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The Greek Islands:...

The Greek Islands: Mykonos, Santorini & Crete

14 days |  16 days with Athens extension
14 days |  16 days with Athens extension
Group size1530 travelers

4.7 out of 5 stars

Physical activity
a woman looking out to sea in mykonos greece
stairs painted like piano keys in mykonos greece
fish on ice in a bowl in greece
looking out to sea from blue topped buildings in santorini greece
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Soak in the breezy lifestyle and diverse culture of three scene-stealing Greek Islands.

It’s nearly impossible to get a true taste of Greek culture without sampling its flavorful isles. Experience their relaxed lifestyle and meet friendly locals as you discover the character and history unique to each island. Absorb Hellenic heritage in ancient Athens (with a chance to return and explore some more when you stay with us for the Athens extension) before anchoring on the beaches of lively Mykonos. Continue your island-hopping as you cruise on the Aegean Sea to the volcanic shores of Santorini before soaking in Crete’s legendary landscapes.

Your tour package includes

  • 12 nights in handpicked hotels
  • 12 breakfasts
  • 5 dinners with beer or wine
  • 3 sightseeing tours
  • Expert Tour Director & local guides
Read more

Included highlights

  • Acropolis
  • Parthenon
  • Windmills in Mykonos Town
  • Akrotiri excavations
  • Village of Pyrgos
Read more
Start planning today

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Day-by-day itinerary

Print itinerary
Overnight Flight1 night
Day 1: Travel day

Board your overnight flight to Athens today.

Athens3 nights
Day 2: Arrival in Athens
Included meal: Dinner

Welcome to Greece! Meet your Tour Director and fellow travelers at a welcome dinner tonight, served with beer or wine.

Day 3: Sightseeing tour of Athens
Included meal: Breakfast

Nothing can prepare you for the sheer sense of awe you’ll feel when you come face-to-face with Athens—where ancient architecture and artifacts coexist with modern life. Meet up with your dedicated local guide, who will introduce you to the highlights of this bustling capital. 

  • Pass by the Panathenaic Stadium, built entirely out of marble—the only such stadium in the world.  
  • Continue to Syntagma Square—home to the neoclassical Greek Parliament building—and admire the plaza’s imposing marble steps, fountain, and lush shade trees. 
  • Admire the Arch of Hadrian—built to honor the Roman emperor—and imagine how its Pentelic marble stones were carted more than 11 miles from Mount Pentelikon in 131 A.D. 
  • View the remains of the sixth-century Temple of Zeus and gaze up at its 16 ornate Corinthian columns. 
  • Drive through Plaka. Situated at the foot of the Acropolis, this district is one of the oldest parts of Athens and is known as “the Neighborhood of the Gods” due to the dozens of monuments strewn throughout it. 
  • Set off on a walking tour around the ancient Acropolis—site of the Parthenon, Temple of Athena Nike, and Erechtheion. You may have seen these enduring icons of antiquity in books and films; now, you’re stepping through the work of craftsmen who quarried and honed these marble blocks thousands of years ago. 

Opt into the excursion to Cape Sounion today, where the remains of the Temple of Poseidon—dedicated to the Greek god of the sea—offer a perfect vantage point over panoramic views of the Aegean and its island chains.   

Alternatively, you can also use your free afternoon in Athens to explore on your own. Head back to the Plaka district or wander through Anafiotika on the northeast slope of the Acropolis. The latter neighborhood dates to the 19th century and is chock-full of charming, whitewashed cottages and vibrantly hued doors, the likes of which you might have seen—or will see soon—on Greece’s Cyclades islands. 

Cape Sounion

From $75 per person

Day 4: Free day in Athens
Included meal: Breakfast

Today, opt into an excursion steeped in mythology—a guided tour of the ancient archaeological site of Delphi. Succumb to the mystical ambiance that has captivated visitors for decades as you discover tales of the Oracle of Delphi, who was believed to deliver prophecies from her seat in the now-ruined Temple of Apollo. From the slopes of Mount Parnassus, you’ll also have unfettered views of olive groves, rugged mountains, and the Gulf of Corinth.  

Prefer to continue your Athenian adventure on your own? Use your free day in Athens to stroll through Monastiraki, a historic neighborhood anchored by a famous flea market. Navigate its packed streets and see if you can spot any of its Greco-Roman ruins. 


From $119 per person

Mykonos3 nights
Day 5: Ferry to Mykonos & sightseeing tour
Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner

We’re off to the islands! Travel by ferry to Mykonos and join your Tour Director on a walk through Mykonos Town’s labyrinthian streets, bursting with cafes, galleries, and shops.  

  • See the iconic white windmills of Mykonos Town—built as early as the 16th century and originally used to mill wheat and barley—and watch their thatched roofs dance in the sea breeze. 
  • Delight in Little Venice—perched right alongside the Aegean and inspired by its Italian namesake—where colorful, sun-splashed residences seem to melt into the water, their balconies hanging over the sea. 
  • Pass the Church of Panagia Paraportiani, eminently photographed for its Byzantine-era, whitewashed facade and intriguing curves. 

