Beyond Athens

Mycenae and Nafplio out of the ordinary

This corner of Greece is alive in legend, myth, traditional crafts and history!

Duration

full day (11 hours)

When

Mon-Sun (private), Mon-Wed-Fri (shared)

Languages

english, french

Price

€130per person

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The haunting landscape of ancient Mycenae isn’t far from Nafplio, the castle-crowned harbour town that served as Greece’s first capital, so we’ll take you to both. After soaking up Mycenae’s ancient dark and tragic atmosphere, you’ll see a different side of Nafplio when you visit a range of active craftspeople, whose art dates back hundreds of years.

Looking for a Private Tour?

We offer all our tours as private and are happy to customize them for you!

Highlights

  • Walk through history and legend in the ancient city of Mycenae, with its legendary Lion Gate and the Tomb of Agamemnon, a beehive structure from 1500BC
  • Visit the charming seaside port of Nafplio, the first capital of modern Greece, with its soaring castle walls and its beautiful waterfront
  • Watch modern artisans, including potters and weavers, work their crafts in the traditional fashion, explaining as they create
  • Eat local specialties for lunch at one of Nafplio’s trendiest tavernas

What you can expect

A tour unlike the standard day trips to Mycenae and Nafplio

In a remarkably dramatic landscape in the northeast of the Peloponnese, the fabled Homeric city of Mycenae, A UNESCO World Heritage Site and the capital of one of the oldest civilizations in the world, stands covered in the dust of millennia.

Here, you’ll walk under the famed Lion Gate to enter ruins that are part history, part myth. Mycenae was home to the cursed House of Atreus, its members sentenced by the gods to suffer. And suffer they did. It was here (spoiler alert!) that King Agamemnon, hero of the Trojan War, was killed by his wife Clytemnestra. The Tomb of Agamemnon, an amazing structure more than three thousand years old, is where famed archaeologist Heinrich Schliemann uncovered the magnificent Mask of Agamemnon, a funeral mask made entirely of gold. There’s a museum here, too, with artifacts recovered from the immediate area. The whole site is moving, mysterious and incredibly old, even by Greek standards, and you’ll see it all and hear every story from your guide.

From Mycenae, you’ll head to Nafplio, with its towering fortifications. This low-key harbor town was in fact the first capital of the country. Its rich past and a great position on a wide bay has made it an important port for much of its history. You can see this in the medieval walls high on Palamidi Hill above the town and in the amazing fort that sits right in the middle of the harbour, but you can also see it in the 19th-century buildings scattered around the town.

In Nafplio, you’ll explore the town’s defenses and visit a variety of craftspeople, including a potter and a weaver, getting the chance to watch them at work and see what their crafts still have in common with the products of those ancient artisans whose work you will have seen earlier in the museum at Mycenae. As in the visit to that ancient site, this part of the tour involves a kind of time-travel because in many ways, the production methods you’ll be seeing in these studio spaces are closer to those practiced in the time of Agamemnon than to those in contemporary automated manufacturing plants. You’ll see a number of other commercial ventures; a local distillery, a shop where pasta is made by hand the old-fashioned way, and a sweet-shop where the traditional almond sweets are still made the way they were generations ago.

Your visit to this historic town will also include a scrumptious lunch at one of Nafplio's trendiest hidden taverns, serving probably the best food in town. 

On the way back to Athens, you will also make a short stop at the Corinth Canal, to admire the narrow Isthmus of Corinth that separates the Peloponnese from the Greek mainland.

In the end of this tour we hope you will have a better understanding of the links that unite the ancient past with life and people in the South of Greece today.

Itinerary

  • Transfer by private a/c vehicle from Athens to Mycenae 
  • Guided walk to the site and museum of ancient Mycenae
  • Lunch
  • Guided walk in the old city of Nafplio
  • Visits to potter, weaver & pasta shop 
  • Visit to local distillery, pastry shop
  • Transfer by private a/c vehicle from Nafplio to Athens
  • Stop at Corinth Canal 

Practical info

Duration
full day (11 hours)
Languages
english, french
When
Mon-Sun (private), Mon-Wed-Fri (shared)

Prices

  • Adults: 130 €
  • Children (0-17): 104€

What's included

  • Professional English speaking tour leader
  • Licensed English speaking Guide (Mycenae)
  • Guided visit of Mycenae site and Mycenae museum
  • Guided visit of Nafplio town
  • Lunch 
  • Visits to craftsmen (potter, loom maker, pasta maker)
  • Private transfer by a/c vehicle
  • Snack and water
  • Hotel pick up & drop off (for private tours only)
  • Petrol, tolls and taxes

Not included

  • Drinks
  • Entry fees
  • Any food or drinks not mentioned in the tour's inclusions

Notes

  • As we want to respect the local communities and disrupt their way of life as little as possible, we refrain from big groups in our shared tours.
  • In private tours we offer a pick up and drop off service. In shared tours we set a central meeting point, as a pick up service will add at least an hour to the total travel time and will cause unnecessary irritation and discomfort to travelers. 
  • Minimum numbers apply for shared tours. In the event that these are not met we will offer you alternatives in good time.

"Wonderful day with top guide Vassia. Incredible lunch at a local restaurant. Mycenae was amazing too with great guide Jenny showing us around. Luxury air-con transport with the best driver. Worth every cent we paid"

Craig P., New Zealand

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You'll love:

The majesty of Mycenae and the amazing artisans of Nafplio

Mycenae and Nafplio out of the ordinary
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Testimonials

"As an artist, Nikos was able to give us a lot of insight into both art we were looking at and the personalities behind the art. Along the way he provided much of the contemporary history that contextualized the life of Athenians the inspires the art that we saw. …Can't miss."

Eric K

"If anything it was our best experience of our two weeks in Greece. Away from the crowds immersed in a variety of cultures and so many different aspects of Athens. Vassia’s knowledge, teaching and communication skills ... we could have walked all day! This is one tour you shouldn't miss!’"

Sospan48

"We sampled food and drinks from about 10 different places within an easy walking distance from the central square. Everything we tried was amazing!"

Justin G