Mamma Mia, Greece is about to make all of your Mediterranean dreams come true. But since you only have a couple of days in Greece, you want to know where to spend them, right? Keep reading to learn about the highlights in each of our favorite spots.
Greece is just one of those countries that needs to be on everyone's live list. With fascinating history and important ruins, amazing food and unique souvenirs, stunning sunsets and photogenic scenery, it will absolutely provide some incredible and unforgettable memories.
If you're planning to volunteer for a semester in Europe with International Language Programs, then you probably already know about the awesome vacations that our volunteers get to plan and experience every semester. Greece has always been a popular destination, and if you've seen any pictures then you obviously understand why.
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When planning vacations with your volunteer group, it can be a little bit difficult to decide where to spend your free days, especially when a country like Greece has so many different cities (and even islands) to choose from! Keep reading for our top 5 favorite spots spread across Greece from top to bottom.
Where To Visit In Greece
- Corfu Town
Due to the time Corfu spent under Venetian, French, and even British rule, you'll see a variety of architecture and culture heritage. Each chapter of its past has left visible marks, even in the local cuisine! Corfu is the ideal place to spend a day, or even a weekend.
Easily one of the most beautiful Old Towns in Greece. You'll find lots of our favorite blossoming bougainvillea bushes among the narrow alleyways, and the two hilltop forts just add to the town's unique character. Since it's a bustling port, there are plenty of cafes and souvenir shops. Make sure you also stop by a few of the many churches scattered throughout the town, and keep an eye out for all of the stunning mansions and museums!
Bet you didn't even know this place exists. Right?! It is one of Greece's best hidden gems. But those who have seen it, all swear it is one of their favorite places in the world. And coming from avid travelers, you know that says a lot.
The stunning cliffs composing Meteora have a long, religious history, since monasteries have rested on their edges for centuries. Now, only 6 of the original 24 monasteries are still operating, and they are home to about 60 monks and nuns. Lucky for you, tourists are still welcome to visit (as long as they dress appropriately) and see this heavenly place for themselves.
To make this visit easy for your group, we suggest taking a guided day-trip from Athens, like this one! Yes, it's pricey, but we think this is one of those times that paying a bit extra for an all-day, once-in-a-lifetime experience is WORTH IT! Almost any tour you choose won't include the cost of entrance to the monasteries, but it's only 3 euros for each one. If you decide to make the trek on public transport, follow this guide! And book your train tickets in advance on this site.
Here is another link with more important info you should know before visiting.
This island is known for its varied and beautiful terrain. Greek mythology says that it was also the birthplace of Zeus. With a history like that, you can bet there are oodles of amazing ancient ruins!
If you can only visit one city in Crete, make it the charming Chania! Head straight for the harbor, since that's where you'll find the best food and the very photogenic rows of colorful buildings that highlight both Venetian and Turkish architecture. Plus, there is a charming lighthouse, right on the edge of the water. And if you get a chance, check out Elafonisi Beach. It has both white AND pink sand, which as you can imagine is absolutely stunning against clear, turquoise water.
Here's a very helpful blog post with more ideas of fun things to see, eat, and do in Chania!
If the blue domes and white-washed towns of Santorini aren't enough to convince you to buy a round-trip ticket (maybe one-way?) to this unique island, then we've really got nothing else to say. It's the perfect day-trip from Athens. Heads up, flights there are super cheap, but expect to pay a bit more for your ticket back. Like we said, one way?
Most of what you'll do in Santorini will honestly consist of just walking around and taking pictures while you soak up all of the magical, sparkling views. But, we do have to mention our favorite bookstore for all of you book lovers. It's located in Oia, right in the center of the tourist walkway. There are books in a variety of languages stacked from floor to ceiling, some even creating staircases and walls. Past visitors have even left notes on their favorite books. They also have first edition copies of many famous classics—and yes they are for sale. Anyone have a spare $10,000? But really, this is one of our top spots on all of Santorini. Check out their website!
Since we really do love this island with out whole hearts, we compiled a complete guide with all of our top things to see, eat, and do.
It's the city in Europe that has consistently been inhabited for the longest amount of time, and Athens has reigned as the capital city of Greece for 3,000 years. That is reason enough to include this city on your itinerary! It has a vibrant vibe, and you'd better plan on eating your weight in gyros, falafel, and baklava.
If you only get to visit one site in Athens, make it this crown jewel. Rising over the entire city, it's home to so many of the most important ruins, like the Parthenon. You won't need more than an hour to enjoy the ancient architecture, but make sure you catch some panoramic views of the city while you're up there.
This is THE spot to go souvenir shopping in Athens. The entire shop is lined with itty bitty shops, so you can expect to find great deals on sandals, ceramics, jewelry, and so much more. And a lot of the wares are pretty different than what you'll find at other flea markets across Europe. Don't be afraid to use your bargaining skills!
Now who's ready to pack up their bags and head to Greece ASAP?
We're definitely with you on that! But you probably want to learn a bit more about what volunteering abroad with ILP is actually like too, right? Click the button below to get in touch with one of our representatives: