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Table of Content for greece2024:

More pages: April 2024 May 2024



2024/04/28 A few Sights from Athens Airport En Route To Nafplio
π 2024-04-28 01:01 in Greece2024, Ntrips

Flying to Athens from Turks and Caicos was not an easy routing, but I managed to make it work via Montreal and Munich, which nicely avoided having needlessly go back through the US and its unnecessary customs and immigration when you are not actually flying to the US. Canada thankfully does this better and had legit transit:

I remember YUL, but this time around, didn't enter the country
I remember YUL, but this time around, didn't enter the country

nicely done, they check where you come from and if you come from an untrustworthy country, you have to go through security again. Fair enough
nicely done, they check where you come from and if you come from an untrustworthy country, you have to go through security again. Fair enough

finally made it to the lounge
finally made it to the lounge

even got Poutine!
even got Poutine!

the Lufthansa plane was nice, but the flight was too short, barely enough time to sleep before landing in Munich
the Lufthansa plane was nice, but the flight was too short, barely enough time to sleep before landing in Munich

of course landed 1h late, with a 1h30 connection. I had to run through the airport to make my flight with 1mn to spare, and my luggage didn't make it
of course landed 1h late, with a 1h30 connection. I had to run through the airport to make my flight with 1mn to spare, and my luggage didn't make it

planey of snow in Munich still
planey of snow in Munich still

finally arriving in Athens, lots of Islands visible right away
finally arriving in Athens, lots of Islands visible right away

After landing in Athens, collecting the rental car, and filing paperwork for my luggage that Lufthansa of course failed to put on the last plane, ther ewas a bit of daylight to see some minor sights on the way to Nafplio (some would have been ok to visit, but since the overworking staff only worked until 15:30, that was not in the cards...).

The Corinth Canal, between 2 seas, while of more limited importance today, was hand dug apparently 2000 years ago by 6000 slaves and is a remarkable achievement. It was later re-opened 2 centuries ago, although today it does not serve a purpose anymore for bigger ships that can easily go around


that almost seems like a wonderful idea :)
that almost seems like a wonderful idea :)

you can see the sea on both sides, and it's the same level, so no locks needed
you can see the sea on both sides, and it's the same level, so no locks needed

We stopped at a few more minor archeological sites on the way that were all closed, but still able to get a peek:






not overachieving hours
not overachieving hours

looked inviting inside
looked inviting inside

fantastic view from up there
fantastic view from up there


After that 2nd stop, it was time to head to Nafplio to end a very very long day (considering the flights that took over 24H)

2024/04/29 Palamidi Fortress in Nafplio
π 2024-04-29 01:01 in Greece2024, Monuments
Nafplio has 2 fortresses, but Palamidi is hard to miss, you see it as soon as you arrive and it's lit up at night. It hangs impossibly on a steep and sideways hill, and it's a miracle and testiment to its construction that it is still standing today. It is built with multiple defense layers and the views from up ther are of course stellar:













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2024/04/29 Ancient Theatre at the Asclepieion of Epidaurus
π 2024-04-29 01:01 in Greece2024, Ntrips

It was a 30mn drive from Nafplio, and went early in the morning soon after it opened. Thankfully this was before tour busses arrived. It is not one of the most remarkable sites in Greece, but it has the best preserved ancient greek theatre to date. It is still used for performances today and the accoustics are fantastic, no microphone or amplification needed:





The grounds were wonderful at the time, but by now, unfortunately there isn't a lot left:



Of course it had a small museum with things that were found on site:


2024/04/29 Nafplio in a Day
π 2024-04-29 01:01 in Greece2024, Ntrips

I say "in a day" because Rick Steves recommended 2 days for it, including the 2 side trips, but actually all of it was easily doable in a day. I just elected to put Mycenae the next morning on the way out to save some useless driving, but it did easily fit at the end of the day thanks to its later opening hours (20:00)

Day started with a yummy breakfast made by the pension:


Next to the pension, there was a very nice orthodox church:





So the day started with a side trip to the Ancient Theatre at the Asclepieion of Epidaurus (click me for blog). Best preserved theatre in greece:


