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Athens Downtown Goes Online

Downtown(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)   Within the framework of the Information Society Operational Programme, the Gazi district – the post-industrial hotspot of Athens- is equipped with free high-speed wireless internet.  Athens citizens and visitors to Technopolis and the surrounding area can access the internet with the use of the necessary equipment. The Gazi Project has been incorporated into the Information Society Digital Strategy Programme and was completed with the support of the City of Athens IT Company (DAEM).  A similar network has already been installed in Syntagma Square, Kotzia Square and Thissio.

Jewels in the Crown of Greece: Sikinos

sikinosparathiro1(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)   Although unspoiled by mass tourism, Sikinos is anything but a tiny, forgotten island. On the contrary, it has opted for an alternative development.  It offers few, small beaches, while in the town of Hora, local architecture is exemplarily preserved. As a mode of transport, cars are not fit for Sikinos, so one must try riding donkeys, or just hiking.  Last but not least, residents of Sikinos contribute to the island’s magic: an active community, which has revived the old vineyards, has set up a beekeeping cooperative and even operates a recycling programme.  Kathimerini Daily: Sikinos opts for a different way to develop; TheGreektravel.com: Sikinos

Greece: 9 Geo-Wonders on Pindos Mountain

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA) The rocks of Deskati in north-western Greece’s prefecture of Grevena – a European Destination of Excellence –  have attracted the interest of geologists around the world as they tell the geological history of the earth and were the basis for the development of the tectonic plates theory.  Deskati and the greater region of Vounasa are among the nine geo-wonders in the Pindos Mountain Range that were the subject of a scientific conference held in the Prefecture of Grevena aimed at their promotion into tourist destinations. The rocks of Deskati were created 700 million years ago when the ancient super continent Pangaea (meaning “all earth” in Greek) broke up to form the European and African continents. Later they were submerged into the Tethys Ocean that existed between the continents and united the region of today’s Britain with China.  The nine geo-wonders of Pindos include the heavily deformed limestone rocks at Mt Tsourgiakas and their small waterfalls, the gorge of Portitsa, the Pierced Rock formed as a result of erosion, Vasilitsa and its multicoloured rocks, the villages of Dotsiko and Mesolouri with their 30-million-year old coral reef and the village of Monachiti with its 50-meter wide vertical rocks. Meanwhile, the Aliakmon River Gorge is currently being studied by scientists from the United States, the UK, Serbia, Italy and Greece in an intense effort to have its geological data recorded considering that by the end of the next decade it will be flooded as soon as the construction of the Public Power Corporation (DEI) “Ilarion” Dam is completed.  

New Athens “Tourist Ticket”

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)  The Athens urban transport organisation (OASA) on Monday unveiled a new three-day ticket costing €15 that will be valid for travel on all means of public transport in and around the city. The new tickets will be available from from July 1.

   

The “tourist ticket” has been designed as a travel card for those visiting Athens for short stays. It offers unlimited travel for three full days after it is first used, including journeys to and from the airport and the new Athens sight-seeing “Bus 400.”  LivinginGreece.gr: New 3-day ticket for unlimited tourist travel in Athens    

Corfu: An Ionian Jewel

Corfu(GREEK NEWS AGENDA) Corfu town is Venice and Naples, a touch of France and more than a dash of England, apart of course from being Greek.”  Countess Flamburiari who used these words to describe Corfu island was not the only one to be enticed by the beauties of this famous and much visited island off the West coast of Greece.  In 19th century, Empress Elisabeth of Austria expressed the desire to immerse herself in the Greek culture and in 1890, she commissioned the construction of a summer palace which she called the Achilleion, after Homer’s hero Achilles. The palace, with the neoclassical Greek statues that surround it, is a monument to romanticism as well as escapism.  The various architectonic styles of its buildings, monuments and city planning are due to the island’s long history of conquerors. Venetians, British, French, Italians and Germans, all left their mark. The island’s city centre -the Old Town- is an historic complex of narrow streets dominated by the 16th century fortress. Close to the capital lies a small island, home to a monastery, the white staircase of which resembles a (mouse) tail, thus the name of the island Pontikonissi (mouse island). Corfu’s natural habitat is equally exquisite. The island has some of the Ionian Sea’s most beautiful beaches, favoured by thousands of visitors. UNESCO World Heritage: Old Town of Corfu is protected by UNESCO; You Tube: UNESCO Ceremony

Greek Tourism has a New Portal

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)   Hellenic tourism is responding to international challenges through the creation of a new portal for electronic services at “www.mygnto.gr” (Greek National Tourism Organisation), which intends to transform website visits into real arrivals in Greece. On May 22, Tourism Minister Costas Markopoulos presented the portal and announced that unified electronic strategic management in the tourist sector is becoming a reality. Visitors are encouraged to book their entire vacation package via this new portal.

