Archaeologists Offer “Walking Seminars” in Athens

by Ed Forteau /
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Jun 17, 2010 / 0 comments

Athens, June 17, 2010 – Context, the urban walking tour specialist known for its scholar-led cultural tours, has expanded its programs to Athens. Working with archaeologists and classical historians at some of the top research institutions and museums in the city, the operator will be offering a series of three-hour “walking seminars” on such topics as Byzantine art, religion in antiquity, and daily life in ancient Athens. The program complements Context’s walks in Istanbul and forms the next step in a wider Eastern Mediterranean offering.

“Our customers have been asking us to expand to Athens for several years,” states Paul Bennett, co-founder of Context. “It’s a pretty logical extension of our programs in Rome, Naples, and Istanbul where we employ more than 30 ancient historians and archaeologists and have, for years, offered some of the most immersive experiences for people who love classical history.”

As with its programs elsewhere, Context will cap its group walks in Athens at six participants, the lowest group size in the walking tour industry. Lasting three hours on average and led by Ph.D.-level scholars and specialists, walks will to independent travelers who want to acquire a deeper understanding and appreciation for Athens and its history.

Initial offerings include two substantial walks on antiquities: the Acropolis Seminar and Daily Life in Ancient Athens. The former focuses on the role of religion and the Acropolis in ancient Athens and covers both the Acropolis itself and the newly opened Acropolis Museum. The latter visits the Agora and Kerameikos archaeological sites and focuses on issues of daily life in ancient Athens, including commerce, politics, housing, language, and the arts. Each walk is held as a seminar, with emphasis on dialogue, conversation, and interactive learning.

In addition to these, Context is offering a walk of the 11th century Byzantine churches hidden within the urban core of the city, a tour of modern and contemporary architecture and built environment, and an introductory walk that provides an overview of the city, designed to appeal to people who’ve just arrived.

A number of the docents in Context’s new Athens program are qualified to work with children or have teaching experience; and thus, a number of these walks will be modifiable for traveling families.

Walks will be offered both privately on request and as regularly scheduled group walks. Private walks will cost between €270 and €330 for the group, while group walks will cost between €65 and €70 per person.

More information can be found on the company’s website, at:

Founded by National Geographic writer Paul Bennett and graphic designer Lani Bevacqua, Context is a network of English-speaking scholars and professionals – including art historians, writers, architects and gastronomes – who organize and lead didactic walking seminars in twelve world cities, including: Florence, Rome, Venice, Naples, Paris, London, Madrid, New York, Philadelphia, Boston, Istanbul, and Athens. Travel + Leisure has named Context one of the top European tour companies for its innovative approach to travel and the depth of its programs. To learn more about Context, visit its website at: