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Greece


Acropolis complex seen from the Mouseion Hill in Athens
View of Acropolis complex, the iconic symbol for both Athens and Greece, seen from the Mouseion Hill, with Lycabettus, Athens highest point in the background. The Acropolis, Athens, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Image: Christophe Meneboeuf

 
Location map of Greece. Where in the world is Greece?
Location map of Greece


Flag of Greece
Flag of Greece
 

Greece in brief


Destination Greece, a Nations Online profile of Hellas, the country in the Mediterranean and occupying the southern part of the Balkan Peninsula in southeastern Europe.
The Hellenic Republic (the official name) is composed of two main peninsulas and some thousand islands in the Aegean (east) and the Ionian seas (west of the mainland). The country is bordered by Albania, Bulgaria, Turkey, and North Macedonia. Greece shares maritime borders with Cyprus, Egypt, Italy, and Libya.

With an area of 132 000 km², Greece is slightly larger than half the size of the United Kingdom, or somewhat smaller than the US state of Alabama.

Greece has a population of 10.7 million people (in 2020). The largest city and national capital is Athens; spoken languages are Greek (official) and Turkish (predominantly spoken by a minority of Turks in Western Thrace).

 

What is Greece famous for?
Greece is famous for its ancient philosophers, like Plato, Pythagoras, Socrates, and Aristotle, to name a few. It is known as the birthplace of democracy in the West; they invented the Olympic Games and theater. Ancient Greeks invented monumental temples with Greek columns. Greece uses a writing system that is unreadable for most people. The country is also famous for Greek food and wine; the Greek Islands; ancient oracle sites like Delphi and Dodona; the Acropolis of Athens; the Twelve Olympians, deities of the Greek pantheon; the nine Greek Muses, and Homer, the earliest poet of the West.

 
Hellenic Republic | Ελληνική Δημοκρατία



Background:
Greece has been inhabited since the Paleolithic era. In ancient times there have been three main civilizations in Greece, the Trojan civilization in Troy, the Cretan or Minoan civilization centered on Crete, and the Helladic or Mycenaean civilization of the Greek mainland. Greek's victory against the Persian invaders at the beginning of the 5th century strengthens Athens' role as the leader of the Greek world. It marks the beginning of an epoch called "The Golden Age of Pericles," in which Athens became the cradle of democracy itself. In the following Hellenistic Period, Greek civilization has spread, and the Greek language became official in the eastern Mediterranean.


Followed by the Greco-Roman civilization and a long period of foreign occupation through Romans, French, Spanish, and the Ottomans, Greece achieved its independence from the Ottoman Empire in 1830.
During the second half of the 19th century and the first half of the 20th century, it gradually added neighboring islands and territories with Greek-speaking populations. In 1945, Greece became a member of the UN.

Following the defeat of communist rebels in 1949, Greece joined NATO in 1952.
In 1967 a coup d'état took place, which led to a military dictatorship that lasted seven years. Many political freedoms were suspended, and the king was forced to flee the country. In autumn 1973, anti-government student revolts broke out, which led to the overthrow of the junta in July 1974.

Democratic elections in 1974 and a referendum created a parliamentary republic and abolished the monarchy; Greece joined the European Community or EC in 1981 (which became the EU in 1992).
 
 

 

Country Profile



Official Name:
Elliniki Dhimokratia
short form: Ellas or Ellada
int'l long form: Hellenic Republic
int'l short form: Greece
former: Kingdom of Greece

ISO Country Code: GR, GRC

Time:
Time Zone: EET - Eastern European Time
Local Time = UTC +2h
Actual Time: Mon-Sept-20  18:40
DST from March - October; UTC +3h

Country Calling Code: +30

Capital City: Athens
Greater Athens (pop. 3 566 000)

Athens
The Municipality of Athens - local government cultural executive body.

...show more




Official Sites of Greece

Note: External links will open in a new browser window.

