Greece - The Road Less Travelled

9 nights starting from
£1935

Tour highlights:

  • A great journey that takes in both an excellent choice of historic sites and spectactular scenery

  • The impressive Meteora Monasteries, a unique experience of nature’s grandeur

  • Thessaloniki, a vibrant cultural city with a fantastic mix of historic monuments

  • The remarkable tombs of Philip II and their exceptional gold

  • Accompanied by Ancient historian Jeremy Paterson

Join historian Jeremy Paterson as he takes ‘the road less travelled’ through Northern Greece, from the ancient tombs of Macedonia with their spectacular hoards of gold, to the remarkable 'monasteries in the sky', Meteora and the villages and humped–backed packhorse bridges of the Pindus mountains. We visit Ioannina, where Byron met Ottoman-Albanian tyrant Ali Pasha. We consult the oracle at Dodona, we see the site of the Battle of Actium where Augustus defeated Antony and Cleopatra. We also visit Pella, the ancient capital of the Macedonians, and explore the fascinating history of Thessaloniki. 

Your Lecturer

Jeremy Paterson
Jeremy taught Greek and Roman history for over forty years at Newcastle University. He has travelled widely in Greece and the Mediterranean. His enthusiasm for the ancient world was first inspired by reading Homer and then by his fascination with the archaeological discoveries at Mycenae and Knossos. He is much in demand as a speaker at home and in many of the classical countries of the Mediterranean, where he has accompanied many groups to sites and museums.

Available Departures

From

09 - April - 2025 Limited Availability Travel Info On Request

Provisional Timings

London Gatwick

Departing: 09th April 2025 at 07:45

Returning: 18th April 2025 at 19:40

ITINERARY 

Day 1: Fly from London Heathrow to Thessaloniki
Transfer to the Royal Hotel (10 minute transfer) for a three-night stay. Welcome dinner.

Day 2: The site of Pella and its excellent museum followed by the impressive museum  and Palace of Ancient Aigai.
Our visits begin at Pella, the capital of ancient Macedon, an extensive archaeological site with an amazing museum. Later we travel onto Ancient Aigai and visit one of the great highlights of the tour. Ancient Aigai is the site of the spectacular tombs of, what is believed to be, Philip II, father of Alexander the Great. Discovered in 1977, the tombs lie under a brilliant recreation of the tumulus which originally covered them, surrounded by an underground display of all the gold and silver objects found buried with the dead. We will also visit the recently opened Palace of Aigai, which was closed for 16 years whilst undergoing restoration, where Alexandra the Great was crowned.

Day 3: Full day Thessaloniki
We enjoy a relaxed day exploring the highlights of Thessaloniki, visiting some of its great Roman remains, its Byzantine churches and its excellent Archaeological Museum.

Day 4: Thessaloniki to Meteora 
We transfer to Kastraki situated at the foot of the great pillars of Meteora, where we catch our first glimpses of the impressive ‘sky-high Meteora Monasteries. Check-in to the Kastraki Hotel, for a two-night stay. Evening at leisure.

Day 5: Meteora and its Monasteries
Our day is spent visiting two of the six working Meteora monasteries, which cling to the top of great and impressive isolated rocks from where we will enjoy breath-taking views. The visit to most of the monasteries involves climbing up and down quite a large number of steps but, of the two we plan to visit, Agios Stephanos is accessible to all as it has very few steps.

Day 6: Meteora to Ioannina
We journey from Kalambaka to Ioannina through the beautiful scenery of the Pindus range stopping en-route to visit the picturesque mountain town of Metsovo. Check-in to the Grand Serai Hotel, Ioannina for a four-night stay.

Day 7: Ioannina and Dodona
We explore the lakeside city of Ioannina, capital of Epirus, which saw its zenith under the Albanian tyrant, Ali Pasha. We will cross to Ali Pasha’island that sits in the middle of Lake Pamvotis, to visit the Philanthropinon monastery with its fine cycle of 16th century wall-paintings. Later we visit Dodona, the site of one of the great oracles of classical Greece.

