greece travel guide

Tourist guide to Greece and the Greek islands

greece Greece is not only an ancient heritage to be discovered on holiday, but much more. Naturally, most of the tourism in Greece takes place around archaeological sites. But the beauty of Greece lies in its 9 841 islands, in the mountainous landscapes, lands of olive trees and vineyards, in the sunsets, in the gastronomy and in the Mediterranean climate.

Greece is made up of a jagged peninsula that thins out into the sea, breaking up into about 3000 islands, of which only 169 are inhabited. The islands are divided into the archipelagos of the Cyclades, the Ionian, the Dodecanese, the northeastern Aegean, the Sporades and the Saronic Gulf, opposite the capital. Greece is the cradle of Western civilization, home to poets and philosophers with well-known names: Homer, Hesiod, Sophocles, Aeschylus, Plato and Aristotle. History and culture, therefore, but above all sun and sea.

evia The two major islands are Crete and Evia. Each island has something unique and original that distinguishes it from the closest island, but the common denominator is the white houses that stand out against the blue of the church domes, perched on the highest point of the chora. The beaches, lapped by crystalline waters, change color according to the conformation of the island: from those of very white sand, to those of black volcanic origin.

The arid Máni region of the Peloponnese boasts the most diverse wildlife in the country, with meadows of oregano, basil and thyme growing wild everywhere. Greece should be enjoyed with a skilful balance between visits to rich museums or spectacular archaeological sites and stops at the typical taverns in panoramic positions, to drink the local aperitif: ouzo.

There are many reasons why tourism in Greece is so intense. We are sure that Greece will delight travelers of all styles, those in search of local culture, those who prefer relaxation and the sea. From Mount Olympus to the island of Crete, passing through the Cyclades, you will always find a place to enjoy life. We absolutely recommend a trip to Greece starting from Italy. It is only a few hours of flight to discover a country that will remain in your heart!

Best places to visit in Greece


athensAthens the capital of Greece, with its glorious past has clearly left the ancient mark that made it famous. When it comes to tourism in Greece, the Acropolis of Athens is one of the first things that come to mind. On the hill overlooking Athens we find the Parthenon and the Theater of Dionysus. Furthermore, at its feet you can visit the Agora, discover the most beautiful monuments of the city.

To learn about the history of the city and the country, visit the Byzantine and Benaki museums and the National Museum. Being a museum city, Athens is very busy, dynamic and lively. During the day, if the heat is not stifling, we recommend a walk in the Plaka district.

While in the evening we recommend discovering the bars of the Metaxourgeio district, or in the quieter Psirri. Also, in the surroundings of Athens (Attica region), you will find many archaeological sites such as Elefsina, Cape Sounion and the temple of Poseidon, or Vravrona. You will go to swim in Glyfada, a very touristic beach.

Cyclades islands

mykonosMykonos: Of course, the most famous island of the Cyclades is the most festive and trendy. But it hasn’t lost its old-world charm, with its whitewashed houses, blue shutters and windmills. If you want to go to the best clubs in the country, this is the place. Tourism in Greece of young clubbers is concentrated on this island.

Also, the area is much loved by the Athenian people who love the nightlife. During the day, or rather in the afternoon, the beaches are full of people, especially those of Agios Stéfanos, Kalafati Beach, and Ornos Beach. In the morning, while everyone is still asleep, a visit to Mykonos is highly recommended to discover its narrow streets. You can also practice diving.

Paros: The location of the island, in the center of the Cyclades, is ideal for discovering the whole region. Impossible not to recommend a visit to this island. There you will find fishing villages such as Naoussa and Alyki. We recommend strolling through the narrow streets of Parikia, the capital of the island, or Lefkès. Kolymbithres beach is beautiful with its coves, but crowded in summer.

santoriniSantorini: When one thinks of tourism in Greece, Santorini offers just what the traveler wants to see. Narrow streets, white and blue houses, quiet but busy in high season. It is a key stop for cruise ships, so the island is very popular.

The town of Oia is what you see on all postcards. Try to visit Fira (or Thira), Akrotiri, or Pyrgos which overlooks the island.

Syros: The island is less known than its Cycladic sisters, but is home to one of the most beautiful cities in Greece: Ermoúpoli and its stairway leading to Ano Syros. Take advantage of this place before it loses its charm due to mass tourism.

Amorgos: The Cyclades are many islands, and Amorgos is one of the best preserved.

