The Best Way to Spend One Week in Greece

Greece is one of those places I’ve been learning about since I was a kid and just couldn’t get out of my head. The islands looked beautiful, there’s a rich history, and who doesn’t love Greek food?! This one-week trip to Greece was truly a dream come true.

Greece is beautiful, and I honestly can’t think of a better way to spend one week in Greece than by traveling around the various landscapes that are a must-see. This itinerary will help you make the most of your time in Greece.

Table of Contents

If you’ve read my posts about saving on travel, then you know that when I see a deal, I take it. I hadn’t been to Europe since college before this trip and had been dreaming about it for a while after visiting Asia and South America, so I knew it needed to be my next destination. I started looking out for cheap flights and found one for the perfect dates. Just $530 for one week in Greece is a pretty good deal!

The flight was booked, and research started. I knew a lot about Greece’s history, had seen countless photos, and couldn’t wait to see what it was actually like to be there. It did not disappoint! I’ve made this itinerary to help you plan a week in Greece, to dip your toes in and really start seeing what makes Greece such a unique place.

Want to know who to pack for your trip? Get my full packing list for Greece in Spring by subscribing. Discover what to pack for an international trip and download the editable checklist by subscribing here.

Pro-tip: Use different sites to research for the cheapest flight. I use Hopper (get 10% off Hopper when you use code “MEGHAN.”). To redeem for $10 off., Google Flights, TravelZoo, and Momondo to check! I found this deal after using the Google Flights map feature. Check out my step by step guide to save on flights here. Gain access to my planning documents by subscribing here.

In this post, I’ll break down the costs and give recommendations on what to see and do in each location. From the mainland to the islands, Greece is beautiful!

Costs per person for One Week in Greece:

  • International Flight — $535
  • Hotels/Airbnb — $325
  • Tours — $203
  • Car Rentals — $35
  • Internal Flights/Baggage/Ferry — $174
  • Food/Tips/Uber — $200

Athens: Day 1

Athens is what we had planned, even though I ended up stuck in Turkey. Elizabeth did all of these things and had an awesome day so I highly recommend it still. Take your first day slow, get to know a new city, and have some fun!

We originally had booked an Airbnb in Athens, but to make Elizabeth feel more comfortable traveling solo, we canceled it and booked Philipos Hotel instead. The hotel was very nice but had a small room. The location was perfect though—they had excellent customer service and a delicious breakfast. No complaints at all!

City Tour

One thing I love to do at the start of any trip is a tour to get to know the city or country I’m visiting. We chose a bike tour because Athens is pretty big and it was a great way to get to know Athens and start off a trip.

Here are some tour options to get to know Athens on your first day:

Well, because of Expedia and Turkish Airlines (read about the fiasco here), I ended up missing this, and we booked a tour for the last day to tour inside the Acropolis as well. Initially, we planned to do this ourselves since we would have done this tour… I will say, I was definitely jealous she got to do this, even though I was in Istanbul for the day!

Delphi and Meteora Trip: Day 2 – 3 (overnight tour)

One of the things I had to do while I was in Greece was see some of the important mainland sites. Delphi was one spot I had heard about, and my parents raved about it after their trip (they went before I did and gave me lots of tips), but I was skeptical about this one. I ended up LOVING IT! The history is so interesting.

Fun facts for you history people like me:

People from all over the known world at the time (as far as Asia and Africa) would come to Delphi to speak to the oracle about their life. Getting there must have been so difficult because it was up a very steep mountain and people brought their gifts for the gods. It is definitely a must-see spot when in Greece. I had no clue that Greece is mostly mountainous and let me tell you, the mountains in spring were covered in flowers! It was gorgeous!

There are many options for day tours to Delphi from Athens, but we opted for a two-day tour to Delphi and Meteora because Meteora was SO worth the extra day. My only complaint about this tour was the fact that we didn’t end up having very much time in Delphi. We were running around trying to see everything after the tour ended with just 30 minutes to explore and still missed a few things.

Delphi and Meteora Tours:

Picked up from hotel at 8:30 am

2-hour bus ride from Athens with 30 minute stop

Pro-tip: While you want to be there quickly, the stops were clutch since we were stuck on a bus for so long. Plus, we got to try lots of different Greek snacks!

