top of page

Your Guide to Visiting Greece


View of Acropolis in Athens, Greece
Athens, Greece

Greece, with its rich history, stunning landscapes, and Mediterranean charm, is a year-round playground for travelers. But when is the best time to embark on your Greek adventure? Fear not my fellow wanderlusters, for we've prepared a month-by-month guide to help you discover the perfect time to explore this captivating country.


From the iconic Greek islands to the ancient wonders of Athens, every corner of Greece reveals a different face of its timeless beauty. Whether you crave the warm embrace of summer, the crisp air of autumn, or the serene beauty of spring, Greece has something extraordinary to offer throughout the year.


If you're planning a trip to Greece, be sure check out our Athens, Mykonos, and Santorini Destination Guides to help you seamless navigate your way around each city.


Pro Tip: All custom travel planning services booked with LUXEY include personalized digital city guides for your destination(s).


Climate in Greece

Lets start with the climate. Greece has a Mediterranean climate, which means hot, dry summers and cool, wet winters. July and August are Greece’s hottest months, with temperatures hovering anywhere between 85 to 95 degrees. Spring and fall are usually temperate, although some areas (particularly the Greek islands) can get a little chilly at night. If you’re planning a trip to Greece, try to avoid the rainy season, which extends from December to February. While Greece’s rainy season might have slight variations depending on the region, you can count on these winter months as being the wettest.


Winds can have a significant impact on the weather in the Greek islands, especially during certain months of the year. The two primary winds that affect the Greek islands are the Meltemi and the Sirocco:

  1. Meltemi: The Meltemi wind is a strong, dry northwesterly wind that predominantly affects the Aegean Sea, including many of the Greek islands. It typically begins in late May or early June and can last until September. The Meltemi is most pronounced during the summer months, especially in July and August. It can bring cooler temperatures, dry conditions, and occasionally rough seas. While it can provide relief from the summer heat, it can also impact ferry travel and water activities.

  2. Sirocco: The Sirocco wind, also known as the "African wind" or "sandstorm wind," can affect the Greek islands, particularly in the southern part of the country. It usually occurs in spring and autumn, with peak months being April and May in the spring and September and October in the autumn. The Sirocco originates in the Sahara Desert and can bring warm, dusty air to the region, sometimes leading to hazy or sandy conditions. It can also bring high temperatures and discomfort, especially during its peak months.

These winds can vary in intensity and duration from year to year, so it's essential to be aware of their potential impact on your travel plans when visiting the Greek islands. If you have specific travel dates in mind, it's a good idea to check the local weather forecasts and stay informed about any potential disruptions, especially if you plan to take ferry rides or engage in outdoor activities during these windy periods.



The Ferry System

The ferry system in Greece is not operated under a single unified name. Instead, it consists of a network of ferry companies that provide transportation services between the Greek mainland and the various Greek islands. Some of the well-known ferry companies in Greece include:


Each of these companies has its own fleet of ferries and operates routes to various Greek islands, as well as international routes to neighboring countries. The closing dates for Greek island ferries can vary depending on the specific routes and islands you're interested in, as well as the ferry companies operating those routes. Generally, the Greek island ferry season is at its peak during the summer months, from late May to early September, when the weather is warm and tourism is at its highest.


However, many ferry routes continue to operate year-round, especially for the more popular and well-connected islands like Crete, Rhodes, and Corfu. Some of the smaller, less-visited islands may see reduced ferry service or even temporary closures during the winter months due to lower demand and less favorable weather conditions.



Famous Greek Islands: Mykonos & Santorini


When to Visit Mykonos

The ferry season to Mykonos, like many Greek islands, typically runs from late spring to early autumn, coinciding with the tourist season when the weather is warm and pleasant. The specific dates can vary from year to year, but generally, you can expect the ferry season to be as follows:

  1. Start of the Season: The Mykonos ferry season usually begins in late April or early May. During this time, ferry services to Mykonos become more frequent as the weather improves, and tourists start to arrive.

  2. Peak Season: The peak season for ferry travel to Mykonos is during the summer months, from June to August. This is when the island experiences the highest number of visitors, and ferry schedules are at their most extensive.

  3. End of the Season: The ferry season starts winding down in September. While ferry services continue throughout the month, they may become less frequent as the month progresses.

  4. Off-Season: From October onwards, ferry services to Mykonos become less frequent, and some routes may be suspended entirely, especially those connecting smaller islands. The ferry season effectively ends by late October or early November.

While Mykonos is known for its beautiful scenary and beaches, it's also a buzzing party scene. Check out LUXEY's Top 7 Beach Clubs in Mykonos for more inspiration.


