Local Culture and Festivities
People who live in small villages and towns in Greece are often resourceful in their daily lives and welcoming to visitors who bring a little of the outside world. The simplicity of life is astounding and difficult for many, especially the old, yet even they will climb through the groves, combing the olives from the trees or head up to the steep mountain tops, keeping an eye on their sheep. Being self-sufficient is a necessity rather than a choice, especially in the winter months, and it often shows in their determination to remain in the villages even though cities can offer greater comfort.
Bread is baked in wood fired ovens; fruit and vegetables are picked from the garden; cheese is bought from the local shepherd. You will often see fresh produce or household goods being sold at the back of a truck, a mobile business model that offers flexibility to the owner and enables the locals access to goods. If you visit us for a cooking holiday or to join the harvest you might wake up to the sound of the mobile sellers!
The climate is mild and everyone enjoys the outdoors. Greeks like to sit in the local cafes drinking coffee, wine, ouzo and raki, in the company of friends and neighbours. Socializing is a very strong cultural element in Greece and it is usually accompanied with sharing meals or just a few bites of the local produce. Greeks can appear a fiery lot as they have an appetite for news and enjoy loud passionate conversations about politics or even just the topics of the day.
Social life, in these communities, is marked by festivals that coincide with seasonal harvests or religious events. Local festivals are always accompanied by music, food, bazaars and of course dancing. These are not to be missed and you will be sure to have the chance to join such elaborate festivities when you visit villages or small towns. Try out a holiday in Crete to connect with the local culture.