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Greece

Background

Greece

Greece achieved independence from the Ottoman Empire in 1829. During the second half of the 19th century and the first half of the 20th century, it gradually added neighboring islands and territories, most with Greek-speaking populations. In World War II, Greece was first invaded by Italy (1940) and subsequently occupied by Germany (1941-44); fighting endured in a protracted civil war between supporters of the king and other anti-Communists and Communist rebels. Following the latter's defeat in 1949, Greece joined NATO in 1952. In 1967, a group of military officers seized power, establishing a military dictatorship that suspended many political liberties and forced the king to flee the country. In 1974, democratic elections and a referendum created a parliamentary republic and abolished the monarchy. In 1981, Greece joined the EC (now the EU); it became the 12th member of the European Economic and Monetary Union in 2001. In 2010, the prospect of a Greek default on its euro-denominated debt created severe strains within the EMU and raised the question of whether a member country might voluntarily leave the common currency or be removed.

About

Greece (Ελλάς, Hellas) is a country in Southern Europe, on the southernmost tip of the Balkan peninsula, with extensive coastlines and islands in the Aegean, Ionian, and Mediterranean Seas. It shares borders in the north with Albania, the Republic of Macedonia, Bulgaria, and Turkey. It has an ancient culture that has had a significant influence on the arts, language, philosophy, politics, and sports of western society, including the genres of comedy and drama, western alphabets, Platonic ideals and the Socratic method, democracies and republics, and the Olympics. Furthermore it's a geographically appealing place to visit, with a mountainous mainland and idyllic island beaches.

Read more about Greece in our Greece travel guide »

Featured journals from

Greece

One Month in Greece

by TremontBruce

(two days of rain)

Jun 2013 - Jul 2013  »  Greece

Paralos Yachts

by ParalosYachts

Yachts, Bareboats and Sailing Boat Vacation in Greek Islands

Jan 2017  »  Greece

Spin the globe....summer 2018

by madjeanne

Temperature hit 100, gotta go!

May 2018 - Jul 2018  »  United States | Italy | Croatia | Montenegro | Greece | Turkey | Malta | Spain | France | Monaco

Greece 2008

by erezarmo

Sep 2010 - Sep 2008  »  Greece

Featured hotels in

Greece

GreeceVasia Beach and Spa 

Sissi Lassithiou
Sissi
Agios Nikolaos 72400
Greece

Price (US$): $131 - $253 / night

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Location. Vasia Beach and Spa is a family friendly hotel located in Agios Nikolaos's Sissi neighborhood, close to Palace of Malia. Other area points of interest include Lychnostatis. Hotel Features. Dining options at Vasia Beach and Spa include 5 restaurants. A poolside bar and a bar/lounge are open for drinks. Room service is available during limited hours. The hotel serves a complimentary buffet breakfast each morning in the restaurant. Recreational amenities include an indoor pool, a… more »

GreeceSaint John Hotel Villas & Spa 

Aghios Ioannis Beach
Aghios Ioannis
Mykonos 84600
Greece

Price (US$): $264 - $2552 / night

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Location. Saint John Hotel Villas & Spa is located on the beach in Mykonos's Aghios Ioannis neighborhood, close to Agios Ioannis Beach, Paradise Beach, and Super Paradise Beach. Other points of interest near this luxury hotel include Windmills of Mykonos and Aegean Maritime Museum. Hotel Features. In addition to 3 restaurants, Saint John Hotel Villas & Spa offers a snack bar/deli and a coffee shop/café. A poolside bar and a bar/lounge are open for drinks. Room service is available 24 hours… more »

GreeceThe Margi 

11 Litous
Vouliagmeni
Vari-Voula-Vouliagmeni 16671
Greece

Price (US$): $181 - $432 / night

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Location. The Margi is located near the beach in Vari Voula Vouliagmeni's Vouliagmeni neighborhood and close to Kavouri Beach and Vouliagmeni Spa Lake. Additional area points of interest include Glyfada Golf Club of Athens. Hotel Features. In addition to 3 restaurants, The Margi offers a snack bar/deli and a coffee shop/café. A poolside bar and a bar/lounge are open for drinks. Room service is available 24 hours a day. The hotel serves a complimentary buffet breakfast each morning in the… more »

GreeceThe Bristol Hotel 

2 Oplopiou & Katouni Street
Ladadika
Thessaloniki 546 25
Greece

Price (US$): $150 - $314 / night

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Location. The Bristol Hotel is located in central Thessaloniki, close to Aristotelous Square, Church of Panagia Chalkeon, and Church of Agia Sophia. Nearby points of interest also include Saint Demetrios Church and Arch of Galerius. Hotel Features. The Bristol Hotel features a restaurant and a bar/lounge. Room service is available. The hotel serves a complimentary breakfast. This 5 star property has a business center and offers small meeting rooms. Complimentary wireless Internet access is… more »

GreeceSheraton Rhodes Resort 

Ialyssos Avenue
Ixia
Rhodes 85100
Greece

Price (US$): $162 - $319 / night

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Location. Sheraton Rhodes Resort is located on the beach in Rhodes's Ialisos neighborhood, close to Hellenistic Stadium, Acropolis of Rhodes, and Temple of Apollo. Other points of interest near this luxury hotel include Palace of the Grand Masters and Archaeological Museum of Rhodes. Hotel Features. In addition to 3 restaurants, Sheraton Rhodes Resort offers a snack bar/deli and a coffee shop/café. A poolside bar and a bar/lounge are open for drinks. Room service is available 24 hours a day… more »

Browse more hotels in Greece »

Greece

Full name
Hellenic Republic
Capital
Athens
Location

Southern Europe, bordering the Aegean Sea, Ionian Sea, and the Mediterranean Sea, between Albania and Turkey

Geographic coordinates

39 00 N, 22 00 E

Area comparative

slightly smaller than Alabama

Border countries

Albania 282 km, Bulgaria 494 km, Turkey 206 km, Macedonia 246 km

Coastline

13,676 km

Climate

temperate; mild, wet winters; hot, dry summers

Terrain

mostly mountains with ranges extending into the sea as peninsulas or chains of islands

Lowest point

Mediterranean Sea 0 m

Highest point

Mount Olympus 2,917 m

Natural resources

lignite, petroleum, iron ore, bauxite, lead, zinc, nickel, magnesite, marble, salt, hydropower potential

Population

10,749,943 (July 2010 est.)

Ethnic groups

population Greek 93%, other (foreign citizens) 7% (2001 census)

Religions

Greek Orthodox 98%, Muslim 1.3%, other 0.7%

Languages

Greek 99% (official), other 1% (includes English and French)

Government type

parliamentary republic

Independence

1829 (from the Ottoman Empire)

National holiday

Independence Day, 25 March (1821)

Chief of state

President Karolos PAPOULIAS (since 12 March 2005)

Head of government

Prime Minister Georgios Andreas PAPANDREOU (since 6 October 2009)

Internet country code

.gr

Internet users

4.971 million (2009)

Airports

81 (2010)

Ports and terminals

Agioi Theodoroi, Aspropyrgos, Pachi, Piraeus, Thessaloniki

Other countries in the region