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>> Social Programme & Excursions

18th Congress of the Association Internationale pour l’Histoire du Verre
Thessaloniki, 21-25 September 2009

Social Programme & Excursions


Social & Cultural Programme - Registration Form

You can download the Social & Cultural Program Registration Form here.

Social & Cultural Programme / Excursions :

Sunday 20/9
16:00 – 19:00 Registrations @ Conference Secretariat
17:00 Welcome City Tour: Thessaloniki at a glance (1)
18:00 Welcome City Tour: Thessaloniki at a glance (2)
19:30 Opening Reception

Tuesday 22/9
18:00 – 20:00 Boat Trip @ Thermaikos Gulf (optional – individuals pay accordingly)

Wednesday 23/9
18:00 – 20:00 City Walks: a history of cultures and contemporary life in Thessaloniki
Dinner @ Xiladika Area, Athonos Square (optional – individuals pay accordingly)

Thursday 24/9
18:00 – 20:00 Winery Visit @ Domaine Gerovassiliou, Epanomi (optional - individuals pay accordingly)

Friday 25/9
18:00 – 24:00 Farewell Party

Saturday 26/9 – all day excursions (optional – individuals pay accordingly)
1st Excursion: Vergina – Dion - Pikrolimni
2nd Excursion: Philippi - Amphipolis

Sunday 27/9 – all day excursions (optional – individuals pay accordingly)
1st Excursion: Vergina – Dion - Pikrolimni
2nd Excursion: Philippi - Amphipolis
3rd Excursion: Mount Athos cruise

City Walks & Tours

Welcome City Tour: Thessaloniki at a glance :
Thessaloniki has a long history of occupation going back to the Neolithic and through the ages has been a principal gateway from the Mediterranean to the Balkans and Central Europe. The Hellenistic city was founded on the site of earlier prehistoric settlements in 315 by Cassander and it quickly developed an increasingly important role as part of the Kingdom of Macedonia. In the period of the first Roman Tetrarchy, Galerius (250 – 311 AD) established his seat in Thessaloniki and built an imposing palace complex. During Byzantine times Thessaloniki was the second city of the empire, playing a leading spiritual and artistic role in the Balkans, frequently taking the lead in the secular and theological thinking of the age. The monuments surviving from that period are representative of the Byzantine culture and art over the centuries and Thessaloniki is regarded as an open museum of Byzantine art. After the capture of the city in 1430, Thessaloniki became a major center of the Ottoman Empire and many large public and religious buildings were constructed at that period. Thessaloniki was incorporated in the Greek State in 1912. It had already developed a strong multi-ethnic and multi-cultural character, which was retained throughout the 20th century. Today, the city is the second in rank economic and industrial center of modern Greece, and the principal port of Northern Greece and the Southern Balkans. Its long history is documented in a wealth of monuments and museums. Urban space, historic monuments, city neighborhoods, busy streets and panoramic views are elements that mould 18th International Congress / 18e Congrès International, Thessaloniki, 21-25.09.2009, www.aghv.gr Thessaloniki’s physiognomy, elements to be seen in a glance at this interesting, welcoming coach tour.

Boat Trip at Thermaikos Gulf: Thessaloniki – the story told from the sea :
Many people say that, seen from the sea, Thessaloniki looks like a butterfly with its wings wide open. At the same time, the sea has always been a leading and determinant element in the city’s history and development. Enjoy a cool evening on a calm boat trip at Thermaikos Gulf. Being the most known landmark of the city, Thermaikos Gulf will offer you a beautiful city-view that will give a totally new perspective of the city. Along with a glass of wine and the sunset, you can take the chance to spend a calm and enjoyable evening. Thessaloniki should definitely be seen from a boat!

