10 Greek Island Hopping Routes and Itineraries by a local

Greek island hopping - Naousa village, Paros
Naousa village, Paros

Island hopping around Greece during the Spring/Summer is one of those travel dreams that make it onto most people’s bucket lists. Well, don’t just dream about exploring the white washed backstreets and admiring the blue of the sea, make your wish a reality!

Our guide helps you choose the best, and most iconic, Greek island hopping routes whilst also giving practical information about the ferries. Read on and we wish you Bon Voyage, or as they say in Greece, Kalo Taxidi meaning have a good trip!

Disclaimer: This post contains an affiliate link. This means that should you click on certain links, and then subsequently purchase a product, I will receive a small commission.

Greek island hopping Itinerary 1

Athens – Mykonos – Santorini

This is one of the most famous island hopping routes covering some of the most iconic and picturesque places in the whole of Greece. Indulge in the history of Athens as you visit the Acropolis before sailing to the top two Cycladic islands; Mykonos and Santorini. Both have the iconic blue and white architecture, Mykonos being a luxury party island and Santorini the island made for relaxation and romance.

Day 1: Arrive in Athens

Day 2: Explore Athens

Day 3: Ferry to Mykonos & start exploring

Multiple ferry companies run several times a day between Athens and Mykonos departing early morning or early evening with afternoon services also added during peak Summer months. Prices vary greatly between companies depending on the speed of the boat. Journey times range from just under 3 hours to just over 5 hours and the price of the ticket reflects this, slower ferries costing about half the price of the high speed ferries.

Click here for the ferry schedule and to book your ferry tickets.

Day 4 & Day 5:  Explore Mykonos

Day 6: Mykonos to Santorini & start exploring

The high-speed boat to Santorini from Mykonos takes approximately 2 hours with slower ferries taking up to 4 hours. The high speed boats run once per day (morning) in Spring and Autumn and twice a day (morning and afternoon) in the peak summer season. Because the high-speed boat is often fully-booked between June-August it is advised to pre-book 1-3 months in advance. There is no ferry service between Santorini and Mykonos from late November until early March.

Click here for the ferry schedule and to book your ferry tickets.

Days 7 & 8: Explore Santorini

Day 9: ferry or flight to Athens

There are two options for your return journey back to Athens; plane or boat.

Flights depart several times a day with a choice of airlines and have a journey time of just 45-55 minutes. Ferries take between 5-12 hours depending on the ferry company and depart twice a day in the afternoons during early Spring or several times throughout the day and night during the Summer season (May-October). Weather permitting, there are 1 or 2 services per day during Winter.

Click here for the ferry schedule and to book your ferry tickets.

Prices are about the same so it often makes sense to take the plane back to Athens where you can continue your onward journey without needing to navigate your way from the port to the airport.

Day 10: Flight home

It easy to plan this trip on your own, if you are interested in talking to a travel agency click here.

Greek island hopping Itinerary 2

Oia Santorini - popular greek island hopping itineraries
Oia Santorini

Athens – Naxos – Santorini

This island hopping route allows you to enjoy the beauty of 2 of Greece’s most beloved islands after exploring vibrant and bustling Athens. Naxos isn’t as well known as Santorini but it’s just as beautiful and is actually the largest of the Cylcadic islands.

Day 1: Arrive in Athens

Day 2: Explore Athens

Day 3: Ferry to Naxos & start exploring

There are regular ferries traveling between Athens (Piraeus) and Naxos each day with 3 services (morning and early evening) during Spring (March-May) and up to 8 departures during the peak Summer season (June-August) though these are still limited mostly to early morning departures. Journey times take anywhere from 3.5 to 6 hours depending on ferry company and whether it’s a high-speed ferry or regular ferry, price is reflected in this with tickets for the faster boats costing more. During the Winter you can expect a minimum of 2 ferries per day, weather permitting.

Click here for the ferry schedule and to book your ferry tickets.

Day 4 & 5: Explore Naxos

Day 6:  Ferry to Santorini & start exploring Santorini

The Naxos to Santorini ferry route operates daily throughout the year with morning and afternoon departures, sometimes stopping enroute at Ios. During late Autumn, Winter, and Spring there are 1-2 ferries per day, this increasing greatly between June-August with approximately 7 boat services to choose from including high-speed catamarans. Journey times average between 1-2 hours though occasionally you’ll find a boat with a 5+ hour journey time due to it visiting other lesser islands before arriving at Santorini.

Click here for the ferry schedule and to book your ferry tickets.

Day 7 & 8: Explore Santorini

Day 9:  Ferry or flight to Athens

Unless you have a lot of time to kill, or are scared of flying, it makes sense to get a plane from Santorini back to Athens as journey times take around 45-55 minutes versus 5-12 hours on the boat. There are multiple flights daily through the year from a range of airlines and prices are comparably with the boat companies.

Day 10: Flight home

You can add more days in Naxos and Santorini ideally one more in each island.

If you don’t want to plan this trip on your own you can check this travel agencey here.

Greek island hopping Itinerary 3

Paros, Naousa - Greek island hopping
Paros, Naousa

Athens – Paros – Mykonos

This is another highly popular island hopping route that allows travelers to enjoy the best of both worlds when sightseeing – the history and hustle and bustle of Athens and the charm of the Cycladic islands in all of their blue and white glory.

Day 1: Arrive in Athens

Day 2: Explore Athens

Day 3: Ferry to Paros & start exploring

Daily services operate between Athens (Piraeus) and Paros all year with journey times averaging 4 hours but this can drop to 2.45 hours in peak Summer when the high-speed catamaran is in operation. There are usually a minimum of 2 services per day, this expanding in the peak Summer season (June-August) with up to 6 services operated by different companies. Due to the popularity of this route (most ferries continue onto Naxos and Santorini) it’s advised to pre-book if traveling during Greek Easter or in the height of Summer.

Click here for the ferry schedule and to book your ferry tickets.

