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The Greek Islands:...

The Greek Islands: Crete & Santorini

10 days |  13 days with Delphi & the Athens Riviera extension
10 days |  13 days with Delphi & the Athens Riviera extension
Group size1528 travelers
Physical activity
OverviewItineraryDates & pricesReviewsHotels, flights & FAQ
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Get the full Greek experience: scrapbook scenery, fantastic food, and sweet, sweet sunshine.

No matter how you cut it, the Greek islands are a multifaceted paradise, and after admiring their gleaming highlights, you’ll be left craving more. Begin your tour in Athens, a city that needs no introduction, before journeying to Crete. Here, on the largest of Greece’s islands, you’ll marvel at the Venetian handiwork of charming Chania’s harbor; walk among vestiges of the Bronze Age Minoans in Heraklion; and discover the joys of Cretan cuisine through olive oil, wine, and other local delights. Then, you’ll head to Santorini—painted in those famous flashes of white and blue—for some seaside R & R. Go for a walk, a swim, or a sail, taking in its volcanic terrain from all angles. And if you’re interested in capping your trip with a mythical twist, add the extension to Delphi. (Maybe you’ll catch the oracle’s whispers riding the wind.)

Your tour package includes

  • 8 nights in handpicked hotels
  • 8 breakfasts
  • 1 lunch
  • 3 dinners with beer or wine
  • 4 sightseeing tours
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Included highlights

  • Temple of Zeus
  • Acropolis
  • Parthenon
  • Venetian port of Chania
  • Palace of Knossos
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Day-by-day itinerary

Print itinerary
Overnight Flight1 night
Day 1: Travel day

Board your overnight flight to Athens today.

Athens2 nights
Day 2: Arrival in Athens
Included meal: Welcome dinner

Welcome to Greece! Meet your Tour Director at the airport and transfer with them to your hotel, where you’ll get to know your fellow travelers over a welcome dinner served with your choice of beer or wine.

Day 3: Sightseeing tour of Athens
Included meal: Breakfast

Meet up with a local guide for an introduction to Greece’s bustling capital, home to the world’s first democracy and over 3,400 years of recorded history.

  • Pass by three points of interest: the Olympic Stadium, Syntagma Square, and the Arch of Hadrian. Now home to various local soccer teams, the Olympic Stadium was erected in 1982 and has hosted a slew of important sporting events since—the grandest being the Summer Games of the 28th Olympiad. Syntagma Square memorializes the signing of the first Greek constitution in 1844, following an armed rebellion against the rule of King Otto. Carved from marble and standing since the second century, the Arch of Hadrian is an iconic landmark of modern-day Athens
  • View the ruins of the Temple of Olympian Zeus. Built less than a kilometer from the Acropolis, this structure dates back to the sixth century B.C. and, when intact, was the largest temple in Ancient Greece
  • See the classically inspired Old Royal Palace, home of the Hellenic Parliament, and drive through Plaka—the historic “neighborhood of the gods” built in the shadow of the Acropolis
  • Set off on a walking tour around the Acropolis of Athens, a millennia-old, UNESCO-listed citadel and the enduring image of Greece. First properly developed by the renowned politician Pericles, it now contains the ruins of the Parthenon, Temple of Athena Nike, Erechtheion, and dozens of other archaeological sites

Enjoy a free afternoon in Athens or add an excursion.

Greek Dance Lesson & Taverna Dinner

From $95 per person

Chania2 nights
Day 4: Flight to Chania
Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Fly to Chania, a coastal city on Crete’s northwestern shore that has passed between Greek, Venetian, and Ottoman hands through the centuries. After settling into your hotel, join your group in the evening for an included dinner, served with your choice of beer or wine.

Day 5: Sightseeing tour of Chania
Included meal: Breakfast

This morning, join a local guide on a walking tour of Chania’s Old Town, a historic quarter especially tinged by its Venetian heritage.

  • Step inside Trimartiri—a Greek Orthodox cathedral dedicated to the Virgin Mary—before visiting Etz Hayyim. The only synagogue on the island, this still-active place of worship is a symbol of the city’s age-old Jewish community
  • Walk along the Old Venetian Port of Chania, a harbor that’s served the city since the mid-1300s. Catch a glimpse of its famous Egyptian lighthouse, and pass by the Yiali Tzami—a former Ottoman mosque, instantly recognizable by its main dome, that nowadays houses art exhibitions

Please note: Etz Hayyim closes on Saturdays and Sundays

Enjoy a free afternoon in Chania or add an excursion.

Crete Olive Oil Tasting & Dinner

From $99 per person

Heraklion1 night
Day 6: Transfer to Heraklion & sightseeing tour
Included meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Board your bus and cruise past Crete’s olive-covered landscapes en route to Heraklion—an ancient port town that was once the hub of the Minoans, Europe’s first civilization. Disembark and enjoy an included lunch before setting off on a guided tour.

