Archaeology Travel guide Greece

From the Acropolis in Athens to Knossos on the island of Crete, Greece has some of the world’s most fascinating archaeological sites. Places that have fuelled fertile imaginations for centuries, and filled glass cabinets around the world. Not surprising then that Greece is a popular tourist destination, particularly for those who enjoy exploring history and around 700,000 years worth of history to explore. There are as many spectacular historical sites to visit on the islands as there are on the mainland.

Reasons to Visit Greece

Sunset behind the Temple of Poseidon at Cape Sounion, Greece.
Evocative Ruins,
Venetian Castles,
Ottoman Mosques,
… and Island Hopping.

Interesting Things to Know About Greece

Discovered in 1959, the Petralona Cave is home to some of the oldest evidence for a hominin presence in what is now Greece. Dated to some point between 350,000 and 200,000 years ago, the Petralona Skull belonged to an individual whose species predated Homo sapiens. Although there is some debate on the subject, many suggest the skull should be considered Homo heidelbergensis.

Perhaps the most iconic archaeological site in Greece is the Parthenon, a temple to the goddess Athena that stands atop the Athenian Acropolis. Built in the 5th century BCE, it would later be used as a church and then a mosque. In the 19th century decorative features were removed from the Parthenon and transported to Britain under highly questionable if not illegal circumstances. Commonly known as the ‘Elgin Marbles’, after the man responsible for their move to London, these remains are on display in the British Museum. There have been various requests and campaigns for their repatriation. Despite there being overwhelming support for the return of these artefacts to Greece, the British Museum has steadfastly refused to do the right thing.
Rome’s conquest of Greece occurred gradually, but was accomplished by the 1st century BC. Greek culture exerted considerable influence on the Romans, being especially admired by emperors like Hadrian. After the collapse of the Western Roman Empire in the 5th century AD, Greece remained part of the Byzantine Empire in the Eastern Mediterranean.
In the 15th century, the Ottoman Empire – an Islamic power based in Turkey – conquered much of the Byzantine Empire, including mainland Greece. Greece would remain Ottoman for around four centuries and the Ottoman influence can be seen at various Greek heritage sites, such as the 15th-century Hamza Bey Mosque in Thessaloniki.
Greece only became a unified political entity in 1822, as Greek revolutionaries overthrew their Ottoman rulers and established an independent state. Since that time, Greece has alternated between periods of monarchical and republican rule, as well as between periods of democracy and dictatorship.

Find Places to Visit in Greece

Featured Destination

Sustainable Travel in Schleswig-Holstein

Dykes and koogs, halligen and warften. These are the tangible traces of a way of life that for centuries has literally shaped this western edge of Schleswig-Holstein. Sandy beaches and the low, flat landscape at the heart of the UNESCO World Heritage Site of the Wadden Sea, make this a popular destination for cyclists and hikers. With Stone Age megalithic sites, historic gabled architecture and many quirky museums, there is no shortage of things for the history lover to do and see.

Five Popular Attractions in Greece

Acropolis Sunset
The Acropolis
The terrace of lion sculptures from Naxos.
Delphi Treasury Of The Athenians
The reconstructed north entrance, with the charging bull fresco.
Meteora Monastery Greece

Explore Greece more deeply

Where to Go in Greece

Sunset behind the Temple of Poseidon at Cape Sounion, Greece.

Athens & Attica

A view down a deep valley with the ancient theatre at Delphi in the foreground.

Central Greece

The high ramparts run down the hill from the Ano Poli to the Lower Town of Thessaloniki, Greece.

Central Macedonia

Kucjk Hassan Mosque Chania


Beautiful spring seascape on Aegean Sea. Coloful evening panorama of Kavala city, the principal seaport of eastern Macedonia and the capital of Kavala regional unit. Greece, Europe.

East Macedonia & Thrace

Konitsa Bridge Epirus


Aerial view from New fortress on the city with Od fortress before sunset, Kerkyra, Corfu island, Greece

Ionian Islands

The high ramparts run down the hill from the Ano Poli to the Lower Town of Thessaloniki, Greece.

North Aegean

The stone amphiteater in Epidaurus is the fine example of the ancient greek architecture, Epidavros, Greece.


Rhodes St Nicholas Fort

South Aegean

Meteora Monastery Greece


West Pediment Temple Of Zeus Olympia

West Greece

Saint Achilleios old Byzantine church ruins at lake Prespa in Greece

West Macedonia

Historic Cities in Greece