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Cultural events in Greece and Cyprus this Summer

Planning a holiday to Cyprus or Greece?  Perhaps you’re already on one of the islands and thinking of things to do.  Greece and Cyprus are hives of activity this summer.  Read on to find out about some of the exciting events taking place over the next two months.

Greece

The Greek Culture Ministry are currently running All of Greece, One Culture 2022 - a varied programme of 140 cultural events spanning visual arts, dance, theatre and music performances, taking place at archaeological sites, monuments and museums across mainland Greece and the islands.

Entering its third year, All of Greece, One Culture 2022 aims to promote Greece’s cultural heritage and this year marks the 100th anniversary since the Asia Minor Catastrophe. 

Running from 15th July to 15th September the cultural events will be free of charge and visitors will only need to pay for admission to the sites.  Twenty-eight archaeological sites are involved in the program this year.

Read on to see our pick of events at All of Greece, One Culture 2022.

Theatre

25th & 26th August 

Niki at the Ancient Theatre of Demetrias (Athens Avenue, Dimitriados) 

Beginning in 1924 Niki tells the tale of refugees arriving in the city of Volos who establish football clubs, one of them being Niki Sports Club. 

Promotional image for the play Niki - photo by Phillipos Margalias

The play features a choreographed football match with the accompaniment of contemporary electronic music inspired by traditional Smyrna songs, speech and movement.

Our nearest hotels to the ancient theatre are located in the Pelion Peninsula region.

7th & 8th September

Headlines at the Monastic Complex of Nea Flogita, Halkidiki

Headlines is a commentary on the press, with a particular focus on the headlines of the Greek, Turkish and Cypriot press from 1922 to the present.

Promotional image for the play Headlines - photo by Panos Andrianos

How does the press work?  As a propaganda mechanism or as a source of information?  How about refugees?  Are they presented as people or numbers?

Our nearest hotels to the Monastic Complex of Nea Flogita are located in the Halkidiki region.

10th & 11th September

Ivala Ivala, Oh, We Sail Along the Coast at the Castle of Zakynthos 

This musical theatre performance by an ensemble of actors tells stories about Smyrna, the diamond of the East.

Promotional image for Ivala Ivala, Oh We Sail Along the Coast - photo by Babis Sgouros

The history of the Asia Minor is recited like ancient Greek chorus, creating pictures of the catastrophe of Smyrna.

Our nearest hotels to the castle are on Zante (Zakynthos).

Music

27th & 28th August

The Rose of the East at the Ancient Theatre of Dodoni

The piece is set in 1950s Greece on a train with refugees.  Passengers begin to tell stories of their motherlands and about their adventures of their settlement in Greece.  Through original songs and texts, stories of people’s experiences unfold.

Our nearest hotels to the ancient theatre are in the Parga region.

Theatre/Activities for Children and Teenagers

3rd & 4th September 

The Great Farewell at Byzantine Museum Argos, Argolis (Peloponnese)

A theatre production inspired by Galatia Grigoriadou-Sourelli's novel The Great Farewell,’ aimed at children aged 10 years and upwards and teenagers. 

Promotional image for The Great Farewell play - photo by Paris Mantopoulos

The play tells the story of the novel’s heroes who take part in the Asia Minor Expedition.  The coming-of-age theatre performance features an original music score and contemporary dance. 

Our nearest hotels to the Byzantine Museum are in the Peloponnese region.

Visual Arts - Performance

2nd & 3rd September 

Before Now After at the Archaeological Museum of Leros

Before Now After takes visitors on a journey through the island of Leros via contemporary dance, traditional live music, oral history, documentary film and photography, reflecting on the past, present and future.

Photo taken in Leros Island by Xenia Tsilochristou

Our nearest hotels to the museum are on Leros.

To book tickets for any of these events please visit the Digital Culture website.

Check in on the website for the latest updates on these events.

Festivals

There are several amazing festivals that will be taking place in some of the Greek islands over the next few months.  Keep your ears to the ground as to the latest updates on these events.  

