When is the best time to visit Greece?
Greece, the land of Apollo and the Acropolis, is a country filled with mythology and mystique! Crumbling ruins that tell stories of an ancient civilization and picturesque islands with whitewashed houses that stand out against a bright blue sky are some of the things that make Greece an enticing destination.
The most popular time to visit Greece – the mainland and the islands – is from mid-June to mid-September. Warm temperatures, perfect sea conditions, and dry weather make this period beach-perfect.
But the best time to visit Greece lies just outside the peak season. The months of April, May, and the first half of June experience weather conditions that are perfect for sightseeing – pleasant temperatures, dry days, and fewer crowds. With warm sea temperatures and plenty of sunshine, September and early October is also an excellent time to visit the Greek islands.
It’s the coldest time of the year across Greece. Athens sees average high temperatures in the mid-50s and around 12-13 rainy days during the month. With rain showers frequenting the islands, many resorts and establishments shut shop.
- Discover ancient treasures at the Acropolis museum
- Savor the best of Greek food in Athens
Temperatures hold steady, but rainfall levels decrease across the country. Athens starts to see sunshine-filled days for most of the month, but don’t leave behind that warm jacket just yet. The Delphi region may even see snow.
- Take a tour of the Parthenon
- Explore the breathtaking islands of Greece, even more alluring, without the crowds
It’s the start of the spring season, and temperatures begin to inch up across the country. The latter part of the month sees the skies clearing up in Athens, making it a good month to sightsee.
- Trek to the monasteries of Meteora that sit atop majestic rock formations
- Watch the change of guards at Syntagma Square in Athens
Spring season is in full swing, with temperatures rising to the mid-60s across Athens and the islands. While the sea is still too cold to swim in, it’s an excellent time for hiking and other outdoor activities.
- Find out how it all began at the ancient site of the Olympics in Olympia
- Explore the island of Naxos by foot or on horseback
Temperatures in the 70s and low precipitation levels make the month one of the best times to visit Athens. In the islands, the weather clears up by the second half of the month.
- Climb up the 900+ steps of the Palamidi Fort in Nafplio for some stunning views of the ocean and town
- Explore the charming island of Hydra – its stone mansions, monasteries and cobblestone streets
It’s the official start of summer and the tourist season. Day time temperatures climb up to the 70s, and the sea is warm enough for a dip. With low precipitation levels June is one of the best times to travel to Greece.
- Witness unforgettable sunsets at Santorini
- Take a boat ride into the caves and around the impressive arches of Kleftiko at the island of Milos
It’s one of the hottest months of the year across the country, which means it’s one of the busiest times of the year, particularly in the islands. Temperatures are in the warm 80s at Santorini and almost touching 90°F in Athens.
- Rub shoulders with the rich and famous at Psarou Beach in Mykonos
- Wander the pedestrianized streets of the Chora settlement in Folegandros
Warm weather conditions continue throughout the country. Low humidity levels in Athens makes the high temperature bearable. The Greek islands see strong winds during this month with a possibility of ferry and boat cancellations.
- Splash into the azure blue waters of Balos Beach in Crete
- Hike the Samaria Gorge trail in Crete that takes you through towering cliffs and ends with unforgettable views of the Libyan Sea
By the second half of September, the crowds leave, but excellent weather conditions linger, making this month one of the best times to visit Greece. Evenings can get a bit chilly, so pack a sweater for your trip.
- Climb the mighty Mt.Olympus, known as the mountain of the Gods
- Visit the old fortress at Spinalonga on a day trip from Elounda
The first half of the month is still a good time to visit the islands. But, by the end of the month, there is a marked shift in weather conditions. Temperatures fall to the low 70s, and rainfall starts to increase.
- Explore the labyrinthine streets of the Plaka in Athens
- Savor the fine wines and delicious foods of the island of Santorini
During this month, you will find a mix of warm, sunny days and gray, rainy weather conditions. It’s a low tourist season. Day time highs are now in the mid-60s while nighttime lows drop into the 50s.
- For a lesson in Greek history, head to Delphi and explore its ancient temples, theaters and stadiums
- There’s plenty to see at Heraklion Archaeological Museum in Crete with its Minoan civilization artifacts
Temperatures drop further, and rainfall levels increase. Athens sees up to 15 wet days during the month. Temperatures are now around 58°F during the day and 48°F during nights. It’s time to bring out your winter jackets.
- Develop an appreciation for the art and architecture of ancient Greece at the National Archaeological Museum at Athens
- Walk down the lively Ermou Street in Athens, all lit up for the festive season
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Best Time to Visit Greece by Season
Greece experiences a typical Mediterranean climate with warm and dry summers and cool, wet winters.
The summer season runs from June to mid-September, with temperatures from the mid-80s to 90s and little to no rain. There is a light breeze blowing across the islands, which makes for pleasant weather conditions. Sea temperatures are at their warmest during this time.
Autumn in Greece is often viewed as one of the best times to visit the country. Temperatures start to drop by the latter half of September, but it is still warm until October. Rainfall levels start increasing, but there are still plenty of sunny days to enjoy the beaches and attractions.
Winter sets in by November, though cold temperatures start showing up in the southern parts only by mid-December. It is the wettest time of the year, and snow is not uncommon in the northern parts of the country.
Springtime weather starts showing up in March with a sudden increase in temperatures in May. Water temperatures are too cold to swim in, but it’s a good time for sightseeing and hiking.
What to pack
During summers, warm temperatures call for light, breathable fabrics, swimwear, and plenty of sun protection – hats, glasses, and sunscreen. Day time temperatures in fall are warm, but nights can get a little chilly, so we recommend you pack a light jacket or sweater.
With temperatures dropping into the 50s during the winter months, it’s best to pack a winter jacket and warm layers. December and January see a fair bit of rain, so pack an umbrella or rain jacket. Spring sees fluctuating temperatures, so it’s best to pack light layers.
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