  • Visit the ruins of the Bronze Age palace of Knossos. Part administrative center, part place of worship, it held a special place at the heart of Minoan culture (and was where, according to the myth, King Minos imprisoned the Minotaur in the heart of a labyrinth)
  • See the Heraklion Archaeological Museum, home of the world’s preeminent collection of Minoan art and many artifacts taken from the excavation of Knossos and other dig sites around Crete
Santorini2 nights
Day 7: Ferry to Santorini
Included meal: Breakfast

Board a ferry and chart a course across the Aegean Sea to Santorini, the crown jewel of the Cyclades islands. Built up by lava flows over thousands of years and irrevocably changed by a devastating eruption in 1,600 B.C., its rock-laden terrain and flooded caldera are a definitive example of the stark beauty of volcanic landscapes.

Upon arrival, enjoy free time to explore its cliffside villages, roam its rugged hills, or simply soak in its charming culture before settling into your accommodations.

Day 8: Sightseeing tour of Santorini
Included meal: Breakfast

Take in the sights of Santorini—a volcanic isle known for its black-sand beaches, cliff-lined shores, and stunning whitewashed architecture—on a guided tour.

  • Visit the prehistoric settlements that were unearthed during the archaeological excavations at Akrotiri
  • Ride to the top of Mount Profitis Ilias for panoramic views of the whole island
  • Stop in small, picturesque Pyrgos, a well-preserved medieval village that’s situated on the island’s highest point and is latticed with steep, cobblestone alleys

Spend a free afternoon in Santorini or add an excursion.

Santorini Caldera Cruise & Dinner

From $149 per person

Athens1 night
Day 9: Flight to Athens
Included meals: Breakfast, Farewell dinner

Fly back to Athens, then celebrate your trip with your fellow group members over a farewell dinner, served with your choice of beer or wine.

Flight Home
Day 10: Departure
Included meal: Breakfast (excluding early morning departures)

Transfer to the airport for your flight home, or extend your stay a little longer. Mystical Delphi, legendary Marathon, the relaxing Athenian Riviera: You’d be in for three days well spent.

Extension to Delphi & the Athens Riviera
For a different perspective on Greek culture through the ages, stay on tour with us for a few more days. From the Byzantine churches of Arachova, set against the hypnotizing beauty of mythic Mount Parnassus, to the religious ruins of Delphi, you’ll tap into the country’s rich spiritual history. Then, dig into ancient military history in Marathon before drawing your journey to an end with a rejuvenating night on the Athens Riviera.
Delphi Region2 nights
Day 10: Delphi Region via Arachova
Included meal: Breakfast

Make your way to the Delphi region via Arachova, a picturesque resort town over 3,000 feet up the southern slope of Mount Parnassus. Stroll through its charming cobblestone streets, marveling at Byzantine-era churches and mountainous landscapes that demand a picture.

Then, continue on to your hotel in the Delphi region and enjoy free time for the rest of the day.

Day 11: Sightseeing tour of Delphi
Included meal: Breakfast

Head back to the slopes of Mount Parnassus and visit the Archaeological Site of Delphi. Now a UNESCO World Heritage Site, it was once a sacred precinct, a spiritual focal point believed by the Ancient Greeks to be the “Navel of the Earth.”

  • Embark on a guided tour of the area, capped by a visit to the Temple of Apollo. Here, according to legend, the god Apollo prophecized to mortals through the voice of the oracle and high priestess, Pythia
  • Take time to explore the ancient treasures at the Delphi Museum, including the life-size bronze statue known as the Charioteer of Delphi

Spend a free afternoon in the Delphi region or add an excursion.

Hosios Loukas & the Gulf of Corinth

From $79 per person

Athens Riviera1 night
Day 12: Athens Riviera via Marathon
Included meal: Breakfast

As you travel to the Athens Riviera, take in even more historic landmarks with a visit to the town of Marathon

  • Learn about the Battle of Marathon. Waged on a nearby coastal plain in 490 BC, the clash marked a pivotal moment in the Greco-Persian Wars, when an outnumbered coalition of Athenians and Plataeans routed an invading Persian army
  • Enter the Tumulus of the Plataeans, a large burial mound where the fallen Plataean soldiers were laid to rest

Continue on to your hotel on the Athens Riviera, then raise a farewell drink to your trip in the evening.

Flight Home
Day 13: Departure
Included meal: Breakfast (excluding early morning departures)

Transfer to the airport for your flight home.

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Hotels, flights & FAQ

Here's the nitty-gritty—where you’ll stay, how you’ll get there, and what to know about your destination before you go.