 Sit down this evening for an included dinner, served with beer or wine. 

Day 6: Free day in Mykonos
Included meal: Breakfast

Choose to spend your free day on Mykonos with a hands-on cooking demonstration. You won’t just get to nibble and sip your way through fresh local fare—you’ll also learn how to make Greek staples like tzatziki yourself. What better way to prolong the magic of your trip than by whipping up a tasty memory at home?  

Not joining the excursion? Use your free day in Mykonos to hit the cobblestones. If visiting the island’s famous beach clubs isn’t your speed, head back to Little Venice for a stroll along the Old Harbor; hike down to Armenistis Lighthouse, one of the oldest in Greece; or get lost in Matogianni Street’s shops and galleries and surrender to the soft, salty air on The Island of the Winds. 

Mykonos Cooking Demonstration & Lunch

From $119 per person

Day 7: Free day in Mykonos
Included meal: Breakfast

Want to add another Greek island to your list? Add an excursion to legendary Delos for a guided tour of this mostly uninhabited island’s remarkably preserved ruins, sanctuaries, and markets. Peer into its cosmopolitan past and importance as a cultural hub. If history isn’t your thing, Delos’s patch of the Aegean Sea gives you glimpses of scenic coastlines and neighboring islands.  

You can also use your free day on Mykonos to hop between the island’s renowned beaches. Relax on golden sands, swim in crystalline waters, or snorkel until you’ve worked up an appetite. Be sure to ask your Tour Director for suggestions on hidden gems and seasonal treats.  

Please note: The excursion to Delos will run in the morning only during April and October and may run in the morning or afternoon from May to September.  

Delos Cruise & Temple of Apollo

From $125 per person

Santorini3 nights
Day 8: Ferry to Santorini
Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner

You’ve seen the photos—now get ready to star in them yourself. Take a ferry to Santorini and enjoy a free afternoon on the island. You can admire the steep cliffs that plunge into the Aegean and the island’s iconic caldera, dotted with whitewashed buildings. Then, eat your way through traditional dishes—like moussaka, a hearty eggplant dish, or tomato fritters—then use your free time to explore unique pebbly beaches and crystal-clear waters. 

Sit down for an included dinner this evening, served with beer or wine.  

Day 9: Sightseeing tour of Santorini
Included meal: Breakfast

Your guided tour of Santorini will take you from dramatic black-sand beaches to jagged cliff-lined shores and back—a stark contrast to the island’s beloved, blue-domed buildings and sprays of bright fuchsia bougainvillea vines. 

  • Visit the archaeological excavations at Akrotiri, a settlement buried in volcanic ash, where richly pigmented Bronze Age frescoes and other Minoan artifacts survived a devastating volcanic eruption in the 16th century B.C. 
  • Ride to the top of Mount Profitis Ilias for panoramic views of Santorini, neighboring island chains, and the blue waters kissing the horizon. 
  • Stop in small, picturesque Pyrgos, where you’ll weave through the steep streets of this off-the-beaten-path village. 

Choose to hop on a catamaran for a steal-your-breath-away dinner cruise starring the cliffside village of Oia—Santorini’s calling card. You can also spend your free afternoon poking around authentic shops and sampling the local wine if you’re craving time to explore on your own. 

Santorini Caldera Cruise & Dinner

From $149 per person

Day 10: Free day in Santorini
Included meal: Breakfast

Santorini’s nutrient-rich soil lends itself perfectly to growing wine grapes. Get to know the island’s unique vineyards when you choose to join the excursion to a local winery, complete with a tasting and accompanying lunch. 

Prefer to spend the day on your own? You can sample even more traditional plates—like octopus or spanakopita—then explore the unique, black-pebbled shores and clear waters of Kamari Beach. End the day with a sunset stop at the lighthouse found on the southern tip of the island. 

Please note: For an additional cost, you can book a visit to the village of Oia through your Tour Director. The visit will either take place on the evening of day 10 or the morning of day 11, depending on the ferry schedule. 

Greek Wine Tasting & Lunch

From $89 per person

Crete2 nights
Day 11: Ferry to Crete
Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Take a ferry to Crete, the largest of the Greek islands, this afternoon. The birthplace of the ancient Minoan civilization, Crete served as the backdrop for the mythical tales of King Minos, the labyrinth, and the Minotaur. Remnants of Minoan civilization can be found across the island, punctuating a diverse landscape that ranges from lush valleys and dramatic gorges to looming mountains and serene beaches.

Expect to be embraced by the locals’ friendliness—perhaps alongside a shot of raki, a strong digestif made of distilled grape skins that’s offered as a sign of hospitality.  

Sit down for an included dinner this evening, served with beer or wine.  