Athens: A New Look for an Old City

Acropolis Museum

(photo: When it opens in June, the New Acropolis Museum will display treasures from the Parthenon /Cameron Hewitt) 
(www.minpress.gr / NBC, 28.04.09)  NBC’s Rick Steve reports on Athens’ dramatic change. The city of about 4 million has made a concerted effort to curb pollution, clean up and pedestrianize the streets, spiff up the museums, build a new airport, and invest in one of Europe’s better public-transit systems.  Athens still has its “big three” sights: the Acropolis, the Ancient Agora and the remarkable National Archaeological Museum. In June the fourth big sight of the city is opening – the New Acropolis Museum.
The new museum is a world-class space, custom-built to showcase the Parthenon sculptures, a state-of-the-art building worth a look itself.   Besides sightseeing, Athens is ideal for strolls and wanderings through the Plaka district, through the Monastiraki flea market and the Psyrri neighborhood. Read more…

Greece: Bird Waching… on Lesvos

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)   The island of Lesvos in the northeastern Aegean is home to 325 bird species and for this reason it is described as the “premier birding destination within the Mediterranean basin.”   The island’s rural municipality of Evergetoulas is a popular destination for birders from all over the world, especially during spring and autumn when there is bird movement.  The gulf of Kalloni is part of “Natura 2000” Network and constitutes an excellent shelter and breeding area for rare and protected species of birds, including flamingos and storks. In Kalloni’s marshlands, from elevated sheltered watchtowers, birdwatchers can enjoy a really impressive spectacle.   Bird watching tours in Greece: www.greecebirdtours.gr; Hellenic Ornithological Society: www.ornithologiki.gr; Greek News Agenda: Bird Watching in Antikythira

Destination Greece: Trikala’s Landmarks Restored

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA) Trikala’s landmarks, the medieval fort and the clock tower opened to the public on April 27 after undergoing extensive restoration. Located at the north side of the town and on the top of Chasia mountain range, the old fort dates back to the Classic and Hellenistic eras. In the east side, the clock-tower was first built during the Turkish rule and replaced by another one in 1936. Trikala, capital city of the homonymous prefecture is a modern and pedestrian-friendly town on the banks of Lithaios River. Greek News Agenda: Winter Destinations

Greece: Chios “The Blessed Island”

chios-mapThree Videos from the Greek island of Chios by Ellopia Media Group:

Chios: The Blessing Island Chios Genesis [ http://rs6.net/tn.jsp?et=1102534344287&s=1624&e=001YI79mKvPVP7D93_JKli4hVjNDQYm2kHuZ2jNhtoUJv4mFV9advZP9wZhVxqyop0df7BXSXczPMNkTkKUm-9h_UDz34LRjberQ_tFt0DHOzxB_G_vA9TIAeOlyexKIpIPnP_H1A-T6oiwv8iUZp3hDQ==} ]  
Chios: O Kampos,Chios o Kampos http://rs6.net/tn.jsp?et=1102534344287&s=1624&e=001YI79mKvPVP5toSlWNf3tvuetxfyTOOnxlu4PtBflOxeuLIjmrg_yBPrLNn9o0_sMOepW39TDtowMes-m-gvyNpJhjBRUWhYVXVypUTjoakN1uk0IZSI7c1GVYw-ASnqdIlHcn2-4YBVFR6FVQ9rlgg== ]
Chios: Metropolitis Dionisios 30 Years.Chios Despotis [http://rs6.net/tn.jsp?et=1102534344287&s=1624&e=001YI79mKvPVP7o9mQBI0p6OMGUt3XFNz0Ztcu4so1lQ_g6ZfJiNGT8A6YmHebL5wGvK0zHk_SvgZXX-Okl-LBs1oj8fxbDqEklZ_U0QiP_s_owdoSeT1f5j2mLvYidnfoD9iZ7CPm_Errd2Lr27cWJ5A=

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Milos: Sustainability Award

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)   Milos island was the winner of the DAFNE Aegean Islands Network For Sustainable Development sustainability award for 2008. The island’s municipality was rewarded for its use of wind generators to desalinate water, its waste treatment and the reuse of water for irrigation. The projects were evaluated by the National Technical University of Athens.  Thirty seven municipalities from 30 islands in the Aegean belong to the Dafne Network that was set up in 2005 to promote sustainable growth in the Aegean by means of alternative energy sources, support for alternative tourism, protection of the environment and cultural heritage. The network is coordinated by the Interdisciplinary Institute for Environmental Research (INIER) – a non-profit organisation for the environment and sustainable development.