Day 8: Preveza and Kassope
Today we travel down to the pleasant town of Preveza on the Ambraciot Gulf, where Mark Antony and Cleopatra assembled their forces, which were beaten at the Battle of Actium in 31 BC. Octavian, the victor, who later became Augustus, the first Roman Emperor, commemorated his victory with a great monument and a new city, Nicopolis, whose extensive remains and museum we visit. Later we visit the remains of the Hellenistic city of Kassope and see the nearby monument to the Suliot women, who danced themselves off the cliff rather than surrender to Ali Pasha.

Day 9: Zagoria and Pindus Mountains
Our tour finishes picturesquely with a visit to the stone villages of Zagoria, set amidst the fantastic scenery of the Pindus mountains, with its gorges and rivers spanned by humped-back pack-horse bridges, it is the territory of the Sarakatsani shepherds, traditionally transhumant shepherds, who grazed their flocks in the summer pastures of the high Pindos, moving them down in the winter months. 

Day 10: Transfer to Preveza Airport for return flight to London Heathrow. 

NB: Exact order of excursions may vary according to local conditions and tour manager's discretion.

Please note the maximum group size on this tour is 25 passengers.

INCLUDED

  • Return flights; London Heathrow to Thessaloniki and Preveza to London Heathrow
  • One night half board and two nights' bed and breakfast at the four-star Royal Hotel based on shared occupancy of a twin/double room. 
  • Two nights’ bed and breakfast at the three-star Kastraki Hotel, Meteora, based on shared occupancy of a twin/double room
  • Four nights’ bed and breakfast at the five-star Grand Serai Hotel, Ioannina, based on shared occupancy of a twin/double room
  • Transfers, tours and entrance fees
  • Jeremy Paterson, local guide and tour manager throughout

NOT INCLUDED

  • Single room supplement 
  • Holiday insurance 
  • Meals other than those stated 
  • Items of a personal nature such as drinks, laundry, telephone calls 
  • Porterage and gratuities

HOTELS

 

Royal Hotel, Thessaloniki 

Situated just 17 kilometres from Thessaloniki and only a 10-minute drive from the airport, the 4-star Royal Hotel provides a good choice for a relaxed place to stay for the start of our tour. Set on a hill, the hotel commands a fantastic view across the Thermaikos Gulf. The comfortable rooms all have balconies with either mountain or sea view, air conditioning/heating. The hotel facilities include a restaurant and bar.

Royal Hotel Website

Kastraki Hotel, Kalambaka

The three-star Hotel Kastraki is located at the foot of Meteora rocks in the village of Kastraki, just 2 km from Kalambaka town. The hotel has 27 comfortable and elegant rooms tastefully decorated with earthy tones and dark-coloured wooden furnishings. The public areas include a spacious lounge, TV room and cafeteria. Free wi-fi is available in all areas. A small section of taverna’s are located close by.

Kastraki Hotel Website

Grand Serai, Ioannina
A well-located and very comfortable five-star hotel that offers attractive, warmly decorated rooms. Facilities at the hotel include a spa, outdoor pool, bar and restaurant. Ioannina is within easy walking distance of the hotel.

Grand Serai Website

Administation
Brochure Description
Flight/Train/Ferry
Accommodation
Tour Manager
Sightseeing Tours
Overall Impression

Wonderful tour and good hotels

Review by Holmes who travelled 22-March-2024


Administation
Brochure Description
Flight/Train/Ferry
Accommodation
Tour Manager
Sightseeing Tours
Overall Impression

Jeremy Paterson and Nikos were both excellent guides, Jane was warm and friendly as well as efficient and all three kept us amused with their sense of humour. I enjoyed The Road less Travelled a few years ago and this trip was equally pleasurable. All three hotels were lovely with excellent breakfast choices. We would have found a map of the overall tour interesting. There would be no room in your brochure but perhaps one might be included in the additional online information.

Review by Swale who travelled 22-March-2024

Travel Editions feedback:

Thank you for your feedback. We will take a look at the map idea for future departures.


Administation
Brochure Description
Flight/Train/Ferry
Accommodation
Tour Manager
Sightseeing Tours
Overall Impression

Great tour guides (Jane and Nico) and lecturer (Jeremy) - good locations, good pace, would have liked one or two more meals together, but otherwise a great trip.

