Beautiful places, hospitable people, stunning beaches, fantastic weather, unique flavors… there are a million reasons to visit Greece. The cradle of Western civilization is a wonderful destination all year round. Visit Greece this year and see for yourself!
1. The Hospitable People
Greek hospitality is legendary. The roots of hospitality live deep in the hearts of the Greek people. The Greek word for hospitality, “philoxenia”, literally translates as “friend to a stranger” and refers to the act of welcoming and caring for a stranger in one's home. For the ancient Greeks, it was an institution and an act of virtue to welcome and care for strangers in their home as they thought they were sent by the gods. Hospitality remains an important value for Greeks. Adapted to the modern way of living, it still exists when they happily open their homes and invite foreigners to a treat. The famous Greek hospitality will make you feel welcome wherever you go.
2. The Mouth-Watering Food
The Greek cuisine alone is enough for someone to visit Greece. Greek cuisine has a strong base in the Mediterranean diet, which many nutritionists promote as they consider it rich in nutrients. In addition, they believe that the Mediterranean diet is the key to longevity.
The most characteristic and integral element of Greek cuisine is olive oil, which is used in most dishes. Greek olive oil and olives are world renowned and there are many varieties to try. Tavernas and some restaurants are among the main venues serving traditional Greek dishes for locals and visitors. Some traditional Greek foods, especially souvlaki and pita with gyros are often served in street food style.
Eating in Greece is intertwined with good company and discussion, and for this reason it is considered an important part of the everyday life of the Greeks. There are many types of eateries in Greece. Some Greek dishes are very well-known and are served in restaurants throughout the world.
3. The Awesome Drinks
Greek wine is so delicious! The country has a lot of good wines, with Assyric, Retsina, Agiorgitiko and Vinsanto varieties that stand out. The Assyrtiko from Santorini is by far the most popular among Greek whites. The diversity of the Greek landscape explains why Greek wines have extremely distinct characteristics. Greek red wines have been greatly improved while characterizing the volcanic island of Santorini as the most important wine-producing site in Greek territory. Robola is often touted as Greece’s second noblest grapes. Robola is a white grape variety grown mainly in the Ionian islands, although it is strongly associated with the island of Kefalonia where its best expressions can be found.
Greece may produce many drinks, but ouzo is the most famous and worth a try. This powerful, licorice-flavored Greek spirit is served before meals with a glass of water. Of the many authentically Greek experiences, one of the most enjoyable is drinking ouzo and eating mezedes with friends at a seaside on the Greek islands. Potent raki and tsipouro, moonshine born from the remnants of winemaking, are popular on the mainland and the Peloponnese. Say “yamas” which is the Greek equivalent to “cheers” before drinking.
4. The Coffee Culture
For most Greeks, drinking coffee is a favorite habit, a necessary daily ritual. It is their first-morning thought, the occasion to meet their friends, their essential companion. Coffee retains its appeal to people of all ages. Every Greek home is a manifestation of the hospitable mood and that is why it always accompanies the traditional treat. The Greeks created a whole culture associated with the consumption of coffee, which results from the general way of life and thinking of people in Greece. It is characteristic that a cup of the delicious dark drink, whose aroma seduces the senses, is not a five-minute break during the day, but rather a long stop for rest and a sense of communication. Each type of coffee has its place, time and social dimension.
Coffee lovers will find several options, including the strong, sweet sludge that is Greek coffee, the instant coffee referred to as “Ness”, as in Nescafé, or frappé, the frosty iced coffee that takes the edge off the heat in the summer.
5. The Remarkable History
In Greece, it's harder to avoid ruins than to find them. They survive in a broad spectrum of importance, quality of preservation, and overall impressiveness, with must-visit sites, 18 of which are inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List.
The perfectly proportioned columns of the Parthenon, combined with the sun's beating rays and the brilliant gleam of marble, conjure up the same awe they inspired in centuries of worshippers. At Cape Sounion, the seaside temple of Poseidon sits on a 60-meter promontory overlooking the Aegean. If you catch the floating island of Delos, the birthplace of Apollo and Artemis, you will find an island-wide archaeological site. A voyage through the Peloponnese will take you back to the era of nymphs, satyrs, and gods in disguise. Sprint across the well-preserved stadium on the way to the original Olympic fields at Ancient Olympia, wander through watery, fresco-covered tunnels at Corinth, peer into Agamemnon’s tomb at Mycenae, or cry over an ancient tragedy in the ancient Theater of Epidaurus. Byzantine times stand still in the sight of Mystras, the former center of Constantinople’s rule in the Peloponnese. After traversing mountain roads, visitors can seek wisdom at the ancient Oracle of Delphi.