Day 4 & 5:  Explore Paros

Day 6: Ferry to Mykonos & start exploring

Ferries run daily throughout the year between Paros and Mykonos, the journey taking 1 hour or less if direct or between 2-5 hours if stopping at other islands en-route. In the peak Summer season you can expect a choice of 10 ferries departing throughout the day with at least 3 services in Spring and Autumn dropping down to 1-2 per day the rest of the year.

Click here for the ferry schedule and to book your ferry tickets.

Day 7 & 8: Explore Mykonos

Day 9: Ferry to Athens

The ferry from Mykonos to Athens runs daily throughout the year with 1 or 2 boats operating in winter with an afternoon departure time, the frequency increasing steadily throughout the year with up to 6 services in operation by a variety of companies in the height of Summer. Journey times on high-speed boats can be as fast as 2.5 hours whilst the slowest boats take 5.5 hours, these tickets generally being at least half the price of the high-speed boat.

Click here for the ferry schedule and to book your ferry tickets.

Day 10: Flight home

check here.

Greek island hopping Itinerary 4

Naxos Chora - Things to do in Naxos Greece
Naxos Chora

Athens – Naxos – Santorini – Crete

This longer itinerary allows you to understand how varied Greece is and how much there is to see and do. From the hustle and bustle of Athens to the picture-postcard beauty of the Cycladic islands of Naxos and Santorini followed by a trip to Greece’s largest island; Crete where you’ll discover the special Cretan hospitality.

Day 1: Arrive in Athens

Day 2: Explore Athens

Day 3: Ferry to Naxos & start exploring

Daily services operate between Athens and Naxos all through the year with a minimum of 2 services (weather permitting) off-season which increases to 7 services during the peak Summer months. Journey times range from  3-7 hours depending on type of boat and the ferry companies route – There is no direct route with all ferries stopping at other islands before reaching Naxos. High-speed catamaran boats only run during Summer, the fastest possible journey time being 3.15 hours.

Click here for the ferry schedule and to book your ferry tickets.

Days 4 & 5: Explore Naxos

Day 6: Ferry to Santorini & start exploring

Ferries from Naxos to Santorini run regularly all through the year with one to two services during Winter (weather permitting) and increased services from Spring into Summer with 7 services running through the day and night during the peak Summer season from a variety of different companies. Journey times take between just over 1 hour and just under 5 hours depending on the type of boat and the route as most boats stop at other islands on the way. There is 1 direct route, this is the boat with the journey time of 1 hour and 10 minutes.

Click here for the ferry schedule and to book your ferry tickets.

Day 7 & 8: Explore Santorini

Day 9: Santorini to Crete

There is no direct service between Santorini and Crete between late November and early March, your only option is to fly (via Athens) or take the ferry back to Piraeus to then get the overnight  boat to Crete (Heraklion).

From late March there is a weekly direct service between Santorini and Crete (Heraklion) that takes just under 6 hours. Services increase greatly once tourist season starts in April with 2-4 direct daily services during the Summer season (April-mid-October) either on the high-speed boats (1.5 – 2 hour journey time) or the slower (usually overnight) car ferry that takes anywhere from 5-11 hours depending on route – Check carefully as the longest journey times usually include a wait at Piraeus or traveling all through the other Cycladic islands which probably isn’t what you want!

Click here for the ferry schedule and to book your ferry tickets.

Rent a Car

Stay 1 night in Heraklion

Day 10:  Knossos Archaeological Site, Archaeological Museum in Heraklion and city highlights – Drive  to Chania

Day 11 & 12: Explore Chania

Day 13:  Rental car drop off Chania – Athens

There are multiple daily flights from Chania Airport to Athens all year with a choice of airlines. Flight time is approximately 50 minutes.

Day 14:  Flight home

If you don’t want to plan this trip on your own you can check this travel agency here.

Greek island hopping Itinerary 5

Emporio village Santorini

Athens – Paros – Santorini

After sightseeing the ancient history of Athens, visit two of Greece’s top Cycladic islands. Paros and Santorini both have the blue and white architecture and sunsets to take your breath away but each has it’s own personality – Let your hair down and party in Paros before relaxing and romancing in Santorini.

Day 1:  Arrive in Athens

Day 2:  Explore Athens

Day 3: Ferry to Paros & Explore Paros

Ferries run daily between Athens (Piraeus) and Paros all year with journey times averaging 4 hours though in peak Summer (June-August) when the high-speed boats are in operation journey times are as short as 2.45 hours. There are usually a minimum of 2 boats per day during the off-season with increased services from April onwards, this peaking at 6 ferry services per day during high-summer.

This ferry route continues to other Cyclades islands after stopping at Paros so is a very popular route and should be booked ahead of time, especially if traveling during Greek Easter or June-August.

Click here for the ferry schedule and to book your ferry tickets.

Day 4 & 5: Explore Paros

Day 6:  Ferry to Santorini – Explore Santorini

You can travel from Paros to Santorini all year with the ferry, weather permitting. During the off-season there are 1-2 services per day which increases up to 10 services per day in June-August. Journey times average 3 hours (these are the boats that stop at Naxos on the way) but direct high-speed boats (which only during the tourist season) can be as fast as 1 hour 45 minutes. Watch out for the ultra-slow boat that takes just over 7 hours as this calls at many other islands on the way, although it is by far the cheapest ticket available so might suit backpackers on an extreme budget!

Click here for the ferry schedule and to book your ferry tickets.

Day 7 & 8: Explore Santorini  

Day 9: Ferry to Athens

Ferries depart Santorini daily for Piraeus with a journey time averaging anywhere from 5-12 hours depending on the type of boat the ferry company is operating and which islands it will make stops at to pickup/drop-off other passengers. In Winter there are 1-2 daily services, this increasing to 4 services in Spring and 7 in the peak Summer season. In the height of Summer the high-speed catamarans are running with the fastest journey time available being 4.5 hours.

Click here for the ferry schedule and to book your ferry tickets.

Day 10:  Flight home

If you don’t want to plan this trip on your own you can check my recommended travel agency here.

Greek island hopping Itinerary 6

Fassolou beach Sifnos

Athens – Sifnos – Milos

This itinerary takes you off of the most-popular island hopping trail to explore ‘the forgotten’ cycladic islands of Sifnos and Milos. These quaint-essential Greek islands are not as overrun by tourism as the likes of Mykonos or Santorini but are equally breathtaking and have their own history and hospitality to enjoy.

Day 1:  Arrive in Athens

Day 2:  Explore Athens

Day 3:  Ferry to Sifnos & Explore Sifnos

During the off-season (October-April) you  can reach Sifnos from Piraeus in just over 5 hours with 1 or 2 ferries that depart up to 4 times a week. From April the route increases to 5-6 days per week with 1-3 boats in operation with and a daily service from May onward with a choice of morning or afternoon departure. The fastest journey time is on the high-speed catamaran, it takes 2 hours but only operates April-Mid October.

Click here for the ferry schedule and to book your ferry tickets.

Day 4 & 5: Explore Sifnos

Day 6: Ferry to Milos & Explore Milos

In March this ferry route operates 5 days per week with varied departure times depending on the day of the week, journey time taking just over 2 hours. With the start of the tourist season in April, Milos becomes much more accessible with daily departures and usually a choice of at least 2 boats, 1 of which is the high-speed ferry which takes just 55 minutes. From June-August you can expect a choice of up to 7 daily departures.

Click here for the ferry schedule and to book your ferry tickets.

Day 7 & 8: Explore Milos

Day 9:  Ferry to Athens

There are daily departures from Milos to Piraeus throughout the year with 1-2 services a day in Winter, this journey taking between 5-7 hours depending on ferry company and route. From Spring into Summer the route increases with up to 7 departures daily. When the high-speed ferries are running (April-October) the journey time is as little as 2 hours 50 minutes.

Click here for the ferry schedule and to book your ferry tickets.

Day 10:  Flight home

If you don’t want to plan this trip on your own you can check my recommended travel agency here.

Greek island hopping Itinerary 7

Klima-Milos
Klima-Milos

Athens – Milos – Santorini

This Greek island-hopping itinerary allows you to see all the different sides of Greece; the hustle and bustle plus history of Athens, the sleepy yet stunning island of Milos that is not overrun with tourists, and then Santorini, the most famous and iconic island in the whole of Greece!

Day 1: Arrive in Athens

Day 2: Explore Athens

Day 3: Ferry to Milos & Explore Milos

Ferries run every day between Athens (Piraeus) and Milos. In winter there are 1-2 boats per day this increasing from March onward and peaking at 7 services per day in the high season. Journey times vary between 2 hours 50minutes when the high-speed ferries are in operation (April-October) but average 5 hours with the regular ferries.

Click here for the ferry schedule and to book your ferry tickets.

Day 4 & 5: Explore Milos

Day 6: Ferry to Santorini & Explore Santorini

Ferries depart Milos for Santorini 1-3 days per week during the off-season (November-mid April) with daily services starting from May with 1-2 departures to choose from which increases to 4 daily departures in the peak of Summer (June-August). The highspeed boats take just 1.5 hours to reach Santorini but only run in the Summer, the average journey time on regular boats being 4-6 hours depending on the type of boat and how many other islands it will stop at on the way.

Click here for the ferry schedule and to book your ferry tickets.

Day 7 & 8: Explore Santorini

Day 9:  Ferry or Flight to Athens

There are daily flights and ferries throughout the year between Santorini and Athens. In most cases it makes more sense to fly back to Athens as the flight time is just 45-55 minutes and the plane tickets are comparable with those of the faster ferries. The ferry from Santorini to Piraeus takes anywhere from 5-12 hours depending on the ferry companies route and the type of boat. Remember – the slower the boat, the less it costs so if you have time but are short on cash this could be the right option for you!

Click here for the ferry schedule and to book your ferry tickets.

Day 10:  Flight home

If you don’t want to plan this trip on your own you can check my recommended travel agency here.

Greek island hopping Itinerary 8

Chora of Ios - Greek Island Hopping Routes
Chora of Ios

Athens – Mykonos – Ios – Santorini

This Greek-island hopping itinerary allows you to enjoy a beautiful blend of culture, nightlife, and stunning scenery. Mykonos and Ios are known as being party islands so let your hair down and enjoy before you relax and rejuvenate on romantic Santorini.

Day 1: Arrive in Athens

Day 2: Explore Athens

Day 3: Ferry to Mykonos & Explore Mykonos

There are daily departures from Athens to Mykonos with 1 or 2 services during the Winter months (weather permitting) and increased daily services from the end of March. During the peak Summer season (June-August) you’ll find approximately 6 ferries departing each day allowing you a choice of  early morning, afternoon, or early evening departure times plus more selection of ferry companies. Journey times range from just under 3 hours to just over 5 hours and the price of the ticket reflects this, slower ferries costing about half the price of the high speed ferries which operate during the Summer.

Click here for the ferry schedule and to book your ferry tickets.

Day 4 & 5: Explore Mykonos

Day 6: Mykonos to Ios  & Explore Ios

Mykonos to Ios is another popular island-hopping route in the Summer with 4 ferries running each day from June until September. Journey time range from 1.40 hours on the high-speed boats up to 3 hours on the regular car ferries. During the shoulder season mid October and end of April 2 services run daily but in Winter the ferries run indirect routes with long waits of 8-20 hours at Piraeus or Santorini.

Click here for the ferry schedule and to book your ferry tickets.

Day 7: Explore Ios

Day 8: ferry to Santorini & Explore Santorini

During the shoulder seasons (March and October) there are 5 direct departures each week between Ios and Santorini with a journey time of 55minutes or 1.20 hours depending on the ferry company. Daily departures run from the end of March with 1-4 services each day, the journey time cutting down to just 35minutes when the high-speed catamaran is running. Between June-August services increase drastically with up to 8 departures each day.