Santorini

The Megaron Gyzi Festival takes place in the first three weeks of August in Gyzi mansion – (a 17th century building of architectural beauty) in the centre of Fira.  Established over forty years ago, the festival’s past programmes have included theatrical performances, art exhibitions, jazz and classical concerts.

Ifestia Fesitval takes place every August/September.  The festival is a dynamic celebration of the volcanic eruption that changed the landscape of Santorini forever.  Activities include the recreation of the volcanic eruption which took place around 1600 BC.  The re-enactment includes a fireworks display at the volcano and sound and light effects.  Visitors can also expect music, theatre and dance performances in addition to photography and art exhibitions during the festival.

In the first three weeks of September the International Music Festival takes place on Santorini.  Held at the Petros M. Nomikos Conference Centre in Fira, the festival has been held since 1979.

The festival attracts artists from across the globe with performances of a variety of musical genres including operatic, tango and classical.  Orchestral, solo recitals and piano duets and much more can be seen at this captivating festival.

Take a look at some of the areas you could stay at in Santorini.

Rhodes

Each year on 15th August the village of Kremasti on Rhodes celebrates Panigiri (Festival of the Virgin Mary).  This is one of the most important dates in the Greek Orthodox calendar.  15th August is a national holiday in Greece and festivities are held throughout the country.

Kremasti’s Panigiri comprises of a vibrant street market with traditional products and delicacies, fiesta and funfair.  Kremasti also hosts the Panhellenic Craft Fair from 14th – 22nd August so it is worth exploring Kremasti over these two events.

The Sound and Light Show of Rhodes is a popular and breath-taking event giving an excellent introduction to the island’s rich history.  The show is displayed in the island’s Municipal Garden of Rhodes and explores the region’s ancient myths, legends and historic events including sieges by the Ottoman Turks against the Knights Hospitaller.  Spectators will also get to see several Rhodes landmarks in the performance such as the Palace of the Grand Master and the Tower of Suleiman.  Visitors are able to watch the show in five different languages.  The Sound and Light Show of Rhodes tends to be held from May to October each year.

Explore areas to stay in Rhodes.

Crete

If you are currently in Crete the island will soon be hosting the Chania Rock Festival from 31st July – 1st August.

This year the music event is celebrating its 20th anniversary.  The rock festival is located in Chania, a city on the northwest coast of Crete known for its 14th century Venetian harbour.

Explore places to stay in Chania.

Cyprus

On 5th – 7th August the village of Katydata will host the Windcraft Music Fest.  The festival features local and international artists, with a particular focus on wind instruments, covering a variety of music genres including techno, swing, Mediterranean folk, Maghreb music, jazz and world music.

Windcraft Music Fest also includes workshops and seminars and invites attendees of all ages to take part in the process of music creation.  

Explore areas to stay in Cyprus.

The village of Agios Epifanios in the Nicosia District of Cyprus will host the Traditional Cypriot Night Festival on the evening of 26th August.  The event will have an array of stands presenting the preparation of traditional Cypriot foods.  Visitors can watch (and in some cases take part in) the making of and taste local delicacies such as palouzes (grape must dessert), halloumi and anari, pasteli and trahanas.

The event will include Cypriot music, traditional dancing and the demonstration of pressing grapes and distillation of the must.  Visitors can also get involved in pressing the grapes should they wish!

Our nearest hotels to this event are in the Larnaca region.

Paphos (a city that is a listed UNESCO World Heritage site) hosts the open-air Paphos Aphrodite Festival in early September.  Situated at the square of the Medieval Castle at the port of Paphos, the festival is a celebration of opera, drawing performers from around the world and is a must for opera lovers.  The festival is truly a cultural highlight in Cyprus’s programme of events.

Find places to stay in Paphos.

First organised in 1961 Limassol Wine Festival returns on 17th – 25th September.  Taking place at Limassol Municipal Gardens, thousands of visitors enjoy tasting some of Cyprus’ finest wines and traditional food.  Greek music and dancing by local and overseas performers all add to the atmosphere.  Visitors have the unique opportunity to also watch the process of grape treading.  Learn more about Cypriot wines in our blog

Find places to stay in Limassol.

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