What’s Greece recognized for? | Intrepid Journey Weblog

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Yearly, hundreds of travellers from everywhere in the world flock to Greece every summer season in quest of solar, sand, and journey – and why wouldn’t you? With its idyllic islands, historical historical past, and mouthwatering delicacies, a vacation to Greece guarantees enjoyable experiences and unforgettable reminiscences.

However whereas glittering sandy seashores, limitless turquoise water, and winding streets guarded by white-washed, blue-domed buildings may be a number of the first issues that come to thoughts when picturing the Mediterranean nation, Greece is definitely a lot greater than that with its roots in world significance going again centuries.

Whether or not you’re captivated by the gorgeous language, transfixed by tales of gods and their heroics, or fascinated by the ruins of sacred locations, we’ve put collectively an inventory of the 11 issues this magical nation is understood for thus you may cease researching Greece and truly begin experiencing it.

1.      Democracy

An old image of a democratic hearing in ancient Greece

Main the best way when it got here to self-rule authorities within the historical world, the Greeks had been the primary ones to create a democracy and used bits of damaged pottery as voting ballots when electing new representatives. Growing within the fifth century BC in Athens, democracy gave a voice to the folks and demonstrated that peace may very well be achieved when transferring energy and that there was no want for violent uprisings or revolutions.

Invented by a person named Cleisthenes (also called “The Father of Democracy”), democracy enabled true residents of Athens to vote on issues reminiscent of passing legal guidelines and authorities representatives. And whereas the fashionable concept of democracy seems to be a little bit totally different, we’ve got the traditional Greeks to thank for the ordered and honest approach most nations are dominated by at the moment.

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2.      Delicacies

Octopus cooked to perfection, plated on a bed of lettuce with a lemon wedge on the side.

Some folks journey to Greece purely for its conventional meals, and with good purpose. Greek delicacies takes its influences from the remainder of the Mediterranean with meals that closely characteristic seafood, grilled meats, cheese, contemporary greens, olives, and olive oil. Thought-about to be a reasonably wholesome and easy approach of consuming, historical Greeks ate by the use of the seasons, counting on bread dipped in olive oil, beans, and different greens to maintain them all year long.

These days, Greek meals has diversified and might be loved all 12 months spherical. Some fashionable dishes embody gyro (meat and greens topped with tzatziki and wrapped in pita bread), kleftiko (a lamb dish served with greens), keftedes (seasoned meatballs), saganaki (pan-fried or grilled cheese), and spanakopita (savoury pastry full of feta cheese and onions).

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3.      Philosophy

A stone statue of an Ancient Greek philosopher with blue sky in the background.

Whereas many historical Greeks believed the world was created by the gods, it wasn’t till the sixth Century BCE {that a} new line of pondering was urged and circulated, and the time period “philosophy” was born. Philosophy centered round pondering with purpose on a variety of subjects together with astrology, politics, arithmetic, and ethics.

Greece had many well-known philosophers through the years and stay a number of the most influential figures in philosophy and science to this present day, serving to to create trendy civilization as we now comprehend it. These well-known philosophers embody Pythagoras of Samos (the inventor of the Pythagorean Theorem), Socrates (a founding father of philosophy), Plato (Socrates’ pupil), Aristotle (trainer of Alexander the Nice), and Democritus (an advocate for liberty and equality).

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4.      The Greek Islands

Houses and buildings along the crystal-clear waters edge on an island in Greece.

We are able to’t make an inventory of the issues Greece is most recognized for and never embody its breathtaking islands. Featured on postcards, journey blogs, and Instagram profiles the world over, Greece’s islands are actually one thing else.

Whether or not you fancy swimming by crystal-clear water, exploring secluded seashores, having fun with a cocktail or two whereas watching the sundown or wandering by historical cities filled with fascinating historical past, the Greek Islands have a little bit one thing for everybody.

Should you don’t thoughts sharing the unimaginable surroundings of Greece’s hottest islands with hundreds of different travellers then you must go to Mykonos, Santorini, and Crete. However, if a slower-paced, laidback island vibe is extra your factor, journey across the smaller and fewer populated islands of Paros, Milos, and Thasos.

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5.      Mythology

A painting depicting sacrifices to the Greek gods.

Should you grew up watching Disney’s 1997 animated movie Hercules like everybody else did, then you definately’ll perceive how fascinating the tales of Greek mythology are. Depicting gods, goddesses, and on a regular basis heroes in battle, performing rituals, and sacrificial practices, these myths had been seen as a form of faith by the traditional Greeks and had been advised as a technique to make sense of the origin and nature of the world.

Whether or not you acknowledge the names of gods reminiscent of Zeus (god of thunder), Apollo (god of solar and light-weight), and Poseidon (god of the ocean) from varied Hollywood films through the years otherwise you bear in mind studying up on Achilles and Odysseus from Homer’s epic assortment of poems the Iliad and the Odyssey in school, there’s little doubt these fascinating mythological tales have influenced trendy western tradition, arts, and literature to this present day.

And the truth that these tales have survived by the centuries to carry relevance and significance in at the moment’s society is fairly cool.