Click here for the ferry schedule and to book your ferry tickets.

Day 9 & 10: Explore Santorini

Day 11: ferry or flight to Athens

There are multiple departures each day from Santorini to Athens whether you choose to fly or sail. The flight time is only 45-55 minutes where as the ferry takes between 5-12 hours. Ticket prices for flights and the faster ferries are comparable so it usually makes more sense to fly back to Athens however, if you have plenty of time to kill but not so much money, taking the 12 hour ferry back to Athens is a very cheap option as generally, the longer the journey (due to the most stops at other islands) the cheaper the ticket.

Click here for the ferry schedule and to book your ferry tickets.

Day 12: Flight home

If you don’t want to plan this trip on your own you can check my recommended travel agency here.

Greek island hopping Itinerary 9

Venetian harbour and lighthouse Chania - things to do in Chania Crete
Venetian harbour and lighthouse Chania

Athens – Santorini – Crete

On this island-hopping route you’ll discover 3 unique sides of Greece. Athens is the historic heart that never sleeps, Santorini is the most iconic island, loved the world over for its blue and white architecture and Caldera sunsets, whilst Crete is the largest island in Greece with a unique landscape as well as culture.

Day 1: Arrive in Athens

Day 2: Explore Athens

Day 3: Ferry to Santorini & Explore Santorini

There are daily departures through the year from Athens to Santorini with a journey time of 5-12 hours depending on the route of the ferry company and how many other islands the boat stops at. In Winter, expect 1-2 services per day, in peak Summer expect this to increase up to 10 services daily, the fastest journey time being 4.5 hours on the high-speed catamaran.

Click here for the ferry schedule and to book your ferry tickets.

Day 4 & 5: Explore Santorini

Day 6: Ferry to Crete – Rent a Car & Explore Crete

The direct Santorini to Crete ferry does not operate in Winter (November-February), if you want to take the boat you have to go via Athens which takes a minimum of 17 hours without wait time at Athens hence, it’s faster to fly. During the shoulder seasons (March and October) you will find a weekly service from Heraklion which takes 6 hours, this increasing to a daily service from April with 2-4 boats running from Heraklion and services from Rethymno and Chania running either 1-3 times per week. The fastest journey time is 1.5-2 hours on the high-speed catamaran that runs in the Summer where as the slower ferry takes between 5-11 hours depending on route and time of day.

Click here for the ferry schedule and to book your ferry tickets.

Day 7 & 8: Explore Crete

Day 9: Flight to Athens

There are 3 airports on Crete with daily departures to Athens throughout the year. Flight time averages 45 minutes and there are a variety of airlines to choose from. Heraklion and Chania are the main airports with the 3rd option being the smaller airport of Sitia – Choose the closest to where you’ll be staying.

Day 10: Flight home

If you had extra days I would add them to Crete

If you don’t want to plan this trip on your own you can check my recommended travel agency here.

Greek island hopping Itinerary 10

Sarakiniko Beach Milos Island
Sarakiniko Beach Milos Island

Athens – Milos – Naxos

This Greek-island hopping itinerary allows you to enjoy sightseeing in Athens before escaping two idyllic Greek islands that are not completely overrun with other tourists – Perfect for that tranquil Greek island escape away from the stress and worries of the real world!

Day 1:  Arrive in Athens

Day 2:  Ferry to Milos & Explore Milos

Daily ferries run from Athens to Milos in the Summer months with 3-4 boats per week off-season (October-April). Journey times take between 5-7 hours in Winter but in Summer, with the high-speed boats running, journey time can be as fast as 2 hours 50 minutes.

Click here for the ferry schedule and to book your ferry tickets.

Day 3 & 4:  Explore Milos

Day 5:  Ferry to Naxos & Explore Naxos

The ferry from Milos to Naxos runs once per week during the off-season (October-April) increasing in frequency from the end of May with 2 morning departures per day. In Summer the journey time is between 2-4 hours due to the high-speed boats being in operation but in Winter takes 6-7 hours.

Click here for the ferry schedule and to book your ferry tickets.

Day 6 & 7: Explore Naxos

Day 8:  Ferry to Athens

Daily services operate between Naxos and Athens (Piraeus) throughout the year with a minimum of 2 services (weather permitting) off-season which increases to 7 services during the peak Summer months. Journey times range from just under 4 hours to 5.5 hours in the Winter but in the Summer, when the high-speed catamaran is also running, the fastest boat takes just over 3 hours.

Click here for the ferry schedule and to book your ferry tickets.

Day 9:  Flight home

If you have an extra day you can add it to Athens.

If you don’t want to plan this trip on your own you can check my recommended travel agency here.

Things to do on your Greek Island Hopping

Things to do in Athens

3 days in Athens

  • The Acropolis – It has to be top of the list! See the 2,500 year old monuments of the ancient world including the iconic Parthenon temple.
  • The New Acropolis Museum – In 2009 the Acropolis archaeological museum re-opened displaying artifacts from the Greek Bronze Age to the Roman and Greek Byzantine age.
  • Plaka – Get enjoyably lost as you stroll the picturesque lanes of the historic Plaka neighbourhood located beneath the Acropolis.
Traditional houses in Plaka - a 3 day Athens itinerary
Traditional houses in Plaka
  • Lycabettus Hill – There’s only one place to be at sunset and that’s Lycabettus Hill, one of the highest peaks in the city of Athens offering panoramic city views.
  • The National Gardens – Escape the concrete jungle to enjoy tranquility in nature. The park/gardens cover 16 hectares and includes a small zoo.
  • Syntagma Square – Pause in Athen’s most famous square as you take in all the hustle and bustle of the city whilst admiring the yellow parliament building.
  •  Monastiraki – This historic neighbourhood bustles with life from morning until night containing a multitude of bars plus the famous flea market.

change-of-the-guards

  • The National Museum of Contemporary Art – Otherwise known as the EMST, this former beer factory houses a wide range of Greek (and international) art exhibitions.
  • Dimotiki Agora – See how the locals shop with a visit to the Central Market where you can shop for meat, fish, and vegetables or dine at one of the onsite eateries.
  • The National Archaeological Museum – Admire the ancient Greek pottery and jewelry before discovering just how advanced the Ancient Greeks were with a 2,000 year old computer.

