It’s the land of ancient gods and demigods; it’s home to some of the world’s most important historical sites and the birthplace of the Olympics — we’re talking about the one and only Greece!
With some 6,000 islands, sparkling blue waters, and postcard-worthy landscapes, we’re finding it hard to come up with a superlative that properly captures Greece’s charm. It's no wonder this Mediterranean country is considered one of the world’s most beautiful places.
Let’s just put it this way: even the fussiest travellers will find Greece a dream destination, regardless if they’re looking for a seaside getaway, outdoor backpacking adventure or immersive cultural experience to check off their bucket list. Don’t believe us? Try this 7-day Greece itinerary and you’ll know what we mean.
Day 1 — Athens
Athens is pretty much the cradle of western civilisation, and its ruins — dating all the way back to 480 BC — still remain standing today. For this reason, we recommend dedicating at least two hours (though it’s better if you can spend more time) to roam around Acropolis — the ancient citadel built by celebrated Greek statesman Pericles in the 5th century BC.
Standing tall in the middle of the Acropolis is the iconic Parthenon, the symbol of Athen’s democracy and the birth of democracy in general. Despite facing man-made destruction and natural disasters, the Acropolis stands strong and remains the most important and most visited building in all of Greece today.
Skip-the-line entrance tickets to the Acropolis start from €24.50 (S$36). The price may increase depending on the different archaeological sites you’d like to see during your visit.
Getting to Athens from Athens International Airport
Train: The Athens airport subway is the best choice among public transport options. For just €10 (S$14,60), the train takes you from the airport straight to Syntagma Square in 40 minutes, and all the stops are clearly indicated in English.
Bus: At just €6 (S$8.80), the X95 express bus is the cheapest transfer option available. Children below the age of 18 and seniors above 65 enjoy an additional discount — a ticket for just €3 (S$4.40)! Travel time takes anywhere between 30-60 minutes, depending on the traffic conditions.
Taxi: Official taxis (the yellow ones) operate at a flat rate from the airport to the city centre — no worries about getting ripped off here — for €38 (S$55.50). Travel time takes anywhere between 30-60 minutes, depending on the traffic conditions.
Welcome Pickups: If you’re really uncertain about your linguistic skills (or you’re bad with directions), you could also pre-book a private transfer and an English-speaking driver to take you from the arrival hall to your destination. Baby/child seats can be booked in advance too, just remember to check their website for details.
Day 2 — Mykonos
Next up on our Greece itinerary is one of the most famous islands in the Cyclades: Mykonos.
There’s no better place to begin exploring Mykonos than from the very heart of the island - Mykonos Old Town, also known as Chora by the locals. It’s a dreamy Cycladic Village with colourful narrow alleys forming the labyrinth that Mykonos is known for. Apart from numerous photo spots, you’ll also find plenty of cute cafes and souvenir shops waiting for you.
Before the sun goes down, head over to the Super Paradise Beach and enjoy the white sands and crystal clear waters. It’s not an overseas holiday in Greece if you don’t spend at least one afternoon lounging around in the sun. Thanks to the nearby Super Paradise Beach Club, you can get an ice-cold beer while you’re there.
Mykonos really comes alive when night falls. If you’re there from June to September, it’s beach parties all night, every night! Just don’t party so hard that you spend the rest of your trip hungover.
Getting to Mykonos from Athens
Plane: The fastest way to get to Mykonos from Athens is via a plane, which only takes 45 minutes and a bit more (depending on how long security checks take). Prices vary, depending on the time of year.
Ferry: The ferries between Athens and Mykonos run at least twice daily, and take anywhere between two and five hours depending on your choice of ferry. Ferry prices range between €32.50 (S$47.40) to €123.50 (S$180.20).
Day 3 — Mykonos
Take today free and easy. You could sleep in and enjoy a peaceful hotel breakfast, or even roll out a yoga mat and meditate with the gorgeous Aegean Sea as your backdrop.
