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Greece in the Off-Season: Exploring the Peloponnese

Program No. 23192RJ
Study with local experts to uncover the fascinating history of ancient Greece as you learn about Greek mythology and cultural landmarks during the quieter winter months.

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At a Glance

During its height in the Middle Ages, the Byzantine Empire was the most powerful economic, cultural and military force in all of Europe, with a strong focus in science, art, music and literature. Along with top-notch instructors, trace the history of Byzantium around the Peloponnese as you explore ancient ruins and incredible artifacts just like a local. Study the roots of Greek mythology at the Temple of Hera and explore one of the most important natural wonders in all of Greece—the Caves of Diros—while the tourists have all gone home. As you cruise around the peninsula, learn about the framework laid by ancient Greeks to create the mighty Byzantine Empire and the modern-day nation of Greece we know today.

Best of all, you’ll…

  • Explore ancient Epidaurus and learn about this healing sanctuary known throughout Greece and the rumored birthplace of Apollo’s son, Asclepius.
  • Learn the story behind the early Olympic Games as you discover Ancient Olympia and the ruins of the gymnasium where the first athletes trained.
  • Enjoy two nights in Athens with our local experts before you board the ship and explore ancient Greek ruins including the Acropolis and the Parthenon.
Visit the Road Scholar Bookshop
You can find many of the books we recommend at the Road Scholar store on bookshop.org, a website that supports local bookstores.
Greece, A Traveler's Literary Companion
by Artemis Leontis (Editor)
In this terrific anthology, 24 modern Greek writers offer a flavor of their nation, its culture and people, beautiful landscapes and rich history.
Eyewitness Guide Greek Islands
by Eyewitness Guides
Color photography, excellent local maps and an island-by-island synopsis of attractions make this book the one to carry with you. Includes a chapter on Athens.
The Complete World of Greek Mythology
by Richard Buxton
Cahill brings to life ancient Greek society and civilization through the lives and words of politicians, playwrights, a poet, a philosopher and an artist in this eloquent and absorbing tribute.
Greece, Land of Light
by Nicholas Gage, Barry Brukoff
Brukoff's dramatic color photographs are paired with incisive commentary by award-winning author Nicholas Gage for this striking portrait of the people, land and history of Greece and the islands
Ancient Greece: Art, Architecture, and History
by Marina Belozerskaya, Kenneth Lapatin
This lyrical novel captures the humanity, quirks and loves of village life in the Greek islands. A satire of war, this charming and richly-colored novel is set on Cephalonia during the Italian occupation in the 1940s.
The Most Beautiful Villages of Greece
by Mark Ottaway
Organized geographically, this handsome oversize picture book is an illustrated portrait of Greece with hundreds of color photographs accompanying lively essays
The King Must Die
by Mary Renault
The first in Mary Renault's trilogy of well-researched page-turners features the tale of Theseus, slayer of the Minotaur and the king of Athens. Known for her exhaustive research, Renault is an acknowledged master of historical fiction.
Corelli's Mandolin
by Louis De Bernieres
This lyrical novel captures the humanity, quirks and loves of village life in the Greek islands. A satire of war, this charming and richly-colored novel is set on Cephalonia during the Italian occupation in the 1940s.
It's All Greek to Me
by Charlotte Higgins
With timelines, a who's who, charts and maps, this handy little primer is a thoroughly entertaining introduction to everything Greek, from poetry and drama to philosophy, history and culture.

Important registration tip:
If you want to attend the live lecture, please do not wait until the last minute to enroll.
If you enroll after a lecture is complete, we’ll send you a recording of the event.