My name is Elena Gaitani, I am a licensed greek tour guide since 1998. I have guided private and group tours throughout Greece. In the last few years I have settled in Kalamata and give tours in Messinia but I also work as a private guide in Olympia and Athens.I mostly organize and conduct private guided tours in Messinia (ancient Messene, Methoni, Koroni, Pylos, Mani),in Olympia, birth place of the Olympic Games, Athens sites and museums (Acropolis, New Acropolis Museum, National Archaeological museum, Cape Sounio) as well as day tours from Athens to Ancient Corinth and the Corinthian Canal,to Delphi and to Mycenae, Nauplion, Epidauros.
Studies: Bachelor in Archaeology and Art History, University of Athens
Diploma and license to guide through Greece ,”Tour Guides’ School of Athens”
Languages: Greek, English, Italian, French
A natural inclination to the arts and an affinity for history provided the grounds for an endeavor in the particular fields since I was a child. The captivating uniqueness of the Ancient Greek civilization and mythology was in my everyday life either through books I was reading or through the trips my parents were organizing for our family to the archaeological site of Olympia, to ancient Messene or any other site close to Kalamata and the Peloponnese where I grew up.
It was only expected that I would pursue an academic education in Archaeology and Art History, as I did, in the university of Athens. I was going to the Acropolis in Athens at least once a week for the entire length of my studies. I was watching the travellers from all over the world, that were coming to visit the Parthenon with a local guide and I soon discovered that my destiny and destination could be no other than sharing my love for the Greek culture with people that are visiting my country. To become a tourist guide was a conscious choice.
Therefore,a second period of study followed in the ” Tour Guides’ School of Athens”. To be a guide in Greece one has to have a three year study in the particular school. Tourism is very important for our country, hence the educational background of all people related to tourist services in Greece, in particular the Greek tour guides, is secured through a demanding level of studies. In the tour guides’ school I did not only learn about all the important historic sites of Greece, but also how to stimulate the imagination of grown-ups and children in order to recreate a past that mostly survives through ruins.
When I started to work as a guide I realized that people need not a scholar, but a warm, hospitable person who is willing to initiate them in the local culture in an engaging manner.Further more I realized how they are not only interested in the past when they visit Greece. They also want to learn about the different aspects of life in modern Greece. The tours I provide are a pleasant blend of information, stories and anecdotes that offer a spherical idea of Greece in just a few hours.
To book a guide for your Greek travels, means that you leave Greece with much more than you came: a treasury of knowledge and a good friend.