Beyond Athens

This article covers several destinations in Peloponnese and Attica that can be explored on day trips from Athens.
Hosios Loukas Monastery

The archaeological site of Delphi ♥♥ (Δελφοί) is among the most important historical sites in Greece recognized by UNESCO. There are several impressive column ensembles, one fully standing temple, a theater, and a lot of ruins, all on successive terraces of a mountain. You can keep climbing to the stadium and beyond. The onsite museum undoubtedly has a remarkable collection of artifacts.

A few kilometers from the village of Steiri, the monastery of Hosios Loukas ♥♥♥ (Ιερά Μονή Οσίου Λουκά) is a beautiful UNESCO World Heritage-recognized property. There are wonderful mosaics, beautiful architecture, and a lot of insight into the workings of a monastery. Limited hiking on surrounding forest mountain paths is possible as part of the visit. A local products shop and a leafy terrace overlooking the valley below complete the ensemble.

Galaxidi ♥ (Γαλαξίδι) is a nice-looking village on a bay in the Gulf of Corinth. Kalafatis Beach ♥ at the northern edge of Galaxidi hugs a calm, shallow, and warm bay with slightly more acidic water; umbrellas, changing booths, showers, a playground, and a café are all onsite.

The archaeological site at Mycenae ♥♥ (Μυκήνες) on the Peloponnese peninsula is comparatively compact and is basically all ruins, with just a few partial walls and a couple of gates standing. Not surprising, since it is 3,500 years old. Some impressive fragments for the connoisseurs. For kids who like to climb and jump on rocks, it is a veritable playground. The onsite museum is not too big but has a remarkable and well-displayed collection of artifacts.

On the road to and from Napflio, we drove by the archaeological site at Tyrins (Τίρυνθα), which is joined with Mycenae on UNESCO World Heritage recognition. It is certainly less popular with visitors.

The seaside town of Nafplion ♥ (Ναύπλιο) is somewhat touristy but not without charms or picturesque corners. Karathona Beach ♥♥ is a few kilometers south of Nafplion; long and sandy, with shallow, calm, and warm waters. There are several umbrella sections, some for direct hire, others paid for by ordering drinks at the beachside cafés.

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