IntroductionIn the South of Europe we find the Hellenic Republic, better known as Greece. This is the place where modern civilization has its roots. Travelling to Greece means to undertake a trip in a glorious past and a timeless history made of untouched nature, traditions, and at the same time, modernization.
CapitalAthens (745.514 inhabitants, 4.013.368 inhabitants in the metropolitan area in 2007)
Population11.257.285 in 2009
Time zoneUTC +1; +2 UTC when winter time applies
LanguageModern Greek; Italian, English and French are also spoken.
Entry requirementsNeither passport nor visa is required for European citizens of the Member States. A valid identity card is sufficient. Most of the European driving licenses are accepted.
Travelling with petsSmall sized pets like cats, dogs and ferrets must travel with animal passport (in force since 2004) and have an identification microchip or tattoo. Also, they must be vaccinated against rabies.
Health and safetyBoth private and public health structures are poor, in some cases even inappropriate. In case of need, however, it would be recommendable to turn to private structures. As for medicaments, they are easily available. No vaccination is required. It is advisable to bring the magnetic card for health assistance. General safety is good, there are no danger zones, but the highest caution is required when travelling near the borders and in the region of Thrace.
ClimateClimate in Greece varies according to the zones. The regions on the coast are generally characterised by the Mediterranean climate, with mild wet winters and very hot dry summers. Toward inland we find a Balkan continental climate, with very cold winters and hot humid summers.
Form of governmentParliamentary Republic
EconomyGreece is traditionally an agricultural country, though most of its territory is mountainous and arid. The main products are wheat, barley, olive oil and grapes. The industrial sector has developed only recently. The main sectors are textile, food industry, tobacco manufacture. Tourism has grown considerably, and it represents an important source of income.
ElectricityVoltage: 230 V – Frequency: 50 Hz. The majority of sockets is of German kind. It is advisable to bring an adapter.
Post offices, banks and communicationsPost offices in Greece are open Monday to Friday from 7.30 am to 14 pm. In the city capital and in the main tourist resorts many post offices remain open also on Saturday and Sunday morning. Banks are generally open from 8 am to 14 pm, Monday to Friday. Mobile phone coverage is very good.
Country code: 0030 + local number, generally beginning with 2, or 6 for the cellular phones.