We handpick every hotel to strike the balance of comfort, location, and local charm. Specific accommodations will vary based on your departure date, but these are frequently used hotels for this tour and we're confident you'll be satisfied.
Wyndham Grand Athens
Wyndham Grand Athens

This elegant hotel is located in the Metaxourgeio neighborhood of Athens. Guests enjoy panoramic views of the Acropolis, a fitness center, and a rooft...

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Kydon Hotel
Kydon Hotel

This comfortable hotel is centrally located in Chania. Guests enjoy free Wi-Fi, a restaurant, and a bar. Nearby, you’ll find the Agora, or covered mar...

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Galaxy Hotel Iraklio
Galaxy Hotel Iraklio

This luxe hotel is located in Heraklion. Guests enjoy restaurants, the outdoor pool, and spa. Nearby, you’ll find Lions’ Square, Ammoudara Beach, and ...

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MAR n MAR Santorini Hotel & Suites
MAR n MAR Santorini Hotel & Suites

This sophisticated hotel is located in the Kamari Village on Santorini island. Guests enjoy the outdoor pool, views of the Aegean Sea, and spa lounge....

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Atheneaum Eridanus
Atheneaum Eridanus

This luxury hotel is located right in the heart of Athens. Guests enjoy a rooftop terrace, fitness center, and free Wi-Fi. Nearby you’ll find the Mona...

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Amalia Hotel Delphi
Amalia Hotel Delphi

This modern hotel is located at the foot of Mount Parnassus in Delphi. Guests enjoy the outdoor pool, beautiful views, and manicured gardens. Nearby, ...

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Dolce by Wyndham Athens Attica Riviera
Dolce by Wyndham Athens Attica Riviera

This seaside hotel is located east of Athens in the town of Brauron. Guests enjoy the private beach area, indoor and outdoor pools, and on-site coffee...

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Round-trip flights are one more thing we handle to make your journey as smooth as possible. Our team of travel experts will find the best flight itinerary for you at a competitive rate, thanks to our partnerships with top airlines.
Add our airfare package and you'll get:
  • Round-trip flight for your tour
  • Airport transfers at your destination
  • A great price locked in today
  • 24/7 support from our dedicated service team
  • Options for arriving early, staying longer, or requesting an upgrade
  • Flexible rebooking options if your tour itinerary changes
  • Find out more about flights


