Updated: December 14, 2017
The Best Islands in Greece
- Best for Honeymoon: Santorini
- Best Nightlife and Parties: Mykonos
- Best for Couples: Santorini, Paros
- Best Beaches: Naxos, Mykonos, Ios, Crete
- Best for Families: Naxos
- Best for Teens: Santorini, Mykonos, Paros, Rhodes
- Best for History: Crete, Rhodes, Santorini
- Best for Hiking: Crete, Folegandros, Santorini, Naxos
- Best for Biking: Kos
- Best for Luxury: Santorini, Mykonos
- Best for Quiet and Solitude: Folegandros, Ikaria, Karpathos
- Best for Outdoor Activity: Crete, Santorini
- Best for Food: All of them
- Best for a Cruise: None of them – don’t do a Greek island cruise, visit on your own
- Best for Island Hopping: The Cyclades: Santorini, Naxos, Paros, Ios, Mykonos, and Milos (and more) are all well connected by ferry and easy to get from one to the next
The 5 Best Greek Islands
My favorite island in Greece is Santorini. If you can only make visit one (and you shouldn’t) make it Santorini. Loaded with great boat tours, wine tours, fantastic hotels, restaurants, and things to do.
The best nightlife and clubbing is found on Mykonos. Also has great beaches and an incredibly charming capital village, Mykonos Town.
The largest Greek island and rich with beaches, historical sights, hikes, and small cities. So big that if you only have a week it’s good to limit yourself to only this island. If you have two weeks it makes a great pair with Santorini.
The most family friendly island in Greece is Naxos. Wonderful beaches and main town is crammed with wonderful local tavernas serving some of the best food on the Greek islands.
If you want quiet idyllic beaches then Antiparos is a great choice. It’s reachable only by boat from nearby Paros.
Greek Islands – Where To Go
Best Greek Islands in March, April, October, and November
This is shoulder season. The busiest islands and those with a local population are quieter but still humming along with plenty of hotels and restaurants open. Santorini, Crete, and Rhodes are the best Greek islands to visit in the spring and autumn period.
Best Greek Islands in May, June, and September
The Greek islands have beautiful weather in the months just before and after peak season. It’s a great time to see the islands, save money, avoid the crowds, and still have great weather (though not as hot as July and August). If you want to see the super-popular islands of Santorini, Rhodes, Corfu, and Crete without the tourists then this is a great time to visit.
Best Greek Islands in July and August
The busiest and hottest months. If you like beach parties and packed clubs then Mykonos is the place to be. The less-busy islands (Antiparos, Sifnos, Ikaria, Folegandros, Milos) have short tourists seasons and this is when they’re fully open and running. Santorini, Crete, Rhodes, and Corfu are in peak-season but all are large enough to retain their charm.
Best Greek Islands in December, January, and February
Most islands are very quiet in the winter. Crete and Santorini are the best islands as they still have plenty to do even in winter and there are lots of (open) places to stay and eat.