Mount Athos is a self-governing part of the Greek State, located on the peninsula of Mount Athos in Chalkidiki, Macedonia. It includes the twenty Holy Monasteries, their parts and various shops and services. There are 20 monasteries on Mount Athos that are forbidden to fluctuate. They are large complex buildings surrounded by a strong wall with the main feature of the Tower with the ramparts and the loopholes that helped to remove the pirates and conquerors in the coastal monasteries. We have two types of monasteries: a) The Basilicas, so called because either because they were founded by order and assistance of the Byzantine emperors or because it was ratified by an imperial gold bullion, b) the Patriarchal and Stavropegian ones because they were associated with the Patriarchate of Constantinople which took over more supervision of them (Patriarchal) and from the cross placed by the Patriarch or a bishop on the foundations before their Establishment (Stavropegian).
Amphipolis was an ancient city built in eastern Macedonia, on the banks of the river Struma River, in the place of a city that was formerly called Nine Roads or very close to it.
Amphipolis was founded by Athenians in 437 BC. with the aim of controlling the mines of Thrace, but passed into the hands of the Spartans during the first phase of the Peloponnesian War, in the period 431-421 BC.
The Archaeological Museum of Amphipolis has exhibits of the area from prehistoric times to the Byzantine period.
Vergina is a small town in Macedonia, in the Prefecture of Imathia, which administratively belongs to the region of Central Macedonia. It is located 13 km southeast of Veria, the capital of the prefecture, and about 80 km southwest of Thessaloniki. The town has a population of about 2,000 and is located at the foot of the Pieria Mountains, at an altitude of 120 meters above sea level. The town is believed to be located in the site of ancient Aigai, the capital of ancient Macedonia, and became world famous in 1977, when the University of Aristotle University, under archeology professor Manolis Andronikos and his associates, discovered the burial sites of the Macedonian kings. among the other tombs and a burial monument which, according to Andronikos’ argument, belonged to King Philip II, father of Alexander the Great. The discovery of these finds is considered by many to have confirmed the location of the ancient city of Aigai, the first capital of the Macedonian kingdom.
Ancient Dion is an archeological site of the ruins of the ancient city of Macedonia, on the border of Thessaly near Thermaikos and the river Aliakmonas. It is said that it took its name from the temple of Zeus, the foundations of which can be seen today near the temple of Isis.
Of the other two cities with the same name, one is located on the Halkidiki peninsula and in Strymonikos gulf and the second in Euboea, at Cape Kinaion near Diades, Athens. The Archaeological Museum, built in 1983, houses their mobile finds excavations. It is located in the modern settlement of Dion, at a distance of 500 m from the entrance of the archeological site.
Alistratis Cave is one of the largest caves in Europe. Its rich decoration includes, in addition to huge stalactites and stalagmites in various colors and the rare eccentrics. Eccentrics or elitists are rare formations that are created by “defying” the laws of gravity and following irregular paths. The main feature of this cave – which makes it unique in Greece – the very large variety of eccentrics. It is also characterized by the unique microscopic organisms (3 mm) found within it, such as Alistratia Beroni, a unique species of isopod. Visitable corridors are about 3 km long. The cave belongs to the network of caves of the gorge of the river Aggitis together with four other well-known caves. Alistratis Cave is 6 km southwest of the town of Alistrati in Serres, in the place “Petroto” and is accessible both from Drama and Kavala, and from Thessaloniki (via Serres or Asprovalta). It has been used and is open to the public since 1998.
Thessaloniki is the second largest and most populous city in Greece. It is the seat of the homonymous municipality, of the homonymous regional unit of the Region of Central Macedonia and of the Decentralized Administration of Macedonia – Thrace. . Since 1912, with the end of the Balkan Wars and the integration of the region into the modern Greek State, Thessaloniki is the second most populous city in Greece. It is often referred to as the co-capital of Greece. The founding of the city in the Hellenistic era coincides with a critical phase in the history of the Macedonian Kingdom, which begins with the untimely death of Alexander the Great and with the claim of the throne of the Macedonian king by his descendants. General Cassander, in order to claim the throne of Macedonia, married the half-sister of Alexander the Great, Thessaloniki, in whose honor he founded the city, uniting 26 citizens, who were around the Thermaic Gulf.