Dodecanese islands

rhodes Rhodes: In the Dodecanese archipelago, the island of Rhodes Greece is a jewel. The homonymous city of Rhodes has the mythical port of Mandraki, famous for the legend of the Colossus.

The island is the greenest of the Cyclades and can be visited in two days. Lindos, 50 km from Rhodes, is not to be missed. The town is dominated by an acropolis within walking distance.

Kos: The island of Kos is most famous for its nightlife. Indeed, there are many low-cost flights serving the city. If you prefer a little more peace and quiet, choose the villages of Andimachéia or Kardamena. Rent a scooter or a bicycle to go around the island, a classic of tourism in Greece. The geographical position of the island allows you to reach the nearby islands of Kalymnos and Nisyros, Leros and Patmos..


creteCrete, the island of the gods is located at the borders of Europe and at the gates of the East. This is worth visiting for a week or more as there is no shortage of sites and attractions. Heraklion, its capital, will be your point of arrival. The sites of Knossos, Festos, Fodele, Malia, Hersonissos and the fort of Koules are worth seeing.

Agios Nikolaos, although very touristy, offers a myriad of sites to visit. Starting with its port, the city of Elounda and the island of Spinalonga. The Lassithi plateau and its small roads offer really beautiful landscapes. In particular, there is the archaeological site of Kato Zakros. Along the coast, towards the east, you will discover Kritsa and the church of Panagia Kera, then Sitia with its olive groves and the monastery of Toplou.

The west of the island of Crete offers many other points of interest, such as Rethymno and its fortress, the sites of Elefterna, the monastery of Arkadi, the surroundings of Chania, the site of Aptéra, trekking in the gorge of Samaria.

In the south of the island is the city of Lerapetra. In general, Crete can be discovered both in a group with a guide and with a rental car. This second solution seems to be the best, to take the time to enjoy the villages of the whole island, to meet the Cretans. In this case, prefer the spring and autumn seasons to avoid the crowds of summer tourists and those looking for a mild winter.


Home to the best ancient sites such as Olympia where the Olympic Games first appeared. Also, Mycenae, illuminated by Homer, and its archaeological sites, Epidaurus and its imposing theatre, the medieval village of Monemvasia, the Byzantine city of Mystra near Sparta, or the port of Nauplia. You can stay in the big cities of Patras, Corinth or Kalamata to visit the Peloponnese.

Greek mainland

meteora Meteora are certainly the great curiosity of the region with their huge rocks on which the monasteries are located. After the Parthenon in Athens, one of the most visited tourist attractions in mainland Greece is the Meteora, an extraordinary example of how human ingenuity can enhance the wonders of nature rather than deface them.

The six monasteries of the Meteora that we can visit today have a very similar structure, built around a central courtyard overlooked by the monks’ cells, the refectory and one or more chapels for prayer. In the center of the courtyard is the katholikon, or main church.


delphi In central Greece, Delphi is the second most important archaeological site after the Acropolis. On Mount Parnassus there is the Temple of Apollo and the theater, among others.

A fundamental stop for fans of ancient Greece and for those looking for places of myth, the name of Delphi is inextricably linked to the most revered and respected oracle of the Greek religion. According to ancient beliefs, the oracle was a woman, named Pythia, priestess of the temple of Apollo at Delphi, it was she who, surrounded by mysterious vapors, gave the expected and sometimes feared response.

Her answer, albeit enigmatic, profoundly conditioned the consultant’s choices on even very serious topics, such as the decision to go to war or the exact place in which to found a new city. Walking through the mountains with a rugged landscape on which the ancient ruins stand, it is not difficult to become pervaded by mysticism and wish to be able to invoke a powerful oracle still today to clarify one’s ideas on important issues.

Macedonia and Chalikidiki

In this region of northern Greece is the second largest city, Thessaloniki. You will find far fewer tourists here than in the south, which is something to take into consideration. Thessaloniki is not only an industrial city but also a cultural one (Byzantine art museum). From Thessaloniki, you can visit the archaeological site of Dion, and by boat, you can go on an excursion to Mount Athos, which is however forbidden to women.

Other places of interest for tourism in Greece

Finally, let’s not forget the Ionian Islands in the west of the country, which include Corfu and Paxos. Also the islands of the eastern Aegean, including Lesvos, Chios and Samos, with Turkish influences. Finally, the mountainous region of Epirus, which borders Albania, will be a delight for hikers (gorges and canyons).

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