Hidden Treasures of Greece | September 29 - October 12, 2020

Begin in Thessaloniki. Founded in the 4th century BC on the head of a spacious bay, and named after the half-sister of Alexander the Great, Thessaloniki is renowned for its monuments dating from late antiquity and the Byzantine era. Continue to Thessaly in central Greece. One of the country’s most surprising and interesting regions, Thessaly borders Mount Olympus and was the home of Homer’s Achilles and Jason and the Argonauts. The legendary stories of Achilles and Jason reveal a land that has been inhabited since deep antiquity. Among the sites you will explore here are the incredible medieval monasteries of Meteora (“monasteries in mid-air”), and glorious Pelion and its old traditional villages. From Thessaly, venture into the world of the Aegean Sea, and explore two of its most attractive islands, Skiathos and Skopelos.

The ancient Greeks believed that music was a gift from the gods. In fact, the word music derives from Muses, the nine mythological daughters of Zeus, the patron goddesses of learning and the arts. A highlight of this journey is the Thessaly Chamber Music Festival. In addition to the many discoveries you will make on this journey, also attend a series of concerts of sublime classical music. Accompanying expert guest lecturer Dr. Helen C. Evans, an adjunct professor at Columbia University, is one of the world’s foremost Byzantine scholars and the Mary and Michael Jaharis Curator for Byzantine Art at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. A lively and engaging speaker and traveling companion, Dr. Evans will offer lectures and commentary that illuminate the rich history of Thessaloniki, Meteora, and other sites.

We invite you to travel with alumni and friends as we discover the hidden treasure of Greece. Please contact the Alumni Travel Study Program office at 866-325-8664 or travelstudy@columbia.edu for more information and to reserve your place today.