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When Is the Best Time to Visit Greece?

When Is the Best Time to Visit Greece?

Chances are you’re wondering: When is the best time to visit Greece? You’ve come to the right place. This guide will discuss the best times to go to Greece depending on the season, your budget and more.

Oh Greece, I love you so. 

It’s a beautiful country with a rich history, culture, scenic landscape, and great food. And, who could forget – there’s a plethora of gorgeous islands where sunshine, stunning beaches and good times await. 

It’s no wonder Greece is on most travellers’ bucket list

So: when’s the best time to visit Greece? Hate to fudge an answer but it really will depend on what you’d like to experience on your trip. 

That’s where this handy guide comes in – let me take you through the best time of year to visit Greece and the factors to consider before you book your visit. 

When’s the Best Time to Visit Greece?: At A Glance

Naoussa Paros - Cyclades Greece-3

Spoiler alert: The best time to travel to Greece is during the shoulder season. This runs from April to June and between September and October. The weather is still warm during this time, though the heavy summer crowds have dispersed. 

Most accommodation and flights are also cheaper during these months – the real bonus, in my opinion. Services, such as ferry rides, are still up and running; although not operating as frequently as in summer, so it’s still relatively easy to get around. 

Of course, this is pretty subjective – let’s take a deep dive into what you need to consider.

The Best Time to Visit Greece 

What is the Best Month to Travel to Greece? 

Naoussa Paros - Cyclades Greece

Generally, the best month to travel to Greece is late April. 

Since it’s the start of spring, the weather starts to warm up, but it’s not yet too hot that your trip is marred by heat exhaustion. As well as this, most attractions, restaurants, and hotels that close in winter start opening up to prepare for the busy summer season. 

Another excellent month to visit is early June (note that by the end of the month it gets extremely busy). This is when summer officially begins, so it’s the perfect time to visit Greece’s stunning beaches. 

Best Time to Visit Mainland Greece

One of the advantages that I find with the mainland over Greece’s islands is that it’s a year-round destination. There are always plenty of events, and attractions – such as the Acropolis – are open all year round. 

That said, though, I recommend visiting in April to early June and September when the weather is moderate. The hoards of summer tourists are also gone around this time.

The heat during summer tends to be almost unbearable, while winter on the mainland is also quite intense. So instead, visit during spring or autumn when it’s shoulder season. 

Tip: Book this Acropolis tour in Athens to discover this archaeological gem. 

Best Time to Visit the Greek Islands 

The best time to visit the Greek islands depends on what you’d like to experience. For example, if you are after the lively party scene partying it up at  beach clubs in Mykonos, summer is the top choice for many. 

If you’re a beach bum and want to work on your tan, the Greek Isle’s renowned beaches are calling your name. Or swim in the island’s warm waters, making summer the best month to visit. However, this comes at a price because the islands are often overcrowded and expensive. 

If you’re looking for a more laid-back vibe, it’s worth visiting the Greek islands in fall, when they are quiet but still enjoy a relative degree of warmth. 

When’s High Season in Greece? 

Greece

The high season in Greece is from late June to the end of August. I suggest avoiding Greece in July and August if you can – or opting for a trip to quieter islands like Sifnos or Iraklia. 

Most people take their summer holiday during this time. So expect large crowds and soaring temperatures—especially on the more popular islands of Santorini, Mykonos, and Zakynthos. 

Mainland Greece is also extremely busy, and many attractions in the main cities are overcrowded.

The Cheapest Time to Visit Greece 

It’s not all doom and gloom, though, as visiting Greece on a budget is still possible. 

One of the cheapest times to visit Greece is just before summer, from April – early June. Note that during April, Greeks celebrate Easter Sunday and Greek Orthodox Easter. Accommodation might be slightly higher during this time, but not as expensive as in summer. 

Autumn, or from September to early November, is also an excellent season to visit when summer crowds have dispersed. If you’re looking for the cheapest time to visit Greece, that would be winter. 

As the temperatures decrease, so do the prices of just about everything – I don’t think it’s worth travelling during this season though as the weather is fairly unpredictable and the islands are eerily quiet.

Best Time to Visit Greece to Avoid Crowds

Winter is the best time to avoid crowds, as the unpredictable weather and cold scare many people away. If you’re willing to brave the cold, you’ll get a natural feel of Greece and how the locals live. 

Otherwise, spring and autumn are your best bets.

Best Time to Go to Greece For Sightseeing

Paralia Vorini Iraklia - Cyclades Greece

The best time to go to Greece for sightseeing, especially on the mainland, is during the shoulder months. You won’t have to wait in endless lines to enter popular attractions like the Parthenon or museums. 

Best Time to Go to Greece For Good Weather

If you’re looking to enjoy the fantastic Greek weather, I would say the best months to visit Greece are June, September, and October. 

