Greece

Greece- the land of History and Hedonism
From ancient ruins and azure blue waters to epic history and an absorbing culture, Greece has everything that would inspire both the historian and the hedonist in you.
Lake of Agios Nikolaos Crete
The lake Voulismeni in Agios Nikolaos, a picturesque town in the eastern part of the island Crete, Greece

There are few places as interesting as Greece. It undoubtedly harbors the roots of the Western civilization. Spend a starlit evening at an age-old outdoor theatre. Check out the colossal marble structures brought up from the sea. Visit towns perched on hilltops and quaint fishing villages. Don’t forget the beaches, buzzing cities and cultural activities. 

Begin your journey from the ancient city of Athens. Mythology meets modernism in a cornucopia of immaculate streets, lush gardens, modern roads, and smart subways. It is dotted with an abundance of historical landmarks like the Acropolis, the Temple of Zeus, the Agora hills, the National Gardens, and the Plaka neighborhoods. 

Next, pay a visit to Chania Town. Its cobbled streets, unique architecture, its old Venetian harbor, and the Botanical Park are some of its many attractions. 

You can’t miss dropping by the fairytale town of Santorini. Littered with glittering white houses, colorful houses, azure seas, and high sapphire domes, it is the stuff that dreams are made of. From ancient ruins and vast vineyards to its beautiful cathedrals and little bistros, Santorini has everything you need to dazzle your senses. 

If you travel to Greece for a family vacation, drop by Hersonissos. This is an old port town that has parks, pristine beaches, ancient ruins, interesting museums, and shopping stores. 

Another good place to visit is Rethymnon, which is a well-maintained Venetian town. Its main attractions include gushing waterfalls, stunning architecture, The Venetian Fortezza, and the Rimondi Fountain. 

Mykonos is another great city that is a hot favorite among tourists. It has a host of attractions including its winding streets, white-washed buildings, great domes, delicious crab meat, and its remarkable windmills. 

If you’re looking for a beach vacation, then Tsilivi is the place for you. It’s simply perfect for some water sports like surfing and paragliding. It also has other attractions like the Tsilivi Waterpark and the Adamieion Ceramic Art Studio. 

Other must-visit destinations in Greece are Apokoronas– popular for its cheese tasting and break baking tours; Meteora – known for mystical monasteries; Crete– famous for its contrasting landscapes; Napfolio – an elite destination; Corfu– a culturally rich island and Sifnos- known for natural beauty and trekking trails. 

Apart from its breath-taking beauty, Greece is simply awe-inspiring with its mythological folklore, ancient history, age-old ruins, warm people, and stunning architecture. Undoubtedly, a land created by the Gods. 

Mykonos port with boats and windmills at evening, Cyclades islands, Greece

Greece consists of more than 2000 islands, out of which around 170 are populated. It is situated at the crossroads of Asia, Europe, and Africa. 

The Greek landscape is characterized by complexity and has three dominating elements, mainly, the mountains, sea, and lowlands. 

Much of Greece is mountainous terrain with mountain chains running through the Northwest and the Southeast. The highest mountain in Greece is Mount Olympus, which rises 9500 feet above sea level. 

Most of the Greek mainland is Peninsula. The land is limited and flat, so only crops that require less soil like grapes and olives can be grown. 

Its landmass is around 131,957 square kilometers and it has an elevation of around 498 meters above sea level. 

Oia, Santorini, Greece
View of Oia the most beautiful village of Santorini island in Greece.

Greece has a Mediterranean climate, mild winters, and warm summers. The Northern cities experience a continental climate, with cold winters and scorching summers. 

The mountain areas experience cold snowy winters and mild summers, sometimes with thunderstorms. It gets rainy along the coast while the winds from the North bring in frost and snow. 

It is quite pleasant across Greece during Spring. Rainfall is less frequent and on some sunny days, there is a North Eastern wind called Meltemi which blows and continues to do so in Summer. 

Summer is sunny and warm, but thunderstorms and sudden showers may occur. Along with the islands and the coasts, sea breezes act as an antidote to the heat. 

Autumn, which begins in late September and goes up to November is characterized by mild weather. However, it begins to rain around October. 

Greek salad with fresh vegetables
Greek salad with fresh vegetables, feta cheese, and kalamata olives.

