Greece is located in the southeastern part of Europe in the south of the Balkan Peninsula and on the islands adjacent to it. In the northern part it borders Albania, Macedonia and Bulgaria, and in the northeast – Turkey. Greece is washed by four seas: the Aegean from the east, the Ionian from the west, and the Mediterranean and Crete from the south. See Greece abbreviations.
The capital of Greece is Athens – the economic, cultural and administrative center.
The area of the country is 131,994 km². The landscape of Greece is mostly treeless mountains, occupying almost a quarter of the country’s territory, as well as densely populated valleys and a large number of islets, bays and straits. The most beautiful rocks with grottoes and caves, as well as picturesque beaches attract lovers of both sea recreation and mountain tourism.
The highest point of the country is Mount Olympus with a height of 2917 m. Other high mountains (more than 2000 m.): Pindus, Parnassus, Taygetos, etc. Plains are distributed mainly on the territory of the Peloponnesian Peninsula. About 44% of the country is occupied by forests and shrubs. There are also many national parks and reserves in Greece.
Most of the Greek rivers are mountainous, with many picturesque rapids and waterfalls. Their main role is a source of energy. The longest of the rivers is Alyakmon (about 300 km). Ebros, Nestos, Strimon, Vardar and Acheloos are considered large.
There are more than 20 lakes in Greece. The largest include Trichonis, Volvi and Vegoritis. Often there are small karst lakes (for example, Janina).
Greece time zone: GMT+2 (- 1 hour from Moscow).
On the territory of Greece there are three types of climate: mild Mediterranean in most of the country, as well as alpine and temperate.
According to 800zipcodes, summers are dry and hot with an average air temperature of around +27…+30 °С, while winters are cool and with heavy showers, the average temperature is +10…+16 °С. Water in summer time warms up to +20…+25 °С.
The amount of precipitation is influenced by the Pindus Range: in the regions located to the west of its slopes, it is much rainier. The average annual precipitation varies from 400-700 mm in the plains to 1500 mm in the mountains.
The largest cities in Greece: Athens, Thessaloniki, Patras.
Main beach resorts: Crete, Rhodes, Corfu, Halkidiki, Kallikratia.
Resorts with good shopping: Kallikratia, Kastoria
Ski resorts: Delphi, Parnassus
Greek cuisine is one of the most attractive European cuisines.
Traditional Greek dishes are prepared from seafood, vegetables and meat. It is very popular to use olive oil for dressing them.
From vegetables for the preparation of national Greek dishes, eggplants, tomatoes, cucumbers, green peppers are most often used, from seafood – fish, which is served in a variety of forms, from meat – beef, pork, lamb, and rabbit meat.
The culinary traditions of Greek cuisine are considered to be very diverse.
The main dishes of the national cuisine of Greece
- Traditionally, meals in Greece begin with appetizers and salads (“mezze”). Of these, a rustic salad of vegetables, olives, cheese, seasoned with olive oil is especially famous. In addition to it, eggplant salad is often prepared in the country – “melizanosalata”, squids – “kalamarakya”, zucchini – “kolokmtakya”, an exotic salad made from dandelions and others.
- Of the meat dishes in Greek cuisine, brizola chops, beef cooked in lemon sauce – moshari lemonato, lamb ribs “paidakia”, beef or rabbit meat in a pot – “stifado” and pork kebab – “suvlaki” are popular.
- Fish dishes in Greece are preferably prepared from sea fish (tuna, mackerel, anchovy). Fish is baked, fried, stewed, stuffed, marinated here. In addition to fish dishes, you can try octopus, oysters and mussels.
Of the spices, the Greeks often use coriander, red and black pepper, cloves, bay leaves and nutmeg.
Cheese in Greece is eaten both as an appetizer and as an ingredient in a dish. The most famous Greek cheese is Feta – salty cheese made from goat’s or sheep’s milk, as well as “graviera” – a variety of hard yellow cheese, “kefalotiri” – salty hard cheese with holes and other varieties.
Such first courses as soups are not common in the national Greek cuisine.
From desserts, it is usually customary to serve fruits (grapes, melons, watermelons, peaches), sweet rolls and yogurts with honey.
The most consumed soft drink in Greece is coffee. Tea is in most cases taken as a medicinal drink.
Of the alcoholic beverages in Greece, it is most common to drink wine. Retsina is considered the most famous type of wine; its uniqueness lies in the aroma and taste of resin. No less popular varieties are “Asyrtiko” from white grapes, “Muscat” from the island of Samos, “Agiorgitiko” from red grapes, “Savatiano” and others.
In addition to wine, raki grape vodka is in great demand in the country.