The Greek islands have long been a sun worshippers paradise. Besides the heavenly sands and turquoise waters, the islands offer ancient sites, intriguing museums, and peaceful small-town life. In the Aegean, Santorini’s black sand beaches soak up the sun's hot rays and stay warm long after the stunning sunsets. Enjoy the vibrant, fun-filled atmosphere of Paradise Beach on Mykonos or seek solace on a secluded strip of sand.
6. The Stunning Beaches
Sand, pebbles and rocky beaches, Greece has a beach for every taste. It is difficult to distinguish which are the best and most beautiful beaches in the country as there are almost 160,000 kilometers of coastline and 380 award-winning Blue Flag beaches. Each one has a special beauty that sets it apart from all the others and thus remains unforgettable to the visitor. A paradise of unspoiled beaches and dazzling warm blue waters awaits to quench your every desire!
7. The Mediterranean Climate
The climate varies significantly between regions of Greece despite the country's relatively small size. Southern islands like Santorini can be exceedingly hot and dry while the lush Ionians are cooler and received more rainfall. High altitude areas are cooler, and snow remains on some mountaintops through summer. For the most part, summer is sunny, hot, and dry. In winter, temperatures vacillate around 50˚F (10°C), and snow occasionally falls as far south as Athens. The rainy season is between October to March.
8. Kids Love Greece too
Greece is a kid-friendly destination and one of the most welcoming places to be traveling with the family. With perfect weather, ‘Blue Flag’ beaches and many activities for children, Greece is a great destination for families all year round.
Greece is home to crystal-clear waters and sandy beaches which are safe for children. The wide range of water sports and beach activities will ensure that they never get bored. With the many historical sites and monuments which may be found around the country, kids can learn history in a fun way. In Ancient Olympia, kids can run the Olympic track where Hercules first participated and even make their own olive wreaths and challenge each other for the crown! In addition to ancient sites, there are medieval castles and forts for them to explore.
9. A Budget-Friendly Destination
Greece has always been famous for its good prices compared to other famous parts of Europe. While it is true that there are a lot of fancy and expensive establishments in Greece, it is actually possible to explore this diverse country on a budget. Traditional tavernas and kafeneia are quite cheap and beaches are free for all to enjoy. The Travel Insiders’ Athens-Piraeus joined tours and Olympia-Katakolon joined tours are specially designed to cover all the highlights at a guaranteed low cost.
10. A Safe Place for Holidays
Greece is considered one of the safest countries in the world. Regardless of time, you always feel safe in Greece. Travelers are, however, advised to use the normal precautions as they would in any other European country. Be cautious of pickpockets and never keep valuables in your back pocket. Also, be aware of transfer scams, particularly from the airport or the port of Piraeus, so be sure to only use licensed transfer services.
Discover for yourself the top 10 reasons to visit Greece with The Travel Insiders’ tours:
- Athens at a Glimpse - Acropolis Site & Plaka (4-5h)
- Private Athens Tour - New Acropolis Museum, Acropolis Site & Plaka (6-7h)
- The Best of Athens Museums & Sights (Full day)
- Athens Sunset Tour – Acropolis site & Lycabettus Hill (4h)
- Cape Sounion & Athenian Riviera Escape
- Delphi, the Oracle of Apollo – The Navel of the Earth (full day)
- The Highlights of Nafplio - Ancient Mycenae & the Epidauros Theater (6h)
- Ancient Olympia Private Day Tour from Athens
- Private Olympia Sightseeing #1 rated tour
- Ancient Olympia & Beach Fun for Kids (half day)
- The Highlights of Mykonos Town, Little Venice & Windmills (half day)
- The Light of Mykonos - a Guided Tour of Delos Islet (half day)
- Mykonos Island Tour & Beach Hopping - Paradise - Super Paradise - Psarou Beach (6h)
- The Highlights of Santorini – The Black Pearl of the Aegean (6h)
- Santorini 5 Senses Wine Tour - 3 Awarded Wineries (half day)
- Santorini Island Tour & Beach Hopping - Red - Black - White Beach (6h)