Greece: Top Tourist Destination for Australians

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)   Greece is among the top tourist destinations of Australian travelers for 2009 despite concerns that Greek tourism would be faced with problems stemming from the global economic crisis. Tourists looking for an endless summer, an alternative stop-over city, or wishing to get acquainted with the European civilisation will choose one of the popular destinations such as Greece, according to Australian tour operators Flight Centre.  Greece offers simple pleasures and affordable holidays to visitors, such as sailing activities in reasonable prices, locally produced wine, beautiful beaches and romantic sunsets, traditional villages and small islands where nature’s surprises are abundant, the Australian tour operator underlines. Traveldailynews.com: Greece tops Aussie tourism list Secretariat General of Information: About Brand Greece – Tourism/Hotel and Resort Infrastructure  

A Guide to Quirky Athens

Times Online (30.1.2009): “”The Greek capital is the latest destination in our regular series that looks at the surprising side of business cities”  Since the Olympic Games returned to Athens in the year 2004, the Greek capital has become an increasingly popular destination for conferences. The International Congress and Convention Association rank the city as the 20th most popular in the world, with conference organisers drawn by newly modernised infrastructure, good hotels, rich history and a pleasant climate. The article discusses shopping, nightlife, travel, and accommodation options in the city which are “quirky” or off the beaten track. Information: Breathtaking Athens – The official city of Athens visitors’ website

Explore Greek Seas and Mountains

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)   There is no doubt that the Greek beaches are magical. Nevertheless, spending one’s summer holidays in the Greek mountains is a rare experience. In addition, if one combines the sea and the mountain, then one’s holidays will be unforgettable. Besides, Greece has a unique advantage; it offers tourists the possibility to access its safe, vast, sandy, crystal-clear beaches easily and in no time at all!  The portal www.agrotravel.gr is a gateway to dream holidays in mainland Greece too, in the mountains, in forests, near valleys, rivers and lakes, in places where air-conditioning is unnecessary, because nature provides cool temperatures.

Greece: Affordable Destination

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)   Greece and Italy have topped this year’s list published by the UK Post Office as Europe’s most affordable destinations for families. In a recent report about ’sightseeing on a shoestring,’ the UK Post Office highlighted countries offering benefits for families travelling with younger children. Attractions in Greece offering special deals for families include the Acropolis, Knossos and Mount Olympus.  Xpatathens.com: Greece and Italy most affordable European travel destinations

The Greek Islands: Karpathos

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)   Karpathos (www.karpathos.gr) is the second largest island in the Dodecanese group. Spectacularly beautiful, with wild, rugged landscape, mountainous in the north and fertile in the south, with wildflowers, Karpathos is a paradise for naturalists. It has extensive beaches with white sands.  Traditions have been well kept in Karpathos. In Olympos village, women still wear their beautiful, colourful, traditional costumes every day, and bake bread in their outdoor ovens.

Why they love Greece

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)  Fifteen foreign correspondents who have lived and worked in Greece for years, take out their travel journals and join their forces to put together one volume with personal memories and photos from places in Greece they cherish. The volume entitled “Why I Love Greece” emerged from the publisher Nikos Kabanis’ wish to collect impressions from non Greek travelers who, nevertheless live in and know Greece much better than the regular tourist. Hence, Kabanis came up with the publication of this volume that describes Greece as never before. The edition is published by Real Travel – Tourism and Property Magazine.

Pourquoi ils aiment la Grèce

(GRECEHEBDO) Quinze journalistes qui ont vécu et travaillé en Grèce comme correspondants de la presse étrangère, ouvrent leurs journaux intimes pour rédiger un livre qui comprend les mémoires de leurs voyages à travers la Grèce. La nouvelle édition intitulée «Why I Love Greece» (Pourquoi j’aime la Grèce) émane du désir, de la part de l’éditeur, de publier un volume avec les impressions des étrangers qui connaissent la Grèce mieux qu’un touriste moyen. Le résultat est une publication originale qui décrit la Grèce comme jamais auparavant.

Greece: On tourism and property

The need to upgrade tourism as a product and the search for efficient methods of tourist development will be at the very centre of the 2nd International Tourism and Property Show scheduled to take place in Athens, from February 22 to 24. Held under the auspices of the Ministry of Tourism, the event will bring together firms from the construction and tourism sector as well as the insurance, real estate management, and architectural-engineering, decoration and equipment sectors along with public sector enterprises with the ulterior aim of becoming a frame of reference for Greek tourism and property businesses.

Greece: Secrets of the Past (IMAX® Trailer)