Hellenic Parliament in Athens, Greece
Front façade of the Hellenic Parliament in Athens, Greece.
Image: © Thomas Wolf


The Hellenic Government
The Greek Constitution defines Greece as a parliamentary republic. The President is the head of state and, together with the government, forms the executive. The Head of Government of Greece is the Prime Minister. The Greek Parliament is a single-chamber legislature with 300 seats and is elected every four years.


Note: External links will open in a new browser window.  

The Hellenic Government
Official website of the Greek government.

Prime Minister of the Hellenic Republic
Office of the Prime Minister of Greece.

Hellenic Parliament
The Greece Parliament's official site.


Hellenic Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Official site of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Greece.

Diplomatic Missions
Permanent Mission of Greece to the United Nations
Greece representation to the UN.
Embassy of Greece in the U.S.
Washington D.C.
Greek Diplomatic and Consular Missions
Address list of Greek Missions Abroad.
Foreign Missions in Greece
Address list of Foreign Missions in Greece.


Statistics
Hellenic Statistical Authority
Greece in figures.

 

 


 


Maps of Greece



A Greece Map
Map of Greece (click map to enlarge)
Image: © nationsonline.org


Maps

Map of Greece
Political map of Greece
Administrative Map of Greece
Map of Greece with its first-level administrative divisions.
Google Earth Google Earth Greece
Searchable map and satellite view of Greece.
Google Earth Google Earth - Athens
Searchable map and satellite view of the Greek capital city.
Google Earth Google Earth - Acropolis of Athens
Labeled satellite view of the monuments of Acropolis of Athens.

Map of Cyprus

Continent:
Map of the Mediterranean
Political Map of the Mediterranean.
Map of the Balkan Peninsula
Political Map of the Balkans.
Map of Europe
Political Map of Europe.
 

 


News from Greece



Greek newspapers


As in many European countries, the Greek media landscape has always been permeated by politics. What makes the Greek media special is the fact that it is characterized by an oversupply compared to demand. In fact, there is an oversupply of newspapers, television stations, magazines and radio stations that must compete for the audience and advertising market share of a small country. [1]
Center-right New Democracy party enjoyed a landslide victory over incumbent Syriza in the July 2019 general election. Soon afterwards, a new presidential decree, placed public broadcaster ERT and state news agency ANA-MPA under the direct supervision of the new Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis. It remains to be seen how this new set-up will affect press freedom in the country. [RSF]


Online News from Greece


Athens-Macedonian News Agency (ANA-MPA)
The national news agency of Greece.

Ekathimerini
English-language daily news and information from Greece, Cyprus, and Southeastern Europe.

To Vima
Greek and English-language daily news from Greece and Southern Europe.

Eleftherotypia
Eleftherotypia was a daily national newspaper published in Athens; it ceased publication in November 2014.

Eleftheros Typos
Eleftheros Typos (Free Press) is an Athens daily newspaper with a conservative orientation.

Ethnos
Greek daily (in Greek).

Estia
Greek national daily broadsheet published in Athens,

Naftemporiki
Greek news (in Greek and English).

Ta Nea
Center-left daily newspaper published in Athens. (in Greek).

The National Herald (Εθνικός Κήρυξ)
Bringing the news to generations of Greek-Americans.
 
TV
ERT (EPT)
The Hellenic Broadcasting Corporation ERT is Greece's state-owned public radio and television broadcaster.
 

 


Arts & Culture of Greece


The exhibition hall at the National Archaeological Museum in Athens
The exhibition hall at the National Archaeological Museum in Athens.
Image: National Archaeological Museum


Arts & Culture



Ministry of Culture and Sports
The Hellenic Culture information server by the Hellenic Ministry of Culture and Sports.

The Hellenic Foundation for Culture
HFC was established in 1992 and is based in Athens. Its main aim is to promote Greek culture and language throughout the world.


Greek National Opera
Home page of the Greek National Opera.

Greek Philosophy
by the Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy.


National Art Gallery
The Department of Conservation and Restoration of the National Gallery and Alexander Soutzos Museum.

Thessaloniki State Museum of Modern Art
MOMus is the result of the merger of four museums and art institutions in Thessaloniki.

Hellenic Cosmos
Cultural center and museum in Athens.



