Greece As A Destination
Greece is a country we have never visited.
Yet, it is a paradox of sorts that the country and its culture seems so close to our hearts.
The fascination with Greek Gods and Greek Mythology took root very early in life. Names like Alexander The Great, and Megasthenes rang in our ears in the early years of schooling and beyond. The enigmatic similarity between Sanskrit and Greek and the links of India and Greece that can be dated back to the 5th Century BCE when the famous Sanskrit Grammarian Panini lived makes Greece a destination that has an altogether different charm.
Athens, one of the oldest cities in the world always fuels the imagination with images of a magnificent era in history. When you think of the Olympic Games, your mind races to Olympia in South-West Greece where the precursor to the modern Olympics began in 776 BC. The ruins of Delphi hauntingly reminds one of the powers of the Oracle.
Modern Day Greece is a beautiful medley of ancient history, culture, and nature waiting to be explored.
Indeed for us, Greece is the stuff that dreams are made of and visiting Greece is a dream we cherish.
So when we got the opportunity to have a tete a tete with Mr. Michael Michailidis, Head of Market Research Department, Greek National Tourism Organization, at the OTM-2018 in Mumbai, India, we simply jumped at the chance.
We listened wide-eyed as Mr. Michilldis talked passionately about Greece as a holiday destination and what all it has to offer, especially to the Indian travelers.
He talked about how Greece is an all-weather destination and that Greece can be visited 365 days a year. He pointed out that there is much more to Greece than Athens, Mykonos, and Santorini. He said Greece has many treasures some known and some hidden waiting to be discovered.
Greece as a destination is a complete family destination with a wide range of experiences which would appeal to all. While on the one hand, the gorgeous Greek beaches seduce you with their beauty; the sites of the ancient civilizations leave you awestruck. Mr. Michilldis stressed the varied options that Greece as a destination has to offer.
He pointed out that Greece as a destination with its romantic sunsets and timeless and historic ruins combined with a vibrant culture and cuisine makes for a great wedding destination. The exotic locales of the country are also ideal for films and Bollywood. Songs for Bollywood films like Bang Bang, Wanted and many others have already been shot in locales around Santorini, Mykonos, and others.
Greece has a total area of 50,949 square miles and has more than 3,000 islands which include some of the most famous islands in the world like Santorini and Mykonos. It is interesting to note that only about 130 of these islands are inhabited.
Greece as a destination has a lot to offer the Indian traveler and these range from a contemporary, vibrant culture to the thrills and spills of adventure. Given the fact that 4/5th of Greece is made up of mountains and it has one of the largest coastlines in the world, it is indeed an ideal theatre for adventure sports. Add to this the fact that the climate of Greece is temperate and conducive to sports all throughout the year. Watersports, mountain biking, Trekking, rock climbing and many other activities guaranteed to give an adrenaline rush await visitors to Greece.
Given the long coastline, ancient sites, idyllic islands, and stunning beaches Greece makes for an ideal destination for cruises too.
Here are a few points that Mr. Michilldis shared about Greece as a destination for the Indian traveler.
- The fact that more and more Indians are showing an interest in traveling to Greece is underscored by the fact that there has been a 30% increase in Indian Nationals visiting Greece over the years
- Greece is looking at an increase of 10-15% growth in tourists from India in 2018
- Indian tourists are discovering in Greece a destination that is close to their culture and a place which offers the best in terms of history, cuisine, art, and nature
- The warmth of the people of Greece and their friendly nature is something which charms the Indian traveler and adds to the allure of the country
- Greece as a destination has featured in many Bollywood songs, music videos, and advertisements, so much so that Bollywood music and dance have become extremely popular with the Greek youth
- Greece also makes for an attractive investment destination for Indian businesses with opportunities in tourism, real estate, and high tech infrastructure
The tete a tete with Mr. Michael Michailidis ended with a cup of coffee and we walked away with dreams of a land full of natural beauty, vibrant culture, and historic sites of timeless beauty.
A land called Greece. A land which is the stuff of dreams.
We thank Mr. Michael Michailidis for taking time from a busy schedule and speaking to us about Greece.
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Have you visited Greece? Which is your favorite place in Greece? Do let us know your thoughts through our comments section. As always they bring a lot of sunshine into our lives.
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