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6.      Language

Traditional Greek engravings in stone.

The traditional Greeks had been one of many oldest civilizations on Earth and the identical might be stated for the Greek language. Claiming the title of one of many first Indo-European languages ever written, the Greek language is an enchanting one with the longest historical past of alphabetic graphology ever recorded. However make no mistake, the Greek language isn’t simple to study.

The Greek language has three genders (male, feminine, and impartial) so remembering the right type of a specific phrase is usually a nightmare. It’s additionally not carefully associated to some other world language, particularly English, so good luck attempting to determine tips on how to pronounce phrases reminiscent of ‘Can I pay with a bank card?’ (Μπορώ Να Πληρώσω Με Πιστωτική Κάρτα) and ‘how lengthy to get to the airport?’ (Πόσο Μακριά Είναι Το Αεροδρόμιο).

Whereas mastering the Greek language may be extraordinarily tough, it’s additionally extraordinarily satisfying so taking the outing to study some helpful phrases and phrases earlier than your Greek journey begins will certainly come in useful.

7.      Historic ruins

The majestic structure of the Acropolis in Athens against a brilliant blue sky.

So far as historical civilizations go, the Greeks are up there with the oldest of them and while you’re arising with concepts reminiscent of democracy and philosophy, you’re certain to depart tons of of sacred locations and historic websites which have seen political battles, cultural practices, and centuries of prayers in your wake.

From the ruins of the Acropolis in Athens to the traditional metropolis of Kamiros alongside the northwest coast of Rhodes, Greek is a historical past lover’s dream. Wander the Parthenon, constructed for Athena (the goddess of knowledge) within the fifth century BC, stare up on the columned temples seen on the Acropolis of Rhodes, and discover the Palace of the Grand Grasp with its medieval type structure, museums, and exhibitions.  

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8.      Ouzo

A group of travellers raising a toast with shot glasses filled with ouzo.

Greece, and extra particularly Mykonos and Santorini, is understood to have a wild and pulsating nightlife however you may’t have an electrical nightlife scene with out the alcohol to match. That’s the place ouzo is available in. Mentioned to have originated within the 14th century by a gaggle of monks on Mount Athos, this fashionable aperitif is extensively consumed throughout Greece and is used as a toasting drink to have a good time particular events.

Described as dry and anise-flavoured, ouzo will certainly put hair in your chest due to its rectified spirit standing (a extremely concentrated and purified ethanol) and is often served with contemporary fish, olives, and feta cheese. If you wish to study as a lot as you may about this solely Greek product, go to the ouzo museum or the ouzo distillery in Plomari in Lesbos.

9.      Monasteries

The clifftop monastery of Meteora with the village below and mountains in the distance.

Greece boasts a wealthy, non secular historical past and one of many methods to bodily see how necessary faith was to the traditional Greeks – and study extra about their historical practices and rituals – is thru the various monasteries scattered across the nation. Usually constructed on steep cliffs and rocky slopes in mountainous areas in order that they had been nearer to God, these monasteries had been used as locations of meditation, providing a simplistic and sacred haven by which to hope.

Whether or not you wish to set your sights on the majestic monasteries of Meteora perched on large, vertical rocks, make your approach across the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Hosios Loukas Holy Monastery in Distomo, or marvel on the distinct structure and holy ambiance of the Megalo Spileo Monastery in Kalavryta, Greece isn’t quick on breathtaking monasteries so that you can discover.

10.  Structure

White-washed and blue-domed houses on the side of a mountain on a Greek island.

Whereas Greece’s pure magnificence can’t be denied, this nation’s artifical magnificence can be one thing to ooh and aah over due to the distinctive and distinctive type of structure its buildings, locations of worship, and homes had been in-built. That includes kinds reminiscent of Doric, Ionic, and Corinthian (assume stone columns and ornate capitals), Greek structure was deliberate round logic and order with each little element having a particular perform.

If you wish to admire Greek structure in all its glory, go to the Temple of Olympian Zeus in Athens, the Odeon of Herodes Atticus within the Acropolis, the Temple of Artemis in Corfu, and the Stoa of Attalos in Agora. Oh, and you must catch a glimpse of the white-washed and blue-domed homes present in most cities in Greece. It’s merely a ceremony of passage.

11.  The Olympic Video games

Woman biting an Olympic gold medal after winning a track event.

We may be glued to our screens when the fashionable Olympic Video games roll round each 4 years, however do you truly understand how, when, and the place it began? We’ve already talked about mythology and its spot in historical Greek civilization however it’s due to Zeus that the primary Olympic Video games had been ever held in 776 BC.

What started as a technique to honour the god of thunder quickly turned a approach for Greece’s most gifted athletes to return collectively and take part in a contest that will be celebrated for hundreds of years till it was deemed to be a pagan spectacle by the then Emperor of Byzantium Theodosius.

However these Olympic Video games appeared rather a lot totally different to those we watch at the moment with creative competitions that includes sculptors and poets, tethrippon – a carriage race run with 4 horses – and pankration (an attention-grabbing mixture of boxing and wrestling) all a part of this system. 

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