The beauty of Greece doesn’t need any introduction. The Greek gods have designed their country with utter perfection. There are many tourist places in Greece that are simply awe-inspiring.
There are beautiful landscapes and sceneries will leave you spellbound, delicacies and beverages will gladden your foodie soul, and locals who will enchant you with their stories and local folklore. Here are a few of the many mesmerizing places to visit in Greece that must be on your itinerary when you’re booking Europe tour packages.
1. Athens – The crown of Greece
Athens showed its jazzy side to the world after the 2004 Olympics. Now the ancient city of Athens is recognized by its modern subways, spotless streets, well-manicured parks, remarkable freeways and ultra-warm people. The extraordinary melting pot of mythology and modernism, it is a city that boasts of stunning modern architecture as well as striking historical monuments. From the pillars of Acropolis to the Temple of Zeus, Athens offers a lot to explore for tourists.
Don’t miss: Beautiful flowers at National Gardens, precious artifacts at New Acropolis Museum, the stunning views from Mount Lycabettus, colossal ruins at the Temple of Olympian Zeus, the ancient Greek temple of Erechtheum, hills of the Ancient Agora, historical neighborhoods of Plaka, the well-preserved Temple of Hephaestus, prehistoric antiques at National Archaeological Museum, and Goddess Athena’s famed temple of Parthenon
Where to stay: If you are looking for luxury stay options, pick from Hotel Grande Bretagne, Hotel King George Athens, and Hotel N.J.V. Athens Plaza. Here, the price ranges from INR 30,000 to 10,000 per night. For budget hotels look at Economy Hotel Athens, Athinaikon Hotel, and Dorian Inn Hotel. They would cost you around INR 3,000 per night; which according to us is a real steal deal!
What to eat and where: Crab appetizers at Spondi, Japanese barbeque at Kiku, Mediterranean cuisine at Estiatorio Milos Athens, exotic cocktails at Gb Corner, Sushi at Kohylia, and gourmet dishes at Funky Gourmet
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2. Chania Town – The old town known for its Venetian Harbor and striking architecture
Chania Town’s center of attraction is its Old Venetian Harbor. The uncommon architecture of the place has been a backdrop to many Hollywood movies and TV series. It is one of the best places to visit in Greece for its cobbled streets and more than welcoming natives. The lighthouse proudly overlooks the panoramic views of the city. Many romantics and couples find themselves staring off into the sea, while holding each other dearly.
Don’t miss: Colorful boats and old architecture at the Old Venetian Harbor, beautifully manicured Botanical Park, artefacts at Chania Archaeological Museum, the popular landmark of Chania Venetian Lighthouse, remarkable display of Greek architecture Ancient Aptera, the happening Iguana Beach, the golden sand of Agii Apostoli Beach, the mysterious Topolia Gorge, and the remarkable Venetian Fortress
Where to stay: Take your pick from La Maison Ottomane, Casa Delfino, and Alcanea Boutique Hotel for ultimate luxury. The price range for them would be somewhere between INR 40,000 to 10,000 per night. Renieris Hotel, Alexis Hotel, Doge Traditional Hotel-Apartment are the best budget options you can find in Chania Town. They would cost you around INR 2,000 to 4,000 per night.
What to eat and where: Fresh organic salads at To Stachi, fish dishes and breweries at Colombo Kitchen & Bar, bouquet of wines at Kritamon Wine Bar, seafood and wine at Salis, finger-food at Akrogiali Taverna, and open kitchen at To Maridaki
3. Santorini – The fairytale land of Imerovigli, Oia, and Fira
Remember the iconic song ‘Tauba tumhare ye ishare’ from 2003 hit, Chalte Chalte? Well, Santorini was the natural set for that song. It looks exactly like a fairyland, flattering with whitewashed buildings, haphazard but cute little colorful houses, spiral pathways, towering sapphire domes, and stretches of azure water and equally azure sky. The houses and hotels are built on cliffs which add the appeal of the place. Santorini is one of the most popular Greece’s tourist attractions.
The phenomenal beauty, along with its cozy homes and little bistros are legendary. There are several ancient monasteries, churches, cathedrals, monuments and buildings which add to the character of the place. It’s one must visit place in Greece; one where you should set foot at least once in your lifetime.
Don’t miss: Bella Aurora & Thalassa cruise, views from Skaros Rock, sunsets at Amoudi Bay, exhibits at Museum of Prehistoric Thera, murals at Lignos Folklore Museum, sailing experience at Santorini, thrill of Fira Hiking Trail, wine-tasting tours at Santo Winery, rocky sand at Perissa Beach, beauty of Santorini Volcano, and ruins of Ancient Thera
Where to stay: Mystique Resort, Vedema Resort, and Kastelli Resort are the best luxury stay options within a price range of INR 80,000 t0 15,000 per night. Some of the best budget options are Caldera Butterfly Villas, Mirsini Pansion, and Meli Meli which could cost you as less as INR 1,200 on off nights too.
