Best Time to Visit Greece

In this article

If you are considering planning a visit to Greece and the Greek Islands then certain times of year are better than others, depending on what your priorities are for your trip.
This is a guide to explain the benefits of visiting the country at different times of the year, so you can decide on the best time to visit Greece for you.

Quick Answer: When Is the Best Time to Visit Greece?

If you want to visit Greece at the hottest time of year then you should book your trip in the summer months. However, the average temperatures stay relatively high in late spring and early autumn, when you can enjoy a more peaceful and usually cheaper visit to Greece and the Greek Islands.

Best Time to Travel to Greece Weather Wise

The summer season in Greece can reach high average temperatures of over 30°C, with southern islands such as Karpathos usually experiencing the hottest weather.
Heat waves in the summer can reach as hot as 40°C, which can be stifling and uncomfortable if you want to walk around and see tourist attractions.
The average temperature stays above 20°C throughout the months of May to September, so if you prefer to visit Greece when there are fewer crowds outside of high season, visiting Greece in May, June and September will usually still be a pleasantly warm temperature.
There is an average of 4 days of rain in May, 1 day of rain in June, July and August and 3 days in September.
Winter months can be quite cold, with minimum temperatures reaching around 5°C. Some parts of Greece will experience outbreaks of cold air and snowfall often occurs in the northern areas of Greece.

When Is Summer in Greece?

The summer months in Greece are from late June to early September. The Greek islands such as Crete, Mykonos and Santorini are particularly popular from mid-June to mid-September.
In these months, the temperatures average at around 30°C but it is not uncommon for heat waves to hit 40°C in summer. August is the hottest month to visit Greece. If you prefer cooler weather, it is better to visit in spring or autumn.
July is the least humid month (46% relative humidity) and is also the windiest month on average.

Best Months to Visit Greece

The best months to visit Greece will depend on what you are looking for. If hot weather is your top priority and you don't mind the possibility of very hot weather, then the summer months of July and August are the best months to visit.
However, these months are also considerably more expensive than visiting outside of high season. If you want to benefit from warm temperatures but lower prices, May, June and September are good times to visit Greece, outside of the school summer holiday season.
These months will also be less busy with tourists and the weather will be more pleasant for sightseeing. There are some stunning hikes in Greece and the Greek islands but the temperatures will usually be too hot in summer, unless you time your hikes very early in the day.

Best Time to Visit Greece for Sightseeing

Greece has a rich history and some interesting places to visit including ancient temples such as the Acropolis and the Parthenon in Athens. If you want to enjoy sightseeing some of Greece's amazing buildings then you should avoid the hottest months or plan your sightseeing visits at cooler parts of the day.

Best Time to Visit Greece for Beaches and Swimming

The beaches benefit from cool sea breezes, so the beaches are a great place to keep cooler, while still enjoying the warm temperatures to sunbathe. The warmest sea temperatures are in August when the sea is around 24°C, which is very pleasant for swimming in.
However, May, June, July, and September can also have warm sea temperatures which are ideal for swimming in the sea.

Best Time to Visit Greece for Honeymoon

The islands of Mykonos and Santorini can provide the perfect setting for a romantic honeymoon. Watching the sunset in Santorini is a popular honeymoon activity but the hotels can be very expensive in the high season.
If you want to experience the romance of the best Greek islands at a lower cost, plan your trip outside of the July and August months. There are also fewer tourists in months like June and September, so you can enjoy a more peaceful honeymoon at these times of year.

Best Time to Visit Greece for Greek Island Hopping

Many people visit Greece for Greek island hopping to explore as many islands as possible. The cheapest way to do it is to book the transport yourself but there are lots of companies offering packages throughout summer.
The weather is usually suitable to go island hopping from May through to September but outside of these months, you are more likely to have rainy days that can spoil the experience. Boat trips in the wind and rain are not as pleasant as calm and warm boat trips.

Best Time to Visit Greece - Santorini and Mykonos

Santorini and Mykonos are classed as luxury holiday destinations, with stunning beaches, five-star hotels, and fine-dining restaurants to enjoy.

Best Time to Visit Greece for Cycling

While Greece is a beautiful country to cycle in, the hotter months of July and August can be dangerously hot to do intense exercise in. Cycling in Greece is better in May, early June, or late September to avoid extremely hot weather.

Best Time to Visit Greece for Skiing

Greece is not the first destination you would associate with skiing resorts but there are ski centers in Parnassos, Pigadia and Karpenisi.
The snow season typically lasts from December to March but this can vary.

Best Time for Nightlife and Partying

The Salsa Spring Festival takes place in Athens in May, which is a lively and fun event for people who are passionate about salsa dancing.
The Santorini International Music Festival is another top event in Greece, taking place in August.
The nightlife in Corfu, Mykonos, and Kos is renowned for partying and it is liveliest during the summer months of July and August.

