ABOUT Greece is situated in southeast Europe on the Mediterranean. The mainland consists of the following regions: Central Greece, the Peloponnese, Thessaly (east/central), Epirus (west), Macedonia (north/northwest) and Thrace (northwest). Euboea, the second largest of the Greek islands, lying to the east of the central region, is also considered to be part of the mainland region. Athens is in the region of Attica, which is characterised by calm beaches, and the pinewoods and thyme-covered slopes of Mount Parnes, Hymettus and Pentelico. The city of Athens is dominated by the flat-topped hill of the Acropolis, site of the 2400-year-old Parthenon (one of the most famous classical monuments in the world), the Theatre of Dionysius, the Doric Temple of Heiphaistos, the Roman Forum and Hadrian's Arch.

CLIMATE The climate of Greece is mediterranean with summers that are usually hot and dry, and the winters that can be quiet cold and wet. The upper part of Greece can be very cold during the winter and snow is not uncommon. However, for the south of Greece and the islands, the winters will be milder. During the winter much of Greece may have snow, and much snowfall can be expected in the higher mountains of Greece. Summers in Greece are usually very hot, and in July and August temperatures usually reach 30 to 35°C, but sometimes even 40°C and more.

BEWARE Most visits to Greece are trouble-free, but theft of wallets and handbags are common on the metro and in crowded tourist places. Demonstrations take place regularly around major squares in central Athens, in particular Syntagma Square. The police have used tear gas to disperse demonstrators. You should follow local media and avoid large crowds and demonstrations. Certain border areas are militarily sensitive. Although you can visit these areas, you should avoid taking photographs or video footage. You should also avoid approaching or taking photographs or video footage of military installations.