City Walks: a history of cultures and contemporary life in Thessaloniki :
Thessaloniki through its history has been a melting pot of diverse cultures, religions and traditions. The city’s multi-cultural heritage and profile was shaped by the work and deeds of emperors, saints, apostles, philosophers and thinkers, but also by its local residents, its refugees and immigrants. Thessaloniki, sometimes covered by the thick mist, sometimes stormed by the heady wind “Vardaris”, yet always defined by its flairs and flavours, is nowadays an economic and cultural center, a vibrant focal point for the Balkans and a geographic landmark between the Eastern and Western Civilization. Through a variety of different walking tours, the aim is to navigate participants through the city’s multicultural history and its contemporary profile.
There will be 4 thematic walks :

Xiladika – Athonos Square: blending the carpenter’s craft with urban night life :
The area of Athonos Square is a downtown neighbourhood that maintains the traditional colour of the old city life. Xiladika is a picturesque alley that concentrates old-style artisan workshops, especially carpentries. Meet other conference participants in Athonos Square and have traditional Greek style dinner at one of the 4 restaurants and taverns in Xiladika. All 4 restaurants are in great proximity and offer a unique chance for socializing.

Winery Visit: Wine – a symbol in times, a local tradition, a pleasure worldwide :
Acquaint yourself with the exquisite Greek wines with a visit at Domaine Gerovassiliou, one of the most renowned wineries in Greece. The tour will start with a tasting of the most indicative wines of Northern Greece. During the visit you will have the chance to tour the wine cellars and learn all about the wine-making procedure, as well as the vineyard itself (depending on the weather). Furthermore, you will be able to visit the Wine Museum, located right next to the cellars and see various pieces of unique significance relating to the vineyard, wine and related fields.


Post-Congress Trips

Three one-day post-congress trips will be organised, each giving the opportunity to visit a different part of Macedonia. It is intended to include important museums and sites, presenting particular interest to glass specialists. The participants will continue to be based at their hotels in Thessaloniki. Participation to the trips will be optional for one, or both days.

1st Excursion : Vergina-Dion-Pikrolimni

Vergina :

The city of Aegae, the ancient capital of the Kingdom of Macedonia, was discovered in the 19th century near Vergina, in Northern Greece. The most important remains are the monumental palace, the theatre, and the burial ground with more than 300 tumuli, some of which date from the 11th century B.C. One of the royal tombs in the Great Tumulus is identified as the one of Philip II, who conquered many Greek cities, paving the way for his son Alexander and the expansion of the Hellenic world. The local museum is a shelter over the magnificently built and painted royal tombs, and the exhibition comprises all the unearthed treasures.

Dion :

The sacred city of the Macedonians, with a sanctuary founded in the 5th century BC, dedicated to the father of Gods, Zeus, at the foothill of Mt. Olympus. This sacred place was for the Macedonians, everything that Zeus’ sanctuary in ancient Olympia was for the rest of the Greeks. Inside the walls, one can see the remains of the rich houses, the baths, the Odeon and a Christian basilica. Outside the walls, there exist intensive sanctuaries and the earliest existing theater in Macedonia.

Pikrolimni :

The ancient lake of Chalastra, mentioned by Pliny as a source of natron.

Cost: 50 euro / per person (including transportation, professional guide and lunch)
Minimum participation: 30 persons

2nd excursion : Philippi-Amphipolis

Philippi :

A Roman colony, with a theatre and a forum, that was located on the Egnatian Way, the primary road across Macedonia. A cosmopolitan city, Philippi, blended Greek and Latin traditions; excavations have brought to light three basilicas, which remind us of Apostle Saint Paul’s first preach ever on European soil.

Amphipolis :

Classical town well-known from Thucydides’ description and the Battle of Amphipolis, fought in 422 BC during the Peloponnesian War between Athens and Sparta. The local museum houses finds from the city and its region.

Cost: 50 euro / per person (including transportation, professional guide and lunch)
Minimum participation: 30 persons

3rd Excursion: Mount Athos cruise

Mount Athos :

An Orthodox spiritual centre since 1054, Mount Athos has enjoyed an autonomous status since Byzantine times. The 'Holy Mountain', which is forbidden to women and children, is also a registered artistic site. The monasteries (about 20 of which are presently inhabited by some 1,400 monks) had a strong religious and artistic influence as far afield as Russia. Each of these monasteries safeguards Byzantine and late-Byzantine relics whose religious and historical value is immeasurable.

Cost: 40 euro / per person (including transportation, boat trip, professional guide and lunch box)
Minimum participation: 30 persons

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