When to Visit Santorini

The ferry season for Santorini, like many Greek islands, typically follows a similar schedule, with the main ferry season running from late spring to early autumn. However, the exact dates can vary slightly from year to year. Here's a general overview of the ferry season for Santorini:

  1. Start of the Season: The ferry season to Santorini usually begins in late April or early May. During this time, ferry services become more frequent as the weather improves and tourism starts to pick up.

  2. Peak Season: The peak ferry season for Santorini is during the summer months, from June to August. This is when the island experiences the highest number of tourists, and ferry schedules are at their most extensive.

  3. End of the Season: The ferry season starts to wind down in September. While ferry services continue throughout the month, they may become less frequent as September progresses.

  4. Off-Season: From October onwards, ferry services to Santorini become less frequent, and some routes may be suspended entirely, especially those connecting smaller islands. The ferry season effectively ends by late October or early November.

It's important to keep in mind that these dates can vary, and the ferry schedule can be influenced by factors like weather conditions and demand. Remember to check with the specific ferry companies or official ferry authority websites for the most up-to-date information on schedules and availability for the dates you plan to travel.



Festivals

Greece hosts a variety of festivals throughout the year, celebrating everything from religious traditions to music, arts, and cultural heritage. The top five festivals in Greece can vary depending on personal interests, but here are five prominent festivals held in different parts of the country:

  1. Easter (Pan-Orthodox): Easter is one of the most significant and widely celebrated festivals in Greece. It's not a single event but a series of religious celebrations that occur in the lead-up to Easter Sunday. The most famous and grandest Easter celebrations take place in the town of Patmos, where the entire island comes alive with processions, church services, and fireworks. Other notable Easter celebrations can be found in Corfu, Chios, and Athens.

  2. Athens Epidaurus Festival: Held annually from May to October, the Athens Epidaurus Festival is one of Greece's premier cultural events. It features a wide range of performances, including ancient Greek drama, modern theater, music concerts, and dance performances. The main venues are the ancient theater of Epidaurus and various locations in Athens.

  3. Thessaloniki International Film Festival: The Thessaloniki International Film Festival is a prominent film festival held in Thessaloniki, Greece's second-largest city. It usually takes place in November and showcases a diverse selection of international and Greek films, attracting filmmakers, industry professionals, and film enthusiasts.

  4. Apokries (Carnival): Apokries is Greece's version of Carnival, celebrated in the weeks leading up to Lent. The city of Patras is known for hosting one of the largest and most festive Carnival celebrations in Greece. The Patras Carnival features parades, parties, and colorful costumes. Other cities like Athens, Thessaloniki, and Rethymno on Crete also have lively Carnival traditions.

  5. Ochi Day (Anniversary of Greece's "No" to Axis Powers): Celebrated on October 28th, Ochi Day commemorates Greece's refusal to surrender to the Axis Powers during World War II. The largest Ochi Day celebrations take place in Athens, Thessaloniki, and other major cities. Festivities include parades, military displays, and patriotic ceremonies.

Apokries Carnival Parade Float
Apokries Carnival Parade Float

These are just a few of the many festivals and celebrations you can experience in Greece. The timing and location of these festivals may vary slightly from year to year, so it's a good idea to check the specific dates and details closer to your planned visit to Greece.


Where to Stay When Visiting Greece


Hotel Grande Bretagne, a Luxury Collection Hotel, Athens

Imagine waking up to the Acropolis bathed in golden light, just a stone's throw from your regal suite at Hotel Grande Bretagne, a majestic 5-star Marriott gem in Athens. Bask in opulent rooms adorned with rich fabrics and gilded accents, be pampered by personalized butler service (if you stay in a suite!), and dine like royalty at the GB Roof Garden


Book your Olympian escape now: Hotel Grande Bretagne; or let LUXEY design the perfect custom itinerary for you with exclusive Virtuoso perks including welcome gift, daily breakfast, property credit and room upgrades.


Amanzoe, Peloponnese

Trade in the tourist hordes of Santorini and Mykonos for a blissful stay at the Amanzoe, nestled on the Peloponnese. Dazzling white facades adorned with regal columns frame breathtaking infinity pools and endless stretches of the azure Aegean and iconic architecture. Choose your haven of tranquility - a private villa with a pool mirroring the sky, or a beachside cabana offering garden whispers and endless sea views.


Bonus - Island hopping at your whim: Skip the ferry queues! Amanzoe's private boats stand ready to whisk you away on an exploration of nearby Greek islands, each a jewel waiting to be discovered.


Let LUXEY design the perfect escape at Amanzoe; with exclusive Virtuoso perks including welcome gift, daily breakfast, property credit and room upgrades, your trip to Greece will feel like a dream!