What to eat and where: Wide selections of wine at Heliotopos Wine Bar, cheesecakes at Metaxy Mas Tavern, finger foods and local wine at Kapari Wine Restaurant, Chicken and Pork Gyros at Pitogyros, seafood at To Psaraki, grilled food at Terra Nera, and rooftop dining at La Maison
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4. Hersonissos – Once, the most glamorous Roman port in Greece
One of the most popular tourist places in Greece is Hersonissos, an old port town. Perfect for a complete family vacation, it has amusement parks, pearly sand beaches, intriguing museums, ancient ruins and local shopping hubs to explore. Also, Hersonissos is famous for its fresh and delicious seafood. The simple and earthy beauty of the town has its own charm. No wonder, it is considered to be one of the best places to see in Greece.
Don’t miss: Seaworld at Aquaworld Aquarium & Reptile Rescue Centre, exhibits at Lychnostatis Open Air Museum, stunning horses at Arion Stables, rides at Star Beach Water Park, happening Labyrinth Theme Park, mysterious Cave Of Zeus, engaging Cretan Farm, and peaceful Vrontisi Monastery
Where to stay: Some of the best luxury hotels are Aldemar Knossos Royal Villas, Pilot’s Villas Luxury Suite, and Amirandes Grecotel Luxury Hotel with a price range of under INR 30,000 per night. Anthoula Village Hotel, Romantica Hotel Apartments, and Maria Hotel Studios are the INR 3,000 per night.
What to eat and where: Octopus delicacies at The Alchemist, fish platter at Zachos Taverna, shrimps platter at Taverna Harakas, dips and breads at Med Cafe & Restaurant, coffee at Coffee Island, Nautica, Greek delicacies at Mythos, tapas menu at David Vegera, and summery drinks at Casa Nostra Bistro
5. Rethymnon – The most well-preserved Venetian town in Greece
Rethymnon is a well-preserved old Venetian town, often considered to be one of the best places to visit in Greece. The stunning buildings and ancient architectures of 16th century reflect strong influences of European and Moorish styles. The magical waterfalls can be perfect for a romantic evening hide-out. The remarkable Cave Church of St Anthony Gorge is another attraction. Enjoy the scrumptious fresh feta, sprinkled with olive oil and local herbs while enjoying the views of colorful, lively docks.
Don’t miss: The charms of Rethymnon Old Town, peace of Sacred Monastery of Arkadi, opulence of The Venetian Fortezza, tranquility at Moni Preveli Monastery, liveliness at Venetian Harbor, wooden artifacts at Museum of Wooden Sculptures, ammunitions display at Rethymno Military Museum, beautiful Rimondi Fountain, and the popular St Anthony George
Where to stay: Rimondi Boutique Hotel, Bellagio Luxury Boutique Hotel, and Aquila Porto Rethymno are the best luxury stay options with a budget of about 20,000 per night. Afroditi Hotel, Elina Hotel, and Hotel Palladion are the best budget hotels in the area.
What to eat and where: Cretan food at Thavma Coffee Drinks & Cretan Food, fresh sea fish delicacies at Zefyros Family Fish Taverna, drinks at Pagonas Place, dessert jars at Goules, salads at Mikro Livadi Restaurant, and homemade Cretan food at Vassilis Restaurant
6. Mykonos Town – The iconic town of windmills and whitewashed buildings
The classic whitewashed buildings with blue towering domes signify the Greek architecture. There are several meandering streets in Mykonos that are charming to the fullest. Iconic windmills have become the center of attraction of this quaint city. The rich culture of Mykonos and the authentic delicacies of crabmeat are the major crowd pullers.
Don’t miss: Gondola ride at Little Venice, old-world charm of Matoyianni Street, exhibits of Aegean Maritime Museum, displays at Rarity Gallery, iconic Windmill, happening Kalafatis Beach, beautiful Church of Paraportiani, views from Armenistis Lighthouse, and golden sandy beach of Megali Ammos
Where to stay: Belvedere Hotel, Harmony Boutique Hotel, and Mykonos Theoxenia Boutique Hotel are the best luxury accommodations. They come at a price of about INR 20,000 to 8,000 per night. Best budget stays are Omiros Hotel, Hotel Spanelis, and Damianos Hotel Mykonos with less than INR 3,000 bucks per night.
What to eat and where: Cakes at Gioras Wood Medieval Mykonian Bakery, pasta dishes at La Cucina di Daniele, summer salads at Funky Kitchen, Italian at M-eating, cheeseburgers and rolls at Pepper Mykonos, seafood at Captain’s Seafood, Italian beverages at D’Angelo Mykonos, and Greek platter at Vegera
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7. Tsilivi – The remarkable neat beach town
The golden Greek beach town is spectacular; its beauty and neatness is mindblowing. Venetian observatory at the northern point is perfect to overlook the city and get acquainted with the awe-inspiring history of the place. A perfect vacation destination, Tsilivi is suitable for surfing, parasailing, sunbathing and indulging in delicious food.
Don’t miss: Fun rides at Tsilivi Waterpark, engaging games at Fantasy Mini Golf, ceramic displays at Adamieion Ceramic Art Studio, boat tour to the Gorge, bowling game at Bowl’m Over, and horseback riding at Athina & Dennis Horse Riding Centre
Where to stay: The Lesante Luxury Hotel & Spa, Azure Luxury Villas, and Tsilivi Beach Hotel are some of the best luxury picks. They would cost you somewhere around INR 20,000 to 8,000 per night. Alexandra Beach Hotel, Neraida Studio, and Zante Maris are the best budget picks with a price range under INR 3,500 per night.