Review by anonymous who travelled 22-March-2024


Administation
Brochure Description
Flight/Train/Ferry
Accommodation
Tour Manager
Sightseeing Tours
Overall Impression

We enjoyed the Road less Travelled - the highlights for us were Kassope, the tombs at Aigai, the theatre and newly opened palace, the walking tour of Thessaloniki, and Metsovo and its folk museum. Jeremy, Nikos and Jane are all excellent guides, hosts and companions on the trip. The only amendment we would suggest is to do something different (if possible) on the day to visit the stone villages - they were quite modern/refurbished and not as historic/rustic/traditional/interesting as we'd expected - but we enjoyed the day overall!

Review by Craven who travelled 22-March-2024

Travel Editions feedback:

Thank you very much for the constructive feedback and we will endeavor to take this on board when reviewing the tour for its next departure.


Administation
Brochure Description
Flight/Train/Ferry
Accommodation
Tour Manager
Sightseeing Tours
Overall Impression

An excellent and most interesting tour in a lesser known area of Greece. Tour Manager Jane, Expert Guide Jeremy and Local Guide Nikos were all excellent. The group was friendly and the hotels, food and the weather were all good, so it all added up to a very enjoyable holiday.

Review by Keir who travelled 22-March-2024


Administation
Brochure Description
Flight/Train/Ferry
Accommodation
Tour Manager
Sightseeing Tours
Overall Impression

I thoroughly enjoyed the holiday which was, according to Jeremy, not a holiday but an archaeological expedition! The range of places we visited and sites we saw was superb, so well chosen and so rich in history. The company of Jeremy and Nicos, with their incredible historical and cultural knowledge, made the holiday very special. How lucky we were to have such learned guides. Jane’s patient and efficient management of the tour and her sense of humour and quiet recognition of specific needs made for a smoothly running tour. This was further enhanced by the amazing driving skills of Nicos. We all felt very reassured and safe in his hands.

Review by Lewis who travelled 22-March-2024


Administation
Brochure Description
Flight/Train/Ferry
Accommodation
Tour Manager
Sightseeing Tours

The lecturer, Jeremy Paterson, is a wonderful guide to the history of Greece and we would join any group he was involved in. The tour manager was relaxed but alert to people's individual needs and the local guide very knowledgeable. They were a good team. We felt lucky to be on this tour and won't forget the variety of places and the thrill of the ancient history.

Review by High who travelled 22-March-2024


Administation
Brochure Description
Flight/Train/Ferry
Accommodation
Tour Manager
Sightseeing Tours
Overall Impression

Review by Bateman who travelled 22-March-2024


Administation
Brochure Description
Flight/Train/Ferry
Tour Manager
Sightseeing Tours
Overall Impression

This was our first trip with Travel Edition and my sister and I were very impressed. Looking back at my photos I can't believe we packed in so much! We saw some amazing archeological and historical sites. Have 2 such enthusiastic and well informed guides- Jeremy and Nikos made all the difference. I'd also like to thank the tour manager, Jane who managed all the practicalities of the trip. I found the walking 'demanding' rather than 'moderate' but she was really helpful making sure I could do what was manageable and enjoyable. She also organised a number of lunches out at local tavernas where we had some good simple food and these provided the opportunity to eat as a group and chat.

Review by Jenkins who travelled 25-March-2023


Administation
Brochure Description
Flight/Train/Ferry
Accommodation
Tour Manager
Sightseeing Tours
Overall Impression

Review by Anonymous who travelled 25-March-2023


Administation
Brochure Description
Flight/Train/Ferry
Accommodation
Tour Manager
Sightseeing Tours
Overall Impression

A perfect holiday for a solo traveller which is always daunting to undertake.. From booking with Andrew to the last day of the trip, everything was well organised. Company very pleasant and Jeremy very enthusiastic, extremely knowledgeable and caring. Nicos the bus driver exceptional. Jane always on hand. Perhaps a map of the route/places taken would be helpful as the programme was so full. Anna.