Mykonos Grand Hotel & Resort

Forget the party-hearty crowds and embrace Mykonos' other facet: divine tranquility. Mykonos Grand Hotel & Resort, a haven on Agios Ioannis Beach, whispers of whitewashed elegance against the deep blue Aegean Sea. Delve into island charm, not the chaotic scene, as you gaze upon Delos, Apollo's sacred birthplace, from your luxurious perch.


Ditch the beach bar buzz and find serenity at Mykonos Grand. Savor the pristine beauty of the island, from private coves to charming villages, all without the tourist overload. Soak in the Mykonian aesthetic without the crowds and admire Aegean views from your semi-caved private pool, indulge in heavenly massages facing Delos, and emerge radiant and renewed.


Unlock the door to serenity and book your stay now at Mykonos Grand Hotel & Resort; or let LUXEY design the perfect custom itinerary for you with exclusive Virtuoso perks including welcome gift, daily breakfast, property credit and room upgrades.


Bill & Coo, Mykonos

Escape the tourist traps and discover Mykonos' true rhythm at Bill & Coo. This boutique gem straddles the line between bustling town and serene oasis, offering the best of both worlds - vibrant energy and exquisite tranquillity. Explore winding alleyways, discover hidden shops, and savor authentic Greek meals, all a stone's throw from your haven.


Bill & Coo's renowned restaurant presents a feast for the senses, with exquisite cuisine crafted from fresh, local ingredients.


This property welcomes families with open arms. Spacious suites, dedicated kids' activities, and attentive staff ensure everyone has a magical stay.





For an adults-only touch of beach bliss, visit Bill & Coo's sister property, Bill & Coo Coast Suites,  an Adults-Only property, nestled on Agios Ioannis Beach, just a short drive away.


Secluded luxury: Soak in the privacy of your beachfront or infinity pool suite, steps away from the Aegean's gentle embrace.


Book your Mykonos escape: Bill & Coo; or let LUXEY design the perfect custom itinerary for you with exclusive Virtuoso perks including welcome gift, daily breakfast, property credit and room upgrades.


Kalesma, Mykonos

The name whispers an invitation, "Kalesma" - "to welcome" in Greek. And welcome you are, at this 5-star haven where panoramic Aegean views unfurl over five captivating acres. Kalesma isn't just a hotel; with open-air spaces throughout the property and sun-kissed scenery, it's an immersion into Mykonos' soul.


Let turquoise plunge pools soothe your spirit, as endless sapphire seas stretch before you. Indulge in room service on your private balcony with breathtaking views of the Aegean.


Embrace the lure of Kalesma; let LUXEY design the perfect custom itinerary for you with exclusive Virtuoso perks including welcome gift, daily breakfast, property credit and room upgrades.


Canaves Oia Epitome, Santorini

Forget bustling towns and tourist trails. Canaves Oia whispers tranquility, perched above the charming Ammoudi fishing village. Here, 49 luxury villas await, each a haven of pampered seclusion. Dive into your private plunge pool, let the Aegean sun kiss your skin on your sun-drenched terrace, and savor breathtaking vistas that stretch to infinity.


Claim your haven of tranquillity and reignite the spark in your own private sanctuary. King-size beds, sprawling sea-view living rooms, and minimalist elegance set the stage for romance. Choose from an array of luxurious villas, each with its own private pool, inviting you to indulge in blissful dips and sun-kissed lounging.


Unveil your Canaves Oia escape; or let LUXEY design the perfect custom itinerary for you with exclusive Virtuoso perks including welcome gift, daily breakfast, property credit and room upgrades.


Grace Hotel, Santorini

Have you dreamt of Santorini's whitewashed magic cascading into the Aegean embrace? The Grace Hotel Santorini isn't just a vision, its an architectural masterpiece. This cliff-top haven unveils Santorini's soul like an exquisite tapestry.


Wake up to the Caldera's fiery sunrise from your room, suite, or private villa, complete with private pools for the utmost luxury stay. The Grace Hotel has something for every traveler.


Escape to the Grace Hotel Santorini; or let LUXEY design the perfect custom itinerary for you with exclusive Virtuoso perks including welcome gift, daily breakfast, property credit and room upgrades.



Greece is more than just a destination; it's an experience waiting to unfold in every season. Discover the festivals, the weather, and the activities that make each month special, allowing you to tailor your visit to your personal preferences. So no matter if you're a sunseeker, a history buff, a food lover, or an adventurer, LUXEY will help you plan your Greek escape, ensuring your journey is nothing short of extraordinary.


Book Now - Ready to plan the perfect dream adventure? Get started designing your next trip with the LUXEY Trip Design Studio.


Check out our travel partner FORA's month-by-month guide to visiting Greece.





Recent Posts

See All

Comments


bottom of page