What to eat and where: Cocktails at Paradise cocktail bar, Greek Traditional at Cafe Ouzeri, deep-fried icecreams at The Halfway House, finger-foods at Summertime Snack Bar, breakfast menu and mocktails at Sunset BLVD, and Lebanese platter at La Meze Tapas & Wine Bar
8. Apokoronas – One of the most beautiful offbeat places to visit in Greece
Lush greenery and pure blue water of Apokoronas are spell-binding. It is known for its bread baking and cheese tasting guided tours. The shallow water beaches are apt for paranoid kids and non-swimmers to splash around. One of the most unexplored places in Greece, Apokoronas can be your personal hideaway, offering the bliss of a quiet and serene vacation.
Don’t miss: Stunning Lake Kournas, happening Kalivaki Beach, fun cooking lessons in Vamos, beautiful Agios Nikolaos Church, wellness treatments at Georgioupolis Beauty & Massage Wellness Center, the lively Ombros Gialos Beach, artifacts at Folklore Museum, and mysterious Samonas Cave
Where to stay: Some of the best luxury stays in Apokoronas are Corissia Princess Hotel, Kiani Beach Resort, and Kalyves Beach Hotel, ranging in between INR 30,000 to 12,000 per night. Porto Kalyves Seaside Apartments, Villa Irini, and Asterina are the best budget options with tariff less than INR 3,000 per night.
What to eat and where: Aubergine dip salad at Georgia’s Traditional Taverna, food bowls at Parasia Rakadiko, slow cooked casserole dishes at Markos’ Place, pizza at Vasilikos, English breakfast at The Cotton Club, spinach and cheese pies at Gavalianos Kafenes, and Greek platter at To Yaladiko
9. Meteora – The magical land of monasteries, dedicated to tranquility and serenity
The English translation of the Greek word ‘Meteora’ is suspended in the air. The phrase aptly describes the monasteries of Meteora that are almost like suspended in the air, over the huge rock cliffs. The monasteries at the altitude of more than 1,200 feet overlook the misty valleys and well-settled villages of Kalambaka and Kastraki. Some of the monasteries take back to early 14th century.
Built to seek spiritual isolation and religious freedom, these monasteries have paths which are simply thrill oozing – winding paths, narrow steps and sometimes, even less than just suspended planks. However, it is assured that the destination will be worth it all.
Don’t miss: Peaceful spots like Holy Trinity Monastery, Great Meteoron Monastery, Varlaam Monastery, Agios Stefanos, , Roussanou Monastery, and Megalo Meteoro Monastery. Also, don’t even think about missing the Meteora rock climbing Kalambáka, Kastraki village , Meteora Thrones, and Theopetra Prehistoric Cave
Where to stay: Every one of the perched monasteries offer decent accommodation along with food, free of any cost. However, if you are looking for nearby hotels, you can take your pick from Divani Meteora, Hotel Meteora, Dellas Boutique Hotel, Alexiou Hotel, Pyrgos Adrachti, Hotel Kaikis, and Kosta Famissi Hotel. They will cost you around INR 3,000 bucks per night.
What to eat and where: Old traditional Greek delicacies at Restaurant Meteora, rice bowls at Taverna Panellinio, platters at Greek Tavern Skaros, Greek food at Taverna Gardenia, coffee at Melydron Cafe, and Saganaki & Mousaka at Stefanos Tavern
10. Crete – The biggest Greek island with contrasting landscapes
The list of best places to visit in Greece is incomplete without a mention of Crete. Crete is a spacious land of contrasting landscapes – expansive coastlines, rolling mountains, lush greenery, and rocky terrains. There are quiet villages as well as bustling metropolitans. The largest island in Greece, Crete is known for its interesting Greek archaeological sites and heritage monuments. However, you cannot disregard its beauty.
Don’t miss: Beautiful Elafonissi Beach, stunning White Mountains, deep blue water at Balos Lagoon, artifacts at Heraklion Archaeological Museum, wilderness of Spinalonga, Samaria Gorge National Park,sunset at Falassarna Beach, peaceful Sacred Monastery of Arkadi, wine tasting tours at Manousakis Winery, shacks at Stalis Beach, and opulent Palace of Knossos
Where to stay: Blue Palace Resort & Spa, Minoa Palace Resort & Spa, and Ilianthos Village Luxury Hotel are the best luxury hotels in Crete. They would cost you around 30,000 per night. Papadakis Villas, Village Heights Golf Resort, and Niriis Hotel are your best picks for budget options.
What to eat and where: Desserts at Yaourtaki Greek Frozen Yogurt, Greek platter at Georgia’s Traditional Taverna, organically prepared natural food at Ntounias, best steaks at The House Steak Restaurant, drinks at Taverna Harakas, and mocktails at Cafe Dimitris
Which one of these tourist places in Greece has made it to your special bucket list of the year 2016?
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