Greece is a country in southeastern Europe with thousands of islands throughout the Aegean and Ionian seas. Influential in ancient times, it's often called the cradle of Western civilization. Athens, its capital, retains landmarks including the 5th-century B.C. Acropolis citadel with the Parthenon temple. Greece is also known for its beaches, from the black sands of Santorini to the party resorts of Mykonos.
Greece and the Greek Islands are one of the favorite tourist destinations in Europe. Every year, the country welcomes millions of visitors from all over the world. Greece is a country unique of beauty that has everything to offer to the visitor: beautiful and variable landscapes, some of the most beautiful beaches in the world, picturesque white-painted or stone-built villages, passionate culture and traditions and, a heavy historical, archaeological and mythological heritage. Greece is also called Ellas or Hellada or Elliniki Dimocratia.
The religious tourism and pilgrimages, the ecotourism, the conference tourism, and the medical tourism are prominent, and initiatives are being made to promote the seasonal tourism as well. Some of the country's major tourist destinations include the capital city Athens, the islands of Santorini, Mykonos, Rhodes, Corfu and Crete, as well as the peninsula of Chalkidice.
Greece has a Mediterranean climate along its coasts and islands. Once inland, many areas and cities experience a continental climate. Summers are usually hot and dry, while winters are generally mild and wet. Northern Greece can experience cold winters, while Southern Greece and the islands experience considerably milder winters.