Arrive in Delphi at 11:30 am

Pro-tip: Booking a tour for this trip was a solid choice. Our meals, drinks, and lodging were covered, we had wifi on the bus, and we got to go through with a guide since the ruins did not have signs or very much info.

Lunch on the way

This was my least favorite meal of the whole trip. Really, not much else to report here, but it’s difficult to take 40 people’s orders all at once so I do feel for them there.

3-hour drive to Meteora

This took the better half of the afternoon. We arrived in Kalambaka at our hotel around 7:30 pm. Our food was included which was really nice. Dinner was at the hotel, but we didn’t mind because riding a bus all day with 35 other people really does take something out of you, so not moving and having a nice big hotel room was pretty great.

We ended up sitting at dinner with an awesome couple from New Zealand that were on our tour who were traveling for a month through Europe and meeting up with friends in Italy. We loved their stories and shared about our lives. One of the best parts about traveling is meeting new people!

Lunch in Kalambaka

Kalambaka is known as the gateway to Meteora. You can actually see it from most of the monasteries and vice versa. It’s so unique and was a fun place to grab lunch. We enjoyed a traditional Greek lunch where the food was home-cooked and served right from the stove. It was so delicious, but a little embarrassing after that mess with the bathroom.

Fun story: I didn’t see the signs here and used the men’s bathroom. I should have learned the Greek words for men and women before the trip!

Back to Athens

We made two stops on the drive back to use the bathroom and get snacks. This was seriously a brutal afternoon trip that seemed to go on forever. It took 5 hours to get back to Athens, and we definitely got bored on the drive. I wouldn’t take it back, though, because Meteora was incredible.

This is why you may want to choose to just do a day trip to Delphi and skip Meteora.

Pro-tip: Bring books and things to do besides your phone! While WiFi was great, it was spotty and didn’t work in the mountains. This left us with little to do on the drive, plus it ate our phone batteries causing us issues getting our plane tickets printed and an Uber in Athens.

Flight to Santorini

We had a late RyanAir flight and arrived in Santorini at 12:30 am. Thankfully, our hotel was able to pick us up and check us in late (for a $20 charge).

The graphics on the flight safety info were our favorite part of the flight. I was dying laughing while on the plane. If you’re a newbie to European airlines like I was, you can read my post about what to expect here!

Pro-tip: Many hotels in Greece do not have 24-hour hotel desks. Double-check hotel rules before booking. We specifically chose Santorini Reflexions Hotel because it allowed late night check-ins and was along the cliffs in Fira.

Santorini: Day 4 – 5

Black Sand Beach

This beach is beautiful and overlooks the cliffs of Ancient Thera—our next stop. It was really empty while we were there, and we felt very lucky to run along the beach all alone. In the summer, this is a really popular beach, but the rocks are really hard on your feet and get extremely hot since this is a black sand beach!

 

Ancient Thera

At the top of a hill in Santorini are some Ancient Greek ruins of a town called Thera. To get there, you’ve got to drive on some winding roads up the mountain and do a little bit of hiking, but the views are breathtaking. You’ll be along cliff edges the entire time you walk the ruins, so be prepared for some scary but beautiful views!

 

Red Beach

Red Beach is one of the most popular beaches in Santorini. Waded in the water and, of course, watched for landslides! It does take some hiking to get down to this beach. You’ll need sturdy shoes to get there and should plan on no shade as you get there.

Lunch on the coast

We found a random stop along our drive with a gorgeous view. There are several little restaurants on this side of Sanotirini and it’s fun to just explore. They had our favorite lunch with delicious feta cheese covered in sesame seeds and honey. Just wonderful!

Enjoy Exploring Fira

Lunch and Explore Oia

Oia (pronounced “ee-ah”) is another picturesque town on the island of Santorini, know

Start your visit by heading down to Amoudi Bay, located at the base of Oia.  The bay is known for its seafood tavernas, offering fresh fish and traditional Greek dishes. Enjoy a leisurely meal with a view of the crystal-clear waters.own for its stunning sunsets, charming architecture, and romantic atmosphere.

Walk back up to the town center and explore the iconic Oia Castle, also known as the Castle of St. Nicholas. The castle ruins provide a fantastic vantage point for panoramic views of the Caldera and the surrounding islands.

