In Greece, you are standing at a crossroads of cultures, colours and civilizations. You feel the strength of history and the warmth of being in the southern most part of Europe, and you discover an evolutionary process of thought, influence and experience. A landscape that has given us thousands of postcard images, but remains incredibly vibrant and impossible to capture. Greece is a country of beautiful contradictions, a constant journey in time, from the present to the past and back again. Walk through the olive groves and through ancients sites. Move to clusters of sparsely inhabited islands. Explore the beaches, rocky-mountains and marvel at the breathtaking scenery. In Greece, the fusion of images becomes more than imagery and turns into reality. Explore your senses in Greece.
Build your holiday
Build your holiday
Build your holiday
Build your holiday
Build your holiday
Greece is situated in south-eastern Europe, and shares borders with Turkey in the north-east and in the north with Albania, Macedonia and Bulgaria. The rest of Greece is fringed by the Mediterranean.
Greece has a Mediterranean climate with plenty of sunshine, mild temperatures and a limited amount of rainfall. Due to the country s geographical position, its rugged relief and its distribution between the mainland and the sea, there is a great variation in Greece s climate. In summer, the dry hot days are cooled by seasonal winds, while mountainous regions have generally lower temperatures. The winters are mild in lowland areas, with a minimum amount of snow and ice, yet, the mountains are usually snow-covered. The summers (May- October) are dry and hot (average temperatures in summer are 25 C- 34 C), whilst winters are cool (5 C- 15 C) with some rain and wind.
Greek, English is widely spoken.
South African passport holders require a visa for Greece.
Bottled water 1L EUR 1.00
Can of coke EUR 1.00
Bottle of local beer EUR 1.50
Take away lunch EUR 11.00
Dinner at a restaurant EUR 25.00
20 minute taxi journey EUR 16.00
*Purchase price will vary depending on point of sale.
Below are a few hints that may help you when planning for your trip to Greece:
For South African passport holders, a visa is required to enter Greece. This visa must be obtained prior to departure from South Africa.
The climate is Mediterranean, pleasant and healthy due to its distinctive dryness. Very hot summers and cold winters. Rain falls mainly during the winter months. Summer months range from June to September and winter starts in December through to March.
Lightweight clothes in the summer, like shorts and t-shirts, and warmer clothes in winter. There are no fixed dress regulations in Greece. Greeks are casual with regard to dress during the day. They do, however, dress up in the evenings when going out to dinner or shows. Comfortable shoes are a must and sandals for the beach are required. Do bring your own beach towel and several swimming costumes, as these will be the most essential items on the islands.
The unit of currency is the Euro. The bills will come in denominations of 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 200 and 500. The design of the bills is the same throughout the euro zone. Coins will be worth either one or two euros or in euro cents — 50, 20, 10, 5, 2 or 1. The coins will have a common face on one side. But on the other side, the symbol will differ from one country to another. Whatever the denomination, the same euro bills and coins can be used in all of the euro zone countries.
Exchange facilities are found at the airports, banks and hotels. Banks are open Monday to Thursday from 08.00 to 14.00 and on Friday from 08.00 to 13.30. They are closed on holidays and weekends.
Some passengers have reported difficulties using American Express and Diners Cards to pay for their meals etc. in their hotels. These credit cards are not as widely accepted as Visa and Mastercards.
Working hours in summer is usually from 09.00 to 13.00 and from 17.00 to 20.00, Monday to Saturday. Shopping in Greece is amazing when it comes to buying shoes, bags, clothes, furs and jewellery. The main shopping areas for tourists are situated in the centre of Athens namely, Syntagma, Kolonkai, Omonia, Monastiraki and Plaka. Sales occur twice a year, in August and February. The shops in the centre of Athens do not close for siesta and are therefore open from 08.00 to 20.30 hours.
In Greece, particularly in Athens, there are plenty of luxury restaurants serving international and Greek cuisine, tavernas and barbecues. When in Greece one must definitely taste the traditional food. In a local taverna you will be offered various starters mezze followed by kebabs souvlakia (yiro) with pita bread and tzatziki (yoghurt/cucumber/garlic sauce). The spinach leaves stuffed with mince and rice dolmades are a must. Greek salads are made in true Greek style with fresh feta cheese and olives. They have many tempting sweets made with phyllo pastry, nuts and syrup called baklava .
In Athens you can choose from many theatres, opera houses, numerous winter as well as summer open-air cinemas. There is a wide choice of nightclubs, music halls, discos and tavernas with the popular bouzouki instrument players. Most of them are gathered in the centre of Athens in the Plaka district.
Passengers should restrict themselves to one suitcase each, in addition to hand luggage. Please pack necessary medication in your hand luggage, as well as a change of clothing in the event of any delays.
Taxis are numerous in all Greek cities and most of them speak English, therefore, the language barrier is not a problem. Do however be careful not to be ripped off with charges. Make sure all taxis run on the metre.
You will generally find that the Greeks are helpful therefore we urge one to conform to worldwide trends in this regard. Hotel porters should receive a small tip (approximately 1), for carrying your luggage (unless travelling in a group in which case this may be included in the tour cost). Guides and drivers should also receive a gratuity and the customary 10 % is recommended for restaurant visits and room service.
Recommended average rates for passengers are:
Guide: Euro 4.- per passenger per day for a full day s services
Driver: Euro 2.- per passenger per day for full day s services.
Hotel staff: Usually 10 % of restaurant/room service bill.
For passengers not travelling as part of a group but rather with individual services please increase your tipping accordingly we suggest doubling above rates for Guide and Driver.
We recommend that you bring some kind of washing soap to do your hand washing. It is also a good idea to bring a blow up hanger, as not all hotel hangers can be removed from the cupboards. Remember to take suntan oil and protection cream. Do not forget the hat for the beach. Most hotels have hair dryers in the room. However, if you do take yours along, make sure that you have an international adaptor set.
Greece has the same voltage as South Africa (220V). The majority of electrical sockets take a two-prong plug. An adaptor- set (multi plug) is recommended.
If hiring a car or scooter on any of the islands, please keep your International Driver s licence handy. Helmets are compulsory and yet seldom worn, but if caught without it, you will be charged accordingly.
Please remember that it is imperative to re-confirm your flight at least 72 hours prior to departure. Failure to do so will result in the automatic cancellation of your flight.
A suggestion from several passengers: If you enjoy your tea/coffee, take a small immersion heater (plus international adaptor set to make sure the electrical plug will fit), a mug, tea/coffee bags, sugar and milk powder/Cremora. Ordering coffee/tea from room service is expensive!
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Greece, Packages, Travel
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