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    Welcome to Greece

    Greece is one of the world's 20 most popular tourist destination countries. According to the Greek Ministry of Tourism, the nation received about 17 million visitors from January to mid August 2007, a large number for a small country of 11 million. Visitors are drawn to the country's beaches and reliable sunny summer weather, its nightlife, historical sites and natural beauty.


    Backstreets of charming Firá, Santoríni
    Over 90% of visitors who come to Greece come from other European countries, although in recent years there have been growing numbers of tourists from other world regions. The vast majority of visitors arrive during the tourist season, which is April through October. Peak season is July through August, and most of the tourists and tourism industry are concentrated in Crete, the Dodecanese, Cyclades, and Western Greek Islands, and to a lesser extent the Peloponnese and the Halkidiki peninsula in Macedonia. There are still many rewarding areas in the country free of large-scale tourism.

    Many first-time visitors arrive in Greece with specific images in mind and are surprised to discover a country with such regional and architectural diversity. The famous whitewashed homes and charming blue-domed churches only characterize a specific region of the country (the Cyclades Islands). Architecture varies greatly from one region to the next depending on the local history. Visitors will find Neoclassical architecture in the cities of Ermoupolis and Nafplion, Ottoman-influenced buildings in Grevená and Kozáni, whitewashed Cycladic homes on the island of Paros, and pastel-coloured baroque homes and churches on Corfu. The nation's terrain is just as varied as its architectural heritage: idyllic beaches, towering mountain ranges, wine-producing valleys, vast stretches of olive orchards in the south, and lush forests in the north. Greece's historical sights are just as varied; the country is littered with just as many medieval churches and castles as classical ruins and temples.


    Information & Facts

    Climate:

    Greece has a Mediterranean climate with plenty of sunshine, mild temperatures and a limited amount of rainfall.
    Due to the country's geographical position, its rugged relief and its distribution between the mainland and the sea, there is great variation in Greece's climate.
    In summer, the dry hot days are cooled by seasonal winds called the meltemi, while mountainous regions have generally lower temperatures.
    The winters are mild in lowland areas, with a minimum amount of snow and ice, yet, mountains are usually snow-covered. Moreover, a common phenomenon is the occurrence of different climactic conditions during the same season (for instance, mild heat in coastal areas and cool temperatures in mountainous regions).
    Data from the National Observatory of Athens www.meteo.gr

    Communications:


     

    Duty Free:


     

    Health:


     

    Language:

    Greek is the national language!

    Money:

     Euro (EUR) is the official currency.
     

    Passport Visa:

    Greece is a Member-State of the European Union and has ratified the Schengen Agreement. Citizens traveling inside the E.U. just need to display their police I.D. Card without the need of a passport. However, a passport is necessary for a number of other transactions, such as currency exchange, purchases, etc.
    Visas are not required by citizens of Member-States of the Schengen Agreement. Greece follows the provisions of the Schengen Agreement, which abolished controls on common internal lands, at air and sea borders and allows Member-State citizens to travel around without a visa for a short stay period of up to three (3) months. However, airlines and other carriers require a valid passport and/or police I.D. Card or other form of official identification means.
    Citizens of the majority of the countries that are not Member-States of the Schengen Agreement require a visa to enter Greece and the E.U. Visitors from these countries can obtain further information from the Hellenic Embassies or Consulates in their countries, or even from their travel agencies.
    Visas are not required by holders of valid passports from the following non-E.U. countries if they want to visit Greece and remain in the country for up to 3 months (90 days) within a chronological period of 6 months:
    Andorra
    Argentina
    Australia
    Brazil
    Brunei
    Canada
    Chile
    Costa Rica
    Croatia
    El Salvador
    Guatemala
    Honduras
    Israel
    Japan
    Malaysia
    Mexico
    Monaco
    New Zealand
    Vatican
    Nicaragua
    Panama
    Paraguay
    Saint Marino
    Singapore
    South Korea
    USA
    Uruguay
    Venezuela
    Note: During their stay in Greece, visitors with a visa must also have suitable insurance coverage for emergency medical or other needs.
    Embassies and Consulates in Greece 
     

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    • Visit Greece | Gods, Myths, Heroes