Print FAQ
Passport, visa & entry requirements
  • In order to enter Greece, U.S. and Canadian citizens need a valid passport with an expiration date at least six months beyond the date of reentry.
  • We recommend having at least one blank passport page for entry stamps.
  • Beginning in 2025, U.S. and Canadian passport holders must register for an ETIAS travel authorization in order to enter many European countries.
  • Passport holders from over 60 visa-exempt countries (including the U.S. and Canada) will need to apply for an ETIAS travel authorization in order to visit 30 European countries. That means that even if you’ve previously traveled to any of these European countries without a visa, starting in 2025, you’ll need to get ETIAS authorization to visit them again. If you’re traveling to multiple countries with this requirement, you only need to complete the form once. All Go Ahead travelers are responsible for obtaining their own ETIAS travel authorization before departure. For more details, please visit our Help Center.
  • If you’re not a U.S. or Canadian citizen, you must contact each country’s consulate for your specific entry requirements.
  • You can see the most up-to-date entry requirements for the destination(s) you’ll visit on tour by going to and searching the code GIS.
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Tour pacing & mobility
  • You’ll walk for at least 1.5 hours daily across uneven terrain, along paved roads and cobblestone streets, and up steep hills and stairs.
  • You should be healthy enough to participate in all included walks without assistance. Adding optional excursions may increase the total amount of walking on your tour.
  • You should feel comfortable occasionally managing your own baggage, as well as getting in and out of ferries.
  • Go Ahead Tours and the Tour Director who accompanies your group are unable to provide you with individualized mobility assistance: The responsibility of the Tour Director is to ensure the group as a whole enjoys a relaxing and informative journey, and they can’t be relied upon to provide ongoing help to any one traveler.
  • If you have any mobility concerns or physical restrictions, please contact our Customer Experience Team.
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Transportation & arrival information
  • Round-trip flights booked through Go Ahead Tours arrive in and depart from Athens. When you first arrive, a representative from Go Ahead Tours will meet you at the airport and take you to your hotel. If you don’t see them, please remain in the arrival lounge: They might be escorting one of your fellow travelers.
  • Transfers to and from the airport at your destination are included for travelers who’ve purchased their flights through Go Ahead Tours. Travelers who purchased their own flights may request airport transfers with Go Ahead Tours for an additional cost.
  • Flights from Athens to Chania and from Santorini to Athens, as well as a ferry transfer from Heraklion to Santorini, are included in the price of your tour.
  • All other included transportation on this tour is by private motor coach.
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Baggage allowance
  • Please note that our travelers are limited to one checked bag and one carry-on bag per person due to storage limitations on motor coaches, ferries, flights, and other modes of transportation.
  • Contact your airline(s) for the luggage restrictions for your itinerary. Please note that on-tour flights may have tighter size and weight limits than your round-trip airfare to and from tour.
  • Some airlines may impose additional charges if you choose to check any bags or exceed their size and weight restrictions. Be advised: You’re responsible for any luggage fees incurred on all flights.
  • Porterage isn’t included on ferry transfer(s). You should be comfortable lifting and carrying your luggage over the boarding ramp and into the storage area.
  • Make sure you label your baggage and keep valuables, medication, and documents in your carry-on.
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Clothing & packing tips
  • We recommend packing lightweight, loose-fitting clothing that can be easily layered to accommodate varying temperatures, as well as a light jacket or rainwear.
  • A sturdy pair of walking shoes or sneakers is recommended for sightseeing.
  • You may want to pack dressier attire if you plan to visit a high-end restaurant or attend a special performance.
  • It’s preferable not to visit churches or other religious sites with bare legs or shoulders. (You may be denied entrance on this basis.)
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  • At least 60 days prior to departure, check with your healthcare provider, or visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s website at, for the latest updates and entry requirements.
  • If you have medication that you take daily, be sure you have enough for each day of the tour, as well as any possible delays you may encounter.
  • Please note that codeine (commonly found in headache medications) is banned in Greece, and you may face prosecution if you bring it into the country.
  • If you have any dietary restrictions or food allergies, please notify Go Ahead Tours at least 30 days prior to your departure by logging into your account and updating your traveler info. To update this information closer to your departure date, please call our Customer Experience Team.
  • You can see the most up-to-date entry requirements for the destination(s) you’ll visit on tour by going to and searching the code GIS.
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  • Greece’s warm climate ensures a constant supply of fresh, high-quality fruits and vegetables. Salads served with aromatic olive oil, feta cheese, and oregano are plentiful, as are dishes centered on grilled fish, meat, squid, and octopus. One of our favorite plates? Spanakopita—a savory mix of spinach, cheese, and seasonings, wrapped in phyllo dough and baked to crisp perfection.
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Electricity & air conditioning
  • Greece operates on the European standard of 220–240 volts and uses Type C, E, or F plugs with two small, round pins.
  • We recommend packing a universal adapter, as well as a voltage converter if you plan on using your own hairdryer or any device without one built in.
  • The strength of the air conditioning in European hotels is often not as strong or cool as what you might be used to in the U.S. or Canada. When air conditioning is available, it’s usually regulated seasonally and controlled centrally by the hotel.
  • Your hotels may provide hairdryers, irons, and other small appliances. However, these amenities can’t be guaranteed.
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  • Wi-Fi is available in most hotels, though some charges may apply.
  • There is no Wi-Fi on any of the motor coaches.
  • Please contact your mobile service provider for information on roaming charges.
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Time zones
  • Greece is two hours ahead of Greenwich Mean Time (GMT) and seven hours ahead of Eastern Time (ET).
  • When it’s noon in New York, it’s 7pm in Greece.
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  • You’ll use the euro on this tour.
  • Better exchange rates are usually available overseas, but it’s worth ordering some currency from your local bank to use when you first arrive.
  • We strongly advise that you take a debit card, which can be used to withdraw cash at local banks as needed. You can also use most cards at ATMs on the international networks Cirrus and Plus, but make sure to check with your home bank about withdrawal fees.
  • Inform your bank and credit card company of your travel plans so that they won’t confuse your international purchases for fraudulent charges.
  • International banks and businesses primarily accept debit and credit cards that work with the EMV chip system. If you do not already have at least one card with a chip in it, we strongly recommend requesting one from your bank prior to your tour.
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  • At the conclusion of your tour, it’s customary to offer your Tour Director and driver a gratuity in local currency. Please keep current exchange rates in mind.
  • We recommend tipping the equivalent of $8–$10 per person, per day for your Tour Director, and the equivalent of $3 per person, per day for your driver.
  • If applicable, we also recommend the equivalent of $2 per local guide.
  • Tips can only be paid in cash.
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Purchasing excursions on tour
  • Most optional excursions will be available for purchase while you’re on tour.
  • Your Tour Director will only accept cash (in USD only), Visa, or MasterCard as payment for optional excursions.
  • Please be advised that if you pay for an excursion by credit card while on tour, it may take up to three months for it to be charged.
  • Some optional excursions may only be purchased in advance. See the last page of your tour itinerary for more information.
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