Greece is a bucket list country, filled with dozens of bucket list destinations like Santorini and Meteora. It’s known for its islands, which dot the water surrounding every side of the country, as well as its archaeological sites and ancient ruins. The islands, particularly touristy spots like Santorini and Mykonos, are best visited between May and October during the open season, but the rest of Greece welcomes visitors throughout the year. Whether you’re looking to discover its history or just eat all the delicious local foods, there’s something in Greece for every type of traveler. Here are 50 of the best (but by no means all) things to do in Greece.
1. Book a sunset suite at Santo Maris
Start your journey in Santorini, where the luxurious sunset suites at Santo Maris offer unobstructed views of the sea and skyline (as well as access to a top-notch spa and several pools).
2. Visit Oia
The nearby hillside town of Oia is Santorini’s most famous (and most Instagrammed) spot, covered in whitewashed buildings and blue-domed churches.
3. Embark on a boat tour
The best way to see the Greek islands is from the sea. The Santorini Yachting Club offers unforgettable catamaran cruises that stop at various sites and swimming spots.
4. Taste some wine
Santorini is home to more than a dozen wineries, which are known for their crisp white wines and rich dessert wines. Venetsanos Winery offers tastings and a particularly nice cliffside view.
5. Have a traditional lunch
Try some local dishes alfresco at Santorini’s Aroma Avlis, a restaurant and winery that also offers cooking classes. Don’t miss the fried tomato balls.
6. Enjoy a Greek tasting menu
Alios Ilios, Santo Maris’s outdoor restaurant, offers a dynamite degustation menu with contemporary takes on traditional Greek dishes as the sun sets.
7. Buy a book
The perfect souvenir for your time in Santorini can be found in Atlantis Books, which sells new and used tomes from a cave-like shop.
8. Visit Chora
From Santorini, hop a ferry to Mykonos, where you’ll discover the seaside town of Chora, an ideal place to shop or grab a drink.
9. Dine at Scorpios
One of Mykonos’s more memorable meals can be found at Scorpios, a hotel and restaurant that serves rustic dishes in an open-air, beachside dining area.
10. Have a cocktail in Little Venice
Mykonos’s area of Little Venice, which dangles over the sea itself, is an ideal spot for a sunset cocktail. Try Bao’s Cocktail Bar or Scarpa Bar.
11. Dance at Cavo Paradiso
Many people come to Mykonos to party and Cavo Paradiso on Paradise Beach is one of the most famous spots to dance the night away.
12. Visit Delos
From Mykonos, it’s an easy boat ride to the island of Delos, where visitors will find a massive archaeological site and museum that showcases ancient ruins.
13. Daytrip to Tinos
Another nearby island is Tinos, a quieter destination known for its food and wine. Stop by Athmar for a snack or a cocktail.
14. Spend time in Athens
Ferries speed between Tinos or Mykonos to Athens, Greece’s biggest city where you should spend at least a few days.
15. Tour the Acropolis
Climb up to the iconic Acropolis, where you’ll find ruins from ancient Greece and a museum that details the architectural and sculptural findings.
16. Visit Hephaestus Temple
Dating back to 450 BC, the ancient Hephaestus Temple is another ancient site worth a visit while in Athens.
17. Peruse the Museum of Cycladic Art
Learn more about the history and ancient cultures of the Aegean and Cyprus at the Museum of Cycladic Art, an impressive private collection.
18. Grab a drink at the Clumsies
Head to the Clumsies, the most famous (and award-winning) cocktail bar in Athens, to indulge in a post-sightseeing drink.
19. Dine at Funky Gourmet
For something unique, book a table for dinner at Funky Gourmet, a two Michelin-starred restaurant that serves up a tasting menu of molecular gastronomic dishes.
20. Have dinner with a view
Dine at the Restaurant at the Acropolis Museum for miraculous views of the ruins and entrées based on traditional Greek recipes. Pro tip: Book a table for a Friday night, when there’s live music until midnight.
21. Go vintage shopping
Athens is known for its vintage stores, which can be found all over the city. Head to Protogenous Street for some of the best, including Paliosinithies, Like Yesterday’s and Treasure House Boutique.
22. Grab a latte
For a pick-me-up, venture to Mind the Cup, an award-winning coffee shop in the Peristeri neighborhood of Athens.
23. Visit Delphi
From Athens, travel to Delphi, an ancient site located at the base of Mount Parnassus. You’ll witness interesting ruins as well as unparalleled views.
24. Climb Mount Olympus
Mount Olympus, home of the Greek gods, is the highest mountain in Greece, making it great for adventurous travelers. It’s possible to get there by car, bus or train from Athens or Thessaloniki.