Archaeological Museums

The Mask of Agamemnon
The Mask of Agamemnon. The gold funeral mask was discovered at the ancient Greek site of Mycenae.
Image: National Archaeological Museum

New Acropolis Museum
The New Acropolis Museum (NAM) officially opened in June 2009. The museum houses all items found on the site of the Acropolis of Athens.

see also: Labeled satellite view of the monuments of Acropolis of Athens.


National Archaeological Museum
The museum displays some of the most important artifacts from a variety of archaeological sites throughout Greece from early history to late antiquity.


Archaeological Museum of Olympia
The Archaeological Museum in Olympia is among the most important museums in Greece.



Changing of the Greek Presidential Guard in Athens, Greece
Evzones (presidential guard) at work. Changing of the Greek Presidential Guard in front of the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at Syntagma Square in Athens.
Image: Jean Housen 
 

 


 


Business & Economy of Greece



Port of Piraeus  (periphery of Attica) in Greece
The Port of Piraeus. The city is the commercial hub of Greek shipping and the largest shipping center in the country.
Image: Nikolaos Diakidis


Economy of Greece
Greece has a market-oriented economy based on services (68%), industry (15%), manufacturing (10%), and agriculture (4%) to the country's GDP in 2017. Of the services, tourism accounts for about 18% of national economic output and employs more than 900,000 people, accounting for one-fifth of the workforce. Merchant shipping is the country's most important industry worth $21.9 billion in 2018. Greek companies control 23.2% of the world's total merchant fleet.


Of the six Greek companies with the highest revenues, five are banks, and the other is an oil company.


Bank of Greece
Greece Central Bank.

Piraeus Bank
Greek multinational financial services company with headquarters in Athens.

National Bank of Greece (NBG)
Greek's second-largest commercial bank by total revenue.

Athens Stock Exchange
The stock exchange of Greece.


Hellenic Petroleum
Oil company.


Other Greek Brands

Folli Follie
A greek-based company that designs and manufactures jewelry, watches, accessories, and giftware.

Grecotel
The largest hotel chain in Greece.

Green Cola

"the green side of soft drinks"

Metaxa
Greek spirit.


Transportation
Airlines

Aegean Airlines
Aegean Airlines is the largest airline in Greece, based in Kifisia; its hub is at Athens-Eleftherios Venizelos Airport.

Ellinair
Greek airline based in Thessaloniki with its hub at Thessaloniki Airport.

Olympic Air
Greek regional airline based in Athens, a subsidiary of Aegean Airlines.

Sky Express
Greek domestic airline based in Heraklion and operating out of Heraklion airport.


Airports
Arrivals/departures and airport information

Athens International Airport
Athens International Airport Eleftherios Venizelos.

Thessaloniki Airport
Official website of Thessaloniki Airport.

Rhodes International Airport
The island of Rhodes airport.


Ferry Services

Aegean Speed Lines
Greek ferry company operating fast ferries between Piraeus and the Cyclades island group.

ANEK Lines
ANEK Lines operates high-speed ferry services from Italy to Greece.

Blue Star Ferries
Blue star ferries is the biggest ferry company in Greece; it provides ferry services from the Greek mainland to the Aegean Islands.

Hellenic Seaways
A Greek shipping company that operates passenger and freight ferry services in the Aegean and the Adriatic Sea.

Minoan Lines
Ferry services between the ports of Piraeus (Athens), Heraklion (Crete), Corfu, Igoumenitsa, and Patras.


Railway
Hellenic Railways OSE
Official site of the Hellenic Railways Organisation.

 

 


 


Tourism in Greece



View of the Santorini caldera, Thira, Greece
Panoramic view of the caldera of Santorini in front of the island of Thira, in the foreground the Blue Domed Church of Santorini in Oia.
Image: Leonard G.


Destination Greece - Travel and Tour Guides



Advertisement

Discover Greece:

Discover Greece: Greece has an abundance of resources that tourists with ecological and cultural interests will find very attractive. Most attractive: Athens, the capital with the Acropolis complex, the Ionian Islands, the Cyclades, the Dodecanese islands, and the Sporades.