Explore the narrow, winding streets of Oia. Admire the traditional white-washed buildings with blue domes, colorful flowers, and charming little shops. Oia is known for its boutique stores, art galleries, and local crafts.

It was so crowded here! I caught the first photo below because everyone was on the west side of Oia trying to catch the sunset so I got lucky on that one, but this second one shows you what the crowds were really like.

Pro-tip: Oia is the most popular spot in Santorini in the evenings. It is famous for its sunsets (NO SURPRISE THERE), so you have to plan ahead. Traffic in Oia was bad with all the tourists coming in on giant buses, so cars couldn’t get through. We were stuck on one road for about 15 minutes at a standstill.

This was in April too—not even close to the height of tourist season. Plan ahead and know it’s going to take a while to get there. Parking was about the same. We didn’t have to look for too long, but still, plan ahead.

Sunset in Oia

Oia is renowned for its breathtaking sunsets. Find a comfortable spot along the cliffs or at one of the many rooftop restaurants and cafes to enjoy the magical moment as the sun sets over the Aegean Sea. The sky often transforms into a palette of warm colors, creating a truly memorable experience.

I wrote a whole post about this, but we tried all the different spots around Oia. It was obvious that the old Byzantine Church had been recommended a lot because it was very crowded; since we couldn’t get near the edge to see the sunset, we left. We ended up just stopping along the side of a building and still had a great view.

Dinner at Floga Oia — (appetizer, dinner, dessert, and wine)

Floga is a top-rated seafood restaurant in Oia, and so when I saw it had open reservations for that evening we jumped on it.

This was definitely a splurge, but we were so happy we did it. The restaurant was fabulous, and the food was so good. I was in heaven leaving that place. The mussels were my favorite or maybe the calamari—so hard to choose!

This place did not have an “iconic” sunset view. We made reservations later (8:30 p.m.) so we could catch the sunset and then head over to an amazing meal on the other side of Oia, which is really only a 10-minute walk.

Also, funny story… We lost the car because my phone died. My plan was to look up the restaurant that I took a photo of next to the car. Well, when my phone died, I couldn’t remember the name of the place, and we ended up searching for the car for like 30 minutes that night. Funny now, not funny then.

Morning Walk Along Cliffs of Fira

Mykonos: Day 5 and 6

When you think of Mykonos, you think of parties on the beach. Well, we didn’t experience any of that. It was cold and rainy the entire time we were there (one of the risks of shoulder season travel).

We asked many locals, where do people go when the weather is like this? They all said to their homes. NOOOOOO! People were not out, it was cold and gloomy, but Mykonos was still beautiful! The sunsets we saw there were the best and can’t be beaten.

We stayed at Madres Studios and Apartments, which are truly apartments right in old-town Mykonos. The place was clean, and the beds were pretty comfortable. The only thing that was odd about it was that when we arrived, no one was there except an older man sitting on the hotel’s terrace. We asked him for help. He called the owner who came in about 20 minutes after. We expected a hotel, but this was more of an Airbnb.

When the owner answered, he sounded really confused that people were checking into the apartment, even though we were there within the hours listed online for hotel check-in. It ended up being just fine, and we enjoyed our stay! We got our own beds, and the room was large. It also had a kitchen and a shower with a bathtub.

Rent a Car

We really wanted to rent ATVs to beach hop, but because of the weather (it rained basically the entire time), we decided to get a car and still visit some different spots.

ATVs are a little cheaper than renting a car, so this could be a fun and cheaper option for you! It was freezing pretty much everywhere we went. We ended up barely using the car just because we were so cold and didn’t feel like going to beaches.

Walkthrough Old Town

Mykonos Old Town, also known as Chora, is a charming and iconic part of the Greek island of Mykonos.

Start your exploration with the iconic windmills that overlook the town. They are a symbol of Mykonos and offer a great view of the surrounding area, including Little Venice and the sea.

Wander through the narrow streets to reach Little Venice, a picturesque neighborhood with houses built right at the water’s edge. The colorful buildings, wooden balconies, and the waves lapping against the foundations create a romantic atmosphere.

