MrPanyGoff – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0

 

We will also visit the Museum of Philippi and then drive for lunch to Kavala.

larnaka Φωτογραφία: Χαράλαμπος Γκούβας, CC BY-SA 3.0

 

Alexander_the_Great_mosaic By Unknown – The Guardian

 

3rd Day: Thessaloniki
Athens Taxi Travel will take you to Thessaloniki, the second largest city of Greece. There you will be able to admire the White Tower, the Arch of Galerius, the Rotonda, St. Dimitrios Cathedral, the unique Archaeological Musuem of Thessaloniki and Vlatadon Monastery. We will return to Athens late in the evening.

White_Tower_Lefkos_Pyrgos

By Leandro Neumann Ciuffo – White Tower, CC BY 2.0

 

More than a taxi tour
Our licensed tourist guide Vicky will enter with you to all monuments and explain everything concerning the monument or the musuem findings you see. Vicky has a degree in Archaeology from the University of Athens and she’s been working as a guide for 35 years now. She speaks English, French and Italian.

Included

  • Pickup and Dropoff
  • Fully Air Conditioned
  • Free Wi-Fi
  • Smoke Free
  • All Tolls & Parking fees
  • Archaeological Sites
  • Baggage Charges
  • Water and Snacks
  • Entrance fees for all attractions
  • Meals
  • Drinks
  • Accommodation

FAQ’s & Useful tips

We use luxury Mercedes Taxi, legal and licensed by the Greek National Tourism Organization. (License Number 06ΣΞ00261ΣΟ).
Prices are quoted per car & not per person.
If you prefer without tour guide, our English speaking driver can give you all the historic information while you can watch a video about the tour. The driver is not permitted to enter archaeological sites and museums with you, only licensed guides from the ministry of culture are allowed to do so.
Driver will wait maximum 60 minutes after the indicated pick up time, kindly be on time.

Summer Essentials

Comfortable clothing and athletic walking shoes are recommended.
Hat, sun glasses and sunscreen to protect yourself are suggested.

Local Currency

We recommend you always keep local currency on you (euro), needed for entrance fees and small expenses

Licensed Guides Extra Seat

Please note that, if you will be choosing the service with a licensed guide, you will require an additional seat in your vehicle, since your guide will be riding with you.

Photos

Photography is permitted throughout the tour and in most historical sites unless otherwise mentioned.