A visit to Mykonos isn’t complete without checking out the iconic Mykonos Windmills. While they’re no longer functional, the sight of all 16 windmills looking out over the Mediterranean sea and the houses of Little Venice is still a sight to behold.
Speaking of Little Venice, this scenic little town is considered one of the most famous and best neighbourhoods to visit in Mykonos. Not only is it perfect for striking poses and filling up your memory cards with countless photos, but it’s also a great place to sip on some cocktails while overlooking the harbour.
After the sun sets, you could take a little walk along the old harbour of Mykonos, which is found just around the bend from Little Venice. There you’ll see a mini church located on the docks, and plenty of colourful fishing boats bobbing along the water’s surface.
Day 4 — Delos + Naxos
The island of Delos lies just off the coast of Mykonos, only 30 minutes away by boat, making it the perfect destination for a day trip. The vibe here is much different from Mykonos — quiet, tranquil, almost therapeutic even. Especially with the stunning cobalt blue Aegean Sea framing the island!
Stepping onto the island of Delos makes you feel as though you’ve time-travelled into the world of the ancient Greeks. The entire island is an archaeological site with evidence of life from as early as 3000 BC.
There’s no shortage of mythological sites here. There’s the Temple of Hera — the oldest temple in all of Olympia and the most venerable of all — the Sanctuary of Zeus and Athena (no introduction needed for these two!). In fact, according to Greek mythology, the goddess Artemis and the god Apollo were born on this very same island, hence the reason why Delos was worshipped as a holy sanctuary for millennia.
As the midday sun begins to beat down, head to the Archaeological Museum of Delos for some respite and to check out some of the more prized artefacts excavated from the island. Most of the statues, mosaics and other pottery were moved into the museum for safekeeping.
While the museum does have a toilet and a little gift shop for souvenirs, the island itself offers little in terms of food and drinks, so it’s best to carry extra water and snacks (a koulouri — sesame bread rings — are great!) for this journey.
After reaching Mykonos, take the ferry over to Naxos. As soon as you pull up to Naxos’ harbour, it’s hard to miss the giant looming castle on the right and the vast, ancient marble doorway of Portara on the left. Talk about first impressions, really.
Getting to Delos from Mykonos
- Ferry: A ferry ride from the Old Port of Mykonos to Delos takes no longer than 30 minutes. Tickets can be purchased from the kiosk at €20 (S$29.20) for a return trip, though you’d still have to purchase an entrance ticket to Delos for €12 (S$17.50) separately.
Getting to Naxos from Mykonos
- Ferry: The boat ride takes about an hour or so with a conventional ferry or 40 minutes via a high-speed vessel. Ticket prices range from €20 (S$29.20) to €60 (S$87.60), depending on the season, seat type and vessel.
Day 5 — Naxos + Santorini
Once it’s bright and early, it’s time to set off for a scenic hike along the hillsides of Naxos to visit the many, many, little villages around. There’re so many of them, you could say Naxos is infused with them even.
Of all the different little villages, Chalki’s is considered the most beautiful of them all. While it was once the former capital of Naxos, it still holds the same grandeur as it did in its heyday with its neoclassical buildings and impressive greenery. Another village worth checking out is that of Apiranthos, which boasts a more Venetian than Greek flair.
Thereafter, it’s onto the most romantic and famous islands of all of Greece, the place you’ve seen many times in postcards and in your friends’ Insta Stories, it’s Santorini!
Once you’ve checked in all your baggage at the hotel, make your way through Oia and up to the Imerovigli, a small upscale village perched atop the highest point of Santorini. Greece’s sunsets are nothing short of amazing, and what better way to enjoy it than over a glass of wine at a bar or a restaurant overlooking Santorini’s crescent shaped-coastline.
Getting to Santorini from Naxos
- Ferry: The ride to Santorini can range between an hour and 20 minutes to nearly two and a half hours, depending on the weather conditions and your choice of vessel. Similarly, ticket prices range from €20 (S$29.20) to €79 (S$115.30).
