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Travel tips

The best time to visit Greece: a season-by-season guide to planning your perfect trip

Jan 09, 2024 by The Go Ahead Tours Team

A Greek escape is always a good idea, but deciding on the best time of the year to visit Greece comes down to two things: what kind of weather you like and what you want to do when you get there. If you’re eager for Greece tours that focus on Athens and its museums and archaeological sites, then any time is the best time to visit Greece. If you’d rather spend your trip to Greece exploring picture-perfect islands, then schedule your adventure for summer. The best places in Greece only get better when you visit at the right time.

No matter when you want to take your Mediterranean holiday, our Greece tours are designed for travelers to maximize their visit through unforgettable experiences that highlight the best of the destination. Read on for our season-by-season guide to planning your perfect Greek getaway.

Weather in Greece by month

When is the best time to visit Greece? Any time—even winter! Given its location in the eastern half of the Mediterranean Sea, weather in Greece varies by season and region. The mountainous north gets snow in the winter—enough that there are, in fact, ski resorts in this part of the country. (It gets very cold in the Pindus Mountains near the border of Albania, for example.) Athens, however, enjoys mild winters with an average temperature of 50°F for most of the season. On the other end of the calendar, Greece’s capital city experiences very hot summers.

If you’re looking to get a tan while exploring the islands, the summer months are the best time to visit Greece. Yes, it may be very sunny and hot, but their coastal perch means cooling breezes come in from off the sea.

Want to travel in the spring or summer? The off-season is also a great time to plan a Greece tour. Weather in Greece, especially in Athens, will be more temperate and not as oppressively hot. Some of the islands will already be warm enough for midday swims. Plus, there will be fewer crowds during the shoulder season, which makes it the best time to visit Greece.

Winter in Greece

Go for seasonal cuisine and holiday celebrations

Planning a trip to Greece for the winter will show you exactly why we love off-season travel. Our Greece tours that set off during the winter months are timed around the New Year holiday, which will add a celebratory flourish to your European adventure. Our New Year’s Eve in Rome: Italy & Greece tour features four glorious days in Greece. This is your chance to combine seasonal thrills with classic cultural experiences (like touring the Acropolis in Athens and the UNESCO-listed archaeological site of Mycenae in Nafplio).

Many of the Greek islands turn into sleepy villages when winter comes. Hotels shut down, restaurants and shops close earlier, and ferry and flight frequency drops. However, Athens and other mainland Greek destinations are ready to welcome you. Ring in the New Year with a trip to Greece, sample winter-only delicacies, and check out local Christmas markets like the brightly lit wonderland in Syntagma Square. Your itinerary will include plenty of free time to track down traditional Greek dishes, such as stuffed lahanodolmades (cabbage rolls), horta (wild greens), and fasolada (bean soup). For dessert, try kourabiedes (biscuits), diples (fried dough), and melomakarona (a type of honey biscuit typically served at Christmastime). Winter is the best time to visit Greece if you’re a foodie!

And let’s not forget: You’ll have more of this enthralling destination to yourself because there will be fewer visitors.

Weather in Greece in December, January, and February:

Average temperatures range between 15°F and 59°F

Spend winter with us in Greece

Spring in Greece

Go for blooming flowers, cultural events, and fantastic weather

Whether you’re eyeing our brand-new Grand Tour of Greece: Athens, Corfu & Santorini or our A Week in Greece: Athens, Mykonos & Santorini tour, consider booking your Greece trip for the spring. While the best time to visit Greece is any time of the year, we might pick spring as the season with the best weather—especially if you set off on your Greece tour in May, when nearly every region of the country is glowing with bright sunshine and warm temperatures. Most importantly, the country isn’t too busy with visitors in the spring, making it a great time to experience all the bucket list things to do in Greece.

Nature lovers planning a trip to Greece will enjoy seeing destinations like Athens, Mykonos, and Santorini at their most fertile. With its wineries, olive groves, citrus orchards, and fields of wildflowers, Greece takes on an Eden-like quality during the spring months. If you prefer to time your trip around lively cultural events, the best time to go to Greece is spring. In May, use your free time to check out the Athens and Epidaurus Festival, a celebration of ancient Greek arts and culture. Greek Orthodox Easter is also a special time of the year when the country highlights age-old traditions you won’t see anywhere else, from midnight firework displays to candlelit processions.

Weather in Greece in March, April, and May:

Average temperatures range between 28°F and 77°F

Travel to Greece in the spring

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Summer in Greece

Go for beaches, festivals, and hot weather

If sunny days and swimming weather call to you, the best time of year to go to Greece is during the summer, when island life is even more appealing. You’ll definitely want to book The Greek Islands: Mykonos, Santorini & Crete tour, which brings you the classic Greek Island experience. If you’re looking for more under-the-radar locales, our brand-new Greece’s Ionian Islands: Athens, Kefalonia & Corfu tour is just the ticket. Whichever you pick, you’ll get to experience the best Greek islands that make for unforgettable summer escapes.

Love island hopping? Our Greece tours offer up plenty of seaside excursions. During a free day in Kefalonia, you can even sign up for an optional visit to Shipwreck Beach in Zakynthos. There’s plenty of sightseeing, too, including visits to historic taverns and charming fishing villages from Athens to Crete. In your free time, maybe you’d want to partake in a local festival? Summer in Greece is busy with both modern and traditional happenings, from weekend dance parties in Athens to the August Moon Festival, an ancient celebration hosted all over the country. Embrace the summer buzz of it all, and then step away from the crowds to discover all the stunning Greek neighborhoods you can’t miss.

Weather in Greece in June, July, and August:

Average temperatures range between 68°F and 97°F

Enjoy summer in Greece

Fall in Greece

Go for archeological sites and outdoor adventure

What makes an autumn trip to Greece so special is that it’s the perfect time to be outside. The weather in Greece is fantastic from September to November—just like it is in the spring. The most spectacular ancient Greek temples you can imagine are all outside and exploring them in the cooler fall temps is a lot more pleasant than under the intense heat of summer. You can actually linger and enjoy the ruins of the Temple of Zeus, as well as the site of the first Olympic Games.

If you take our A Week in Ancient Greece: Athens, Delphi & Olympia tour during the fall, your stay in Athens will be even more magical. You’ll have more space in the city’s museums, shops, and restaurants. Our Footsteps of Saint Paul in Greece: Thessaloniki to Athens tour offers an opportunity to hike in the rugged Meteora region, which is fabulous in autumn when the surroundings are lush and the climate is mild.

If you go for our A Week in Greece: Athens, Mykonos & Santorini tour, especially during the earlier half of fall, you can still enjoy bright, warm weather on the beaches of Mykonos and Santorini. Plus, if you decide to visit the volcanic vineyards of Santorini, you’re in luck: You’ll get to witness a busy harvest. Because it’s less busy in the fall, we also love recommending our autumn Greece tours to solo travelers. There’s something truly magical about traveling to Greece solo when you have more time and space to explore.

Weather in Greece in September, October, and November:

Average temperatures range between 54°F and 82°F

Experience fall in Greece

The best time of year to visit Greece is any time! Browse our Greece tours and you’ll be on your way.

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About the author | The Go Ahead Tours Team
We’re a team of passionate travel experts, dedicated to helping people explore the world. From inspiring stories to tips for an amazing trip, the topics we cover are all about getting you out there and making discoveries.

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