Athens – The Capital of Greece

During the independence of Greece in 1830, Athens was a small town, with the size of a village. Now it is a great town with authentic look that is still fascinating. What makes it unique is the diversity of architectural styles, good people, sirtaki and the icy ouzo…all these things will spell you.

In Athens you cannot get bored, but you should take some time for an afternoon nap. In the summer time, between two and four in the afternoon, the killing Athenian sun shines mercilessly. That’s why the most appropriate time to travel to Greece is in the early autumn or late spring.

Athens is both the capital and the largest city in Greece. It is situated on Attica peninsula, in a relatively hilly area and is connected to Piraeus port.

Your trip with bus to Greece will not cost much. It is very comfortable and you will be able to see many places there. There are many hotels where you can stay for little money.

When you go to Athens you will have the chance to walk for hours and to try the delicious food of some of the small restaurants in the narrow streets. You can sit in one of the thousands cafes and taverns full of lanterns and musicians. Here is the paradise of the Greek salad, covered with olive oil and olives. In Piraeus, the port of Athens, you can find seaside taverns, where the most delicious thing is the seafood – fresh octopus, squid and fish and ouzo as an aperitif. At about nine or ten o’clock local people go to dinner, drink coffee or cocktails. If you decide to join the nightlife, one o’clock at night on Friday and Saturday is the right time.

It is clear that if you are on holiday in Athens, you will want to see some attractions of the town. You will find many new beauties there – from beautiful squares, monuments to taverns. It is better for you to get a map and to mark your route and put some red circles around the places you want to see. The historic center of Athens is the Acropolis (now a museum) with the Parthenon, the Propylaea, the Temple of Nike, Erechteum and others. This is definitely the place that you should visit. At the foot of the hill are located the theatre of Dionysus (5 century B.C.), the Temple of Olympian Zeus, the ancient necropolis, agora. Do not miss the political and cultural center, Academy of Sciences, the National Archaeological Museum, the National Gallery and the Museum of Byzantine art. The chief town square is Syntagma.

There is a great possibility that you will fall in love with Athens. It is really wonderful town and you will be amazed by all the sights there.

Read more about the beauty of Greece from this great article.

Mytilene Greece, the Capital City of Lesbos Island With Unique Ouzo

The capital city of the Greek island of

Lesbos, Mytilene or Mitilini Greece has always been a rich and fertile

place. Citizens could afford to participate in the

Trojan War; Then they began colonizing neighboring

areas. A long, varied, yet violent history has left

fascinating archaeological ruins. Today local

residents press their own olive oil, make their own

soap, and they make ouzo! Yes that’s right Greek ouzo

Mytilene Greece is the capital city of the Aegean island,

Lesbos produces of ouzo a lickerish like liqueur that turns white when water is added.. The city of Mitilini is surrounded by fertile farmlands.

To the northwest, there are mountains. The city has a

beautiful port, with frequent ferries to neighboring

islands. This city is home to the center of the Aegean University.

The whole island of Lesbos Greece was once called Mytilene.

The island was the kingdom of Makaras, who had 5

daughters and 4 sons. The cities of this Greek island were

named for these children. According to one legend,

King Lepithou married one of Makaras’ daughters. They

had a son named Lesvo. The island was named for him.

Or, possibly, Lesvos island was named Esvou, the

Phoenician word for seven.

Mytilene Greece has been civilized since 3000 BC. Siding

with Troy, Mytilene fought in the Trojan War. By the

Classical Age, Mytilene or Mitilini Greece was a major sea power with

ships traveling to Carthage and the Black Sea. Since

Mytilene had a large population and strong culture,

they began moving out and colonizing other areas.

Roman conquerors destroyed much of the island. After

that the island of Lesvos Greece passed from Byzantine to Saracen to

Turkish rule. After the Crusades, Lesvos island was given

to the Genoese, where the people lived fairly

peacefully until the invasion of the Ottoman Empire.

Freed in 1912, Mytilene the city, Lesbos the island joined Greece in 1923.

The Germans did take over the island for 3 years

during World War II. After the war, Mytilene or Lesvos island was free

again.

With this long and varied history, archaeologists have

uncovered a broad array of fascinating finds.

Scientists from the University of British Columbia

excavating a medieval castle, discovered the burial

chambers of the Gattelusi family. This was the

Genoese family that rules much of the north Aegean

region from the mid 1300’s through the 1400’s. They

also uncovered a vampire burial. The remains of a

middle aged man were found with spikes through his

neck, torso and ankles. This may have been associated

with an Ottoman cemetery that spanned many periods.

Deeper excavation revealed a substantial Roman

building. And from the Classical Greek period,

archaeologists uncovered a sanctuary dedicated to

Demeter and Kore.

Modern Mytilene offers concerts on Lesvos Greece, theatrical

performances, especially including those of the

ancient dramas. Here the people still press their own

olive oil. They manufacture their own soaps.

