Great Greece Itineraries: How Many Days to Spend?

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A country with ancient history and breathtaking natural beauty, Greece comprises a mainland along with hundreds of small islands scattered through the Aegean Sea. Some of the must-see places in the country include the historic cities of Athens and Thessaloniki, where you can learn more about the ancient Greek civilization, as well as the iconic island of Santorini with its striking houses and the beautiful beaches of Ios. If you are planning on exploring this beloved destination, our overview on how many days to spend in Greece below will definitely come in handy.

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How much time should I spend in Greece?

A brief stay in Greece can last less than five days. In this case, your Greece itinerary should focus on soaking up the sights of Athens along with an island stay. You could either head for Santorini, where whitewashed houses glow in the Mediterranean sun, or let your hair down in Mykonos.

Our recommendation is that you spend seven days in Greece. This way, you have enough time to explore the country’s historic mainland cities before visiting a few of its famous islands like Corfu and Ios. Those short on duration should also consider flying between Thessaloniki and Athens as this would save you a lot of time and allow you to carry out an in-depth exploration of both these cities.

Go for a two-week Greece itinerary without any inhibition if you have enough time. Spend a week visiting some of the best towns and cities on the mainland, like Delphi, Nafplio, Parga and Xanthi. After your mainland tour, you could then take to the seas to discover several stunning Greek islands.

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With activities catered towards couples, Santorini is a perfect place for romance.
The Acropolis of Athens
Parthenon, the temple that dominates the hill of the Acropolis at Athens.

You can still create an amazing Greece itinerary if you only have five days or less. Our best advice is to fly into Athens, as there is a lot to see and do in this ancient city. Visit the Acropolis of Athens as well as its museum. Tour the Roman Forum and see the Temple of Olympian Zeus.

After spending a few nights in Athens, you are probably ready to escape to one of the picture-perfect Greek islands to swim in turquoise blue waters and relax on the beach. If you only have one or two nights to spare, we recommend Santorini, one of the most popular island getaways in the country. Those planning to spend a little longer can go island hopping in the Cyclades.

You can also check out some of our 5-day Greece itineraries for more ideas.

If you adore sublime romantic sunsets, Santorini is a must-see destination
Santorini is an enchanting coastal town in Greece that has everything for a summer vacation, from sun and sea to beautiful whitewashed houses and mesmerizing sunsets.

A week will allow you to expand your Greece itinerary. We recommend starting your trip from Thessaloniki. Give yourself a day or two to soak up the history of this beautiful city and make sure you visit the White Tower and the Arch of Galerius.

To make the most of your week, it is best if you can then fly south to Athens. If you do not want to fly, then renting a car is probably the best option. It will take you a full day to drive between the cities. However, you will get to see more of Greece’s beautiful countryside during a road trip and can also add a detour to Delphi. Once you are in Athens, spend a day or two exploring this amazing city before heading out to the nearby islands to spend the rest of your vacation.

Browse through our 7-day Greece tours for some extra inspiration.

With ten days up your sleeve, you have unlimited options for a Greece tour. Add a trip to the Peloponnese region on top of the seven-day itinerary above. The Peloponnese is the southernmost peninsula of mainland Greece and is full of forested mountains, deserted beaches and ancient ruins. A road trip from Athens through this region is a great way to spend the first few days of your trip. Done with the road trip, you could either explore some of Greece’s islands or head north to discover more of the mainland.

If dealing with car rentals and road trips is not your cup of coffee, we suggest going on an adventure sailing to the Cyclades.

The ruins of Delphi in Greece
Delphi is one of the ancient towns in Greece where the Greek temple and oracle of Apollo is located.

Two weeks will allow you more than enough time to travel through Greece at a leisurely pace. Having explored Thessaloniki and its surrounding areas, start your meandering journey south. Make sure you explore the mythical Mount Olympus, the jaw dropping Monasteries of Meteora and the ruins of Delphi along the way.

You could complete this road trip in a week or less, which would leave you a full week to go island hopping in the Aegean Sea or explore southern Greece. The Mani peninsula, an area still spared by mass tourism, is full of picture-postcard coastal villages and is home to the spectacular Diros caves, while Elafonisos Island is where one of the best beaches in the country is located.

Planning a trip to Greece?

Get in touch with one of our travel experts in Greece for a customized trip. If you would like to book a package trip or join a group, check out our tours in Greece.

Published by Marie Storm, updated on November 2, 2021

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