Greece is already open to Russians and is slowly increasing its momentum: since the end of March, the country has been receiving 4,000 of our compatriots every week. Now there are direct flights from Moscow only to Athens, but towards the end of spring it is planned to open flights to Thessaloniki and Heraklion (Crete).
There are enough restrictions for tourists for now: in addition to the standard PCR – a test for coronavirus and a QR code for entry, upon arrival you will have to spend 7 days in quarantine. Local authorities promise that by mid-May all these restrictions will be lifted. In the meantime, museums, restaurants and cafes are closed, and for walks you need to fill out a special form.
Climb Mount Olympus
If you arrive in Thessaloniki, be sure to plan an ascent to the sacred Mount Olympus. After all, everyone needs photos “I'm on top of Olympus”!
But seriously, this is one of the must see attractions in Greece – the most beautiful and highest point of the country. By the way, Olympus – it is not one mountain, but a mountain range with many peaks. To conquer it does not require special physical training or special equipment. Both pensioners and schoolchildren can climb Olympus.
Usually Olympus is conquered in 2 days. It happens like this: first you climb to the Prioni parking lot at an altitude of 1,100 m. You can get here:
- on foot,
- by rented car,
The trekking route to the summit starts from Prioni. In the middle of the route there is a shelter where most of the conquerors of Olympus stop for the night. After spending the night in 3-4 hours, you climb one of the three-thousander peaks (there are 3 in total) along a well-marked trail. And everything – you “took” Olympus!
You can conquer Olympus on your own, remembering the myths of ancient Greece, gods and heroes along the way, or by buying an author's tour to Greece with one of the guides who are in love with their work.
< strong>Important:On the peaks of Mount Olympus, snow stays almost until August, so don't forget warm clothes and gloves.
Explore non-beach Crete
The largest Greek island, Crete, is literally stuffed with sights. Inspect them in the summer – so-so occupation. Only in the Palace of Knossos, the very famous labyrinth of the Minotaur, hundreds (!) Buses with tourists come daily during the season. Don't forget about the temperature, which rarely drops below 30 °C in summer.
Spring – quite another matter: the sun is not yet merciless, there are few travelers, and the best guides are at your disposal. In addition to visiting historical sights and holy places, spring – ideal time for trekking in Crete.
Of the mandatory, we recommend getting to the impressive Samaria Gorge, located on the territory of the national park, a trip to the uninhabited island of Spinalonga, better known as the “leper island”, and see with your own eyes the cave of Zeus, where, according to legend, the god of thunder was born.
< p> It is possible to make a route independently or to try excursion rounds. For example, you can go on a week-long hike in the west of the island. Waiting for you:
- spend the night on the beaches,
- chic canyons,
- orange gardens,
- impressions of non-beach Crete that will last a lifetime.
Chill on the sea
When there is neither the strength nor the desire to conquer the mountains and see the sights, you can choose the relaxation option. Spring is perfect for this holiday. The temperature in April-May is about 20-25 °C, prices for hotels and apartments – pleasant, guides – who miss work and guests.
In spring, all of Greece blooms and literally immersed in greenery. Almond trees are blooming, at the foot of Mount Olympus – carpet of blooming poppies. Arrange for yourself leisurely walks along the coast, picnics at sunset on the beach, breathe in the iodized sea air and bask under the gentle spring sun. It's too early to swim, but chill near the sea in spring – priceless. Doubly priceless after a year of lockdown.
Back in May, the Greeks celebrate their main holiday – Easter. To be at Easter in Greece – special experience. The Greeks celebrate it noisily and on a grand scale: with fireworks, feasts, set festive tables from the city authorities and an atmosphere of universal joy.