Holidays in Greece: take a dream cruise in these…
Holidays in Greece offer tourists unique and fascinating activities, wonderful beaches, delicious cuisine and much more. Which Greek destination is right for you?
Greece is home to beautiful islands and a continent steeped in history, culture and rich gastronomy.
Cruise vacations here allow visitors to explore the country’s beautiful coastline – with smaller ships stopping where larger ships cannot.
But cruises aren’t limited to life on board – you want to make sure your shore excursions are just as rewarding.
Greece has a large number of very popular vacation spots and it can be difficult to choose where to go. Here we take a look at some of the brilliant places that you can visit in Greece.
Heraklion is located on the beautiful island of Crete.
Fans of ancient history will love the Archaeological Museum, one of the most important museums in Greece, where visitors can find almost all of the unique treasures of Minoan civilization unearthed in Knossos, Phaistos, Malia and elsewhere.
Among the city’s most remarkable sites are the fortification walls that mark off the “old town”. The first fortifications were built by the Arabs and then reinforced by the Venetians in the 15th century.
Many monuments in Heraklion date back to the Middle Ages – a time when the city enjoyed great prosperity. The Venetian Loggia is just one highlight – a magnificent arched building adorned with coats of arms and trophies that served as a meeting place for the Duke and other nobles during the Venetian period.
Beach lovers will also be happy in Heraklion – there are beautiful blue flag sandy beaches.
Meanwhile, foodies should head to the town market where traditional Cretan products such as olive oil, raki, local wine, honey, herbs and more are sold.
Visitors to Heraklion should try to take a trip to Knossos – it is one of the most important archaeological sites in Europe and the legendary center of Minoan civilization from 1900 to 1400 BC.
Santorini’s iconic blue and white painted buildings perched atop steep cliffs are a well-known sight and the place is extremely popular with tourists.
Santorini – formed by a volcano (still active) – is a group of islands made up of Thira, Thirassia, Aspronissi, Palea and Nea Kameni in the southernmost part of the Cyclades. Don’t worry, the last big eruption happened 3,600 years ago.
Visitors to Santorini are spoiled for choice. Fira, perched on the edge of the Caldera, is the picturesque capital of the island. The town, along with Oia, Imerovigli, and Firostefani, set on top of a cliff, forms the so-called ‘Eyebrow of the Caldera’, the balcony of Santorini, from where visitors can admire stunning views of the volcano.
The small villages are also worth exploring and soaking up their distinctive traditional atmosphere is a rewarding experience.
As for the coastline, expect deep blue waters and beaches of white, red or black sand or volcanic pebbles, spectacular rock formations and awe-inspiring lunar landscapes.
And, when you’re ready to rest, indulge your taste buds with famous traditional dishes such as cherry tomatoes, white eggplants, broad beans, capers and ‘hloro tyrí’ (a special type of fresh goat cheese). . Or why not try some of the exceptional wines produced from grapes grown in the volcanic soil of the island?
– READ MORE: Crete, Athens or the Cyclades – where to go –
Koufonisia is a small group of two islets called Pano Koufonisi and Kato Koufonisi which have some of the best beaches in the Aegean Sea.
The name Koufonisia translates to Hollow Islands because of the huge caves on the islands which made the pirates seem like hollow islands to spy on them from a distance.
Only Pano Koufonisi is populated and is the perfect place for vacationers looking to relax and drink on Koufonisia’s sheltered golden sandy beaches, small natural pools with turquoise waters and abundance of fresh seafood.
The best beaches are in Loutro, Parianos, Foinikas, Fanos, Italida and Pori where you can also go windsurfing. Be sure to take a boat tour of the island to explore sea caves and nearby islets.
The typical Cycladic village of Chora with its whitewashed houses and picturesque alleys is also worth a visit. Why not rent a bike or go for a hike?
Postcard perfect, Santorini, one of the Cycladic islands located in the Aegean Sea, is famous for its…
Located in the heart of the Greek Cyclades archipelago, the cosmopolitan town of Mykonos has acquired a…
A bustling port city and capital of the Greek island of Crete, Heraklion has become a…
Naxos is the largest and greenest island in the Cyclades. It features high mountains, fertile valleys, verdant gorges, stunning seascapes and traditional villages.
It has a rich history and is even featured in Greek myths. The islet of Palatia can be spotted as visitors enter the harbor. The impressive marble door of the Temple of Apollo, which dates from the 6th century BC, can still be found here. According to mythology, the god Dionysus met Ariadne there after she was abandoned by Theseus (of minotaur fame).
Culture lovers will appreciate the Archaeological Museum, housed in a historic building from the Venetian period, while Chora, the capital, has an imposing Venetian castle. There is a lot of amazing architecture to contemplate here – it is a unique blend of Cycladic and Medieval.
Outdoor enthusiasts will love the many hiking routes on offer – or explore by bike!
There are also a number of picturesque villages in Naxos. Apeiranthos has impressive architecture (think stone towers, old houses, churches and alleyways cobbled in marble) while Halki is home to Byzantine churches, colorful lanes, and beautiful old mansions. Also look for traditional windmills in the area.
If you are heading for the beach, be sure to visit Agios Prokopios, Agia Anna and Plaka, sandy beaches with crystal clear waters and ideal for families and couples.
Gourmets will appreciate the quality local products, such as olive oil, potatoes, the famous liqueur of the island (Kitron), the mouth-watering wine and especially the famous cheeses of Naxos. These include graviera (hard cheese), xinomyzithra (sour myzithra, made from goat’s or sheep’s milk, yeast and salt), xinotyro (sour cheese), arseniko (a delicious cheese. hard paste made from goat’s and sheep’s milk).
Mykonos also played a role in Greek mythology. Mykonos is said to have been formed from the petrified bodies of giants slain by Hercules while the island takes its name from Apollo’s grandson, Mykonos.
Visitors to the capital Hora can wander the town’s pretty streets – check out its whitewashed houses with colorful doors and window frames, purple flowering bougainvillea, and hidden churches.
Of course, we must not forget the cosmopolitan side of Mykonos. There is good shopping to be done in the capital, with glamorous Matoyánni Street lined with designer stores, charming cafes and chic, upscale restaurants.
Make sure to head to the bustling waterfront where fishing boats are moored and the local pelican can be found.
The bird has been the official mascot of Mykonos for many decades since Petros the pelican was found by a fisherman after a storm in 1954. He eventually became the companion of the locals and upon his death the community was so devastated that ‘a replacement was quickly found. . In honor of Petros, the locals have established a long tradition of pelicans wandering the water’s edge as an essential part of daily life.
Alefkántra or “Little Venice”, an 18th century district, is also worth a visit. It is one of the most idyllic and iconic areas of the Cyclades and is perfect for a cocktail or a romantic dinner.
The south coast of Mykonos is home to the most popular beaches, with Paradise and Super Paradise known for partying, but, if you want something quieter, try the beaches of Panormos, Kalafatis, Ornos and Agios Ioannis.
Mykonos is also ideal for water sports, from windsurfing and jet skiing to sea skydiving and diving.
On the food side, try the pepper kopanistí, a soft cheese seasoned with pepper – the island’s gourmet brand. Try it as a garnish on a rusk spread with grated tomato, a favorite local mezes (appetizer). Meanwhile, carnivores can enjoy “louzes” (pork tenderloin cooked with spices) and tasty local sausages sprinkled with pepper and local oregano. To end your meal, savor two exceptional local pastries: “amigdalotá” (small round cakes with almond powder, rose water and powdered sugar) and honey tart.
To learn more about visiting Greece, click here.