Greek National Tourism Organization
The official website of the Greek national tourism organization.

Hellenic Ministry of Tourism
Official website of the Greek Ministry of Tourism.


Greek Islands

Andros
Official website of Andros, the northernmost and second-largest island of the Cyclades.

Astronaut photograph of the island of Crete
Astronaut photograph of the island of Crete, taken from the International Space Station.
Image: NASA Earth Observatory

Crete
The official travel guide of the largest of the Greek islands.

Corfu
Corfu is the second largest of the Ionian Islands in the Ionian Sea.

Kos
The island of Kos in the eastern Aegean Sea is located off the coast of Asia Minor.

Mykonos
Mykonos, one of the islands of the Cyclades in the Aegean Sea, is known as a cosmopolitan travel mecca.

Naxos
The official guide to the largest island of the Cyclades.

Rhodes
Rhodes is the largest of the Dodecanese Islands, situated off the Turkish coast in the southeast Aegean.

Visit Samos
Samos, the Greek island off the Turkish mainland in the Eastern Aegean.

Skyros
Skyros is the southernmost of the Sporades islands group.

Visit Kythera
A guide to Kythera, the island to the south of the Peloponnese peninsula.

Lefkada Slow Guide
A guide to Lefkada, the Greek island in the Ionian Sea

Zanteisland.com
Zakynthos island information.

Travelling Greece
A site on travel and tourism in Greece.


Cyprus
Profile of the Republic of Cyprus.


City Guides Athens
City of Athens
City of Athens portal.

Athens Survival Guide
How to survive in Athens.

Other Cities:
Thessaloniki
The city of Thessaloniki.

Destination Piraeus
The Piraeus Prefecture.


Palace of Saints Michael and George in the city of Corfu, Greece
The neoclassical palace of Saints Michael and George in the city of Corfu on the island of the same name. The Old Town of Corfu is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Image: Martin Falbisoner

 

 


 


UNESCO World Heritage Sites


The ancient theater of Delphi in Greece.
The ancient theater of Delphi was built above the Temple of Apollo, and it offers spectators a view of the entire sanctuary and the valley below. The Archaeological Site of Delphi is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Image: Kim Bach
 

UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Greece

Greece is home to 18 UNESCO World Heritage Sites, 16 cultural and two mixed. (see UNESCO's list for Greece)


World Heritage Site Acropolis, Athens
The Acropolis of Athens and its monuments are considered the universal symbols of the classical spirit and classical civilization. The temple complex on a hill in the middle of Athens is the largest architectural and artistic group of monuments that Greek antiquity has left to the world. In ancient times, strong fortification walls have surrounded the summit of the Acropolis hill.


World Heritage Site Archaeological Site of Aigai
In 1977, the burial sites of several kings of Greek Macedon were found in the town of Aigai (Vergina), which was the ancient capital of the Kingdom of Macedonia. It was the site where Philip II of Macedon was king. From here, he restored peace within the kingdom, and by 339 BC, he had gained domination over all of Greece by military and diplomatic means. He was the father of Alexander the Great, his successor.


World Heritage Site Archaeological Site of Delphi
The sanctuary of Delphi, with its main monument, the Temple of Apollo, is located on the slopes of Mount Parnassus, about seven kilometers from the coast of the Corinthian Gulf. In ancient Greece, Delphi was the "center of the world," the hub of the universe, literally. It was the site where Pythia, the high priestess of Apollo at Delphi, went into a trance to forecast the outcome of future wars or political strategies. The sanctuary itself was at the center of several "Sacred Wars" over the control of Delphi.


World Heritage Site Medieval City of Rhodes
For more than 200 years, Rhodes, an island off the Turkish mainland in the eastern Mediterranean, was ruled by the Knights of St John of Jerusalem, a military order who had lost their last stronghold in the Holy Land. The history of Rhodes under the reign of the Knights Hospitaller lasted from 1310 until 1522. They transformed the island capital into a fortified city that could withstand sieges by Egyptian (Mamluk) and Ottoman forces. The city of Rhodes is one of the best-preserved and most extensive medieval towns in Europe.