Things to do in Mykonos

Mykonos Tours

  • Little Venice aka Alefkantra – Enjoy a drink and stroll around the 18th century picturesque waterfront area called Little Venice before watching the sunset.
  • Chora Windmills – The iconic white windmills that face toward the sea are worthy of a photo or three, especially as the sun goes down – Enjoy the view!
  • Explore Mykonos Town – Quaint essentially Greek with its white washed buildings and pink bougainvillea, explore the backstreets, camera in hand.
The view from the windmill of Boni in Mykonos
The view from the windmill of Boni in Mykonos
  • Enjoy the Nightlife! A party island from June- August, Mykonos has more street bars and beach bars than you’ll know what to do with!
  • Boat Trip to Delos – Delos is an island that, in ancient times, was the religious and political centre for the Cyclades due to it being the birthplace of Apollo.
  • Lena’s House – Visit a typical 19th century Mykonian family home in Chora to see furniture and decorative objects including embroideries from this time period.

  • Aegean Maritime Museum – Get an insight into Greek maritime history with rowing and sailing boat replicas, maps, coins, sculptures, and other memorabilia.
  • Paraportiani Church – This eye-catching white-washed chapel dates back to Byzantine times and features beautiful frescoes inside.
  • Archaeological Museum – This small museum packs in a lot of history with artefacts including pottery, sculpture, and jewellery from the 25th century B.C onward.

  • The Folklore Museum – Understand the culture of Mykonos as you view the collections of ceramics, furniture, Byzantine art, photographs, and more.

Things to do in Santorini

Oia Santorini in winter
Oia Santorini
  • Explore Oia – This town is the most iconic on Santorini, the place where the postcard views mostly come from. Wander the backstreets and enjoy the view at sunset.
  • Visit the Caldera – Take a boat ride across to the Caldera (the volcanic crater) and hike the barren landscape until you reach the hot springs where you can enjoy the view.
  • Visit Thirassia Island – This tiny island is has beautiful views of Santorini and of the Caldera. Visit the monastery of Panagia too, located on the Southern side of the island.
The best Santorini Beaches
Red Beach
  • Red Beach – Make the short hike to Red Beach, a small beach great for snorkelling so called because of the reddish brown cliffs that cause the sand to turn reddish-brown.
  • Museum of Prehistoric Thira – This museum contains the finds from Akrotiri archaeological site including the famous Blue Monkeys wall fresco, marble figures, weapons, and more.
  • Ancient Akrotiri – Discover the ancient settlement of Akrotiri that was flourishing until it was buried under lava due to the volcanic eruption in the 16th century BC. Is this the real life Atlantis?
Amoudi Bay - The best Santorini Beaches
Amoudi Bay
  • Sunset Catamaran Cruise – Admire Santorini from the water as you cruise from Oia to the South of the island stopping at Red Beach, White Beach, and the volcanic hot springs before watching the sunset.
  • Ancient Thera – Hike up to see the 9th century Hellenistic temple ruins as well of Roman and Byzantine buildings whilst admiring the panoramic view from the archaeological site.
  • Wine Tasting Tour – There are several wineries providing wine tasting tours on Santorini so allow your taste buds to savour the unique taste of some of Europe’s top wines.
  • Santozeum – Admire the ancient wall paintings aka frescoes that have been recovered from Akrotiri along with other art exhibitions and special events.

Things to do in Naxos

Portara Naxos - Things to do in Naxos Greece
Portara Naxos
  • Apollo Temple aka Portara – This iconic marble gate towers above Chora and is the only thing to see of the unfinished 7th century temple that was dedicated to Apollo.
  • Explore Chora/Hora – The main city on the island, Chora is a hillside settlement with a port and a maze of picturesque backstreets with white washed buildings.

Naxos Old Town - Things to do In Naxos Greece 3

  • Mount Zeus Cave – The cave of Zeus is located on the slopes of Mount Zeus. Legend has it that Zeus hid here from his father, Cronus who wanted to eat him.
  • Panagia Drosiani Monastery – Built in the 6th century, this is one of the most important pre-Christian temples on the island containing wall painting from the 7th-14th centuries.
  • Kouros Marble Giants – See the two huge marble statues, Kouros. One of them is located in Flerio and the other is in Apollonas.
  • Archaeological Museum of Naxos – This restored Venetian building contains art and objects (ceramics, statues etc) dating back to the 17th century.

  • Temple of Demeter – It is believed that this 6th century marble temple was built by the same people who built the Parthenon at the Acropolis.
  • Geological Museum – Marvel at the fossils and other rock formations which date back 70,000 years. The museum has rare exhibits of emery; the dark local marble.
Plaka - where to stay in Naxos
Sunbeds on Plaka beach
  • Rina Sea Cave – Hop on a boat and visit the most beautiful sea cave on the Naxos coastline. Take a swim inside, but watch out for the bats!
  • Chora Castle – This medieval castle has plenty of stories to tell it being the home of a Boarding School of Commerce, a Catholic Cathedral, and of course, a fortress.

