Basic Program of Liberal Education

Study in Greece: Spring Break in Greece

Sunset view of Athenian treasury at the ancient Delphi site in Greece.

The Graham School is pleased to offer an opportunity for Basic Program students to travel to Greece accompanied by an Athens Centre archaeologist, along with a Basic Program Instructor, and trip coordinator Jan Watson. Experience firsthand many of the historic places that you have encountered in the Core Curriculum readings. Students will enjoy on site lectures visiting sites in Athens, such as the temple of Athena on the Acropolis, Socrates's jail cell in the Agora, and major museums. We will venture outside of Athens to visit Korinthos and Nemea, the Lions Gate in Mycenae the city of Agamemnon, the theatre of Epidaurus, Nestor's Palace in Pylos, Olympia, and Apollo's temple and the Oracle of Delphi. In addition to a pre-trip seminar, there will be time to discuss the sites in relation to the texts with your instructor and your fellow students.

Statue in Delphi museum, Greece.

All Basic Program students and alumni of the program are eligible to apply for the trip. Spouses and partners are cordially welcome.

The synergy with the Basic Program courses is great. We read a lot of material over the four years and to actually see the locations made that come alive. I feel more attached to the Basic Program after visiting Greece and better appreciate the special bond the Basic Program creates among its students.

Past Participant in Basic Program Travel to Greece

Trip Leaders will be announced and shared soon.

  • Pre-trip seminar
  • Pre-trip reception
  • Double-occupancy hotel accommodations
  • Daily breakfast and lunch, arrival day reception, welcome and farewell dinners.
  • Archaeologist and expert led site and museum tours.
  • Discussion sessions led by a Basic Program instructor. 
  • Entry to the ancient sites and museums.
  • Coach transportation to sites outside of Athens.
  • Support services provided by the Athens Centre.

Participants are responsible for their own air travel to Greece (and airport transfers) and meals other than those listed above.

Accommodations are in 3-4 star hotels in double hotel rooms located near the sites we will visit. Single travelers may book by paying the single supplement.

Participants should be aware that the trip requires considerable walking in ancient archeological sites. Ability to climb 2-3 flights of stairs and ability to stand for up to 60 minutes is required.

Greek Text Inscription on a rock in Delphi.

Readings are arranged based on locations we will visit.

Athens: A Place, a Goddess, and a Way of Life

  • The Landmark Thucydides: A Comprehensive Guide to the Peloponnesian War, Free Press, ISBN 978-0684827902.
    Please read Book 2.35 – 2.46 – Pericles’ Funeral Oration
  • Plato: Five Dialogues, Trans. Grube, Hackett 2nd Ed., ISBN 978-0872206335
    Please read the Apology, p. 22-44 and the Phaedo 115a-118a (p. 151-154)

At Home in Pylos with Nestor

  • Homer, The Odyssey (Fagles tr.), Penguin, ISBN 978-0140268867.
    Please read Book 3, where Telemachus visits Nestor at Pylos.

Gods, Games, and Gifts at Olympia & Delphi

  • Herodotus, The History (Grene tr.), University of Chicago Press, ISBN 978-0226327723.
    Please read Book 1.7-92 (Delphi), 6.99-140 (Marathon), 8.48-63 (Acropolis burned)
Lion Gate in Mycenae, Greece.

Discussion Session Topics are under consideration and will be shared soon.

A golden death mask called the "Mask of Agamemnon."
Ruins of Appollo temple with fortress at back in ancient Corinth, Greece.
Day One
  • Arrive in Athens
  • Check in to group hotel
  • Trip Overview session
  • Cocktail reception
  • Welcome Dinner / Overnight Athens
Day Two
  • Breakfast at the hotel
  • Guided visit to the Acropolis site
  • Lunch at a taverna 
  • Guided visit to the Acropolis Museum
  • Overnight Athens
Day Three
  • Breakfast at the hotel
  • Guided visit to the National Archaeological Museum
  • Lunch at a nearby taverna
  • Guided visit to the Kerameikos site
  • Discussion session with Basic Program Instructor
  • Overnight Athens
Day Four
  • Breakfast at the hotel
  • Guided visit to Epidaurus theatre, museum, and sanctuary
  • Guided visit to Korinthos and Nemea
  • Lunch
  • Continue to Mycenae for guided visit to site and museum
  • Overnight Nafplion

Day Five

  • Breakfast at the hotel
  • Guided visit to Epidaurus theatre, museum, and sanctuary
  • Lunch
  • Discussion led by Basic Program Instructor
  • Overnight Nafplion
Day Six
  • Breakfast at the hotel
  • Bus to Pylos
  • Guided visit to Pylos site and museum
  • Lunch
  • Bus to Olympia / Overnight Olympia
Day Seven
  • Breakfast at the hotel
  • Guided visit to Olympia site and museum
  • Lunch
  • Bus to Delphi
  • Discussion session with Basic Program Instructor
  • Overnight Delphi
Day Eight
  • Breakfast at the hotel
  • Guided visit to museum and Upper site, Sanctuary of Apollon
  • Lunch
  • Guided visit to Lower site, Sanctuary of Athena
  • Bus to Athens / Overnight Athens
Day Nine
  • Breakfast at the hotel
  • Guided visit to ancient Agora site and museum
  • Free afternoon
  • Farewell dinner / Overnight Athens
Day Ten
  • Departure

Tuition fees are being determined and will be announced soon.

We strongly suggest that participants purchase travel insurance to protect against nonrefundable costs incurred when travel must be postponed on short notice. We are unable to make exceptions to our refund policies.

Participants may elect instead to waive this requirement understanding fully that the University of Chicago Graham School of Continuing Liberal and Professional Studies is under no obligation to provide a refund after cancellation dates have passed.

Participants should also confirm that their medical insurance covers expenses while in Greece or arrange for alternative medical insurance.

The University of Chicago, the University of Chicago Graham School of Continuing Liberal and Professional Studies, and the Athens Centre have no responsibility in whole or in part for any loss, death, damage, or injury to person or property or accident, mechanical defect, failure or negligence of any nature howsoever caused in connection with any accommodation, transportation, or other services. Baggage is at the owner’s risk entirely. The right is retained to decline to accept or retain any person as a trip member should such person’s health, mental condition, physical infirmity, or attitude jeopardize the operation of the trip or the rights, welfare, or enjoyment of other participants.

For further information, please email

Details will be shared soon.