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Main cities
Athens, Thessaloniki, Patras, Larissa, Heraklion, Volos, Rhodes.

Democracy
Greece, also known as Hellas, is the birthplace of politics as an art and democracy as a from of government. Its democratic ideals inspired, among others, the framers of the US constitution. The present Greek Constitution, voted in 1975 and amended in 1986, defines the country's political system as a Parliamentary Democracy headed by a president.

Legislative powers are exercised by a single Chamber Parliament (the Vouli) and executive powers are vested in the Government and the President. The Prime Minister, whose Government must enjoy the confidence of the House, has extensive powers. The judiciary is independent. Civil, political and human rights are constitutionally guaranteed. General elections for the 300 parliamentary seats are held every four years. The president of the Republic is elected by MP's and serves for a five year term, renewable only once.

Festivals and Folklore
Athens' lively nightlife includes rooftop tavernas in colorful Plaka, bouzouki clubs, discos and casinos. Theater, an integral part of life, is most vivid when performed in the ancient outdoor theaters of Athens and at Epidaurus, south of Corinth. Annual events include the Athens Festival (June-Sept.); the Epidaurus Festival (July-Sept.) and the Dora Stratou folk dancing performances in Athens (April-Sept.). Concerts are also held in the new Megaron Mousikis (Music Hall). Futhermore, events are organized all around Greece depending on the season.

Annual events include the Athens Festival (June-Sept.); the Epidaurus Festival (July-Sept.) and the Dora Stratou folk dancing performances in Athens (April-Sept.). Concerts are also held in the new Megaron Mousikis (Music Hall). Futhermore, events are organized all around Greece depending on the season. Annual events include the Athens Festival (June-Sept.); the Epidaurus Festival (July-Sept.) and the Dora Stratou folk dancing performances in Athens (April-Sept.). Concerts are also held in the new Megaron Mousikis (Music Hall). Futhermore, events are organized all around Greece depending on the season.

Currency
EURO

Credit cards
All Major International Cards

Tips
By law, service charges are included in the bill at hotels, restaurants, and tavernas.

Visas
For E.U. nationals only an identity card is needed to enter Greece. Citizens of most other countries must have a valid passport. Visas are required in some cases.

Post
All post offices are open Monday through Friday from 7.30 a.m.-2.00 p.m.

Telephone
Country Code is: 30+city code. International Calls: 00+Country Code.

Opening hours
Government office hours are 7:30 a.m.-3:00 p.m. Monday through Friday from October to May, and 07:00 a.m.-2:30 p.m., Monday through Friday from May through September.
Private sector office hours are 8:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m. (with one hour for lunch).

Manufacturing establishments operate from 7:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m., Monday through Friday. Banking business hours are 8:30 a.m.-2:00 p.m., Monday through Friday.

Transports
Railroads length: 2,497 km (1993) Roads total lengths: 116,150 Km (paved 92%).

Merchant marine vessels (1994): (100 gross tons and over) 2,149.
Total deadweight tonnage: 30,536,000.

Shopping
Stores generally are open Monday to Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturday from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

Look for national handicrafts, jewelry, leather goods and fur, flokati rugs made from sheep's wool, pottery, onyx, marble and alabaster. Excellent reproductions of museum pieces are available in the museum shops. A crossroads between Europe and the Middle East Greece has long been a centre for craftsmanship; craftsmen jewellers, furriers, leatherworkers and ceramicists. Modern boutiques sit side by side with huge department stores and some of Europe's top establishments now have at least one store in the major cities and some of the islands. Most visitors buy honey, olive oil, sponges, ceramics, gold and silver jewellery, shoes (a lesser-known craft, some of the best shoemakers and designers work in Greece), pottery, embroidery and even worry beads. The choice is there and it's up to you to discover the variety on offer.

Main economic resources
Primary: Agriculture 12% of GDP. Secondary: Industry 30% of GDP. Tertiary: Services 58% of GDP

Major industries
In the sub-sector of manufacturing (13 percent of GDP), the food industry is one of the most profitable and highest growth areas, with an increased presence in the Balkan countries and significant export potential. High-technology equipment.

Electricity
220 volt, 50 cycle AC current. Sockets are either of the two or three pin variety.


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