Overview Guide to travel in Greece

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Overview

Greece is a land of spectacular landscapes and a Mediterranean celebration, located at the southern tip of the Balkan Peninsula. For those looking for an exciting city break in a sunny country, Greece has a lot to offer you. From the beautiful islands of Mykonos, Rhodes, Crete, Kos to the vibrant nightlife of Athens and Thessaloniki – Greece is a tourist destination to suit every taste and pocket. Greece is also a popular destination for cruising in Europe. Greece consists of 13 administrative areas/provinces: Attica, Central Greece, Central Macedonia, Crete, Eastern Macedonia and Thrace, Epirus, Ionian Islands, North Aegean, Peloponnese, South Aegean, Thessaly, Western Greece, and Western Macedonia.

Country

Greece

Approx. Duration

Full-day Tour, Overnight Tour

Accessibility Level

Accessibility Level – High

Flights & Accommodations

Local Currency

Euro

Price Level

$

Min. Price

Not Relevant

Address

Spoken Languages

Greek (formal), English

Recommended Age

Babies, Kids, Teens, Adults, Seniors, Any Age

Detailed Pricing

Not Relevant

Electricity

Greek (formal), English

Safety


Things To Do

Total: 1
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Reasons to visit Overview Guide to travel in Greece

  • Mainland Greece – In that case, you can visit Thessaloniki and its rich history, visit churches, and of course, watch the White Tower, its hallmark. You can drive to Mount Olympus and admire the impressive forests and rich vegetation and even embark on a jeep or trekking route towards the summit. Another notable attraction is the meteor, pillars hundreds of meters high that protrude from the ground thanks to a unique geological phenomenon, at the top of which are medieval monasteries.
  • Athens – Located on the mainland, Athens is a must-stop location. you can visit the Acropolis, one of the world-famous buildings, as well as other sites that are thousands of years old.
  • Taverns – You can’t visit Greece without visiting the famous taverns, where you can eat authentic Greek food, sip ouzo and enjoy the typical Greek music.
  • The Islands – Greece has many amazing ilands, each offers a unique experience. Use our Trip Planner to search for trips in Greece that are perfect for your needs.


Frequently Asked Questions

We can start by saying that almost all stores and services are closed on Sunday, except, of course, tourist-oriented shops and services. Supermarkets, department stores, and chain stores are usually open from 9 am to 9 pm, Monday through Saturday.
On Monday, Wednesday, and Saturday, smaller retail shops’ hours are usually 9 am to 3 pm; Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday, it’s 9 am to 2 pm and 5 pm to 7 pm. The afternoon siesta is generally observed from 3 pm to 5 pm, though many tourist-oriented businesses have a minimal crew on duty during naptime, and they may keep extended hours, often from 8 am to 10 pm.

Hotels: 1 Euro per bag for the bellboy/porter. Leave 1 Euro per day on the bedside table for housekeeping.

Restaurants: 10% and 15% of the bill.

Spas: Staff at space in will not usually expect gratuities, but it’s up to you. Tip if you want.

Taxi Driver: Taxi drivers usually don’t get tips. Some taxi drivers may have grown used to it from tourists. If you decide to tip your taxi driver, round up the fare or leave between 5% and 10%. If you’ve hired a private driver, leave around 20 Euros per day. If they went above and beyond, you could always tip more.

Tour Guide: In Greece, it is standard etiquette to tip on tours. For group tours, you can tip between 2 and 5 Euros per person, per day. For private tours, tip 20 Euros per person, per day.

If there is no tourist police officer available (tel. 171), dial 100 for the local police.
For fire, call tel. 199.
For medical emergencies and/or first aid and/or an ambulance, call tel. 166.
For hospitals, call tel. 106.
For automobile emergencies, put out a triangular danger sign and call tel. 10400.
Embassies, consulates, and many hotels can recommend an English-speaking doctor.

Absolutely! In most cities and many islands, especially the large ones, you will find attractions and hotels that will be especially suitable for a trip with a family. For example, in Crete, the largest of the Greek islands, you will find a variety of parks, such as Water City, Limnoupolis Water Park, Open Museum (Lychnostatis), Aquarium (Cretaquarium) where children can be impressed by a variety of species of sea animals like sharks, and this is only a partial list.

In mainland Greece, tap water is safe to drink, although it can be slightly salty in some locales near the sea. That’s why many people prefer to buy bottled water. When you’re in a restaurant, if you prefer fresh tap water, you can ask for tap or house water. Just be sure to do so before the waiter opens bottled water.

On the islands, it’s best to stick to bottled water. The majority of Greek islands do not have sufficient water, and the little that they do have is used for hygienic purposes and laundry.

Unfortunately, Greece is not the best prepared and organized for travelers with disabilities.

Sure, some places are more accessible than others, but overall, if you are a person with special needs or traveling with someone who is, be sure to plan ahead. Book a room or cabin for the disabled in hotels and ferries early.

If you plan on visiting some Greek islands (there are over 200), we found 3 islands that are more accessible for people with disabilities. These are Corfu, Crete, and Syros. You can find services, hotels, and help at the major tourist places for people with disabilities. You can use our Trip Planner and filter by accessibility level to find places that suit your needs.

How about ferries to the islands?