LOUTRAKI OF ARIDAIA (LOUTRA POZAR)
In Loutraki, Pella prefecture, 13 km west of Aridea, there are the mineral springs Loutra Loutrakiou or Loutra Pozar that gush at a temperature of 37 ° C, with a remarkable chemical composition. Hot water has a healing effect and is drinkable. Visitors use it for bath therapy, posotherapy, toning and relaxation. A complex of about 15 caves has been discovered in the area, with numerous finds from prehistoric times, which are exhibited in the small museum of Loutra. The area has been declared a cave park (Almopia Cave Park) and is the first of its kind in Greece.
Meteora is a complex of huge dark sandstone cliffs that rise outside Kalambaka, near the first hills of Pindos and Hasia. The monasteries of Meteora, which are built on the tops of some of the rocks, are today the second most important monastic complex in Greece, after Mount Athos. Of the thirty that have been historic, only six are currently in operation, which, since 1988, have been included in the UNESCO World Heritage List. The average altitude is 313 meters. Studies show that rocks formed about 65 million years ago during the Paleogene Period. Disintegration, erosion and earthquakes then gave them their current shape. The name Meteora is attributed to the owner of the monastery of Megalo Meteoro, Agios Athanasios Meteoritis, who named “Meteor” Platy Lithos, which he first climbed in 1344.
THE WATERFALLS OF EDESSA
Edessa could not be called a city of water without the famous Waterfalls the largest in all of the Balkans. Edessa Waterfalls are located on the edge of a cliff in a unique water park sculpted by the water called ‘eyebrow of the city’ with 11 waterfalls. The two are large, visible, visitable and offer a unique atmosphere of the power of nature, creating the myth of the water state. The Waterfall Geopark extends over an area of over 100,000 square meters and a route on the rock for 1.1 km. Very close to the city center is the main attraction for visitors and one of the most important attractions in Greece. Here the Waterfall Park offers open recreation and meeting places for everyone.
The city of Pella (Ancient Pella as well) is built on a hill at a distance of one kilometer from the road artery Thessaloniki – Edessa and the archeological site and 7 km from Giannitsa. To the south of the road is the fertile plain that emerged from the drying up of the London Lake or Lake Giannitsa by the American Foundation Company between the years 1927-1937. Pella has an area of about 3 sq. Km. and a population of 2450 inhabitants. Many are the name of the city founded by Archelaus around 400 BC. During the Byzantine and Ottoman empires its name was changed to “Holy Apostles” and was known as Postol. In 1936 it was renamed.
Olympus is the highest mountain in Greece known worldwide mainly for its mythological context, as at its top (Mytikas-2,918 m.) Lived the Twelve “Olympian” Gods according to the religion of the ancient Greeks. It is also the second highest mountain in the Balkans (after Rila in Bulgaria), but also in the whole of Europe from the Alps to the Caucasus. Organized mountain shelters with a variety of mountaineering and climbing routes are available to visitors who want to explore its beauties. The classic starting point is the town of Litochoro at the eastern foot of the mountain, 100 km from Thessaloniki, where the Olympus Mountaineering Marathon ends at the beginning of each summer.
The enchanting Chalkidiki peninsula, reminiscent of Poseidon’s trident, is located in the south of Thessaloniki and consists of three smaller peninsulas, Kassandra, Sithonia and Mount Athos. Polygyros is the capital of Chalkidiki, where the transfer takes place by road, while the nearest airport is “Macedonia” in Thessaloniki. Chalkidiki has variety and diversity so that even the most demanding visitor is not dissatisfied. “Tasty” corners with traditional delicacies in all the remarkable villages in terms of architecture, idyllic coves and islands, amazing archeological sites and a unique cave, intense nightlife, endless elements of the image of the beach and only clear blue peninsula.