Set in southeastern Europe, and boasting thousands of breathtaking islands in the Aegean and Ionic Seas, Greece is a country that remains virtually unrivalled in the sheer volume and diversity of its historical and cultural repertoire. For centuries visitors have been drawn to the country’s spectacular natural landscapes and rich archaeological sites, which contain the relics of four millennia of ancient culture. From the bustling nightlife of Mykonos to the breathtaking sunsets of Santorini and exquisite turquoise waters everywhere you look, Greece’s islands are arguably its biggest drawcard. Must-see heritage attractions include the numerous ancient structures of Athens; Meteora Monasteries, one of the world’s most remarkable ecclesiastical sites; the towering Mount Olympus, home of the gods; and of course Delphi, Greece’s most sacred site where the oracle once answered the questions in the temple of Apollo.
Greece has a warm Mediterranean climate. In summer, dry hot days are often relieved by stiff evening breezes, especially in the north, on the islands and in coastal areas. Athens can be stiflingly hot, with temperatures occasionally exceeding 40°C (104°F) in July. Winters are mild in the south but much colder in the mountainous north, where it is not uncommon to see snow and temperatures plummeting to well below zero. November to March is the rainy season, most notably on the Ionian islands.