Learning the myths and the truths Olympus – Pelion – Volos.
From ancient times, Olympus was perhaps the only mountain that had such a mythical character and its grandeur is still well-preserved.
In combination with the unique natural landscape of Pelion and the wider region, a series of documented myths has excited the imagination of the Thessalians.
If you look at the peaks of these mountains, especially if someone climbs Olympus, you feel as though the gods are still living in the palaces. Olympus was at the center of Greek religion, the home of the 12 gods, the Muses and many other divinities. This can also be seen in the ruins of the ancient cities of Leivethra, Pythion, and Dion at the foothills of Olympus, and Iolcos at the foothills of Pelion.
The wider region around them has been inhabited since antiquity and is an endless treasure of myths, legends, histories and cultural traditions, a paradise for nature-lovers, naturalists, archaeologists, historians, and anthropologists, since for millennia gods, demigods and Centaurs, Titans and Giants, nymphs and dryads, kings, heroes and warriors walked here.. This is also where the battle of the “Gigantomachy” took place, the marriage of Peleus and Thetis (parents of Achilles) was held, as well as the first beauty contest between the beautiful and powerful goddesses Hera, Athena and Aphrodite. Here kings married goddesses, women were sacrificed to save their husbands and Gods and princes went hunting. What is truly impressive is that all these mythical figures – Peleus, Jason and the Argonauts, Alcestis , Achilles – continue to live in the narratives of the illiterate Thessalians.
Description: Learning the myths and truths: Olympus – Pelion – Volos (Ancient Iolkos)
Category: Theme Routes
Type: Tour in the nature, Greek mythology, Culture and Tradition
Area: Olympus, Pelion, Volos-Thessaly
Duration: 15 days / 14 overnights
Accommodation: In 4 & 3 star hotels
Board: Halfboard (dinner)
Traveler Type: Sightseer
The services included in the program:
1. Transfer by bus/mini bus from airport of Thessaloniki or Volos airport or another upon request to the hotel and return (days 1 and 15).
2. Daily transfers as indicated in the program (days 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14)
3. Fourteen (14) nights in double standard room.
4. Fourteen (14) breakfasts.
5. Fourteen (14) dinners.
6. Disposal of a hotel meeting room for the group’s briefing (day 1).
7. Disposal of a hotel meeting room and audiovisual material for presentation (days 2 & 3).
8. Escort (days 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15).
9. Tour in Olympus (day 2).
10. Guide tour in Ancient Theatre of Larisa and museums (day 3).
11. Guide tour in Ancient Iolkos, Sesklo, Dimini, Archaeological museum of Volos (days 4 & 5).
12. Full day boat trip in East Pelion (day 8).
13. Hiking tour Tsagarada – Agios Ioannis (day 9).
14. Horse riding in Central Pelion (day 10).
15. Tour in Tsagarada (day 11).
16. Cooking classes in Portaria (days 12 & 13).
THE EXPERIENCE OF THE AUTHOR OF THE BOOK “MYTHS AND LEGENDS OF THESSALY”
When I was a child my favorite lesson at school was mythology. At around the same time I discovered in the Library of the Trikala Club – the only library that existed in Trikala in those years – a collection with ancient myths, which I not only devoured but copied patiently into an exercise book. In the same exercise book I also noted different stories that I would hear in the villages, when with my father, who had a threshing machine, we went threshing. These little stories – I learned then that they were called legends – usually mentioned a rock that was reminiscent of a man or an icon that was mysteriously constantly changing position, or fairies who would steal your voice.
Thessalians, people with a great imagination, never left anything uncommented on. For the ordinary people, every national phenomenon had an explanation. Every place name was connected with some incident. Nothing was by chance. Mountains, rivers, footsteps on rocks, caves, potholes and castles, all were tied to a legend which, just as with fairytales, was transmitted from mouth to mouth. With one difference, however. The fairytale is surely a work of the imagination and often has a disembodied narrative, which no one believes, while the legend appears true and the person narrating it will assure you that what he or she is saying happened in reality.
Writer, Honorary Doctor of the University of Thessaly
Twelfth and Thirteenth Day
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