Traveling on Budget: Cheapest Time to Go to Greece

On average, flights to Greece are cheapest in September, October, and November. Hotel prices can be very high in July and August so if you are traveling on a budget, book to avoid these months.

Worst Time to Visit Greece

Some people would say there is no bad time to visit the beautiful country of Greece. However, the most popular destinations can get very expensive and very busy in July and August.
However, you will be able to find quieter parts of Greece such as Andros and Syros.
If you want to avoid extremely hot weather, you should also avoid July and August, while the winter months are cold and not usually enjoyable for a holiday.

Greece Seasons

Peak Season

The peak season in Greece is from early July to the end of August. This is the hottest part of the year with very little rain but it is also the most expensive time of the year and the busiest.
However, there are lots of fun events and tourist attractions taking place at this time of year, making it a fun beach holiday destination for all the family in summer.
Watersports, music festivals, boat trips and cultural festivals are happening throughout peak season in Greece and the Greek islands.

Shoulder Season

The shoulder seasons in Greece are April through to early June and mid-September to mid-October.
During these times the weather will usually be warm but not too hot. There is a higher chance of rain and cloudy days during the shoulder season, so it is not always good weather for sunbathing and days at the beach.

Low Season

The low season in Greece is November through to March and there are lots of cold and wet days and cool nights, so it is not popular for holidays at this time of year. There is an average low of -2°C in January, so it is not a good place to visit for winter sun, with few sunny days and damp weather.

Americans Traveling to Greece: Essential Tips

Greece and the Greek islands are very popular destinations for American travelers who want to learn more about the country’s history and enjoy the warm climate in summer. The top places in Greece for Americans include Santorini, Nafplio, Crete and Athens.
Before you book your trip to Greece from the USA, there are some important factors to consider when planning your trip, such as which tourist attractions to visit, how to travel around the and passport and visa requirements.
Greek island hopping is a great way to see lots of different parts of Greece, while Mykonos and Santorini are highly recommended if you want to experience the most luxurious of the country’s islands. If this is your type of vacation, learn more about the 15 best Greek islands to visit.

Entry Requirements for Foreigners Traveling to Greece

In 2023 the ETIAS (Electronic Travel Information and Authorization System) is set to become mandatory. This means that citizens of non-visa countries will be required to apply for an ETIAS to visit countries in the Schengen Area, including Greece.
The ETIAS is for short-term stays of up to 90 days and there is a quick and simple online application process . There is also a digital nomad visa for Greece, that allows foreigners to live and work in Greece if they meet the required criteria.

Best Time of Year to Visit Greece: The Takeaway

The best time of year to visit Greece will depend on the purposes of your trip. If you want to have a hot summer holiday then July and August are the best months, but you will also be paying considerably more for your holiday at this time of year.
If you have flexibility around your dates and can avoid the school holiday months, you can get a cheaper holiday to Greece in early July and early September, while still enjoying warm weather.
Written by: Fikayomi Abisola
Abisola is an ETIAS Travel and Immigration writer with several years of writing experience in the industry. Abisola has a unique enthusiasm for travels, tours, and tourism and loves to educate travellers about the criteria involved in international travelling.

FAQs

  • 1. What is the cheapest time to go to Greece?

    The cheapest time to go to Greece is usually September, October and November.
  • 2. What is the rainy season in Greece?

    The rainy season in Greece runs from November to March.
  • 3. What time of year is the best weather in Greece?

    The hottest weather months in Greece are July and August, when there are average temperatures of over 30°C and can reach as high at 40°C when there is a heat wave.
  • 4. What is Greece's hottest month?

    The hottest month in Greece is July when the average temperature is 33°C and an average low of 17°C.
  • 4. What is Greece's hottest month?

    The hottest month in Greece is July when the average temperature is 33°C and an average low of 17°C.
  • 5. What month is the best to travel to Greece?

    If you want the hottest weather, July is the best month to visit Greece but if you prefer a quieter, cheaper and slightly cooler holiday, June or September will be a better option. Early summer is usually the best time to visit for sunny weather before the hotter temperatures arrive.
  • 6. When should you avoid Greece?

    Greece can get cold and dull from November through to April, so if you want a sunshine break, avoid these months. If you want to avoid busy tourist crowds and the possibility of very hot weather, you should avoid Greece in July and August.
  • 7. How many days in Greece is enough?

    Although many people book a one-week holiday in Greece, if you want to go island hopping or visit different areas of Greece, you will need at least a few weeks.
  • 8. Which Greek island is the prettiest?

    Many people consider Santorini to be the prettiest Greek island but there are many more that have stunning beaches and historic sites to visit.
  • 9. What is the coolest month in Greece?

    The coolest month in Greece is January, when the average daily maximum is 6°C with an average low of -2°C.

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