Greece Travel Guide
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More about Greece
An accessible destination with rich history and incredible food! The local people are friendly and tend to have a sense of humour. We really enjoy the islands but there's something for almost every travel style around the archipelago or on the mainland. Make sure you try the tzatziki!
With some 6,000 islands, it's no surprise that water activities such as yachting are popular. Seafood and beach life are plentiful, too. Some of the world's most famous beaches are found in Greece. We also figure Santorini to be among the most photographed destinations in the Mediterranean.
Visas & travel documents
We recommend everyone planning a trip visits their government travel site for the latest information relevant to their trip:
Remember that this information can change at any time.
Please note that government guidelines may not represent the additional requirements of your airline or cruise transportation. If your passport is due to expire in the 6 months following your intended return home you risk being denied boarding / embarkation.
As part of the European Union's Schengen area, there are freedom of movement rules which make it easy to visit Greece as a tourist for both Canadian and US passport holders. There is no visa requirement for stays of up to 90 days in the EU's Schengen area, this is a cumulative total during any 180-day period, so longer stays or multiple trips may require specific planning and consideration. From 2021, the EU will introduce a sort of electronic travel authority waiver affecting US and Canadian passport holders, the European Travel Information and Authorization System will require an advanced digital application scheduled to last 3 years once approved. Fees are currently estimated at €8. You may also be required to prove onward travel, sufficient funds, and other conditions of entry.
There are flights servicing Greece as a tourist destination throughout the year, with Athens receiving guests year round. However, many cruise itineraries and hotel properties located on the Greek Islands only operate between April and October, with peak season falling mid-June through the earlier parts of September. For the most opportunity to enjoy local life while experiencing a significant reduction in crowds, consider visiting in May or late September through October.
When to visit
Driving is done on the right side of the road, an international driver's permit or licence is absolutely necessary to rent any motor powered vehicle. Be prepared for an unreal amount of scrutiny and make sure each vehicle for which you are qualified is, in turn, endorsed on the IDL or prepare to be denied your rental.
Even those intending on enjoying a cruise vacation embarking from Athens (Piraeus) or featuring one of the many incredible islands of Greece will likely fly into the country. The main airport is located in Athens, the Eleftherios Venizelos International Airport (ATH). Located east-southeast from the city of Athens itself, plan for roughly 40 minutes of travel time by private transfer. Excellent connectivity to Europe and major gateways in Canada and the US, including a direct daily flight from Toronto with Air Canada. Also serviced by Aegean Airlines, a Star Alliance member airline. Many of the more popular islands destinations have their own regional airport, plan to connect via Athens.
European rail, road, and bus service connects the mainland of Greece. However, many of the overland routes require in excess of 20 hours of travel time.
Cruise vacations and yachting are among the most popular ways to see Greece, opening up the wonder of the islands and giving visitors the opportunity to explore the nuance among them. Connectivity to/from the mainland and Athens is primarily through the port at Piraeus. Local or inter-island ferry service does exist, but expect limited daily departures and a realistic half-day travel time or longer. Wind and waves during the popular summer season can result in delays. Plan to fly.
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Content is intended for information and planning purposes only. While we try our best to deliver accurate and current information, some items may not be as described. Please contact your Odyssean Travel advisor for further details.