 Things to do in Paros

Greek island hopping - Naousa village, Paros
Naousa village, Paros
  • Naoussa Old Town – Walk the maze-like cobblestone lanes with white washed buildings either side and enjoy the atmosphere, this area comes alive at night.
  • Paros Park – Enjoy the beauty of nature as you walk the paths to see the natural rock formations, the wild flowers in Spring, the lighthouse, the cave and the stunning sea views.
  • Kolybithres Beach – This is the most famous beach on the island of Paros due to its unique geology; million year old granite rock formations in crystal clear water.
Kolimbithres beach - Greek island hopping routes
Kolimbithres beach
  • Church of Our Lady of a Hundred Doors – This 4th century Byzantine church (Panagia Ekatontapyliani) is one of the oldest remaining Byzantine churches in the whole of Greece.
  • Parikia – This port town is a picturesque place to explore full of charming cafes and boutique and designer shops amongst the white washed buildings.
The Ekatontapiliani church in Parikia
The Ekatontapiliani church in Parikia
  • Paros Archaeological Museum – The collections at this small but important museum cover the Neolithic period up to early Christianity.
  • Visit Antiparos – Make the 10 minute boat journey across to Antiparos for the day. This is the smaller, more laidback version of Paros. You might see Tom Hanks as he has a holiday home here!
the port of Antiparos island - Greek island hopping
the port of Antiparos island
  • Marathi Marble Quarries – Visit the caverns of the marble quarries and learn how this quarry was mined during the Roman eta by more than 150,000 slaves.
  • Frankish Castle – Partially ruined, this castle was built in the 1200’s by the Venetians using materials from the Temple of Demeter on the island of Naxos.
  • Butterfly Valley – A natural phenomenon takes place each Summer at this beautiful green valley as it fills with Jersey Tiger Moths.

 Things to do in Milos

Where to stay in Milos
The picturesque village of Plaka on the island of Milos
  • Milos Catacombs – Thought to date back to the 1st century, the 3 interconnecting Catacombs were used as a burial ground for Christians in Roman times and are comparable with those in Paris.
  • Ancient Theatre – Visit the ruins of the ancient Roman amphitheater of Milos close to the Catacombs and sit in the marble seats to admire the sea view.
Kleftiko Milos island
Kleftiko Milos island
  • Kleftiko – This is one of Milos’ most photographed natural wonders; breathtaking white cliffs and outcrops with natural sea arches and caves set against the crystal clear blue of the Aegean.
  • Sarakiniko – This moon-like landscape of volcanic rock with natural sea inlet is a must visit place for beach lovers as well as photographers.
  • Milos Mining Museum – Discover the islands mining heritage, this the island that provided the most sulphur to the ancient world and see gypsum,baryte, perlite, alum, and more.
Kleftiko Milos island boat tour
cruise Milos island
  • Island Cruise – Access the areas that are unavailable to you by foot or car and see Milos from another angle – the sea. Stop off at the most picturesque beaches and sea caves on a day tour with food and drink provided.
  • Ecclesiastical Museum – See the treasures located in the church of the Holy Trinity. The museum contains icons and carvings plus gold and silver items dating back to Venetian times.
  • Sea Caves – Take a boat trip to admire the various sea caves and rock formations dotted along the shoreline of Milos, there are plenty to choose from, each unique.
Where to stay in Milos - Adamas
Traditional fishing village Adamas
  • Archaeological Museum – View the archaeological finds that date back to the Neolithic Age with sculptures, tools, coins, figurines, and more noting the replica of Venus de Milo at the entrance.
  • Sail over to Antimilos – The island of Antimilos aka Erimomilos is a (now) uninhabited volcanic rock island. See the volcano caldera and discover how people used to live here.

Things to do in Crete

Elafonissi beach - top things to do in Crete
Elafonissi beach
  • Knossos – The largest and most famous Bronze Age archaeological site on Crete, Knossos Palace is the partially restored Minoan palatial settlement where legendary King Minos ruled.
  • Samaria Gorge – The only national park on Crete, Samaria Gorge is a 16km world-famous hike that starts in the White Mountains and ends at the sea in Agia Roumeli.
Spinalonga
  • Spinalonga Island – Made famous by Victoria Hislop’s book The Island, Spinalonga is the historic island that housed a leper colony until the late 1950’s.
  • Balos & Gramvousa – Take a boat trip out to the island with fortress known as Gramvousa followed by swim and beach time at the stunningly beautiful Balos lagoon.
Balos- Best beaches in Crete
Balos
  • Elafonnisi – Known for its pink sand, Elafonnisi Beach is a nature reserve island that can be accessible at low-tide by wading through the peninsula lagoon.
  • Rethymno Fortezza – Discover the history of Rethymno and its fort as you admire the views out across the town and out to sea noting the Ottoman minuets and the Venetian Lighthouse.
  • Psychro Cave – Said to be the cave where Zeus hid from his Father, Psychro is an impressive cave with its stalactites and stalagmites even without the mythology.
The main church of Arkadi Monastery - things to do in crete
The main church of Arkadi Monastery
  • Matala – This seaside village with its historic man-made cliff caves was home to the hippies in the 1960’s (including Joni Mitchell) and still retains an artistic vibe.
  • Arkadi Monastery – This picturesque Eastern Orthodox Monastery dates back to the 12th century. It is remembered for the revolution of 1866 against Ottoman rule.
  • Heraklion Archaeological Museum – Containing a wealth of Minoan art and other Minoan artefacts, this museum is considered one of the best in the whole in Greece.

Things to do in Ios

  • Chora Windmills – An icon of Ios, these 12 historic windmills are no longer in use but are worthy of a photograph as well as a climb-up to admire the view back across the town and out to sea.
  • Homer’s Tomb – Considered to be the place where the famous poet Homer (writer of Odyssey) is buried, Homer’s Tomb is a picturesque location located on a hill.
Tomb of Homer
  • Skarkos – This Bronze Age archaeological site is the largest on Ios and is one of the best preserved Bronze Age settlements in the Aegean.
  • Odysseas  Elytis Theater – Named after the famous Greek poet, this modern amphitheater is modeled on those of Ancient Greek design – Watch a music event, play, or cultural festival from the marble seats.
  • Modern Art Museum – View the collections of paintings and photographs at the modern art museum which houses a permanent collection of works by Jean Marie Dro.
  • Ios Cathedral – The blue and white cathedral church that dominates Chora has an impressive interior with some fine icons so be sure to admire it from the outside and the inside.
  • Paleokatro – The ruins of this cliffside castle date back to Byzantine times. Within the castle ruins is a small church and beautiful sea views are all around.
Chora town, Ios island - Greek island hopping
Chora town, Ios island
  • Boat Tour – Reach several picturesque beaches that are inaccessible by car or foot on a boat trip around the island taking in the sea caves and rock formations.
  • Lorentzena Sunset – The small and isolated Lorentzena Beach is unspoilt and the best place to watch the sunset on Ios.
Mylopotas beach, Ios
Mylopotas beach, Ios
  • Archaeological Museum – See the sculptures, pottery, coins, jewellery, marble friezes and other archaeological finds that have been uncovered from Skarkos and elsewhere on the island.