While Greece is widely known for its history and culture, charming islands, and pleasant weather, it is also known for its delicious cuisine!

With recipes that have been handed down generations, Greek cuisine has been influenced by a variety of cultures including Ottoman, Italian, and Middle Eastern cultures. Ingredients such as fresh vegetables, fish, olive oil, wine, meat, and grains play an important role in Greek cuisine.  The use of ingredients such as cheese, bread, olives, herbs, and yogurt is also quite prominent. 

Greece is a small country with a diverse geography that is reflected in the country’s regional cuisine. The flavor palette across regions also differs, as does the choice of raw ingredients. Greece has always been an intersection of Eastern and Western culture and influences of Italian dishes to Turkish cuisine such as tzatziki, hummus that appear throughout Greek cuisine. Some of the Greek specialties are Mezes or shared starters that include salads, cheese, wine, and meats. Grilled Eggplants, Octopus, Pitas, dishes made of Pork and Lamb, Gyros, and sweets such as Baklava, Diples, spiced sweet bread is known as Lazarakia, and Pastafrola is some staples in Greece.

Greek cuisine uses robust flavors. Garlic, lemons, and aromatic herbs such as oregano and thyme are used to season everything from bean dishes to meat. Spices such as cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves, which made their way to Greece a thousand years ago, are used in the preparation of stews and sauces. Greek dishes are usually sautéed, simmered, fried, baked, boiled, or pureed and are almost never smoked.  Greek cuisine is simply exotic, delicious and one of the healthiest cuisines in the world, which makes it a favorite among people.

Banknote: 20 Euro 50 Euro 100 Euro thrown on the ground

The currency used in Greece is the euro. 1 euro comprises 100 cents. It is best to exchange pounds for euros in the UK itself. If you need to exchange currency in Greece, avoid exchanging at airports and hotels as the exchange rate tends to be higher. You can use your international debit or credit cards in Greek cities and main tourist areas. 

However, you’ll need cash if you visit the Greek countryside. In most Greek cities, you will find ATMs. However, ATMs are rare in rural areas or in some of the islands. So, carrying adequate cash is wise. 

If you are withdrawing cash or using your debit or credit card, it is wise to carry out your own research on extra and hidden charges. 

 traditional Ash Monday celebrations in Seich Shou hill in Thessaloniki, Greece
Folklore groups dance on traditional Ash Monday celebrations in Seich Shou hill in Thessaloniki, Greece.

When you travel to Greece, you would do well to remember that the dress code is inclined towards smart casuals for both men and women. Men are always well turned out and women like to wear figure-enhancing clothes with tight fits and high heels. 

Jeans can be worn to get around in the city but team them up with a dressy blouse or blazer and some elegant accessories. 

If you travel during Spring or Summer, carry jeans and capris in darker colors, so that you can pair them with vibrant t-shirts, tops, and blouses. It gets chilly in the evenings. So it is best to pack a light jacket. 

Walking shoes are a must since there is plenty to explore on foot. If you travel during Summer, carry shorts, skirts, and a bikini. 

Autumn is like Spring in terms of the clothing you should carry. Just add a scarf and a waterproof jacket and you are good. Winters can be cold and snowy. So, carry along thermal dinnerwear, an overcoat, scarves, gloves, and a muffler. 

Greek letters on white background
Colorful greek letter on white background. Back to school concept.

Greek is the main language spoken in Greece by more than 99% of the country’s population. Some Greeks also converse in foreign languages like Russian, English, French, Albanian, German and Turkish. 

Incidentally, Greek is one of the oldest languages in the world that can be traced to the 13th century BC. There are several Greek dialects also spoken in different parts of the country. A dialect called ‘Attic Greek’ is spoken in Athens, while a lesser spoken dialect called Doric is spoken by a minority community in Peloponnese.

Hellenistic Greek and Byzantine Greek are the two most distinctive dialects. Hellenistic Greek also called Biblical Greek was used to script the new Testament of the Bible. It was also made famous by Alexander the Great. Subsequently, it was modified to become Hellenistic Koine. 

Byzantine Greek was used as the language of administration and was used until the conquest of Constantinople in 1453. It is still the language used by the Greek Orthodox church. 

Traditional folklore dance ,Chania, Crete Greece Europe
Traditional folklore dance, Chania, Crete Greece Europe

An important aspect of Greece is its unique customs and culture that has evolved over the years. 