On the way, there was a store that sold pretty nice art:



After that, and finding a parking spot downtown, which was a tad challenging, managed to get to port just in time for a bi hourly boat to Bourtzi fortress:


lots of friendly cats everywhere
lots of friendly cats everywhere





Back in town, the city walk went by some small churches and minor museums:






museums closed quite early, some around 14:30, so getting an early morning was a good thing
museums closed quite early, some around 14:30, so getting an early morning was a good thing






After the bourtzi fortress in the water, the 2nd one was Akronafplia's Castle, which you could drive up to, but there is also an elevator to it:


nicer view from up there
nicer view from up there

even a cactus garden
even a cactus garden




more friendly cats ;)
more friendly cats ;)

you can see Palamidi from Akronafplia's walls
you can see Palamidi from Akronafplia's walls

a godo picture of Akronafplia from Palamidi
a godo picture of Akronafplia from Palamidi

You can't really see that fortress from the fortress itself, but it had great views. Of course, the most impressive one is clearly Palamidi Fortress (click me for blog), which you can hike up, but it's a long ass painful hike. I went with the 10mn drive around ;)



even better view from up there
even better view from up there

While this could have been pushed into the end of the first day, to get a bit of rest, a nice dinner, and avoid an extra hour of driving to Mycenae and back to Nafplio for the night, I moved Mycenae to the next morning on the drive out (click me for blog)

Nice dinner to end the day




While this could have been pushed into the end of the first day, to get a bit of rest, a nice dinner, and avoid an extra hour of driving to Mycenae and back to Nafplio for the night, I moved

  • Mycenae to the next morning on the drive out
  • and since there was some spare time, I chose to add Olympia, which was a fair drive away, but obviously historically significant
  • See more images for Nafplio in a Day
    2024/04/30 Mycenae Near Nafplio
    π 2024-04-30 01:01 in Greece2024, Ntrips

    The 2nd worthwhile sidetrip from Nafplio was to go see Mycenae, and it was conveniently located on the drive out of Nafplio when I realized that I had already done everything in one day, and it would make sense to push to Olympia instead of going back to Athens directly.
    Got there bright and early soon after it opened, and got to learn about the Myceanaean culture, which predated the greeks by about a thousand years:




























    That was an interesing 1.5H+ visit, and then time to drive to Olympia, a longish 3h+ drive...

    The Athens Archeological Museum had a good amount of artifacts from this location, including a nice overview:


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    2024/04/30 Long Side Trip to Olympia
    π 2024-04-30 01:01 in Greece2024, Ntrips

    After being ahead in Nafplio (1 day instead of 2), I realized that it was possible to add a long day trip to Olympia, so I did the drive there after finishing Mycenae. It was a somewhat painful 3H+ drive there from Nafplio and a bit longer back to Athens. It is true that by today's standards, it looks small and underwhelming, but it was still very much worth seeing. Thankfully it was just late enough in the season that the sightseeing times had moved from 15:30 to 20:00, making the side trip feasible and worthwhile.

    The museum of the olympic games, was a good place to start and the archeological museum was next:








    lots of things found in excavations
    lots of things found in excavations





    This is what the original amphitheatre that was used for over 1000 years, looked like. Yes, it's small and underwhelming compared to Roman theatres ;)


    of course the area had fancy buildings which are now mostly gone
    of course the area had fancy buildings which are now mostly gone

    The archeological tour, showed what was left. Nothing much, if anything, had been restored








    The tour ends with the arch to the main arena:


    it looks quite flat
    it looks quite flat

    I went to compete for the original 2000+ years old olympics
    I went to compete for the original 2000+ years old olympics

    It would have been nice if more had been restored, but even as is, it's a nice and peaceful area:


    Before driving out, a quick stop in town to visit the very good Archimedes museum, showing all the excellent work he did, arguably one of the top geniuses of the world until Leonardo de Vinci, up to 1500 years later. He was sadly and mistakenly killed by a roman soldier. What a loss...





    After leaving Mycenae around 11:00, arriving at Olympia around 14:00, the tour visit was mostly over 3H later, and with a 3.5H drive to Athens to return the rental car in time by 21:00:


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