Unwind in Greece: A Guide to Athens, Santorini & Mykonos
Arts & Culture
Greece is the perfect destination to immerse yourself in culture, history and nature. With just a short plane or ferry ride you can travel between the mainland and hundreds of islands, all with unique landscapes, populations and cultures to offer. This is the perfect destination for friends, families or couples, and can be as relaxing or active as you want! Soaking in the views of the ocean from the pool or beach, hiking through the countryside, or enjoying local wines and cuisine are just some of the ways you can experience all that Greece has to offer.
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Where to stay in Greece
Set on the cliffs of Santorini, this refined chic hotel boats suites and villas, plus two restaurants and a full-service spa.
The Modernist Athens
Chic hotel at the base of Mount Lycabettusin in Athens' Kolonaki neighborhood.
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Andronis Luxury Suites
Luxury all-suite hotel featuring individually decorated suites in the picturesque village of Oia.
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Things to do in Greece
Things to do in Athens
Parthenon: A must-see when you are in Greece. This beautiful marble temple is a great way to immerse yourself in ancient Greek culture, plus there are GREAT views of the city and the walk up is a nice way to get some exercise!
National Garden: Another one of my favorites right in the capital of Greece. Take a stroll through the gardens and discover thousands of varieties of plants and animals native to Greece and beyond.
Athens Markets: It is worth walking through the markets to taste local cuisine, shop for souvenirs, or marvel at the captivating artwork.
Things to do in Santorini
Katharos Beach: Right outside of Oia this is a beautiful rocky beach where you can swim, relax or hike.
Winery tour: I HIGHLY recommend booking a sunset winery tour. Greece has a plethora of local native wines and some of the most beautiful wineries I have ever been to. Santo Wines was my favorite, but booking a tour through Viator allows you to travel between wineries easily and see multiple.
Catamaran Cruise: This was another favorite of mine in Santorini. We did a half-day cruise leaving in the morning and it was a great way to get on the water, swim in the crystal blue waters, enjoy homemade Greek cuisine and see Santorini.
Oia to Fira hike: This is a great way to sightsee and get some exercise at the same time! This hike is definitely moderate, and it is six miles to Fira so plan on finding a ride back or turning back early. Beautiful views of the Caldera.
Black Sand Beach: We rented ATVs and spent a day at the black sand beach. It is easy to rent cabanas and enjoy the view, and there are plenty of great shops and restaurants nearby. Perfect for a relaxing day!
Things to do in Mykonos
Mykonian Spiti cooking class: By far one of my favorite travel experiences ever. You will go to a local farm home and spend the day making a variety of local Greek dishes. Plus you get to try what you make and get a recipe book to take home.
Scorpios: Great for a pool or beach day, this is the place to be!
Mykonos town: While in Mykonos make sure to take some time to shop local boutiques, souvenir shops and plenty of high-end designer stores.
Places to eat & drink in Greece
Places to eat & drink in Athens
Bandiera: Traditional Greek food in a quaint location. Very affordable and friendly staff.
Mavros Gatos: Another great place to get authentic Greek food, try the Greek salad, chicken gyro or grilled halloumi.
Places to eat & drink in Santorini
Amoudi Fish Tavern: Great for a sunset dinner, beautiful views right on the water and the most fresh seafood. Try the calamari, you won't regret it!
Pacman Sunset Restaurant: Another place for some great views, unique atmosphere and some of the best sushi I have ever had.
Pito gyro: A must-try while you are in Santorini. Greek street food, make sure to stop by for a gyro and end the night with some baklava.
3Bs: Great place to stop for a Freddo Cappuccino.
Fourni Bakery: My favorite breakfast spot. Stop in for fresh pastries first thing in the morning before you explore Santorini!
Places to eat & drink in Mykonos
Pepper Souvlaki: Greek street food with great gyros, kebabs, and fries!
Interni: Incredible atmosphere, make a late reservation and watch as this dinner destination transforms into a nightclub. Great mussels and espresso martinis.
Scorpios: A CANT-MISS when you are in Mykonos. This is the place to be. Make sure you make a reservation ahead of time and enjoy a sunset dinner. Order the hummus, calamari and clam pasta!
Need to Know
From the United States, we did a 10-day trip, flying in and out of Athens. You really do not need to spend more than 24 hours in Athens to see the popular attractions. Then, we flew from Athens to Santorini (a short and affordable flight) and spent five nights in Oia, then took a ferry to Mykonos and spent three nights in Mykonos town and flew back into Athens (spending one night in Athens on either end of our trip). This was the perfect amount of time to see what we wanted to see without feeling rushed, but you could always add on extra days for relaxation or to explore additional islands.
For more travel tips, check out How to Spend the Perfect 7 Days in Switzerland.
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This guide is part of our ongoing series on travel to Greece.