Festivals such as Easter and Christmas are grandly celebrated with families going all out in cuisine and tradition. 

With an extraordinary heritage, Greece enjoys its thriving art life. Greek theater continues to influence the modern world, as the two major genres of theater, comedy, and tragedy, were created by the Greeks. 

Music in Greece is diverse and celebrates its history and is in two parts – Greek traditional music and Byzantine music that includes more Eastern-inspired sounds. Greece hosts many cultural events that take place all year round. One such famous event is the Athens Epidaurus Greek Festival. Such festivals present the local culture of the land and showcase the vibrant traditions of Greece.

Greece Visa application form
Visa application form and flag of Greece

UK passport holders can travel without a visa to Greece and stay there for up to 90 days in a 180 day period. 

When you travel to Greece, your passport could be stamped on entry and exit and you may be required to produce an onward or return ticket. Additionally, you may also be asked to show that you have sufficient funds for the duration of your visit.

Ensure that your passport is valid for at least 3 months from the date of intended departure from Greece. 

In Greek, the associated plug types are C and F. The standard voltage is 230V and the standard frequency is 50Hz. 

Travelers from the UK can safely use their devices here with no issues. Be cautious while using rotating or moving devices like shavers and clocks. 

The best way to be sure is by verifying the label on the device. If  ‘INPUT: 100-240V, 50/60 Hz’ is mentioned on the device, then the equipment can be used across the world. Tablets, cameras, brushes, and mobile phones generally fall in this category. 

Why Visit Greece?
Lake of Agios Nikolaos Crete
The lake Voulismeni in Agios Nikolaos, a picturesque town in the eastern part of the island Crete, Greece

There are few places as interesting as Greece. It undoubtedly harbors the roots of the Western civilization. Spend a starlit evening at an age-old outdoor theatre. Check out the colossal marble structures brought up from the sea. Visit towns perched on hilltops and quaint fishing villages. Don’t forget the beaches, buzzing cities and cultural activities. 

Begin your journey from the ancient city of Athens. Mythology meets modernism in a cornucopia of immaculate streets, lush gardens, modern roads, and smart subways. It is dotted with an abundance of historical landmarks like the Acropolis, the Temple of Zeus, the Agora hills, the National Gardens, and the Plaka neighborhoods. 

Next, pay a visit to Chania Town. Its cobbled streets, unique architecture, its old Venetian harbor, and the Botanical Park are some of its many attractions. 

You can’t miss dropping by the fairytale town of Santorini. Littered with glittering white houses, colorful houses, azure seas, and high sapphire domes, it is the stuff that dreams are made of. From ancient ruins and vast vineyards to its beautiful cathedrals and little bistros, Santorini has everything you need to dazzle your senses. 

If you travel to Greece for a family vacation, drop by Hersonissos. This is an old port town that has parks, pristine beaches, ancient ruins, interesting museums, and shopping stores. 

Another good place to visit is Rethymnon, which is a well-maintained Venetian town. Its main attractions include gushing waterfalls, stunning architecture, The Venetian Fortezza, and the Rimondi Fountain. 

Mykonos is another great city that is a hot favorite among tourists. It has a host of attractions including its winding streets, white-washed buildings, great domes, delicious crab meat, and its remarkable windmills. 

If you’re looking for a beach vacation, then Tsilivi is the place for you. It’s simply perfect for some water sports like surfing and paragliding. It also has other attractions like the Tsilivi Waterpark and the Adamieion Ceramic Art Studio. 

Other must-visit destinations in Greece are Apokoronas– popular for its cheese tasting and break baking tours; Meteora – known for mystical monasteries; Crete– famous for its contrasting landscapes; Napfolio – an elite destination; Corfu– a culturally rich island and Sifnos- known for natural beauty and trekking trails. 

Apart from its breath-taking beauty, Greece is simply awe-inspiring with its mythological folklore, ancient history, age-old ruins, warm people, and stunning architecture. Undoubtedly, a land created by the Gods. 

Location & Geography
Mykonos port with boats and windmills at evening, Cyclades islands, Greece

Greece consists of more than 2000 islands, out of which around 170 are populated. It is situated at the crossroads of Asia, Europe, and Africa. 

The Greek landscape is characterized by complexity and has three dominating elements, mainly, the mountains, sea, and lowlands. 