The temperatures range between 20 and 35°C and see minimal rainfall. This is also an excellent time to swim and sail in warm Mediterranean waters. 

Best Time to Go Island Hopping

Shoulder season (April/May/September/October) is the best time to go Greek island hopping. Most ferry services are still up and running and are much cheaper than in peak season. 

Best Time to Go on Honeymoon

Greece is one of the most idyllic honeymoon destinations in the world. June is the best time to visit Greece for a honeymoon, particularly on the islands. You’ll enjoy warm, sunny weather and fewer crowds. 

Best Time to Party

Paradise Mykonos

It’s no secret that one of the best things to do in Mykonos, and some of the other Greek islands, is to enjoy its fun party scene. The islands come to life in July and August when multiple international DJs make the Greek islands their base for epic summer parties.  

Best Time of the Year to Go to Greece by Season

Spring in Greece 

April – May

Apeiranthos Naxos - Cyclades Greece

I would say that Spring is probably the best time of the year to visit Greece. This is when I plan my trips.

Temperatures range between a moderate 17 – 27°C, usually never going higher than this. The crowds are significantly thinner (yet it’s not too quiet), and prices are reasonable. 

Key Events and Things to Do in Greece in Spring 

  • Holy Week and Greek Orthodox Easter are the most significant events in spring. Throughout the week, many Greeks participate in various celebrations and traditions passed down for centuries.

Pros to Travelling to Greece in Spring. 

  • Spring is one of the best times to visit Greece because of its shoulder season, meaning you’ll deal with lower prices and fewer crowds. 
  • The weather is excellent. 

Cons to Travelling to Greece in Spring

  • Not all hotels, services, and restaurants are fully operational, especially on the islands. 
  • The mainland gets full in April because of Easter. 

Summer in Greece 

June – August

Alyko Beach Naxos

If you’re willing to brave the sun and the crowds, some of the best months to visit Greece are during summer, which brings excitement to the country. 

Summer is the hottest season, making it great for enjoying the country’s warm waters and beaches. You can expect temperatures to rise to a blistering 40°C. 

Key Events and Things to Do in Greece in Summer 

  • The Athens Epidaurus Festival is one of the biggest and oldest festivals in the country, founded in 1955. You’ll be able to enjoy dancing, theatre, and music festivals in the iconic Greek Epidaurus Amphitheatre. 

Pros of Travelling to Greece in Summer

  • Summer is warm and perfect for hitting the beaches.
  • Summer brings a great atmosphere to Greece, and it comes alive.

Cons to Travelling to Greece in Summer

  • It’s extremely hot.
  • Prices skyrocket in summer. 

Autumn / Fall in Greece

September – November

Mykonos

Autumn sees lovely temperatures of about 25°C on the islands and slightly cooler temperatures on the mainland. All in all, it’s still a great time to visit. 

Key Events and Things to Do in Greece in Autumn 

  • Harvest season takes place in Autumn. During this time, Greeks harvest two of the country’s most famous exports, grapes, and olives, which are in abundance. You can tour many wineries and olive farms and try fresh produce. 
  • If you’re a beer lover, you might enjoy a trip to Corfu, which hosts the Corfu Beer Festival in September. Think of it as Greece’s version of Oktoberfest. 

Pros of Travelling to Greece in Autumn

  • Autumn is the best time to travel around Greece as summer crowds have dispersed, and most services are still up and running.
  • The weather is enjoyable so you can enjoy sightseeing without the smouldering summer temperatures.

Cons to Travelling to Greece in Autumn

  • Coming off the back of peak season, a lot of things are still quite pricey, especially in September. 

Winter in Greece 

December – March

Winter in Greece brings in cooler temperatures. On the mainland, you can expect snow and chilling weather of about 12°C and lower. On the islands, though, it’s a bit warmer, ranging between 15 and sometimes 20°C. 

Key Events and Things to Do in Greece in Winter

  • Christmas is a big deal in Greece; you’ll find trees lighting up town and city squares and loads of tasty treats. 
  • New Year’s day is also a significant event in Greece, where many people exchange gifts and honour the Greek Santa Claus – Saint Basil. 

Pros of Travelling to Greece in Winter

  • While most people don’t consider this the best time to go to Greece, savvy travellers know you’ll save a ton of money on your trip.
  • There are very few crowds.

Cons to Travelling to Greece in Winter

  • The weather is highly unpredictable and cold, so not the best time to enjoy any outdoor activities. 
  • Most businesses close on the islands in winter. 

When to Travel to Greece: Practical Tips + Tricks 

  • Consider what you want to do on your trip to help you figure out the best time to go to Greece. Remember to consider the weather, hotel prices, and religious holidays in the region/island.
  • Booking a tour can help you island-hop with ease. Read my review of Sailing Greece with G Adventures.

Paralia Vorini Iraklia - Cyclades Greece
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