Things to do in Sifnos

Sifnos
  • Kastro – This is the oldest village on the island and the most picturesque. Get lost in the maze of backstreets whilst admiring the quaint-essential Greek architecture.
  • Church of 7 Martyrs – Walk down to this small scenic white washed church perched on the peninsula as you admire the view out to sea.
  • Monastery of Panagia Chrissopigi – Perched on the top of a peninsula this historic monastery that dates back to 1650 is connected to Sifnos via a small bridge.
church of Panaghia Chrisopigi at Sifnos island - Greek island hopping routes
church of Panaghia Chrisopigi at Sifnos island
  • Agios Andreas Archaeological Site – Walk around this excavated 13th century Mycenaean town with hilltop Acropolis/Citadel of Saint Andrew Castle.
  • Artemonas – Visit this traditional laid back town and admire the neoclassical mansions along with the panoramic views.
  • Archaeological Museum – See the sculptures, statues, pottery, coins and other artefacts found on Sifnos that date from the Archaic to the Roman period.
Eftamartyres church, Sifnos
Eftamartyres church, Sifnos
  • Folklore & Popular Art Museum – Begin to understand the history and culture of Sifnos as you view the traditional costumes, furniture, and other heirlooms as well as artworks.
  • Ecclesiastical Museum – Housed at the Monastery of Panagia Vrysiani, this museum contains priests robes, a rare 18th century gospel, and a variety of 18th century Byzantine icons.
Vathy Beach, Sifnos, Greece -The Best Mediterranean Beaches
Vathy Beach, Sifnos, Greece
  • Sifnos Towers – Hike up to the ruins of the ancient watchtowers that are located around Sifnos. They were built after Sifnos was ravaged in 524BC by the Samians.
  • Island Boat Trip – Reach the most beautiful secluded beaches of Sifnos by boat whilst admiring the coastline and also enjoying some snorkeling time.

Where to stay during your Greek Island Hopping

Where to stay in Athens 

Plaka

Herodion Hotel offers elegant rooms next to the Acropolis and the Acropolis museum. Its rooms offer all the modern amenities you would expect from a 4-star hotel. There is also an on-site restaurant and bar that offers panoramic views of the Acropolis.

Monastiraki

360 degrees is located in Monastiraki square at the heart of the historic district. It offers modern rooms with all the amenities; air-condition, TV, free wifi and buffet breakfast with vegan options. Other hotel amenities include a rooftop bar-restaurant with breathtaking views of the Acropolis.

Syntagma

Electra Hotel Athens is a recently renovated hotel located in the main shopping street of Athens, Ermou next to Syntagma square. It offers classically furnished rooms with free Wi-Fi, satellite TV and a rooftop bar restaurant with lovely views of the Parliament and the Acropolis.

Where to stay in Mykonos 

Platys Gialos Beach

Petinos Beach Hotel -24 spacious guest rooms all serve the same purpose – provide you with luxury interiors, appealing styles and a lot of character. It’s only 1 minute away from the beach and serves breakfast, snacks and even candlelight romantic dinners if requested.

Nissaki Boutique Hotel – A 2 minute walk from the beach, you can revel in the most beautiful views in Mykonos from any hotel. You’ll be able to see open views of the blue Aegean Sea, swim in the outdoor swimming pool, unwind at an exterior hot tub, or enjoy a cup of coffee or a drink in the bar lounge!

Mykonos Town

Belvedere – A chic hotel with a great swimming pool, Belvedere is an effortless hotel that offers unique rooms, each with different design elements and rain showers in the bathroom! There is a gym, spa and massage treatments, and steam rooms!

Tharroe of Mykonos Boutique Hotels – Mykonian architecture dominate this place, offering a luxurious atmosphere with the Aegean Sea as the backdrop blending art, nature and luxury together. Perched on top of a hill, this hotel offers great sunset views, and wonderful scenery. The hotel is 17 minutes away from the beach, and there’s an outdoor pool, and a hot tub!

Where to stay in Santorini 

Fira

Alizea Villas and Suites–Alizea offers beautifully designed, simple and cosy villas and suites that are situated in an ideal location, central to all of Fira’s key attractions. For the price tag, Alizea offers many luxury features, has a beautiful pool, great rooms, as well as friendly service; it has everything you need for a wonderful trip to Fira.

Aria Suites – Aria Suites offer large, spacious suites that provide you with a huge amount of flexibility and space when visiting Fira. Many of them also come with individual pools, that offer incredible views. One of the highlights of Aria Suites is its incredible position, which in the evening, is perfect for viewing the famous sunsets of Santorini, from the comfort of your own room.

Oia

Canaves Oia Suites and Spa – With its spectacular infinity pool, white-washed cave style interiors, and breath-taking sea views, Canaves Oia Suites and Spa is the ultimate place to stay for any luxury enthusiast. The hotel has gorgeous rooms that feel truly unique, as well as a beautiful restaurant overlooking the sea and islands ahead; it is particularly astonishing during the early evening and sunset, as the sky turns to a light-pink hue, and Oia lights up.

Filotera Suites – The suites at Filotera offer individual balconies and pools that provide you with a private view of the gorgeous sea ahead; the suites and balconies are so idyllic that you will find yourself not wanting to leave the hotel! The hotel also has a beautiful restaurant that serves the most exquisite and delicious dishes that you will find yourself not getting enough of them.