Day 12: Free day in Crete
Included meal: Breakfast

Looking to uncover centuries of cultural diversity? Choose to join the excursion to Chania, a coastal city on Crete’s northwestern shore that has passed between Greek, Venetian, and Ottoman hands through the years. Embark on a walking tour of Chania’s Old Town, a historic quarter tinged by Venetian heritage that also happens to boast a thriving Jewish community. 

You can also use your free day to enjoy Cretan cuisine—grilled seafood and local cheeses like mizithra—at one of the island’s many seaside tavernas or stroll along the warm sands of a beach (or three).  


From $119 per person

Athens1 night
Day 13: Sightseeing tour of Heraklion & transfer to Athens
Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Board your bus and cruise past Crete’s olive-covered terrain en route to Heraklion—an ancient port town that was once the hub of the Minoans, Europe’s first civilization. Here, you’ll set 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 legend, 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.  

Afterward, fly to Athens and celebrate your trip with your group at a farewell dinner, served with beer or wine.  

Flight Home
Day 14: Departure
Included meal: Breakfast (excluding early morning departures)

Transfer to the airport for your flight home or extend your stay to continue exploring Athens. With a history spanning more than 3,400 years, we know you’ll want more time to delve into the Greek capital’s ever-evolving cultural landscape. And if you’re just craving another plateful of syrupy, sweet fried dough—those pillowy loukoumades—we’re right there with you.

Extension to Athens
You’ve decided to treat yourself to two more days in Athens—and we’re ready to help you fill them with more history, archaeology, and tangy, craveable cuisine. Ask your Tour Director for their best tips for exploring Greece’s unforgettable capital, then go ahead and discover the city your way (or join our one of our specially curated excursions).
Athens2 nights
Day 14: Free day in Athens
Included meal: Breakfast

Athens has no shortage of incredible restaurants serving Greek and international fare, but there’s nothing like a home-cooked meal with friends and soon-to-be friends. Opt into the dinner excursion tonight and break bread with your local host.  

You can also spend your first day in Athens scoping out the National Garden, a serene, green expanse in the heart of the city with ponds and shady paths that cross through ancient ruins. For a less crowded panorama of Athens, head to Mount Lycabettus, where you can hike or take the funicular railway to the top of the hill. Be sure to ask your Tour Director for their recommendations, too!  

Athens Home-Hosted Dinner

From $79 per person

Day 15: Free day in Athens
Included meal: Breakfast

It’s your last full day in Athens; let’s make the most of it. Join the optional (but highly recommended) visit to the Corinth Canal. This narrow waterway connects the Gulf of Corinth to the Saronic Gulf and was an important navigational route upon its opening in 1893. While it’s too narrow for modern vessels, its steep limestone walls provide a scenic contrast to the aquamarine waters below. You’ll then continue to the archaeological sites at Epidaurus and Mycenae to walk along some of the best-preserved ancient sites in Greece. 

If you choose to spend your free day venturing out on your own, why not take in some of the city’s street art? Wander through neighborhoods like Exarchia or Psiri and check out their colorful graffiti up close. Looking for another vantage point to admire Athens? Head to the Pnyx, a hill where ancient Athenians gathered for assemblies. You’ll get views and a tranquil atmosphere.  

Tonight, gather with your fellow travelers to enjoy a farewell drink. 

Corinth Canal, Epidaurus & Mycenae

From $119 per person

Flight Home
Day 16: Departure
Included meal: Breakfast (excluding early morning departures)

Transfer to the airport for your flight home, souvlaki in hand.  

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4.7 out of 5 stars

Overall rating 4.7 out of 5

Based on 806 authentic traveler reviews
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    5 out of 5 stars

    Cousins in Greece
    6/8/24 by 1st-time traveler Dhetra

    It was Awesome! Words can’t even describe it was a wonderful 2 weeks.

    EF Go Ahead Tours replied on 7/10/24

    Hi Dhetra, Thank you for your review and your love...

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    3 out of 5 stars

    6/5/24 by 2nd-time traveler Christine

    5 out of 5 stars

    6/20/24 by 1st-time traveler Barbara
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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.
    Saint George Lycabettus Hotel
    Saint George Lycabettus Hotel

    This boutique hotel is located in the Kolonaki neighborhood in central Athens. Guests enjoy a screening room, rooftop pool, and spa. Nearby, you’ll fi...

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    San Antonio Summerland
    San Antonio Summerland

    This seaside hotel is located in Mykonos Town. Guests enjoy individually controlled air conditioning, free Wi-Fi. Nearby, you'll find the windmills, M...

    Read more +
    Aegean Plaza Hotel
    Aegean Plaza Hotel

    This prestigious hotel is located in Santorini's Kamari area. Guests enjoy stylish rooms, outdoor pool, and fitness center. Nearby you'll find Kamari ...

    Read more +
    Galaxy Hotel Iraklio
    Galaxy Hotel Iraklio

    This luxe hotel is located in Heraklion on the island of Crete. Guests enjoy restaurants, the outdoor pool, and a spa. Nearby, you’ll find Lions Squar...

    Read more +


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