Island-hopping in Greece offers over 200 islands to explore, making it one of Europe’s must-do experiences.
It may not be as straightforward as you think – and you must plan your route carefully.
If you’re planning a trip to the Greek Islands, here are some essential tips and tricks that will ensure your journey runs smoothly.
Santorini’s finest hotels are hidden along the edge of a caldera that surrounds some of Greece’s most picturesque towns. From here, guests have stunning views of the volcano and can take in stunning sunsets.
Santorini, one of the Cyclades islands, is shaped like a crescent and its black beaches make it a must-visit. Its three main beach towns are Perissa, Perivolos and Kamari.
For the most stunning views, we suggest staying in Fira or Oia – cliffside villages situated along the edge of the caldera. From here, you can take in stunning volcano and sunset vistas as well as restaurants, bars and nightclubs.
For those on a tighter budget, we suggest staying at the two-star Lignos Hotel near Fira. It features an incredible pool that will appeal to families with young children.
Mykonos, Greece is bathed in a magical Aegean light that casts a spell over this vibrant island. Here, you’ll find stylish villas and suites that blend into the horizon, award-winning design, and five-star service to match.
Mykonos is a popular summer holiday destination, with June and September being its peak months. However, traveling during these peak periods can be hectic and costly; however, shoulder season (April to early June, late September or October) offers more of a relaxing experience with fewer tourists, cheaper accommodation options and often empty beaches.
To truly experience the island, it is recommended to stay for at least five days. This will give you enough time to see all the main attractions and take an excursion to Delos nearby. Furthermore, you will have plenty of time to enjoy several stunning beaches as well as Little Venice’s strip of bars.
Paros is one of the central Cyclades islands and a popular getaway for those seeking an idyllic holiday with plenty of culture. The island boasts stunning beaches as well as numerous World Heritage archaeological sites to discover.
Paros is best reached by plane, though you can also take a ferry from surrounding islands like Mykonos, Naxos or Santorini. The journey takes around 40 minutes from Athens; however you should allow extra time for security checks so it’s best to plan your travel ahead of time.
The ideal hotels in Paros are those situated close to the beach and harbour, making them convenient to access. Alternatively, consider staying in Parikia or Naoussa villages where you’ll find plenty of restaurants, bars, shopping opportunities, and beaches within walking distance through their charming maze of narrow lanes.
Crete is the largest island in Greece and second-largest in the Eastern Mediterranean, boasting an amazing array of natural and cultural sights that beckon travellers with stunning beaches, legendary archaeological sites and ruins, captivating mythology, as well as a welcoming culture.
Starting your exploration of Crete should begin in Heraklion, home to an exciting port and some of the country’s most significant historical sites. Don’t miss out on visiting Knossos – home to Daedalus and Icarus – an ancient Minoan palace outside Heraklion that should not be missed!
On Crete’s northern coastline are charming seaside towns like Chania, Vamos and Rethymnon. Each has a distinct character due to its combination of Venetian and Ottoman architectural influences, with narrow pedestrian lanes perfect for exploring.