Day 6 — Santorini + Crete
Breakfast will leave you stuffed, if Greek hospitality is anything to go by, so you’d definitely want to take a good long walk around Fira to start the day right.
The walk along the Caldera is 220 metres above the sea, offering a stunning view of the vista and the view out to the volcano, as well as the architecture that makes Santorini so special. There are also plenty of churches of different architectural styles all around Fira too: orthodox, baroque, you name it. While you’re there, you also have to visit the iconic Three Bells of Fira.
For today’s day trip, it’s out to Crete, the largest of all Greek islands and a paradise for tourists seeking sunshine, beaches and beautiful landscapes. The Elafonissi beach, in particular, is extremely rare due to its unique pink sand made up of the foraminifera’s red shells. You won’t find such a huge pink beach anywhere else.
If you’re looking to enjoy a bibulous meal in Crete, alcohol aficionados would be pleased to know Tsikoudia (the local grape distillate of Crete) is often served before or after every meal. It’s a trademark of hospitality and will never be missing from any Cretan table, whether you’re dining at Pelagos or Tholos restaurant.
Getting to Crete from Santorini
- Ferry: There’s a daily ferry that goes back and forth between Crete and Santorini, though the frequency increases during the peak months between April and October. A 2-hour journey via a fast ferry costs around €80 (S$116.80) , while slower ones cost much less at just €40 (S$58.40). Still, time is money, so keep that in mind while choosing your ride.
Day 7 — Santorini
On the last morning of your Greek adventure, treat yourself to an extravagant breakfast down at Amoudi Bay, a little fishing village sitting by the sea. Here you’ll get to see fishermen hauling in their early morning catch from their little vintage boats, and it’s not long before those fresh fish and octopi end up on your plate at one of the surrounding restaurants.
You’d definitely want to try some sun-dried octopus — usually sliced into thin slices and served with herbs and sweet dressings. Unlike the usual octopus you get that’s tough as boots, the fishermen prepare their octopus by quickly killing it and smacking it against rocks, before rubbing it against the rocks until it starts foaming. It might sound unusual, but this process helps to tenderise it and get rid of the slime on the catch to prepare it for cooking.
Last but not least, take a boat tour to Nea Kameni and Palea Kameni, the remaining two volcanic islets. Both are still active (though dormant) and the underwater geothermal activity keeps the coastal waters curiously warm (think 30 to 35 degrees).
While at Palea Kameni, you can also swim in the hot springs of Palea Kameni. In fact, it’s particularly recommended for those suffering from rheumatism and arthritis. But considering all the walking you’ve done the past 4 days, you don’t need any other reason for a nice hot soak.
A Santorini Volcano and Hot Spring boat tour can cost as little as €25 (S$37.50) for three hours, enough for a full tour of the volcano and a nice long soak.
Getting to Athens International Airport from Santorini
Ferry and public transport: Daily ferries run between Santorini and Athens and take anywhere between three to ten hours, depending on the company you pick. Prices also range from €30 (S$43.80) to €109 (S$159.10). After reaching Athens, any of the previously mentioned public transport will bring you back to the airport.
Plane: The faster (and more convenient) way to get back is via a flight from Santorini directly to Athens International Airport and you can hop on your flight back home easily. Prices vary depending on the time of the year.
And it’s a wrap for this 7-day Greece itinerary! There’s definitely still much more to explore, but this covers everything you’d want to see while in Greece.
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Best time to visit
For the best warm weather and plenty of beach opportunities, anytime between May and June for overseas travel is great. You may also choose to visit Greece between Septmeber and October, where it’s slightly cooler.
The official currency of Greece is Euro (EUR).
Boats and ferries are the best way to get around Greece’s different islands and mainland. They run most frequently during summer months but may stop their services during winter as well as in high winds and storms.
With their extensive network, taking Greek buses is also a cheap and convenient way to get around major towns.
Search for airfares and book your tickets to Greece here.
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