Greece is a land immersed in ancient myths and folklores with mystical magic to make your holiday dreams come true. It is the perfect destination to soak up in the sun and enjoy its delights all year round. You’ll be spoilt for choice, with the dazzling bright scenery, fabulous beaches, perfect weather, great food and wine, and incredible history. Sounds too good to be true?
Check this out – Greece is made up of more than 6,000 islands with 0nly 227 inhibited by humans on the Aegean Sea; thickly spread across mainland Greece and tiny isles scattered across the sea like dazzling gems across the Ionian and Aegean seas. There’s plenty to see and do, experience, learn, gawk, and get mesmerized. Legend has it that Greek gods created everything, and that’s why the Island has great scholars in all fields. This is where Democracy began, and the world followed suit.
You’ll get to see numerous monuments, museums filled with an impressively rich history, ancient arenas, and temples, as well as the incredible Acropolis of Athens.
What to do and where to go in Greece
Thankfully, today, Greece is a cosmopolitan Island with fantastic charm and hospitality. You’ll be spoilt for choice when it comes to selecting an ideal beach resort in Greece for your holidays.
And the food?
OMG! The food is sumptuously delicious, be it in the local taverns or the chic restaurants – they all provide universal cuisines alongside tasty Greek dishes. The Greek Islands form an excellent attraction for tourists worldwide. The islands are plentiful, but don’t worry, we have compiled for you a list of some of the best Greek Islands to visit.
So here we go…
Athens is a magnificently beautiful city renowned for its historical importance. The soft Acropolis marble monuments stand tall and majestic with a golden reflection of the sunrise – filling the cobblestone streets with golden rays as the locals emerge from their homes to go to work or the market. Athens is a dream town, with a slow lifestyle, people playing chess as early as 8 am. And as the sun sets in the evening, the entire city transforms into a reveling blissful moment. The air thickens with music from dance clubs, delicious spiced lamb, and the glowing lights of Omonia Square reflecting the gleaming Parthenon columns, illuminated for all to see.
Main attractions in Athens:
The Acropolis Museum
Located in the Makrigianni district, the museum’s architectural design is out of this world. The glass floors provide a rare underground display of ancient ruins covered in protective glass, forming the museum’s base! The museum displays archaeological findings, including; a relief of Athena Nike, carved statues from Erechtheion, and a galleria with numerous Parthenon artifacts.
Plaka – Athens
The beautiful Plaka neighbourhood is located under the Acropolis. Most tourists love the collection of cozy cafés and restaurants, which are swamped to the brim each summer.
Plaka offers a fascinating heavenly atmosphere and plenty of great souvenir shops for unique gifts to take back home.
Erechtheion – Athens
North of the Parthenon lies the Erechtheion pagan monument surrounded by the Acropolis complex, constructed from 421 to 406 B.C. The memorial was a holy place where locals worshipped Erechtheus, the mythological king of Athens, and several other Greek gods.
Other attractions in Athens include:
- Temple of Hephaestus
- Ancient Agora
- Benaki Museum
Beaches and Saronic Island Day Trips
Take a day trip from the Glyfada marina to see Athens by sea. Take the Aegean Rib Voyages for the best sea voyage experience from the Capital’s coast to nearby coves and beaches such as Flies and Nishida.
Visit remote islands like Mani, Poros, Aegina, Agistri, Kea, and Flies; Kythnos, Hydra, and Spetses.
See the heavenly Virgin Islands in the Saronic Isles. You can indulge in beach activities like deep seas diving, cruising on the calm waters by boat, or eating at the local beachfront eateries, including some spicy Greek seafood cuisines.
Known locally as “Salonica”, the Island overlooks the Aegean Sea from the Northern side. It is the second-largest town in the Isles. The town is crucial to its neighboring countries Bulgaria and Turkey were founded in 316 BC as a trading point between the three countries.
Salonica is listed as a UNESCO world heritage site for attractions such as:
- The Byzantine churches
- The Byzantine Museum
- The 4th-century Rotunda
- The Triumphal Arch of Galerius
- The 15th-century seafront White Tower
- Roman monuments
- Other UNESCO world heritage locations outside of Athens are:
- The Metéora Monasteries
Santorini is undoubtedly the most famous of the Greek Islands and has a rich history spanning over 4,000 years. A volcanic eruption product on the Aegean Sea, Santorini is an explosion of breath-taking beauty and mind-blowing sceneries spread over 43 miles.
For a full Santorini experience of the rich history, culture, and cuisine, you must visit:
- Museum of Prehistoric Thera
- Ancient Thira
- Kamari Beach
- Amoudi Bay
- Fira to Oia Hike.
- Winery Tours
Stretching out on 120 km of Coastline, Paros forms part of the Cyclades, the most popular among the Greek Isles. Located at the center of the Aegean Sea, it is easily accessible from Athens. The most significant landmark in Paros is Panagia Ekatontapiliani, a church dating back to the 4th century A.D.
When visiting Paros, you can enjoy the following activities:
- Eating out
- Beach Life
Apart from these activities, you may as well seek wellness from the countless healing sanctuaries available in Paros.
At position 88, Crete ranks highly in the hierarchy of Island sizes globally but is No. one in Greece.
To kick-start your visit, check out the breath-taking Balos lagoon, with clear turquoise-colored waters swooshing on the shallow ends, and a deep azure blue for the deeper ends. You will need to plan in advance so that you can arrive early to get a perfect spot as the lagoon is quite a crowd puller.
A visit to Samaria Gorge should be your next stop as you will get to see the unbelievably stunning countryside that unfolds here as you take a hike, or have an aerial view of the topography from a chopper.
Spinalonga is famous for having served as a quarantine area for lepers up until 1957. Once you are here, you will get to hear the untold stories of the leper’s site. To get here, you need to book a boat ride from the main land since it’s the only way to access Spinalonga.