Most ferries sailing from mainland Greece to the islands offer standard accessibility amenities for people with disabilities. The majority of large ferry companies in Greece offer wheelchair-accessible cabins, ramps, lifts, and boarding assistance. Just make sure you inform the ferry company at least 48 hours in advance if you require assistance with boarding and getting around the ferry.

Off-season

Bear in mind that some accessibility services such as sea access equipment and wheelchair-friendly resorts may be unavailable during the winter months.

In most places in Greece, you can expect to have WIFI.
WiFi spots are available in many public spaces. You can find them in hotels, cafes, bars, etc. Don’t be afraid to ask for the password if the connection is secured.

In remote and isolated areas, it might be more of a struggle. If you plan to go to one of those places and need an internet connection, you can buy a prepaid internet card from local kiosks.

Additional Information

Weather in Greece

Greece covers a large area, and in each part, the weather is slightly different. Overall, the weather is Mediterranean. The summer is hot, with temperatures often crossing 30 degrees Celsius (86 Fahrenheit), while the winter is cool. Greece offers a few snowy locations used as ski resorts.

If you are interested in a trip that’s mostly relaxing on the beach, then summer is the season for you. If it is a more urban trip, away from the beaches, then the transition seasons are more suitable. In Athens, for example, the average temperature is 10 degrees Celsius (50 Fahrenheit) in January-February and 29 degrees Celsius (84 Fahrenheit) in July-August. December is considered the rainiest month, with an average of 19 rainy days, while summer is almost always dry.

What can we do in Greece?

It is difficult to exhaust all of Greece in one trip, with each city and each island bringing a different atmosphere and different attractions with them.

Suppose you choose to focus on mainland Greece. In that case, you can visit Thessaloniki and its rich history, visit churches, and of course, watch the White Tower, its hallmark. You can drive to Mount Olympus and admire the impressive forests and rich vegetation and even embark on a jeep or trekking route towards the summit. Another notable attraction is the meteor, pillars hundreds of meters high that protrude from the ground thanks to a unique geological phenomenon, at the top of which are medieval monasteries. Of course, the capital Athens is a must stop, where you can visit the Acropolis, one of the world-famous buildings, as well as other sites that are thousands of years old.

Of course, I must mention the famous taverns of Greece, where you can eat authentic Greek food, sip ouzo and enjoy the typical Greek music.

 

Here are some ground rules while in Greece

Cash is still the king

Credits are convenient, for sure, but Greece prefers cash. Usually, you will have no problem paying by card at hotels, attractions, and big restaurants. A card may be a problem in more remote areas, smaller restaurants, traditional taverns, or less touristy islands. Make sure you always have enough cash on hand. If you’re missing cash, no problem, make a trip to the nearest ATM.

Show too much skin when visiting a church

Greece offers some amazing churches and monasteries that tourists like to visit. You need to be respectful of the space and aware of the dress code. Don’t walk in wearing a swimsuit. Wear long shorts or trousers for men, long skirts for women. In some places, women might be offered a wrap. Religious or not, try to respect and wear it.

Take photos of military installations

In Greece, especially in the Aegean islands near the Turkish border, taking photos of military facilities is simply forbidden. Avoid any trouble with the authorities by respecting this simple rule.

The no-eating / no-drinking rule within the metro is widely enforced

Athenians are very proud of their great new metro. Indeed it’s much new and better than many other capitals, and that’s because Athenians respect it. You can drink water at the metro, but please avoid eating or drinking. They take it very seriously.

Click here for more info about the metro in Athens.

Never do the moutza

The moutza is a Greek hand curse. It’s a hand gesture where the palm is extended, fingers spread out, the hand thrusting forward, usually accompanied by the terrible sound of “Na!”

Respect artifacts and archaeological sites

Greece has an amazing history, incredible archaeological sites, and many museums with artifacts. Let’s keep them and unless stated otherwise, avoid touching any exhibit at archaeological sites or in museums.

Don’t presume butter is served with bread

At a restaurant, guests are always served a basket of bread before the meal. This is a tradition, and part of Greek hospitality.

Don’t ask for butter as the bread is for dipping in the salad bowl, or with different oils and dipping sauces which are a lot better than butter.

Don’t double-dip

Following the previous paragraph, do not double-dip, even at your own table. Tear off chunks of bread every time before dipping.

Be Taxi-Smart

Taxi fares in Greece are very fair, except for the airport rides. In the city, you should be able to find taxis virtually everywhere. Just flag them and if they stopped, note the following:

  • The driver may ask you what is your destination first, before deciding if it suits him or not.
  • Do not be surprised if the driver stops to take other people while you’re in it. If it happens, just keep cool and note that you will not share the fare with them.

Do Not Flush Toilet Paper

In most of Greece, the sewage pipes are old and can’t support toilet paper flush. That’s why it is very common to see signs asking you not to throw paper in the toilet. They are kindly requesting to use the bin for this purpose.


Travelers Experiences

All experiences are written by TravelingFAQ users and subjective of their opinion and not of TravelingFAQ.


Best Time To Visit

You can travel to Greece all year, for different activities, locations, and goals. The busy season is from mid-July to the end of August. Remember to check the weather a few days before the trip and before heading to the airport.