Moments of the C4 mobility in Greece

In these hard times that we go through, we look back at the wonderful time we had together in Katerini, Greece, and we are thankful for this amazing, unforgettable experience.

C4 Students exchange in Katerini, Greece (Farewell)

Saturday 14th March 2020

At 3:30 am on Saturday we had to say farewell to our Basque friends. The Basque delegation had to leave one day earlier than originally planned (on the 14th March instead of the 15th) because of the gravity of the situation in their country due to the Coronavirus, thus the farewell party planned for Saturday the 14th was cancelled. However, we made a promise that we will see each other again soon. 

Note: In a nutshell, in this mobility we took all the necessary precautions so as to keep the children away from crowded places, as safe as possible, giving them instructions and advice on how to protect themselves. We also advised the host families to follow sanitary rules at home and keep an eye on what is happening around as well as keep us updated all the time.

C4 Students exchange in Katerini, Greece (Day 5)

Friday 13th March 2020

On Friday morning we visited the Platamon Castle, a castle of the middle Byzantine period located in strategic position in the southeast of Mount Olympus. We were guided around the castle and enjoyed the view from up there.
The Platamon castle

On the way to the castle

The gate of the castle

Mount Olympus at the back
Afterwards we headed towards the traditional village of Old Panteleimon. There we had plenty of time to admire the local architecture of the stone houses and cobbled streets and at the same time relax and enjoy ourselves under the hot sun. 
The whole team at the entrance of the traditional settlement
Basque students enjoying Greek confectionaries

In the village of Old Panteleimon a nice lady, a shop owner, was kind enough to talk to us about the architecture of this traditional settlement.

Note: The visit to the archeological site of ancient Leivithra was cancelled as a precaution measure against the Coronavirus spread. So we just did the open-air visits to the castle of Platamon and the traditional village of Old Panteleimonas. 

C4 Students exchange in Katerini, Greece (Day 4)

Thursday 12th March 2020

We started our Thursday with a nice tour around the archaelogical site of Dion, the holy city of the Macedonians. The Greek students were our guides in this tour. We saw the Hellenistic Theater of the era of Philip the E, the Sanctuary of Demeter, the sanctuary of the Egyptian goddess Isis, the mansion of God Dionysus with the lovely mosaic, the Sanctuary of Zeus, the shops and the baths. And in the Museum of Dion we saw the Hydraulis of Dion, the oldest musical instrument of that type, the predecessor of the modern church Organ.

The Hellenistic theatre of Dion

We tested the accoustics of the theatre
Walking on the streets of the city of ancient Dion

The sanctuary of Zeus
ancient public toilets
The thermes (the baths)
Outside the museum of Dion

After Dion we headed to Litohoro, a small town at the foot of Mt. Olympus. So we hiked on a local path by Enipeas Gorge. We saw the beginning of the European long distance path E4, which crosses Olympus mountain, and we admired the view of the summits of Olympus and the flora of the area.
Olympus mountain

And after all this hiking it was time to eat. We had luch altogether at a beautiful seaside taverna in the area of Gritsa. There we had the chance to cook ourselves, too. The Basque girls prepared a tortilla (a spanish omelette) for us to try. We enjoyed the fish dishes prepared by the chef and his helpers (Greek and Basque students) and we had fun by the sea. 
Our chefs are ready to cook
Basque students preparing a torilla

Greek students preparing stuffed squid
making the salads

Note: The activities of the day were carried out according to the plan as they were in open-air places, which is Olympus Mountain, the archaeological site of Dion and cooking in a tavern which is by the sea and is safe. The only activity cancelled was the visit to the Centre of National Park of Olympus as it was held in a Hall.

C4 Students exchange in Katerini, Greece (Day 3)

Wednesday 11th March 2020

On Wednesday morning we visited Aigai, the first city of Macedon and the first capital of the Macedon Kingdom. In the archeological site of Aigai we entered the royal burial cluster, where we admired the tombs of Philip II (father of Alexander the Great), of Alexander IV (son of Alexander the Great) and finally of Meda (Philip's Thracian wife). 
Outside the royal burial cluster

The tomb of Philip II

The gold wreaths of the Macedon kings

The abduction of Persephone by the God of the Underworld
After Vegrina and the archeological site of Aigai we moved on to Thessaloniki. 
Thessaloniki is the second largest city of Greece and is proud to host several declared World Heritage Sites by UNESCO. So we visited some of them. 
We first visited the Rotonda, one of the most important and imposing monuments of Thessaloniki with its architectural strength and its beautiful wall mosaics.
The Rotonda from the outside

Then we walked down Navarinou St., where we saw the Galerious Arch and the Galerian Complex.
The Galerious Arch

Finally we reached the White Tower, the emblem of Thessaloniki, which dominates the port area and was part of the city's fortification. We climbed to the top of the Tower and enjoyed the view of the city's port and waterfront.

Before we took our way back to Katerini we stopped at the upper part of the city near the fortification, the castles, to enjoy the view and take some photos.

Note: As a safety precaution against the Coronavirus spread, we cancelled the visit to the archaeological museum in Thessaloniki so as to avoid contact with tourists in a closed-in place. We just visited all the open-air places of the programme as the Galerius Arch, the castle etc.