Lesvos Greece is home to distilleries. Grapes are

distilled in alcohol, and then warmed uniformly so

anise can be added. The end product is raki,

rakitzides, best known as ouzo, the famed Greek

liqueur that turns white when water is added.

Here are also a couple of more travel tips which can help you out while visiting Greece

by S Pappas greekinfo@gmail.com

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Capital of Greece, Athens, Is Known to Be One of The Most Outstanding Cities in The World

Greece is not only popular in the world for being one of the oldest countries, but is also popular for its diversified beauty. Visitors from all over the world flock to the country because of the various features it offers. Whichever field or sphere you consider, Greece sets itself better. Well, everything in Greece is thus, very properly handled and organized.

Athens holds a separate specialty and uniqueness in assessment to very unique and other attractive cities located in Greece. The capital of Greece is Athens which is also the largest city of the nation. The city offers an assortment of unique features, outstanding in its class, and considered to be very beautiful that enables it to attract vacationers. The implausible loveliness of the city is the primary reason for visit of a large number of tourists.

Tourist Information

Although, Athens is one of the oldest cities in the world, but the amenities are fully developed and is very well organized. The city is very old and has seen a lot of changes being taken in the world. Thus, the city is well made for its people.

There are plenty of places in the city of Athens that would make every one realize it.

In all parts of the world, Athens is recognized as the motherland of investigations based on the Archaeological field. The city is rich in architectures and memorial. From new creations of arts to enormous historical monuments, Athens has all. This is why the archaeological investigations can be carried on here very easily. Amongst all the cultures that existed till date, the Greek culture was totally up to date and one of the oldest cultures known till now. This is the key reason that Athens is said to be so special, because along with attractive features it also reflects the strong culture of its civilization.

The city of Athens is wealthy in both architectural monuments and modern day to day amenities. The city has a very well managed network of connection throughout with easily available means of transportation. There are parks and greenery all around the city, which helps in keeping the atmosphere clean and clear.

There are plenty means of connecting Athens with the major cities of the world. Thus, reaching Athens is very easy and one can reach here very easily and at ease. The city also offers excellent provision of housing that may differ in range so that it enables one to choose as according to the opportune of their budget.

Number of Tourist visiting every year

From different corners of the world, 6 million travelers visit Athens every year.

Background

Athens is highly prominent for being amongst the oldest cities of the world. This is what makes it rich in culture and tradition. The city also holds the background of being a part of the world’s most powerful kingdom. This city offers different kinds of amenities for large number of people and enjoys stable economy.

The signs of development in the country are beyond comparison.

History

Very old history is associated with the city of Athens. The city is said to be around 3400 years old, as per mentioned in the documents about the city. Human dwelling in the city is said to be around in between 11th to 7th millennium B.C., and this reality clearly indicates how old the city really is. In the beginning of 19th century, the city of Athens was declared as the capital city of Greece.

From that time onwards, it incepted to be one of the largest and most fashionable cities of Greece.

Climate

A hot summer Mediterranean type of climate is experienced by this city. From mid-October to mid-April, the city experiences rainfall. The rainfall is not very high in Athens and the prime reason of this is Athens being in the rain shadow region.

Population

Today, it is estimated that the city of Athens is a home of about 3,686,371 people.

Local Holidays

All together, the people of Athens experience 26 festivals in a year.

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A History of Greece as the Yachting Capital of the World

In 1969 Bill Lefakinis a Greek born and United States bred businessman envisioned a dream, which has since become a reality – Greece, The Yachting Capital of the World.

Bill left Greece at the early age of 13 to pursue a better life and future for himself and his family. Bill attended the Hackley School and The University of Pennsylvania Wharton School of Business on full scholarships and served in the US Army and the Greek Air Force. Having worked and traveled extensively as Chief Executive Officer of Filtrine International Co., Bill finally returned to Greece in 1969 where he started his own company, Valef Yachts.

At that time there were no marinas in Greece and only about 30 yachts, 20 of which were for private use. There was no national concept of the wealth Greece had to offer to the yachting world. Its unique history, civilization, hospitality, 4,000 islands and 13,000 miles of seashore (twice that of the USA where only 18% was yacht friendly compared to Greece’s 99%) made it most ideal for the world of yacht chartering. Bill, after realizing the immense potential of Greek yachting, went to work applying his know-how taken from his Greek and American business exposure. He convinced four of his friends to let him charter their yachts and after almost forty years of constant work, marketing, public relations, pressure to the various Greek Governments to promote this unique tourist feature that is second to NONE, Bill’s dedication finally paid off. Today, Greece has over 20,000 yachts for charter and for private use, and over 50 marinas. Valef Yachts became a successful and trusted company with offices in the states and in Greece. Bill began his company and single-handedly created a vision and a revolution in the yachting world in Greece with his motto since 1969 being, “Discover The Yachting World of Greece.”

