Greece › Best Places to Visit
by Santorini Dave • Updated: January 2, 2022
The Best of Greece
- Greece is my favorite holiday destination in Europe. History, culture, great food, beautiful beaches, charming villages, amazing weather, fun nightlife, and island hopping.
- All Greek Islands are unique, wonderful, and worth visiting. But my favorites (especially for first timers) are Santorini, Mykonos, Naxos, Paros, and Crete.
- If you can only go to one island then visit Crete or Santorini (they have the most to see and do). If you can only go to two then visit Santorini and Naxos (very easy to get between) or Santorini and Mykonos (both have international airports making visiting from western Europe easy).
- Best Greek Island for Couples and Honeymoon: Santorini
- Best Greek Island for Kids and Families: Naxos.
- Best Greek Islands for Nightlife: Mykonos • Ios • Santorini • Paros
- Best Greek Islands for Beaches: Mykonos • Naxos • Paros • Ios • Crete
- Best Greek Islands for Food: Naxos and Santorini.
- Best Greek Islands for Hiking: Naxos • Santorini • Crete • Sifnos
- Athens deserves one or two full days of sightseeing. But after that, get yourself to an island. There are some great tours in Athens that should not be missed and most of the Best Hotels in Athens are centrally located and close to the main tourist sights. From central Athens, it’s an easy 20-minute metro ride to the ferry port.
- The best day trips and short trips from Athens are Nafplio, Delphi, and the Meteora.
Greece Travel Itinerary
The key to planning a travel itinerary for Greece is to fly in and out of different cities, and be sure there are direct and regular ferries between all your destinations. Once you set those basic plans the rest is easy as there really are no bad itineraries for Greece. Every Greek island is worth visiting. From April to October, there are regular ferries (usually 2 or more per day) along the Heraklion (Crete) to Santorini to Ios to Naxos to Paros to Mykonos to Athens route – which are the best islands for first-time visitors to Greece.
• Greece Itinerary for 7 days: 4 days in Santorini and 3 days in Naxos OR 5 days in Santorini and 2 days in Mykonos OR 6 days in Santorini and 1 day in Athens.
• Greece Itinerary for 10 days: 2 days in Chania (Crete), 1 day in Heraklion (Crete), 4 days in Santorini, 3 days in Naxos/Mykonos OR 5 days in Santorini, 4 days in Naxos/Mykonos, 1 day in Athens.
• Greece Itinerary for 14 days: 3 days in Chania (Crete), 1 day in Heraklion (Crete), 5 days in Santorini, 3 days in Naxos, 2 days in Mykonos OR 5 days in Santorini, 3 days in Naxos, 2 days in Paros, 3 days in Mykonos, 1 day in Athens.
If you’re uncertain where the top destinations are located then take a look at my maps of Greece – they should help you get a feel for the lay of the country and islands.
The 30 Best Places To Visit in Greece
Which Greek Island by Season and Weather
Where to Go In Greece in July and August (Summer/High Season)
Santorini and Mykonos are great if you want lots of activity, nightlife, live DJs, and packed clubs. If you want a quieter island in the peak season Naxos, Folegandros, Milos, Sifnos, Antiparos, and Ikaria are wonderful choices.
Where to Go In Greece in June and September
Santorini and Mykonos are a little quieter than their high season peak but still plenty going on. Crete, Naxos, Paros, and Rhodes are at their best. The quiet islands (Sifnos, Ikaria, Antiparos) quickly become very quiet by mid-September which might be fine for some but too slow for others.
Where to Go In Greece in May and October
Most islands are slow in these shoulder months but Santorini, Crete, and Rhodes are still wonderful places to visit with lots open. Naxos and Paros are quiet but far from dead. Quiet islands are very slow but still enough open to get by.
Where to Go In Greece in March, April, and November
A great time to visit if sightseeing, wine tours, fine food, and walking are your main interests. Weather is nice by northern European standards but usually not warm enough for swimming or suntanning. Santorini and Crete are the best islands to visit during this period but unfortunately, there are no ferries between the two islands during the slow season so you’ll need to fly via Athens if you want to visit both.
Where to Go In Greece in December, January, and February (Winter/Low Seasons)
Santorini is the best island to visit during the winter. Best to fly directly as the sea can be rough during the winter months. Crete is also a good destination as it’s the warmest place in Greece during winter.
- Complete Greece Travel Guide
- When to Visit Greece and the Greek Islands
- The Best Beaches in Greece
- Athens Travel Guide
- Crete Travel Guide
- Mykonos Travel Guide
- Naxos Travel Guide
- Paros Travel Guide
- Santorini Travel Guide
- Mainland Greece Travel Guide
- Halkidiki Travel Guide
- Italy Travel Guide
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