Find out if we’ve got your favourite pastime covered in our dedicated special interest holidays travel guide or just search for a few more ideas to help you have a really worthwhile week away rather than just a boring break at the beach. This page is all about what special interest holidays entail and how you can choose between small group and tailor made options to ensure you get the most out of your holiday.
Archaeology travel guide
Old archaeologists never die. They just wish you bone voyage.
Dating is big in the world of archaeology, with some finds using absolute dating techniques and others using relative dating techniques. Whichever dating you opt for, what we know for sure is that there is a lot of love out there for understanding the ancient influences on a place – a growing desire to delve into the DNA of destinations. Think of our archaeology holidays travel guide, therefore, as a dating profile to some of the world’s greatest spots, where travellers not only seek to explore how a place looks, but also the epic stories, colossal constructions and immovable feasts for eyes that can get hearts pounding. From Petra to the Parthenon to the Pyramids, expert archaeology guides lead the way.
Archaeology holidays are...
not just about going back in time, but also slowing down time so that you can dig and delve, hear the stories and breathe it all in.
Archaeology holidays aren’t…
just about ancient culture. Many combine history with hiking, dramatic sites with desert sands. Old stories with new ones.
Types of archaeology holidays
Forget any image you have of archaeology holidays being like grown up school trips, packed into steamed up coaches with boring guides. Archaeology rocks these days, and holiday providers are offering trips that get you pedalling up mountains, sailing across the Aegean or down the Nile on a traditional felucca. Just as the great buildings and sites that we visit were informed by the landscapes they were built in, so too can your holidays.
Pedal around the Peloponnese
Pedalling is very Peloponnese, and you can go on an archaeology holiday that is tailored to your needs. This way you can cycle around places like Nafplion on the coast, taking in sites such as the Venetian Palamidi fortress, or around Mycenae, where the ancient citadel is said to be the mythological King Agamemnon’s home. The beauty here, as you cycle from one ancient village is far from a myth though; it’s just sheer magic.
Go under canvas in Jordan
An hour and a half from Petra is the protected area known as Wadi Rum, or as the Bedouin call it, “Valley of the Moon”. This is southern Jordan’s desert, rich in Bedouin culture and highly protected for its natural and cultural heritage. Trips to Jordan nearly always include a night under the stars in this idyllic, isolated spot, staying with the Bedouin in one of their camps. Gazing starward, you will lose track of which century you are in altogether.
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Sail around Greece
Immerse yourself both in history and the Med by seeing the ancient sites of the Peloponnese Peninsula in Greece by going on a small ship cruise. Travelling with maximum 50 passengers, all staying in cabins overlooking the water, you can visit sites such as Olympia, Delphi, Epidaurus, Nafplion, Mycenae and many more, with an expert local guide.
Wash off the dust at the beach
Archaeology lovers may happily walk and walk in order to get to grips with the greats, but many also love a bit of blissing out at the beach as much as anyone else. Downtime on archaeology holidays includes snorkelling in the Red Sea in Jordan; or in Greece, spend a week exploring the ancient sites in and around Athens, followed by a few days on the volcanic island of Santorini. Ancient fishing villages and coves are omnipresent in Greece’s Peloponnese and, on an archaeology holiday in Naples, the Amalfi coast boasts a bevy of bays.
Best time to go on an archaeology holiday
When I saw Petra lit by over a thousand candles, I could have stayed there all night. At one point I couldn’t tell the stars and the candles apart.
More Archaeology articles
Our archaeology holidays map and highlights boast a plethora of great sites you can visit.
Jordan has been a hub for humanity since the dawn of civilisation.
Albania is tiny, yet boasts some of the Med's most impressive archaeological sites.
If you’re interested in the myths and legends of the ancient world Greece is certain to sate your curiosity.
Archaeological marvels in Eastern Turkey bring visitors to a lesser-visited area of the country.