Cities in Greece
Cheap Flights to Greece with Vayama starting at $ 503
Bordered by Albania, Macedonia, Bulgaria and Turkey, Greece is right at the edge of Europe tipping almost into the Asian continent with many of its islands far closer to Turkey than mainland Greece.
This means to the lucky visitor coming on holiday to Greece that many influences abound creating a country that has established European roots yet with a hint of Asian influence.
To explore the beauty and diversity of the Greek islands is one of the reasons why many people come to Greece. With hundreds of islands contained within seven island groups, there are lots to get around but do not worry if you feel you are missing out by not being on a certain island. You will almost certainly find what you are looking for whether you stay on one or, as many backpackers do, hop around the islands on a whim.
The main islands of Greece are Rhodes, Crete, Mykanos, Corfu, and Santorini, but if you do not want to follow the crowds, try Hydra where no cars are allowed, Kasos with its craggy peaks or Skyros that has a 13th century fortress.
For a livelier holiday in Greece, try Crete, the largest island of Greece and arguably the most naturally beautiful with mountain ranges, caves and the Samaria Gorge, the longest in Europe. Crete also has a buzzing nightlife, especially on the north coast where the main tourist areas are situated.
Athens is of course the main city of Greece being the capital, but there are many other delights of mainland Greece to be savoured. Thessaloniki, the second largest city in Greece, has a distinct character of its own with an ancient Turkish quarter and many museums. The Archaeological Museum displays artefacts from prehistoric Thessaloniki and the Museum of Ancient Greek & Byzantine Instruments shows exactly that, with instruments covering many centuries. For fantastic views over the city and surrounding area, climb up the White Tower, so called because it was whitewashed to expel remnants of its Turkish past when there had been massacres of prison inmates in the 19th century. There is also an old Turkish quarter in the town of Kavala, along the coast towards Bulgaria. One of Greeceâ€™s most attractive towns, it spills gently down the hillside into a good sized harbour.
The Turkish quarter is centred round the streets of Panagia and many of the pastel coloured houses are in better shape than their counterparts in Thessaloniki. There is also a large Byzantine fortress to be explored, as well as marvelling at the 18 domed Imaret which overlooks the harbour.
To taste a bit of Greece, try some ouzo with the locals. This intoxicating spirit is made from aniseed and might not be to everyoneâ€™s taste but it certainly gets you in the mood for a party! So if you fancy getting in the mood in Greece, check out Vayamaâ€™s offers on flights to Athens. You are sure to find something to please you and hopefully you will be flying to Greece before you know it!
Greek Etiquette Tips
Expect to eat a lot in Greece! Not only will you be expected to eat everything off your plate, but you should also compliment the chef by asking for seconds – even if you're stuffed!
You will find that Greece is a friendly place, very hospitable to guests, but it is still important to learn about their traditions and customs in order to blend in and respect Greece's heritage. Below are some more etiquette tips for your trip to Greece.
1. Dress Attire
- DO dress conservatively for business functions. Men may wear a nice, dark-colored suit, while women may wear a dark-colored dress or suit.
2. Table Manners
- DON'T sit down until told where to sit before eating.
- DON'T begin eating until the host starts.
- DON'T put your elbows on the table, but do keep your hands above the table.
- DO compliment the chef by asking for seconds.
- DO finish everything on your plate.
- DO give a toast if you are the host or the guest of honor. The host gives the first toast, and the guest of honor returns the toast later.
- DO put your fork and knife parallel on your plate with the handles facing to the right to indicate that you are done eating.
- DO share your food with your dining partners. They will likely do the same.
- DO keep your wine glass at least half full when you no longer want anymore wine.
- DO check the bill to see if the tip is included at a restaurant. Usually there is a 15% gratuity included. You may also wish to leave an additional tip on the table for those who bus the tables.
4. Gift Giving and Accepting Gifts
- DON'T spend a lot of money on a gift, because then the recipient might feel the need to spend a lot of money on you in return.
- DO wrap the present nicely.
- DO open your gift immediately.
- DON'T give knives as a gift.
5. Body Gestures
- DON'T make the "OK" sign with your hand. It's a vulgar gesture in Greece.
- DO be aware of how to indicate "yes" or "no" with body language, as it's different in Greece than in the U.S. "Yes" is a slight downward nod of the head, and "No" is a slight upward nod of the head.
- DO shake hands upon meeting someone. Shake hands with children, too!
- DO exchange hugs and kisses with women you are familiar with. Men will usually pat each other on the back or shoulder.
7. Visitors Etiquette
- DO bring a gift for your host. A nice host gift would be brandy, flowers, cakes, fruit, etc. If you want to give flowers, you may also have them sent in advance.
- DO take your shoes off upon entering a home.
8. Business Meeting
- DO understand that nepotism is acceptable and common in Greek business. You may do business with many different members of the same family.
- DO try to schedule a meeting 1 to 2 weeks in advance, and confirm the meeting by phone the day before.
- DON'T expect business to be conducted immediately. Sometimes it takes several meetings before any business is conducted at all. Your Greek business associates will want to get to know you first.
- DO have your information and business cards printed in Greek, and consider hiring an interpreter.
- DON'T be aloof, irritable, or angry at meetings.
- DO be patient. Business happens at a much slower pace in Greece.
9. Dance Etiquette
- DO join in with Greek dances! There are over a thousand types of folk dances in Greece, and many times at tourist restaurants and festivals people may invite you to join in. Many Greek dances are line dances.
- DO join at the back of the line, not the front, if you are a beginner.
- DO go behind the leader to learn the steps before joining the line if you're having trouble grasping the steps.
- DON'T worry about dance steps if you're doing the Zembekiko, which is "The Drunkard's Dance" or the Tsifteteli, which is a belly dance. Those aren't line dances, like many Greek dances are, so just hop on the dance floor and boogie!
Greeks tends to be very accommodating to visitors, but definitely keep in mind the above etiquette to respect your hosts. Have a safe and happy trip to Greece!
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