One time I thought traveling to Greece was out of my budget and that it was crazy expensive. Fast forward, I have afforded to have traveled twice and stayed in a dream-style villa in different hotels, and visited many other islands. Hence, I have the 5 tips for visiting Greece; continue reading.
1. Travel to Greece in Late Summer
If you want to travel to Greece, everything is about timing. The best advice that I can give you is to travel in the late summer.
The prices usually spike in the mid-summer due to the high demand of Americans wanting to get to know the beautiful islands, join the music festivals, and enjoy the beach bars that are fabulous here. So start by scheduling your trip in mid-August. Of course, you must handle all the back-to-school duties or any business meetings you will have upon your return beforehand to enjoy the journey.
Even though they have tourism during late August, people will likely be traveling from other parts of Europe rather than American tourism.
2. Fly to Athens and take the ferries to the Islands
Athens has an International Airport, and depending on where you are traveling, and you can get a direct or one-stop flight there and then take the boat to the islands. Every Island has a Port, and all the Islands are connected by Ferry. Many greeks in the tourist areas speak English and can help you with any questions you might have. These tickets most likely are not available online, but you can get access to the schedule, which is pretty regular, so you can plan on getting the timed tiket entry to move in between the Islands.
3. Pick your Islands beforehand
Here are some of my favorite island hotels and places to stay, and restaurants:
- Definitely visit as much Museums, and Greek Ruins as possible and enjoy the Athens cosmo-life and food scene
- Hotels with Great location: Electra Metropolis Athens; Family Friendly: Novotel Athenes
- Restaurants with Great Location and Hospitality: Eleas Gi; Hidden Gem: Thanasis Fish Tavern @thanasisfish
- Santorini is such a romantic Island, visit Wineries and Fira and Oia
- Hotels at Kamari Beach RK Beach Hotel at Kamari Beach and Oia Mare Villas at Oia, Santorini
- Instead of staying on a Hotel Try to book a Villa through AIRBNB
- Beach Clubs to visit
- Tropicana Beach Bar
- Super Paradise Beach Club
4. Visit the Wine Country
Santorini or Peloponnese area are fantastic options. For instance, some of my favorite Wineries to visit in Santorini are:
- Boutari Winery
- Venetsanos Winery
- Gavalas Winery
- Estate Argyros
- Hatzidakis Winery
If you are near Athens and you do not plan on visiting the Islands, you should need to see at least Domaine Costa Lazaridis, which is 1 hour away from Athens downtown. More info here.
5. Eat at lo local eateries, aka Tavernas.
Do I need to explain this? The most authentic food is in the Tavernas, family-owned restaurants where the food and camaraderie will be the most authentic greek experience. Most of them have the catch of the day and the typical greek menu that we know in the US but way more delicious. From Mousaka to Galaktobureko, Atherina to Grilled Bronzino, all the delightful Mediterranean food is at its best.