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Athens, Crete, Nafplion, Delphi and Thessaloniki, Greece

Program Description

In one programme, you can see the glories of ancient Greece, the medieval splendour of Byzantium and the storied history of a modern nation descended from the oldest culture in Europe, one of the major spiritual homes of Orthodox Christianity.

History and Culture in Greece: Ancient to Modern comprehensively covers the entire period of Greek history and gives a broad understanding of the many cultures and states that have influenced this beautiful region: the Minoans and Mycenaeans in the Bronze Age, the Greek city-states and the Roman Empire in Classical antiquity, the Byzantines, western crusaders and Venetians in the Middle Ages, the Turkish Ottoman Empire which conquered and replaced Byzantium in 1453, but after a long occupation gave way to modern, independent Greece in the 1820s.

You will see the traces of all of these cultures in a wide variety of sites all across Greece, walk the ruins and the buildings and see the fruits of their artistic endeavours. See Minoan Knossos, the Parthenon, sacred Olympia and Delphi, Alexander the Great's capital, Byzantine churches, Venetian and Ottoman castles, walk the shores of the beautiful Mediterranean and Aegean seas, eat delicious Greek food and experience the literary and artistic richness of a truly remarkable people.

This programme is unique in its scope and will only be offered once in your college career. Come with us for a transformative education and the experience of a life-time.

Location Description

The locations are carefully chosen to cover all periods of Greek History in a rough chronological order and to cover most of the major regions of Greece. It is primarily centred on the mainland but includes the beautiful island of Crete.

Athens: The capital and largest city of Greece. It boasts iconic landmarks of its ancient past, beautiful beaches and fascinating archaeological sites and museums.

Crete: The largest of the Greek islands, Crete has beautiful landscapes and several very important sites from the Bronze Age. It was an important centre from antiquity to the early modern period, ruled by Minoans, Greeks, Romans, Byzantines, Arabs, Venetians and Turks.

Nafplion: An enchanting port town in the Peloponnese (Southern Greece). We will explore nearby Mycenae, Argos, Epidauros and Olympia for their storied ancient remains, but also the Byzantine and Venetian churches and fortresses.

Delphi: The glorious remains of the sacred sanctuary of Apollo and his prophetic priestess, the Pythia, located in the cool mountains of central Greece amidst magnificent views.

Thessaloniki: The great city of Northern Greece with ruins and buildings from all periods. We visit the capitals of the Macedonian kingdom of Philip II and Alexander the Great at Pella and Vergina.


Stephen Chappell | | History


Students will share rooms in quite good Greek hotels. They are usually centrally located and convenient for local transportation.

Delicious Greek breakfasts are provided by the hotel. You will receive twenty Euros per day for lunch and dinner. There will be several group meals paid for by the programme in addition.

Additional Items to Consider

You must take two classes (6 credits) of which one must be HIST 391. The second can be either HIST 291 or HIST 489. HIST 291 lectures will all be available online. HIST 391 lectures will be delivered in Greece. HIST 489 meets concurrently with HIST 391.

HIST 291: The Greeks (3000 to 30 BC): History, Literature and Art of the Ancient Greeks. This class is one of the two possible electives. It can count towards the History Major and Minor. It is also intended to count for IDLS. It can be petitioned to count as the core requirement of the Classics minor.

HIST 391: Greece from the Romans to the Present (167 BC to yesterday teatime): History and Culture of the Greek World with an emphasis on the Romans, the Byzantines, the Crusader states in Greece, especially the Venetians, the Ottoman occupation of Greece and the Modern Greek Republic. It can count towards the History Major and Minor. It is also intended to count for IDLS.

HIST 489: Topics in Greek History, Literature and Culture. This class primarily involves the writing of a research paper. It counts towards the European requirement of the History Major. I am willing to help students in other majors mould the content towards their courses of study, if feasible.

COVID-19 Location Information:

Each country has different requirements upon entry with regard to COVID-19. Please check this website for the most up-to-date information on what is required for the country (or countries) that are part of this program. Please note that this changes often, so we encourage you to check back frequently.

Applicant Criteria

Applicants must have a GPA minimum of 2.0

Open to all majors and class levels.

Application Process

This list serves as an application preview. To apply, students will need to complete the following:

  • Study Abroad Online Application ($40 fee)
  • Short Essay 
  • Official transcript required for non-JMU students

Further details and instructions about these application requirements will be available upon log-in. 

Applications Closed.


Application Deadline


All dates are tentative and subject to change


HIST 291: The Ancient Greeks (3 credits)

HIST 391: Greece from the Christ to the Present (3 credits)

HIST 489: Topics in Greek History, Literature and Culture (3 credits)

Courses listed here are to be used as a general guideline for program curriculum. *All courses are considered pending until approved by the Academic Department, Program, and/or College.


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