From abandoned villages to streets that are filled with joy and light – Kavita Sarmah tells you about 5 offbeat things to do in Greece.
5 Wackiest And Unusual Things To Do In Greece
Greece is an ancient paradise dressed in blue skies and white castles. So much of the world’s history was made here; so many feelings felt over the years. The country is bound to envelope you in its serenity, art and picturesque views. The palm-fringed, white sand beaches, beautiful scattered islands and forests are the perfect mix of adventure and leisure! Not only does Greece have breathtaking spots that are loved for its wonderfulness, the country also has its unique, hidden wonders that are little pockets of magnificence waiting to be discovered. If you are visiting this unforgettable country, out of all the things to do in Greece, here are 5 offbeat experiences that you definitely shouldn’t miss.
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#1 Explore The Ghost Town of Gavros, Macedonia
If you are a professional or amateur photographer and easily curious, then out of all the things to do in Greece, visiting Ghost Town of Garvos would be an incredible experience. Gavros is a completely abandoned and empty village located on the road that connects Kastoria to the Prespa lakes that not many people visit. The village is mostly made with bricks of soil and hay. The bushes here are overgrown and the trees are unkempt and once in a while you would find one or a couple of unfinished walls structured together with wildflower growing all around them. It is still unclear why the locals decided to desert this little village and relocate nearby.
#2 Discover The Fairytale Castle of Agrili
In Messinia, Peloponnese, in a small town of Agrili is a breathtaking fairy-tale castle! The castle was built in 1960s by a US born doctor of Greek descent, Harry Fournier, who made quite a fortune being a surgeon in Chicago. He later returned to his ancestral lands of Filiatra and wished to leave his mark in the city from where he and his family belonged. He thought to blend fairy-tales with Greek mythology and thus, created this big castle by the sea with huge statues in the courtyard, including one of Goddess Athena, God Poseidon and one of a sitting horse. He also made a 85 foot tall iron replica of the Eiffel Tower at the entrance of the city and a huge metal globe outside of a local high school. If you are in Greece, you should definitely visit the creations of a man who just wanted to make everyone happy!
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#3 Soak In Every Magical Bit Of Pittaki Street, Athens
If you are wondering about things to do in Athens and you’re someone who appreciates art and good intentions, you must visit Pittaki Street. Until very recently, Pittaki Street was just a dark alley that had become a spot for garbage and seedy characters. However, the locals of Athens were not ready to give up on this part of their town. In the year 2012, a nonprofit organization called ‘Imagine the City’ decided to partner up with a creative design studio called ‘Beforelight’ and their hearts set on completely renovating and revamping the dim street! They started by asking the locals to donate old lamps, light, lanterns and chandeliers – anything that they could manage, and the locals were happy to cooperate. The lights that were donated were then weatherproofed, fixed, wired and strung together above the once dark alley. Now the street has a beautiful, magical vibe to it and the cafes here sing songs of happiness and positivity!
Travel Tip – This place is the best to visit after sunset when the lights all go up.
#4 Marvel At The Live 3D Patterns Of Volcanic Rocks, Lemnos
The Volcanic Rocks of Lemnos is one the most underrated and fascinating places to visit in Greece. This area used to be dressed in the huge, lava spewing Miocene volcanoes. Now that the volcanoes are dormant, they have left behind big, fascinating rock formations. The petrified lava that poured out of these volcanoes have hardened into weird shapes like spirals, ripples and interesting 3D patterns. The locals call these rocks “faraklo” or “fragokefala”, which means “bald” or “baldheads” referencing to the empty grounds with the sandy circular little mountains that were volcanoes. The long, serene beaches and majestic waterfalls is what attracts tourists to this island but I promise you – A trip to the Volcanic Rocks is one of the best things to do in Greece!
Travel Tip – Wandering here is a great experience with kids and family.
Also See – A Breathtaking Glimpse Of Greece
#5 Stop, See And Capture The Moments In Pyrgi, Chios
Pyrgi, also known as the “painted village” is the largest medieval village in the island of Chios. Pyrgi is known for the black and white geometrical designs that decorate all its building making the whole village look like it’s a piece of art! This picturesque little place is absolutely great to photograph – Definitely for your Instagram (wink wink). The village has gone through many changes and revamping over the years but somehow it still maintains its medieval essence. With apparent beauty, this place also houses so much of Greece’s history. Check out the Agioi Apostoli (Holy Apostles) temple which is a marvelously preserved byzantine monument built between the 13th and 14th century. The wall paintings are from the 1665 and were created by the Cretan painter Antonios Domestichos.
Greece is a wonderfully giving and serene country. There is hardly a place that you’d visit and not like – Even these little unusual and non-so-touristy things to do in Greece will mesmerise you!
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