7 days in Greece - A teacher's school trip diary
It's no secret that teachers are superheroes, so a big thank you to the 4 teachers who found time to write a diary for their school trip to Greece and send us their fantastic photos to share. A wonderful time was had by all as the Year 10 and Year 11 students experienced the history, culture and sun Greece has to offer in abundance.
"Hi Elise and Tricia,
Just thought I'd drop you a line to tell you how much we all enjoyed the Greece trip. The girls are still raving about it and a number parents have got in touch thanking us for what their daughters tell them was the best trip ever!
Thanks again for all your help, without which we could never have had such a smoothly run and unspoilt time in Greece." - Party Leader
After a very early start, we landed in Athens, ready to begin our Greece adventure! Our first stop was the Temple of Poseidon, where the year 11 students performed a sacrifice to the Gods. We then made our way to the impressive Corinth canal, and then on to our lovely hotel where we enjoyed a relaxing evening, followed by some much-needed sleep!
After having breakfast in the hotel, we travelled to the site of Apollo’s temple in ancient Corinth where Medea rode off in her Dragon Chariot! Following this, we went to a museum with lots of headless, but otherwise well-preserved statues. We then travelled 20 minutes down the road to ancient Nemea (where Heracles slew the Nemean Lion), where we stood inside the Temple of Zeus. The highlight of the day was watching Ella cruelly defeat Mr. Giles in the race in the ancient stadium. When we returned, we braved the freezing hotel pool and then had a buffet dinner and brownies. In the evening, we went into Tolo, ate ice cream and made friends with some local dogs!
Our first stop on the third day was the huge ancient theatre at Epidauros. We then climbed a hill to a sanctuary of Hera and smelt a lovely Juniper tree. We then went on to 3,500 years old Mycenae and first the Tomb of Agamemnon, where we listened as Mr. Giles described how thieves entered and stole the treasures that had once been there. Next, in Mycenae the bravest of us took the tunnel down to the Underworld. After that, we headed into the sunny town of Nafplio and enjoyed pizza, ice cream and sweets as well as picking up some gifts for family and friends back home. We headed home exhausted and spoke to the lovely owners of a souvenir shop, who explained the Greek version fidget spinner - a string of beads you can use to keep your hands busy. It was an excellent end to our 3-night stay at the King Minos hotel.
On the fourth day of our trip, we travelled to Sparta, climbing Mt. Taygetus up to a castle above the city of Mystras. We visited ancient Byzantine churches and saw where Helen of Troy was born. At the peak, there was a beautiful view of the river Eurotas and modern Sparta – a lovely place to eat our lunch. Mr. Giles even got the chance to quiz the year 10s and 11s on their knowledge of Sparta - a great revision opportunity!
On Sunday we visited Olympia. Here, we explored the sanctuary, including the ruins of the Temple of Zeus where the 12m cult statue of Zeus stood. The wildflowers made this site particularly beautiful! We were able to see where the famous Olympic torch was lit and we had an exciting relay race on the track with Mr. Giles and Miss Laming (with the year 11 team winning the relay, and Mr. Giles winning the stadion, gaining sweet, sweet revenge and reclaiming his title of Olympic champion).
On our sixth day, a group of students got up early to watch the sunrise over the hills of Delphi. It was a bracing walk but the stunning views were worth it! The rest of the morning was spent in the Sanctuary of the Temple of Apollo where students saw the Temple of Apollo where the famous Delphic Oracle held court and the Omphalos (navel stone) which marks the centre of the Ancient Greek world. We also visited the theatre and stadium - the site of the Pythian Games. Following the three-hour journey to Athens, we had a great buffet dinner and then ventured out to see the stunning Acropolis at night - a highlight for many on the trip!
Our final full day on the Greece trip was spent in Athens. After breakfast, we braved the Metro before visiting the Acropolis museum where students saw the original sculptures from the Parthenon and excavations through a glass floor. Following this we trekked up the Acropolis, stopping to see the Theatre of Dionysius and Acropolis temples. After lunch, we visited the ancient Agora with the incredibly preserved Temple of Hephaestus and enjoyed another climb to the Pnyx - the birthplace of democracy. We ended our trip with a lovely relaxing evening in the hotel, chilling in our rooms and enjoying the amazing views from the roof!
We all had a fantastic time on the Greece trip and are very grateful for the work put into organising everything.