Eternal Greece Ltd

Archaeology in Eastern Attica for foodies – Vravron, Thorikos and the Temple of Poseidon at Cape Sounion

  • thorikos Eternal Greece Ltd
  • vravron Eternal Greece Ltd

Τhree of the most fabulous and important archaeological sites of Eastern Attica: Vravron, Thorikos and the temple of Poseidon at Cape Sounion accompanied with irresistible local...

Introduction

This same-day programme focusses on three of the most important archaeological sites of Eastern Attica: Vravron, Thorikos and the temple of Poseidon (Neptune) at Cape Sounion.

It also gives participants the opportunity to see some of the most fantastic inland and coastal scenery of Attica whilst savouring top-notch local cuisine and wine, true to the tradition of ancient Greek symposia.

The tour is accompanied by a licenced guide-archaeologist and includes irresistible food at a picturesque taverna featuring fabulous dishes.

Itinerary

The day is off to an early start with our visit to Vravron, with its delightful museum and celebrated, open-air archaeological site. This coastal location, in such a tranquil setting next to the Vravron Wetlands nature reserve, was actually occupied from as far back as the Early Bronze Age. The sanctuary is said to be the place where Agamemnon’s daughter, Iphigenia, with her brother Orestes, allegedly sought refuge after Artemis spared her from sacrifice by her father before the Trojan War. While the site is easy to reach by car now, just imagine how, on a four-yearly basis in ancient times, a procession of worshippers, especially women and children, would walk or ride from Athens along the sacred road to this sanctuary to take part in the Arkteia (little bears) festival.

Our visit to the site and the adjacent Archaeological Museum of Vravron will shed more light on the history of the cult of Artemis and give us a first-hand impression of what drew ancient peoples to settle and worship the goddess here.

We then proceed south-east to Thorikos, inhabited since the 5th millenium BC and subsequently an important fortified city guarding the all-important regional silver mines which enabled Athens to become the great maritime and geopolitical time that it was during its apogee. Notable are the 5th-century BC theatre with its unusual rectangular orchestra as well as the remnants of tombs dating back to the Mycenaean period,  ‘the  industrial quarter’ of Thorikos and the traces of houses, gateways and fortification walls.

Following a hearty and delicious meal at our hand-picked venue, we return to Athens via Cape Sounion and its celebrated temple perched on the final promontory of Attica and of mainland Greece, jutting into the Aegean Sea as would befit mighty Poseidon (Neptune), the god of the Sea of the Hellenic pantheon and patron deity of this superb temple.

Our return route will follow the coastal road of the Athenian Riviera and the fabulous views it affords.

Day’s total driving distance and indicative time: 162 km (101 mi) / 3 hours and 11 minutes. Routeing, distance and time subject to change depending on external factors.

Are you more independent-minded?
This programme is also available in a self-drive version!
Find out more on Self-Drive Tours

Map

Included

  • Air-conditioned minibus or coach
  • Tour leader and licenced guide
  • Lunch
  • Entry tickets to archaeological sites and museums
  • Pick from and return to central Athens hotel or agreed meeting point

Not Included

  • Tips and gratuities to driver, guide and at taverna
  • Travel insurance

Points to note

The tour is accompanied by an expert, licensed guide who is fluent in English. Transport is by air-conditioned coach and lunch will take place at a picturesque seaside location and restaurant gratuities.

The programme does not include flights to and from Greece and personal travel insurance. An example of how to obtain travel insurance can be found here.

Good and comfortable walking gear is a must. As the tours take place nearly all the year, waterproofs in non-summer months are recommended, even though they may well prove unnecessary. As the safety and comfort of all our travellers are of paramount importance to us, we might need to adjust at our sole responsible discretion the routeing and/or the activities should weather or other conditions so dictate.

The final applicable price will depend on the number of participants of the tour.

Testimonials

  • We travelled through the Peloponnese with the Fortress Study Group on a 10 day tour organized by Eternal Greece Ltd. We visited a mix of sites from classical and pre-history, through Venetian and Ottoman times. This mix gave us a picture of the breadth of Greek history instead of just a single slice of time which we much appreciated. We had an excellent archaeologist guide and an excellent driver.

    Eric Cauchi, the proprietor of Eternal Greece, travelled with us as the tour director and trouble-shooter in chief. His own passion for archaeology and for his country added to the trip experience. The hotels he booked for us were excellent, all very clean and comfortable, with friendly staff and most on the sea with beautiful views. The restaurants he selected for our meals served delicious traditional Greek food family style, far superior to what one might expect for a group meal.

    Having never been to Greece before, we came into Athens 4 days early. We had many pre-trip questions which Eric always answered very promptly. He assisted us with several aspects of our planning before we set foot in Greece. He booked an Athens hotel in an excellent location for us and arranged airport transports which worked perfectly. When we decided to do a day-trip to Delphi and asked if he could recommend some companies for us to contact, he responded with the name and cost of a group tour company with pros/cons and the offer of arranging a private driver and guide for us with pros/cons. He also offered to, and subsequently did, email the rest of the group participants to see if anyone might be interested in sharing the private tour to bring down the costs. The driver and guide Eric arranged were very professional, tailored the day to our interests, and made the day a wonderful memory for us.

    When, as part of our planning, we decided that we might like to use our free time on the last evening of the Peloponnese tour to see an additional site some distance away from our hotel on our own, we emailed Eric to enquire as to whether time-wise this might be feasible and if we would have trouble finding a taxi to take us and wait. Eric advised that renting a car would be better. We expressed concern about finding a car rental place that would be open till 9:00 p.m. on a Sunday evening. Eric responded within hours with contact information for a rental location around the corner from our hotel that would be open till 9 p.m.

    Eric’s level of service was superb. We would travel again on a trip arranged by Eternal Greece and we definitely recommend Eternal Greece.

    Summerclouds053117
  • Dear Eric,

    Thank you so much for all the work you put in to organise such a wonderful trip. The time has flown and I thoroughly enjoyed it. I hope to come across Eternal Greece again.

    Pamela M.
  • Dear Eric,

    Hope I am not disturbing you from your well-deserved slumbers, but just to thank you so much for organising an excellent programme for the FSG and looking after everyone so well.

    I hope our paths meet again some time.

    Richard A.
  • Dear Eric, it was a pleasure meeting you and Ken and of course Romylos and Argyris. In the rather hurried disembarkation from the bus on Monday I did not have the opportunity to thank you properly for organising such an excellent tour. The sites were well chosen and I think we all understood that on some occasions long coach journeys were unavoidable but worth it. This was my first visit to Greece and I thoroughly enjoyed every bit of it.

    I hope we have the opportunity to meet again.

    Bill C.
  • Thank you for a splendid tour. It was more “archaeological” than our usual tours, but the sites themselves and the mythology that went with them made for a great few days.

    I hope that FSG and yourself can organize another tour of Greece in the near future. In fact I look forward to the possibility.

    Martyn G.