Review by Wheeler who travelled 25-March-2023


Administation
Brochure Description
Flight/Train/Ferry
Accommodation
Tour Manager
Sightseeing Tours

The three guides and the coach driver were excellent, as was the combination of erudition and banter. We saw an amazing range of sites and landscapes. Inevitably we had to travel considerable distances between so many interesting areas. Getting to Corfu on the last day was enjoyable but an extra stretch. Overall a refreshing and stimulating trip.

Review by Shaw who travelled 25-March-2023


Administation
Brochure Description
Flight/Train/Ferry
Accommodation
Tour Manager
Sightseeing Tours
Overall Impression

Some days were more demanding than moderate. Brilliant to see so many amazing sights and sites but would have preferred a 12 day itinerary to allow for some moments of reflection.

Review by Anonymous who travelled 25-March-2023


Administation
Brochure Description
Flight/Train/Ferry
Accommodation
Tour Manager
Sightseeing Tours
Overall Impression

Jeremy was an inspirational teacher with enormous enthusiasm. Jane was a delightful tour leader and a great comfort when I suffered from food poisoning. Very busy days.

Review by Fawcett who travelled 25-March-2023


Administation
Brochure Description
Flight/Train/Ferry
Accommodation
Tour Manager
Sightseeing Tours
Overall Impression

My first trip, The Road Less Travelled, with Travel Editions (the company was recommended by a friend) was an outstanding success, exactly what I had hoped for. There was an excellent balance of scholarship and fun: Jeremy Paterson and Nikos were excellent guides to sites, giving us detailed tours and talks but always stressing that we could 'sit this one out'. The driver, another Nikos, was universally admired for his professional skills; I never once felt insecure. The hotels were very well chosen: different from each other, strengths and minor weaknesses but all in all very good indeed. The final word must be saved for the tour manager Jane Freeman: she was simply beyond outstanding, remarkable in every way. Absolutely charming, she worked behind the scenes when a site was closed and she sorted everything to perfection; she was always very conscious of H & S; she had the knack of keeping everything perfectly arranged and on time without becoming officious - the best I have ever known..

Review by Parr who travelled 25-March-2023


Administation
Brochure Description
Flight/Train/Ferry
Accommodation
Tour Manager
Sightseeing Tours
Overall Impression

Jane is an excellent Tour Manager and together with Jeremy and Nicos made a terrific team. We thoroughly enjoyed it. As a constructive comment I think a 'get tpgether dinner 'on the first night is very important , especially for people travelling alone. it is not easy to go out into an unknown city looking for a restaurant. The lunch on the last day was an excellent idea and it would be better to have both.

Review by Brookes who travelled 21-March-2022


Administation
Brochure Description
Flight/Train/Ferry
Accommodation
Tour Manager
Sightseeing Tours
Overall Impression

A lovely trip which we thoroughly enjoyed from start to finish. Our coach driver Nikos was a very skilled driver, our guide Nikos hugely knowledgeable, Jeremy, our expert, of course utterly brilliant and Tour Manager Jane very organized, helpful and lots of fun too! Could not have been improved upon. A couple of sightseeing tours were cancelled due to them being closed down indefinitely which was a little disappointing initially but we were seamlessly taken elsewhere to see things of equal stature. The Meteora Monastries were breathtaking and the scenery in the snowy Pindus Mountains, the little villages in that area and lovely Motsovo are particularly worthy of comment. Would highly recommend.

Review by Anonymous who travelled 21-March-2022


Administation
Brochure Description
Flight/Train/Ferry
Accommodation
Tour Manager
Sightseeing Tours
Overall Impression

The final accommodation in supposed 5 star hotel was poor. No Wi-Fi in room, reconstituted orange for breakfast, staff gone missing in evenings. All other accommodations were excellent. Jane, tour manager was excellent as usual and coped with all situations with efficiency and good humour. Jeremy was first class as ever. Nicos (local guide) knowledgeable, good humoured and friendly, Nicos (driver) magnificent as ever. A wonderful trip.

