This is the homeland of Alexander the Great: at Vergina lie the Macedonian tombs of Alexander's family, at Pella lie the ruins of the city in which he was born, while at Dion you can visit the city his father Philip built as capital of the Macedonian Empire. We have all heard of Mount Olympus but few understand its beauty until they are walking in its foothills. The Chalkidiki peninsula has white sandy beaches and in its eastern reaches lies the centre of Orthodox monasticism, Mount Athos. The capital of the region is Greece's second city, Thessaloniki, which boasts a plethora of beautiful Byzantine churches and one of Europe's finest archaeological museums. There are a host of smaller towns worth visiting, including Kastoria and Kavala.