Explore Matogianni Street, the main shopping street in Mykonos Old Town. It’s lined with boutique shops, cafes, and restaurants. You can find a variety of items, from local crafts and souvenirs to high-end fashion.

Head to the Panagia Paraportiani Beach for a relaxing time by the sea. It’s a small sandy beach with crystal-clear waters, providing a refreshing break from exploring the town.

We did most of our souvenir shopping here, nothing cheers you up when the weather is bad like shopping. I probably spent way more than I would have normally, but shopping was the only thing to do and inside!

Archaeological Museum

 If you’re interested in history, consider visiting the Archaeological Museum of Mykonos, located in the Old Town. It houses artifacts from the island’s history, including pottery, sculptures, and jewelry.

On a rainy day, the museum is definitely a good thing to do!

Dinner

We stopped at a little spot in old-town Mykonos. I cannot stop thinking about this salad! It was so good, and this spot was really cute. There are plenty of restaurants all along the water in Mykonos, so head down toward the water and take in the lovely view.

Sunset in Mykonos

Not overrated and not to be missed! Like many Greek islands, Mykonos offers stunning sunsets. The Old Port is a fantastic spot to watch the sunset, and you can find waterfront bars and cafes to enjoy the view with a drink in hand.

Bars and beaches

We went to Namos, we went to Paraga Beach, and we attempted Paradise Beach, too. No one was at any of these places, and the weather was just not that great for this. However, the beaches were pretty, and it was still so nice to see them. When you are only in a place once, you make the best of it!

People told me that this was very bizarre weather for Greece in April, but it was the hand we were dealt. It was still great to see, and now I know what to do when I go back!

Mykonos to Athens Flight on RyanAir

We took another cheap flight from Mykonos to Athens on RyanAir and were back Saturday morning.

Athens: Day 7

We stayed at a very eclectic Airbnb in Athens. It was in a neighborhood we had originally planned to explore a little bit, but because of my flight issues (thanks again, Expedia), we didn’t end up exploring it. The Airbnb owner explained it as the “Beverly Hills of Athens”, which was funny to think about visiting! It was definitely an eclectic place, and the host was so very kind.

An Uber ride to the Acropolis cost us $10, which was not a bad price. You can also take the train to the Acropolis and nearby areas.

Pro-tip: Uber works in many different places around the world. If your phone has international service, using Uber can be an affordable, reliable, and safe way to travel.

Tour of Acropolis

I highly recommend taking a tour. There are not many signs inside the Acropolis, and this is a really historically significant place worth learning more about. If you don’t have to do a tour inside the Acropolis then it can be a little confusing on your own.

I have used Walks Tours in different countries around the world and loved them every single time. All of their tours have knowledgeable guides, and they make it worth it! Below are a few Acropolis Tours they offer.

Acropolis Tour Options:

Acropolis Museum

This is definitely worth a visit. It is located right near the Acropolis and opens fairly late in comparison, which makes it easy to get to even if you only have a day. You also aren’t allowed to take photos inside, so you will have to see this one for yourself!

Walking through downtown Athens (the Plaka)

Sunset over Athens

This was a beautiful spot for a sunset! There is a rock right at the bottom of the Acropolis near the entrances with an excellent view of Athens, then you turn around, and you get an amazing view of the Acropolis.

Wine and Stay with Acropolis Views

After catching the sunset, I started looking for rooftops where we could have a good view of the Acropolis and grab a glass of wine to relax. I found Divani Hotel online! It had a rooftop bar with an awesome view of the Acropolis. It did not disappoint and was the perfect way to end a long day in Athens: wine and a final view of the Acropolis.

I would recommend staying here for your trip due to its excellent location and views!

I loved Greece and had a blast on this trip. While the weather didn’t cooperate at times, the trip was still a success. As I’m writing this post I am honestly smiling because it was seriously a ton of fun and super easy to plan. Greece was way easier than China, Peru, or Turkey to travel in, and I felt safe the whole time despite the current economy there! Have you been to Greece? What are your thoughts? Let me know.

How should you spend 7 days or One Week in Greece? From the main land to the best islands, this itinerary will help you see it all!
How should you spend 7 days or One Week in Greece? From the main land to the best islands, this itinerary will help you see it all!
Meghan

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