Review by Bishop who travelled 21-March-2022


Administation
Brochure Description
Flight/Train/Ferry
Accommodation
Tour Manager
Sightseeing Tours
Overall Impression

This was a wonderful tour. Just what we wished for. Jane is an exceptional tour manager and really looked after us when we had to isolate after 5 days. She made sure we got home safely despite the failures (2 flight cancellations) of EasyJet. Jeremy and Nikos were also excellent and enriched the tour in their specialist ways. In each city the hotels were just right for the programme.

Review by Anonymous who travelled 21-March-2022


Administation
Brochure Description
Flight/Train/Ferry
Accommodation
Tour Manager
Sightseeing Tours
Overall Impression

Review by Anonymous who travelled 21-March-2022


Administation
Brochure Description
Flight/Train/Ferry
Accommodation
Tour Manager
Sightseeing Tours
Overall Impression

This was an excellent tour visiting really interesting places in northern Greece with a really good balance of visits to architectural sites, museums and countryside. Jeremy, Jane, Nicos (guide) and Nicos (driver) were all excellent and I don't think the holiday could have been bettered!

Review by Anonymous who travelled 23-October-2019


Administation
Brochure Description
Flight/Train/Ferry
Accommodation
Tour Manager
Sightseeing Tours
Overall Impression

Our third Travel Editions trip to Greece, with the same ever- reliable team of Jeremy Paterson, tour manager Jane Freeman and coach driver Nikos. Our local guide this time, also called Nikos, was a real asset. His knowledge, contacts (and charm!) enabled us to visit some places (and/or at some times) when they would otherwise have been closed.

Review by Kilpatrick who travelled 23-October-2019


Administation
Brochure Description
Flight/Train/Ferry
Accommodation
Tour Manager
Sightseeing Tours
Overall Impression

A very enjoyable and educative holiday in Northern Greece. Jane and Jeremy (and his wife Anne) did an excellent job, as did Nicos the local guide and Nicos the coach driver. We particularly enjoyed the evening ferry voyage between Corfu and the Greek mainland. The hotels were of a aood standard and we particularly liked the Hotel Kastraki. We were also very fortunate with the weather, which was warm and dry for all but the final 2 days. This was our third trip of this kind with Travel Editions and we were not disappointed.

Review by Anonymous who travelled 23-October-2019


Administation
Brochure Description
Flight/Train/Ferry
Accommodation
Tour Manager
Sightseeing Tours
Overall Impression

Jeremy Paterson was excellent. Breakfasts at hotel number one (Grand Serai) were a bit hit and miss. We would have appreciated a few more options for individual exploration away from the group, with specified meet up times. An enjoyable trip overall.

Review by Jones who travelled 23-October-2019


Administation
Brochure Description
Flight/Train/Ferry
Accommodation
Tour Manager
Sightseeing Tours
Overall Impression

So far I have had 3 Greek holidays with T/E and have enjoyed them all. I have 2 booked for next year. The first day was far too long and so were several others. Lunch was often late and then I felt too stuffed for dinner. Jeremy and Jane are excellent and I do enjoy travelling with them. Easy Jet are hopeless and they lost my case although it was returned today. Sometimes I feel the timetable is too full, more is not necessarily more but I do understand how difficult it can be shepherding a group of people. Don't take this as too much criticism as we saw some lovely sights and a good group of people.

Review by Davies who travelled 23-October-2019


Administation
Brochure Description
Flight/Train/Ferry
Accommodation
Tour Manager
Sightseeing Tours
Overall Impression

A riveting trip, in which I found myself visiting places I had not thought of visiting and of which, in some cases, I had never even heard! I felt my areas of interest had been expanded. And in that situation, there is nobody better to have around than Jeremy Patterson.

Review by Davis who travelled 23-October-2019


Administation
Brochure Description
Flight/Train/Ferry
Accommodation
Tour Manager
Sightseeing Tours
Overall Impression

Another great tour with Jeremy Paterson and the excellent local guide Nico. It was both fascinating and enjoyable.

Review by Horn who travelled 23-October-2019


Similar Holidays

Arts and Crafts in the Cotswolds

2 nights from £499

View

In the Footsteps of Vincent Van Gogh Tour

4 nights from £1899

View

Art Deco in Paris Tour

3 nights from £1599

View

Art Nouveau Tour in Ljubljana and Trieste

4 nights from £1469

View