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First Time in The Greek Islands Guide

I know your first trip to Greece can seem a bit overwhelming. These coastal coves, sandy beaches, whitewashed villages, and blue-domed churches make for legendary vacations. On the Pacific Rim, volcanic activity formed thousands of islands many years ago. So planning a trip there requires a little research, particularly if you plan to go island hopping. Here’s everything you need to know in our Greek Islands travel guide before you visit the epic islands!

Currency in Greece

The currency used in the Greek Islands is the Euro. It is essential always to have some cash in Greece and the Greek Islands. Although many hotels, restaurants, and tourist shops in Greece accept credit cards, you might encounter few studios or small shops in less-touristy islands that ask for cash.

In Greece, Visa and MasterCard are the most widely accepted cards. Greek cities and tourist areas accept major credit cards.


During May and September, Santorini has a subtropical climate with warm temperatures. There is also very little rainfall during the summer when it is extremely dry.

The summer is still warm and dry on Corfu, an island in the Ionian Sea. During the winter months, a lot more precipitation is recorded than on Santorini and other popular islands. As a result, Corfu is covered with much more lush vegetation than other parts of Greece.

During winter in Crete, it is mild and often rainy; in summer, it is sunny with little to no precipitation. October to March is when the island experiences the majority of its rainfall.

When to visit Greek Islands

The best time to visit the Greek Islands for the first time is from June to September. But traveling during the off-season can help you save money and beat the crowds. Are you planning a trip during the winter? Santorini & Crete will have more restaurants and hotels open to visitors.

How long should you visit?

No amount of time is too long on the Greek Islands. Give yourself at least a week to see a couple of the islands for the first time in the Greek Islands. You won’t see everything, but you will get a good taste of it.

Getting there

One can travel to Greece in many different ways: by road, plane, train, or sea. Major highways link Greece with Europe and Asia. The country’s airports provide top-notch services. Rail connections with Europe allow for a pleasant nostalgic journey.

And last but not least, Greek ports welcome ocean-going ships and local ferries all year round. Some of the larger Greek Islands will have airports that can accept international flights, with the airports in Rhodes and Corfu among the largest, offering the broadest range of flights.

However, if you plan to see different islands and explore several other parts of the region, then the only natural way to travel between the islands is by ferry. Because it is such a large area, various ferry companies serve different parts of the islands. The prices and schedule can vary dramatically, particularly if you want to travel outside the primary tourist season.

Greek Culture

Greece is a country of great interests and diverse cultures, influenced by its location, at the junction between the East and the West, and by the many occupations of the Greek people throughout history.

The Orthodox Church is at the heart of Greek culture. Blue-domed, whitewashed chapels are iconic symbols of the Greek islands. They were often built along the coast so that people could pray for relatives out at sea.

One of the most famous-featured in the movie Mamma Mia on Skopelos, high on a rocky outcrop lashed by the waves. Traditional Crafts and folk artists abound on the Greek islands.

On Skyros, you’ll see old ladies on stoops bent over embroidery and wood carvers chipping away at miniature chairs in their workshops.

Things to do in the Greek Islands

If you are wondering what activities you should consider for your first time in the Greek Islands, I recommend the following:

  • Percy Jackson Tour at the Acropolis Museum

  • Fun family sailing adventure at Milos Island

  • River Trekking in Crete

  • Mountain Biking around Lassithi Plateau

  • Taste and learn traditional Cretan Cheese

  • Hike up the Santorini Volcano

We hope you found our first-timer’s guide to the Greek Islands helpful. Leave us a comment below; schedule a free consultation if you have any questions.


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