Are you a party animal? If yes, Mykonos is the place to be as it is the hub of clubbing and nightlife.
Mykonos offers you endless nightlife where you can party all night long as you club hop from one vibrant nightspot to another.
One of the most popular spots you must visit is the Cavo Paradiso, set on a beautiful platform overlooking the ocean setting the right ambiance, just the perfect club for endless partying.
Other popular party clubs to explore include:
- Scandinavian Bar
- Super Paradise Beach Club
Another fun activity that you can undertake in Mykonos is Yachting. You can check out Mykonos Yachting for an exhilarating yachting experience on the pristine island waters.
Among the Cyclades, you will find that Naxos is not only the largest but the greenest of the islands. If you seek to spend time with your loved ones, this Island is relatively family-friendly and offers you endless fun activities that to indulge as a family.
Summer is the best time for you to explore the Island as you get to enjoy the extensive coastline that engulfs Naxos Island.
Naxos has pocket friendly hotel rates if you’re looking for a bit of luxury, in a laidback location.
If your budget allows it, you will find plenty of comfort at Naxian Collection, 18 Grape Hotel, To Armiro, and The Plaza beach Hotels, among others.
You could consider Naxos Golden Beach, Maragas Beach Apartments, Plaka Camping, or Antonia Studios for a lower budget. These places offer a decent stay for much less than the high-end hotels.
For beach activities, there’s windsurfing and kitesurfing, which are very popular here. Your trip would not be complete without some sightseeing, check out the Monument of Portana and the Castle of Chora as great places to visit.
Following the islands’ strict development policy, Hydra retains her unique architecture and is one of Greece’s more beautiful islands.
If you are looking for a break from the hustle and bustle that comes with motor vehicles, then you will find it at Hydra. Following a Presidential Decree banning all motorbikes, cars, and all wheeled transport, there are no vehicles in Hydra. None. It is rather refreshing to walk freely on the streets. The only mode of transportation here is mule rides. This place is truly authentic.
To access the beach, hop on a hired sea taxi for a return trip to take you to the beach area. You can use a shared ride or an exclusive ride, which is costlier than the former, but worth it.
Located on the Aegean Sea, Skiathos is a popular tiny island. Because of its buzzing nightlife and fun activities, it draws mostly the younger generation tourists for wild party nights. You can check out other cool night clubs in the area.
You will be spoilt for choice as numerous spots ooze from every other sidewalk on the streets. If you are a movie fan, check out the Mamma Mia filming location at the Skiathos Princess Hotel to experience the filming set atmosphere.
Located on the Ionian Sea, Cephalonia has a population of 35,000.00 people. One of the places you must visit while here is the Monastery of Agios Gerasimos, built-in 1560. Many pilgrimages come here seeking mental healing.
Your visit would be incomplete without the coveted glass boat tour on the Island. A glass-bottomed boat would accord you a glimpse of the expansive blue sea filled with an assortment of exotic fish, and the beautiful underwater world such as coves, inlets, and secluded beaches on the mainland.
Corfu is one of 18 no. Sites listed on UNESCO world heritage sites. It is a picture-perfect heavenly island with a stunning landscape, hence a great attraction for visiting tourists. Corfu sits overlooking the Ionian Sea and is an excellent getaway with plenty of activities for you.
To fully experience Corfu and witness her beauty first hand, be sure to visit the following places:
- The Corfu Old Town
- Esplanade and Liston
- St. Spyridon Church
- Mount Pantokrator
- Pontikonisi (Mouse Island)
Named after the famous Icarus of Greek mythology, Ikaria sits on about 250 km and is part of the Eastern Aegean Islands.
It is a famous isle due to the long life of its peoples contributed by the Ikarian organic diet.
The Isle is quite a sight to behold! Once you set your foot here, you’ll never want to go back home, I swear! It’s the perfect trip to reactivate your traveling energies. Although the attitude on the Island is laidback and slow, it’s a refreshing place to be; soaking in all the goodness, the amazing sunlight and happy folks going on about their daily chores.
It almost feels like centuries ago, when folks lived in communal villages. That’s the unique thing about Greece, and the combined smaller Isles.
The people all over are amazingly friendly, and helpful. Most folks understand English, so it shouldn’t be a problem when visiting even the most remote Isle in this fantastic part of the world.
Our Final Word
Greece. Its natural, wild beauty is spectacular. Friendly locals, Rocky Mountains, stunning gorges, steep hiking trails, and enthralling beaches set the scene of the perfect magical holiday destination, exclusively for countryside lovers!
You will never get bored while on the Greek Islands. Whether your goal is to relax on the backdrop of the vast pristine waters, or site-seeing, Greece has a calming effect – of drowning away all your worries and leaving you rejuvenated. And if you are the adventurous type, satiate yourself in Island trotting, hiking, and strolling on the serene beaches.
“The Human Connection” explores the profound impact of human interactions during travels. It emphasizes the importance of embracing local cultures, understanding diverse perspectives, and forming meaningful connections. This post encourages readers to see beyond tourist spots and delve deeper into the heart of the places they visit, through the people they meet.
Discover the magic of the holiday season with our ultimate guide to the best Christmas destinations. Explore enchanting markets, festive light displays, and unique traditions around the world. From snowy European towns to tropical beach retreats, we’ve got the perfect holiday travel suggestions for every type of traveler.
We have traveled to Alaska and boarded a small plane. Flying through the Brooks Range, a mountain range in far northern North America stretching some 700 miles from west to east across northern Alaska into Canada’s Yukon Territory it felt like as if we were so close to the mountain tops that we could reach out and touch the peaks. Our destination was the arctic. The small village of Kaktovik.
And our goal? To encounter Polar Bears in the wild.