To accomplish this, together with Panos Tsafos, Bill founded and presided over The Professional Yacht Owners Association, became Secretary General of the Hellenic Yacht Brokers Association and Consultants Association, and organized the Association of Greek Yacht Crews in order to coordinate efforts to improve yacht chartering in Greece. He also started a magazine called “Sea and Yachting” to enlighten Greeks about the beauty of their islands, their potential as well as the importance of participating in seawater sports. He constantly wrote caustic articles addressed to the Greek Government regarding their apathy about improving conditions and laws to govern properly professional yachting in Greece. Bill also became co-publisher of the English Daily Newspaper “Athens Mirror,” in 1971, became a member of the Foreign Press Association, The Greek Travel Agents Association, Hellenic American Chamber of Commerce, Greek Ship owner’s Club and many others.

In his efforts to promote Greece internationally, Bill brought the Miss Universe Contest to Greece in 1973 (it was the first time they held the competition overseas); movies James Bond in 1980 & 1983 and The Greek Tycoon; TV series The Love Boat in 1980, Heart to Heart, The Life Styles of the Rich and Famous with Robin Leach, The Evening Magazine (which featured Greece for one entire week), The Arthur Frommer Show, Eyes on LA, Canadian and Japanese Government television; magazines Playboy and Penthouse, Conde Nast’s “The Traveler” and dozens of other international TV shows, movies and magazines continuing to the present. Internationally noted personalities were brought to Greece by Bill to promote yachting. To name a few, Hugh Hefner and daughter Christina, Bob Cuccione, John and Bo Derek, John Wayne, Anthony Quinn, Christina Onassis, Baron Hans Heinrich von Thyssen, Patricia Gucci – fashion designer,

Claude Arpels – Van Cleef and Arpels jewellers,

Garavani Valentino – fashion designer, Max Fisher, John Clinton (Chairman of Dunhill and Rothman Group), Ernest Gallo, Giovanni-Yanelli of Fiat, Henry Ford II of Ford Motor Corporation, Roger Smith, ex-CEO of General Motors, ex-Chairman of the Board of Intercontinental Hotels Corp. Mr. Hans Sternik, ex-German President Richard Fon Weizsacker, internationally acclaimed cellist Mr. Rostropovich, Bruce Springsteen, Sting, John Denver, Kenny Rogers and Charlton Heston. He has been an advisor to the Greek National Tourist Organization, Greek Ministry of the Merchant Marine and member of the Greek Government’s Advisory Council for the Development of Greece, yachting marinas, and the yachting infrastructure.

In 1978, with the increasingly heavy air pollution in Athens and water pollution in the Hellenic Seas, Bill co-founded “PAKOE” (The Panhellenic Ecological Research Foundation) together with a group of volunteer scientists and doctors. As the Secretary General of the organization, he chartered airplanes and helicopters to take hundreds of air samples by University and Government scientists (including reporters abroad) to analyze the contents for air pollution around the Acropolis, Athens as well had several Valef Yachts with the same groups to test for water pollution in the seas. All evidence was confirmed by Government scientific laboratories and independent research centers. The high extent of pollution was widely published with articles, photos to all the media as well as full reports to the Greek Authorities including the President, Prime Minister and all parliamentary members. As a matter of fact, pollution was the main subject for the next year’s election. Now the Greek Seas are the cleanest in Europe according to the findings of the European Union and the air pollution has dropped dramatically, the Parthenon is protected and many laws have been made to protect the environment.

Bill and Kathy, his wife of 27 years; run the North American Headquarters of Valef Yachts and Bill travels frequently to the Greek headquarters always keeping his finger on the pulse of the market. Kathy and Bill met in 1978 while she was traveling in Greece. Within months they were married and moved to Greece where they settled and began working together. Kathy and Bill realized in 1981 the need to establish a USA North and South American Headquarters for more direct contact and more efficient response and information for potential clients. Running two offices half way around the world from each other keep Kathy and Bill quite busy.

In 1986 Bill, as President of Valef Yachts and President of the Yacht Owners Association, invited 200 American yacht brokers on 20 yachts to “Discover the Yachting World of Greece.” They went to many islands where mayors of the islands greeted all with parties and festivities and the famous Greek Easter was celebrated with the traditional roasted lamb on the fire and great fun was had by all.

Such hard work leads to an appreciation and understanding of a proper vacation. This has given them further insight into the development of the ultimate holiday vacation that caters that caters to the clients every desire. The personal touch and hands on approach offered by the yacht owners make chartering a luxury yacht with Valef Yachts a true pleasure.

Bill and Kathy’s two daughters, Alexandra and Kassandra, have spent numerous summers working in the yachting business, learning the ropes from the ground up. Having been brought up in both countries spending quality time in Europe and cruising the Aegean, they have a great head start in knowing Greece, what yachting is all about, and what the client ultimately desires. Alexandra and Kassandra both passionately work where Valef Yachts has its roots; and continue to infuse fresh energy into their family business and one of the first names in Greek Yachting.

Valef Yachts remains a company that continues to flourish, raise industry standards and client expectations while remaining firmly anchored in the ever-flourishing Greek yachting community. All of the above activities have finally helped establish Greece as the Center of the Yachting World!

submitted by Lee Ann Pughe