25. Go camping
Those who like the outdoors should pitch a tent near Mount Olympus at Camping Hellas, which has easy access to the blue waters of the Aegean Sea.
26. Visit Thessaloniki’s museums
The port city of Thessaloniki is the second largest metropolis in Greece and features a great archaeological museum, several art museums and the Museum of Byzantine Culture.
27. Eat a gyro
Grab a delicious gyro sandwich at Diavasi while in Thessaloniki to enjoy the popular Greek dish.
28. Experience the Meteora monasteries
Located in the center of the country, the six Orthodox monasteries in Meteora are an unforgettable World Heritage site worth visiting.
29. Go cave hiking
The rocky landscape on Meteora is perfect to explore natural caves. Opt for a guided hiking tour with Visit Meteora to ensure you don’t miss any of the hidden sights.
30. Adventure into Melissani Cave
Speaking of caves, Melissani Cave, on the island of Kefalonia, draws visitors to its underground lake via boat.
31. Hang out on the beach
Take a break from all the adventuring by relaxing on Kefalonia’s pristine Myrtos Beach, which has crystal-blue waters and a few amenities.
32. Discover a shipwreck
Another great beach can be found on Zakynthos. Navagio Beach, known as “shipwreck beach,” is home to the remains of a smuggler’s shipwreck (as well as beautiful white sand). It’s accessible only by boat, so hop on a daytrip tour.
33. Explore Crete
The southern island of Crete, Greece’s largest island, features beaches, hiking and lots of cultural attractions. Start in Chania, Crete’s main city.
34. Shop an outdoor market
In Chania, weave through the stalls of Chania Market, a daily outdoor marketplace that sells local products and features several eateries that are perfect for a quick lunch.
35. Tour the ruins of Knossos
The ancient city of Knossos, now in ruins on Crete, was home of the mythological Minotaur and you can still see the palace’s remains during a visit.
36. Stroll the Samariá Gorge
On Crete, the Samariá Gorge traverses the Samariá National Park. Follow the trail from the scenic White Mountains to the seaside village of Agia Rouméli.
37. Taste fresh fish
While on Crete, visit the seaside town of Réthymno, where you’ll find Zefyros Fish Taverna, a local seafood restaurant.
38. Visit Spinalonga
Hop a boat from Crete to the tiny, abandoned island of Spinalonga, where you can explore an old Venetian fortress and catch views of the sea.
39. Ascend to the ‘Mamma Mia’ church
On the island of Skopelos, discover the church of Agios Ioannis Kastri, which appeared in the original Mamma Mia film.
40. Explore the beaches of Skiathos
Adjacent to Skopelos is the island of Skiathos, known for its lively beaches. Start at Koukounaries Beach, then head to Banana Beach to find the action.
41. Visit the Athens Riviera
Speaking of beaches, the Athens Riviera is a vibrant beachside area just south of Athens, where visitors can find swanky beach clubs and resorts.
42. Hike on Corfu
Another amazing Greek island is Corfu, located off the northwest coast of Greece. It’s known for its scenic hiking trails, which extend through the mountains and along the shores. The famous Corfu Trail reaches 137 miles across the island.
43. See the Achilleion
To learn more about Corfu’s history, visit the Achilleion, a palace and museum built for Empress Elisabeth of Austria.
44. Snack on baklava
45. Harvest olive oil
Experience the production of Greece’s olive oil by partaking in the annual harvest during the fall. It happens all over the country, but Crete is a good place to start since the island is well-known for its oil.
46. Go to a dance festival
In Kalamata, the annual Kalamata International Dance Festival takes place in July, welcoming dancers and dance groups from around the world.
47. Enjoy a music festival
Snag a ticket to Rockwave Festival, in Malakasa, to experience one of Greece’s biggest music festivals, which has been running for 25 years.
48. Spot the Tourlitis Lighthouse
The Instagram-worthy Tourlitis Lighthouse is perched in the middle of the water off the coast of Andros. It can be spotted from shore, as well as visited by boat.
49. Toast at Brettos Bar
Conclude your journey around Greece with a celebratory drink at Brettos Bar before you fly out of Athens. It’s the city’s oldest distillery (try the masticha) and the perfect way to cap off a great vacation.
50. Embark on a cruise
If it feels too overwhelming to decide where to visit in Greece, try a cruise of the Greek islands and major cities. Viking Cruises’ Greek Odyssey cruise hits a lot of the best spots, including Athens, Rhodes and Santorini.