Much of Greece is mountainous terrain with mountain chains running through the Northwest and the Southeast. The highest mountain in Greece is Mount Olympus, which rises 9500 feet above sea level. 

Most of the Greek mainland is Peninsula. The land is limited and flat, so only crops that require less soil like grapes and olives can be grown. 

Its landmass is around 131,957 square kilometers and it has an elevation of around 498 meters above sea level. 

Climate & Weather
Oia, Santorini, Greece
View of Oia the most beautiful village of Santorini island in Greece.

Greece has a Mediterranean climate, mild winters, and warm summers. The Northern cities experience a continental climate, with cold winters and scorching summers. 

The mountain areas experience cold snowy winters and mild summers, sometimes with thunderstorms. It gets rainy along the coast while the winds from the North bring in frost and snow. 

It is quite pleasant across Greece during Spring. Rainfall is less frequent and on some sunny days, there is a North Eastern wind called Meltemi which blows and continues to do so in Summer. 

Summer is sunny and warm, but thunderstorms and sudden showers may occur. Along with the islands and the coasts, sea breezes act as an antidote to the heat. 

Autumn, which begins in late September and goes up to November is characterized by mild weather. However, it begins to rain around October. 

Cuisine
Greek salad with fresh vegetables
Greek salad with fresh vegetables, feta cheese, and kalamata olives.

While Greece is widely known for its history and culture, charming islands, and pleasant weather, it is also known for its delicious cuisine!

With recipes that have been handed down generations, Greek cuisine has been influenced by a variety of cultures including Ottoman, Italian, and Middle Eastern cultures. Ingredients such as fresh vegetables, fish, olive oil, wine, meat, and grains play an important role in Greek cuisine.  The use of ingredients such as cheese, bread, olives, herbs, and yogurt is also quite prominent. 

Greece is a small country with a diverse geography that is reflected in the country’s regional cuisine. The flavor palette across regions also differs, as does the choice of raw ingredients. Greece has always been an intersection of Eastern and Western culture and influences of Italian dishes to Turkish cuisine such as tzatziki, hummus that appear throughout Greek cuisine. Some of the Greek specialties are Mezes or shared starters that include salads, cheese, wine, and meats. Grilled Eggplants, Octopus, Pitas, dishes made of Pork and Lamb, Gyros, and sweets such as Baklava, Diples, spiced sweet bread is known as Lazarakia, and Pastafrola is some staples in Greece.

Greek cuisine uses robust flavors. Garlic, lemons, and aromatic herbs such as oregano and thyme are used to season everything from bean dishes to meat. Spices such as cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves, which made their way to Greece a thousand years ago, are used in the preparation of stews and sauces. Greek dishes are usually sautéed, simmered, fried, baked, boiled, or pureed and are almost never smoked.  Greek cuisine is simply exotic, delicious and one of the healthiest cuisines in the world, which makes it a favorite among people.

Currency
Banknote: 20 Euro 50 Euro 100 Euro thrown on the ground

The currency used in Greece is the euro. 1 euro comprises 100 cents. It is best to exchange pounds for euros in the UK itself. If you need to exchange currency in Greece, avoid exchanging at airports and hotels as the exchange rate tends to be higher. You can use your international debit or credit cards in Greek cities and main tourist areas. 

However, you’ll need cash if you visit the Greek countryside. In most Greek cities, you will find ATMs. However, ATMs are rare in rural areas or in some of the islands. So, carrying adequate cash is wise. 

If you are withdrawing cash or using your debit or credit card, it is wise to carry out your own research on extra and hidden charges. 

Clothing & Dress
 traditional Ash Monday celebrations in Seich Shou hill in Thessaloniki, Greece
Folklore groups dance on traditional Ash Monday celebrations in Seich Shou hill in Thessaloniki, Greece.

When you travel to Greece, you would do well to remember that the dress code is inclined towards smart casuals for both men and women. Men are always well turned out and women like to wear figure-enhancing clothes with tight fits and high heels. 

Jeans can be worn to get around in the city but team them up with a dressy blouse or blazer and some elegant accessories. 

If you travel during Spring or Summer, carry jeans and capris in darker colors, so that you can pair them with vibrant t-shirts, tops, and blouses. It gets chilly in the evenings. So it is best to pack a light jacket. 