The Avenue of the Knights in Rhodes city, Rhodes
The Avenue of the Knights in the old town of Rhodes.
Image: Self
 

 


Education in Greece



University of Athens historic building
The 19th-century University of Athens historic building.
Image: Thomas Wolf


Important Universities in Greece

Aristotle University of Thessaloniki
Prestigious AUTh is the largest university in Greece, founded in 1925.

Athens University of Economics and Business
University-level education in Economics and Business, founded in 1920.

National and Kapodistrian University of Athens
The first university in the newly established Greek state (in 1828). It is commonly known as the University of Athens (UoA), the public university in Athens was founded in 1837.

National Technical University of Athens N.T.U.A.
The oldest educational institution in Greece in the field of technology was founded in 1836.

University of Crete
High-ranking multi-disciplinary, research-oriented university on the island of Crete.

 

 


Environment & Nature



Meteora rock formation and Rosánou monastry
Panoramic view of Meteora, a rock formation of immense monolithic sandstone pillars, and a complex of 24 ancient Eastern Orthodox monasteries built upon the rocks. Six of the monasteries are still inhabited. In the foreground, the Rosánou-monastery. Meteora official website is a Greek UNESCO World Heritage site.
Image: Stathis floros


Hellenic Ministry of Environment and Energy
Official website of the ministry.

National Center for Marine Research Institute of Oceanography
The site provides information about the Greek Poseidon Marine Monitor System.

ARCHELON
Sea Turtle Protection Society of Greece.

Arcturos
Greek environmental organization which focuses on saving the brown bear and its habitats.

Ecological Movement of Thessaloniki
An eco-political group, active in Greece (in Greek).

Ecoweek
Ecoweek was founded in Greece in 2005. The organization's aim is to raise awareness of environmental issues and climate change.

 

 


Greece History



Painted vase from the Dipylon Cemetary in Athens
Greek geometric pottery (circa 900 BC – 700 BC.): Painted vase from the Dipylon Cemetary in Athens.
This work is part of the collections of the Louvre, Paris.


Archaeological Museum of Thessaloniki
Explore the cultural heritage of Central Macedonia.

Greek Mythology
Site about all the protagonists of the Greek mythology.

Wikipedia W History of Greek Antiquity by period
Wikipedia index of Greek Antiquity by period.

Ancient Greece
All about the old Greeks.

Wikipedia W Ancient Greece (period)
Wikipedia article about Greece history from the Greek Dark Ages of the 12th–9th centuries BC to the end of antiquity (c. AD 600).

Hellenic History
Site about Greek history from the Stone Age to contemporary Greece.

The Stoa Consortium
Allen Ross Scaife founded the Stoa Consortium for Electronic Publication in the Humanities in 1997 as an umbrella project for many projects in the Classics.


Greek Philosophy
Wikipedia W List of ancient Greek philosophers
Wikipedia index of ancient Greek philosophers, from Acrion to Zeno of Tarsus.
 
 

 


Additional Information


Selected country profiles of Greece published by international organizations.



Advertisement

Amnesty International: Greece
Amnesty International is a non-governmental organization focused on human rights.

BBC Country profile: Greece
Country profiles by the British public service broadcaster.

EU member countries: Greece
EU member countries in brief, Greece.

FAO: Greece
The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) is a UN agency that leads international efforts to defeat hunger.

Freedom House: Greece
The U.S. government-funded non-profit organization whose goal is to promote liberal democracies worldwide.

GlobalEDGE: Greece
Greece page by the Global business knowledge portal.

The Heritage Foundation: Greece
Index of Economic Freedom by The Heritage Foundation, an American conservative think tank.

Human Rights Watch: Greece
HRW conducts research and advocacy on human rights.

OEC: Greece
The Observatory of Economic Complexity provides the latest trade data.

Reporters Without Borders: Greece
RSF (Reporters sans frontières) is an international NGO that defends and promotes media freedom.

Wikipedia: Greece
Wikipedia's Greece page in many languages.

The CIA World Factbook -- Greece
The CIA World Factbook intelligence on Greece.

 

 



 
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