Where to stay in Naxos 

Chora Town – St. George Beach

Saint George Hotel – This quaint-essentially Greek white-washed hotel with urns of bougainvillea outside enjoys a seafront location with shops, tavernas, and bars as well as a bus stop all just seconds away. The bright and airy rooms are decorated beautifully with some rooms having a kitchenette.

Xenia Hotel – This elegant boutique hotel sits in the heart of Naxos Town surrounded by shops and restaurants. The contemporary styled rooms are light and airy with everything you need for an enjoyable nights sleep before stepping out onto the street to explore all that Naxos has to offer.

Agios Prokopios

Naxos Island Hotel – Enjoy world-class service at this stunning 5 star hotel. The on site spa and gym has a hot tub, sauna, Turkish bath, and 2 massage treatment rooms with panoramic views over the water from the rooftop terrace/pool/bar area.

Katerina Hotel – Providing guests with traditional hotel rooms or studio apartments, this family-run hotel prides itself on its breakfast. Located 150 metres from the beach you can relax by the pool or rent a car directly from a reception to go off exploring.

Where to stay in Paros

Naousa

Porto NaoussaThis stylish hotel is for adults only so you can be assured of a relaxing time away without the peace being broken by kids running riot! Located just 300metres from the Venetian Harbour the hotel provides a free shuttle service to make your vacation a breeze.

Hotel Senia This stylish yet homely hotel enjoys a seafront location just 200 metres from Naousa Town. Swim in the infinity pool whilst admiring the view, a must at sunset, enjoy the fresh flavours at dinner, and relax in the luxurious rooms.

Parikia

Sunset View Hotel Boasting breathtaking views across the sea at sunset, this stylish family-friendly hotel with typical Cycladic décor in the bedrooms is a short 10 minute walk from Paros Port.

Argonauta Hotel If you like family-run hotels that have character and stay true to the country Argonauta will take your breath away with its stunning interiors so typical of the Cycladic islands. Relax in the courtyard and get tips from the owners before stepping outside to explore the town, Paros Port being a 5 minute walk away.

Where to stay in Milos 

Adamas

Santa Maria Village – Another great accommodation option in Adamas is Santa Maria Village. Situated 300 m away from the beach and close to restaurants and bars this beautiful hotel offers spacious rooms with balcony, free Wi-Fi, air-conditioning and a swimming pool.

Pollonia

Nefeli Sunset Studios – A great accommodation option in Pollonia is Nefeli Sunset Studios. Located just 4 minutes on foot from the beach and the restaurants and bars of the area this family-run hotel offers spacious rooms with balcony, free wi-fi, and air conditioning.

Where to stay in Crete

Chania

Splanzia Boutique Hotel – Located in the alleyways of the Old Town and just 15 minutes on foot from the beach, the Splanzia Boutique Hotel offers contemporary rooms in a Venetian building. Rooms are equipped with Internet, air-conditioning and satellite TV.

Pension Eva – Located in a quiet part of the old town and just 9 minutes from the beach, Pension Eva is a housed in a 17th-century Venetian  building. It offers elegant rooms with Internet, Tv and air conditioning among other amenities. The highlight of this hotel is the roof terrace with the stunning views of the Old Town.

Heraklion

GDM Megaron, Historical Monument Hotel –  This 5-star historical hotel has spectacular views over the old fishing port and fort from its rooftop pool area. It may have been built in 1925 but has been beautifully refurbished to ensure guests can enjoy modern day comforts.

Atrion Hotel –  A short walk from the vibrant city centre and the History Museum, the modern and comfortable Atrion Hotel enjoys sea views located across from the promenade where you can take a morning or evening stroll with the locals.

Where to stay in Ios

Chora

Liostasi Hotel & Suites  – This elegant hotel pays attention to detail with charming décor accents added to its otherwise clean, white/black interior design. Soak up the sea and mountain views from your terrace/balcony or from the pool area before enjoying the spa treatments.

Kritikakis Village HotelStep foot into the stunning Cycladic labyrinth of these comfortable self-catering apartments and let your jaw drop open as you admire the blue of the sea against the white of the buildings. Beach, bars, restaurants, and a bus stop are all within easy reach and there’s a pool on site.

Mylopotas Beach

Dionysos Seaside Resort Ios This chic hotel may have you thinking you’ve arrived in Indonesia instead of Greece with its bamboo accents and palm fringed bar/beach area. Make use of the hotel facilities with a game of tennis before a dip in the pool or sea before enjoying the food at the bar/restaurant, the vegetables coming from the hotels organic garden.

Ios Palace Hotel and Spa –  Indulge your senses at this unique hotel that overlooks Mylopotas Bay. At breakfast you’ll be soothed by the sounds of classical music and in the pool, music plays underwater so be sure to dunk your head down before heading to the bar for a margarita cocktail – This hotel boasting the most options in Europe!

Where to stay Sifnos

Platis Yialos

Alexandros Hotel Enjoy a relaxing Greek getaway amongst the olive trees with white and blue buildings and a palm tree and bougainvillea filled garden that leads you down to the beach and the surrounding bars, shops, and restaurants.

Ostria Studios Relax in these traditionally decorated, homely self-catering apartments in garden surroundings that overlook Platis Yialos Bay. Each apartment has a spacious veranda with sea views and a kitchenette giving you the option to cook for yourself or wander down to the nearby bars and restaurants.

Where to book your ferry tickets

The award-winning Ferries in Greece website is easy to use and allows travelers to book single or return trips as well as multiple Greek island hops in one go. You can also book ferries to Italy or Turkey if you’re continuing your travels by sea.

Easily see which tickets are e-tickets and which you’ll need to pick up from the port as  well as which boats accept cars, the duration, price, and availability. One benefit of this website is that you can pay using Paypal if you dislike paying by card.

Friendly and knowledgeable staff are on hand to help you with your bookings via phone, email, or social media and you can rest assured that you’ll know of any changes to the schedule thanks to SMS notifications.

Click here for the ferry schedule and to book your ferry tickets.

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