Walking shoes are a must since there is plenty to explore on foot. If you travel during Summer, carry shorts, skirts, and a bikini. 

Autumn is like Spring in terms of the clothing you should carry. Just add a scarf and a waterproof jacket and you are good. Winters can be cold and snowy. So, carry along thermal dinnerwear, an overcoat, scarves, gloves, and a muffler. 

Language
Greek letters on white background
Colorful greek letter on white background. Back to school concept.

Greek is the main language spoken in Greece by more than 99% of the country’s population. Some Greeks also converse in foreign languages like Russian, English, French, Albanian, German and Turkish. 

Incidentally, Greek is one of the oldest languages in the world that can be traced to the 13th century BC. There are several Greek dialects also spoken in different parts of the country. A dialect called ‘Attic Greek’ is spoken in Athens, while a lesser spoken dialect called Doric is spoken by a minority community in Peloponnese.

Hellenistic Greek and Byzantine Greek are the two most distinctive dialects. Hellenistic Greek also called Biblical Greek was used to script the new Testament of the Bible. It was also made famous by Alexander the Great. Subsequently, it was modified to become Hellenistic Koine. 

Byzantine Greek was used as the language of administration and was used until the conquest of Constantinople in 1453. It is still the language used by the Greek Orthodox church. 

Customs & Culture
Traditional folklore dance ,Chania, Crete Greece Europe
Traditional folklore dance, Chania, Crete Greece Europe

An important aspect of Greece is its unique customs and culture that has evolved over the years. 

Festivals such as Easter and Christmas are grandly celebrated with families going all out in cuisine and tradition. 

With an extraordinary heritage, Greece enjoys its thriving art life. Greek theater continues to influence the modern world, as the two major genres of theater, comedy, and tragedy, were created by the Greeks. 

Music in Greece is diverse and celebrates its history and is in two parts – Greek traditional music and Byzantine music that includes more Eastern-inspired sounds. Greece hosts many cultural events that take place all year round. One such famous event is the Athens Epidaurus Greek Festival. Such festivals present the local culture of the land and showcase the vibrant traditions of Greece.

Passport & Visa
Greece Visa application form
Visa application form and flag of Greece

UK passport holders can travel without a visa to Greece and stay there for up to 90 days in a 180 day period. 

When you travel to Greece, your passport could be stamped on entry and exit and you may be required to produce an onward or return ticket. Additionally, you may also be asked to show that you have sufficient funds for the duration of your visit.

Ensure that your passport is valid for at least 3 months from the date of intended departure from Greece. 

Electricity & Plug

In Greek, the associated plug types are C and F. The standard voltage is 230V and the standard frequency is 50Hz. 

Travelers from the UK can safely use their devices here with no issues. Be cautious while using rotating or moving devices like shavers and clocks. 

The best way to be sure is by verifying the label on the device. If  ‘INPUT: 100-240V, 50/60 Hz’ is mentioned on the device, then the equipment can be used across the world. Tablets, cameras, brushes, and mobile phones generally fall in this category. 

Destinations in Greece

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Your Travel Questions Answered

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We’re taking the kids away on a special holiday and wondered if you have any recommendations of cruise lines for kids?

1 1 year ago 1 answers 1002 views

We have a holiday booked to Gouves, Crete this summer, staying at the Andreas Apartments.  We would like to see Malia too. What’s the best way to get from Gouves to Malia?

1 1 year ago 1 answers 1366 views

We’re visiting Athens this October, staying at the Acropolis Museum Boutique Hotel. What’s the best way to get from Athens International Airport to the hotel?

1 1 year ago 1 answers 891 views

I’m staying in Heraklion, Crete, this summer. I’ve always wanted to visit Santorini. Is it possible to visit Santorini on a day trip from Heraklion?

1 1 year ago 1 answers 1644 views

My friend and I have always wanted to visit Santorini together. We want to go at the best time of year as this is a once-in-a-lifetime trip. When is the best time to visit Santorini?

1 1 year ago 1 answers 640 views

I have a holiday to Kos booked for August this year. I’m staying at Atlantica Porto Bello Beach near Kardamena. Is it worth going on a day trip to Kos Town?

1 1 year ago 1 answers 1144 views

I’ve found lots of cheap flights to Athens next year, when is the best time to visit?

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