Introduction to Katakolon, Greece
This sleepy port in the Peloponnese lies near the site of Olympia.
Katakolon is a seaside town in western Ilia in the municipality of Pyrgos, and is seen as the gateway to Olympia. Take a shore excursion to visit the birthplace of the Olympic games and experience the Mercouri vineyards and winery.
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Following the resounding success of the London 2012 Olympics; on this cruise tour, why not let yourself relive the wonder and thrill of the original Olympic Games as they were held here from 776 BC until 398 AD.
From the little harbour of Katakolon, it will be a short drive of approximately 35 minutes through the rural countryside of Elis to the site of Olympia. Our guide will take us into the site where we shall see where the ancient athletes competed to honour their gods. We will then discover the great monuments one by one; the archaic Temple of Hera and the huge Temple of Zeus, which once housed one of the Seven Wonders of the World – The Golden Ivory Zeus. We shall see the unique stadium and Bouleuterion, where the competitors swore on oath to play fair. Nearby were Phedias’ workshop, the Palaistra and the Gymnasium. The site is beautifully shaded by Judas and olive trees and above it all stands the conical Hill of Kronos.
We will continue to the Museum to view the marble statues of the Temple of Zeus, the famous Hermes of Praxiteles and a unique collection of ancient pieces of armour and bronze figurines.
We will then have some free time in the modern village of Olympia, so may choose to enjoy a coffee or other refreshment before our return over the same road to the small port.
CRUISE TOUR NOTES: This cruise tour involves approximately 300 metres (985 feet) of downhill walking from the parking site to the Olympia site, and approximately two hours of walking both at Olympia and the museum. From the museum to the car park, there will be a walk down approximately 25 – 30 steps. The use of cameras and video cameras are permitted at Olympia and in the Museum, but flash photography in the Museum is prohibited. Guests are advised to wear sun protection and to bring a bottle of water.
DESCRIPTION CORRECT FOR 2012 CANARIES & MEDITERRANEAN CRUISE HOLIDAYS.
The wine, as well as the beauty and charm of the private estate of one of Greece’s most highly respected vintners, will be the highlight of this delicious cruise tour.
On this Mediterranean cruise, and a short drive north of the port of Katakolon, in the idyllic countryside between the Ionian Sea and the mountain of Katakolo, lies the village of Korakochori and the stone mansion, lovely vineyards and winery of the Mercouri family.
Established in 1860 by Theodore Mercouris, who was the first to import Refosco grapes from Italy, the farm and estate functioned as a winery and distillery until 1955. In 1990 the winery was taken over by the founder’s granddaughter, Maria Mercouri and her sons who revived and modernised the winery with the latest technology.
Our visit will first take us for a walk through the woods, along the beach and through the vineyards, followed by a guided explanation through the cellars. We shall then have the chance to taste some of the wine produced here - typically three vintages of Ktima Mercouri are tasted – and can, of course, purchase some to take home if we wish.
After this unique experience, we will return to the nearby port and our awaiting cruise ship.
CRUISE TOUR NOTES: The entire duration at Ktima Mercouri is on foot – the cruise tour and wine tasting will take over two and a half hours and we advise participants wear non-slip, comfortable shoes and use sun protection. This cruise tour is accessible to wheelchair users, however all participants must be able to board the coach unaided. Dress can be casual, however we should remember that we are visiting a private estate and fine vineyard. Guests are advised to bring only small bags. Please be advised that any wine purchased to take home will be handed in to security for safe keeping on return to our cruise ship.
DESCRIPTION CORRECT FOR 2012 CANARIES & MEDITERRANEAN CRUISES.
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