With 230 inhabited islands and a sprawling mainland, Greece offers more than enough culture, adventure, and relaxation to fill an 11-day trip. You'll likely start with must-see sites in Athens, then explore two or three of the major Cycladic islands. Other options include road tripping the Peloponnese peninsula, going off the beaten path on less-visited isles, or a combination of all of the above.

Itinerary #1: Relaxed Athens, Santorini, Mykonos & Naxos

This trip plan is inspired by laid back “island time.” The journey begins with a relaxed approach to Athens, followed by a leisurely tour of Santorini, Mykonos, and Naxos. 

The Parthenon at dusk
Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Athens, Welcome Dinner Athens
Day 2 Athens Food Tour Athens
Day 3 Athens to Santorini Santorini
Day 4 Santorini Catamaran Cruise Santorini
Day 5 Ferry to Naxos Naxos
Day 6 Naxos Beaches and Villages Bike Tour Naxos
Day 7 Cooking Class on Naxos Naxos
Day 8 Ferry to Mykonos Mykonos
Day 9 Farm Visit and Mykonian Dinner Mykonos
Day 10 Return to Athens, Sunset at Cape Sounion Athens
Day 11 Depart Athens  


Athens
is your home base for the first two days of your journey. The Parthenon and Acropolis are must-sees, but you can also stroll hip neighborhoods like the Psyrri district or the bustling stalls at the Monastiraki flea if you're inspired by city vibes. On day two, embark on a guided food tour of Athens; you'll meet vendors at the Varvakios Market and will sample their delectable specialties.

Then it's on to Santorini; spend two days exploring the island, its beaches and volcanic caldera by foot — or just relax seaside — and cruise a catamaran to the distinctive-colored sands of Red Beach and White Beach

Next, you’ll head to Naxos, where you can pop into the shops in the main town, summit the towering Mount Zas, or explore ancient sites like the Temple of Demeter and the Portrara (the entrance to the unfinished ancient Temple to Apollo). You’ll take a guided bike tour of the island’s west side, its incredible beaches and charming villages, like Agios Arsenios and Glinado. The next day, learn to cook like a local at the home of a villager in Kaloxylos, where you’ll whip up a traditional menu inspired by the season and your preferences.

On day eight, you’ll ferry to Mykonos. Escape the crowds at the remote Agios Sostis beach, try windsurfing at Ftelia Beach, or dine in style at a glitzy restaurant. Then, visit a traditional farm to learn about local agriculture practices before sitting down to a homemade meal in a local Mykonian household.

Return to the mainland the next day, where you’ll visit the Athenian Riviera and the Temple of Poseidon, then take advantage of a spectacular Kodak moment with the Saronic Gulf behind you. Enjoy one last night in Athens — perhaps even dance the night away at a popular beach bar — before bidding farewell to Greece the next morning. Learn more

Itinerary #2: Greek Hotspots in Athens, Mykonos & Santorini

This trip plan is full of site seeing and activities, blending visits to ancient sites, laid back beach days, wine tasting, and cruising through a volcanic caldera. 

Oia, on the island of Santorini
Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Athens Athens
Day 2 Explore Athens & the Acropolis Athens
Day 3 Athens to Mykonos Mykonos
Day 4 Beach Day & Sunset Boat to Delos Mykonos
Day 5 Mykonos Day Cruise Mykonos
Day 6 Mykonos to Santorini Santorini
Day 7 Free Day in Santorini Santorini
Day 8 Santorini Wine Tasting Tour Santorini
Day 9 Explore the Volcano Santorini
Day 10 Return to Athens & Free Evening Athens
Day 11 Depart Athens  


Start with two history-packed days in Athens, in its fantastic museums (the National Museum and the Acropolis Museum are exceptional) and tantalizing marketplaces. You’ll dive deep into Athenian landmarks on a full-day guided tour of must-sees — like the Parthenon, the Panhellenic Stadium, and the Athens Trilogy — and can explore whatever suits your fancy on your own, be that shopping at the Monastiraki flea market or lingering over mezze in the hip Pangrati neighborhood.

The next morning, it’s off to the glamorous island of Mykonos, where you’ll spend the next three days. The island is yours for adventure: windsurf at Ftelia Beach, sip cocktails seaside on luxe Platis Gialos beach, or wander through Little Venice. End day four on a sunset cruise to the ancient sacred site at Delos.

The next day, it’s back to the high seas: choose between a private yacht cruise around secluded bays on Mykonos — where you can snorkel, fish, and jet ski — or join a group for a meal on glass bottom-boat out on the ocean.

Spend days six and seven discovering Santorini at your own speed: the island is full of pink and black-sand beaches, walking trails, and museums devoted to folklore and archeology. You’ll also learn about Crete through guided tours of its ancient wineries; taste a dozen volcanic varietals, alongside creamy local cheeses. Cities like Fira, the capital, and Oia offer amazing restaurants and artsy-spots, as well as Instagram-worthy views of the sun dipping into the Aegean. 

You’ll take in Santorini’s hottest spot of all on your final day when you cruise to the island’s volcano and its basin. Hike the volcanic red rock turf, then take a plunge in Nea Kameni, the sulfuric hot spring rumored to have healing potential. The next morning, trade island life for the mainland when you return for one last day in Athens. Enjoy a final night in Greece, maybe sipping ouzo in the Psyrri district, before jetting off the next morning. Learn more

Itinerary #3: Historic Athens, Mainland Greece, Cyclades & Crete

History-minded travelers, this trip plan is for you: a fantastic tour through ancient sites, iconic landmarks, and lots of time to soak up guided tidbits and museum exhibits. You’ll venture through Athens, seek the mystical oracle at Delphi, then search for wonders on Crete, Santorini, and Mykonos.

The majestic Bourtzi Castle in Nafplio Bay
Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Athens Athens
Day 2 Guided Acropolis Visit Athens
Day 3 Day Trip to Delphi Athens
Day 4 Athens to Mykonos Mykonos
Day 5 Day Trip to Delos Mykonos
Day 6 Mykonos to Santorini Santorini
Day 7 Discover Prehistoric Akrotiri, Ferry to Crete Heraklion
Day 8 Tour Knossos and Heraklion, Travel to Chania Chania
Day 9 Ancient Aptera Tour Chania
Day 10 Return to Athens, Visit Mycenae and Nafplio Nafplio
Day 11 Nafplio to Athens and Depart  


Your historical investigation begins in Athens, home to the ruins of ancient sacred sites and marketplaces, juxtaposed with modern amenities, shopping, and nightlife.

Spend your first day at the phenomenal National Museum, or go off the beaten path: the Platonic Academy features interactive digital exhibits, and the Museum of Ancient Greek Technology is home to a working model of the Antikythera mechanism — the first analog computer! You’ll take a guided tour of the Acropolis, with stops at the Parthenon and the Temple of Athena Nike. Cap your day in the Acropolis Museum, then order platters of mezze in Anafiotika, the oldest Athenian neighborhood. On day three, seek out the oracle at Delphi on a guided full-day excursion. You’ll have plenty of time to wander the magnificent complex and its various sites and olive groves before sitting down to a scenic lunch under the plane trees in the old town district. 

You’ll head to the Cyclades on day four, greeted by the glitz and glamor of Mykonos. Use recommendations curated just for you by your specialist to explore the island, whether that means reading on the sand at Agios Sostis beach or discovering the 18th-century charm of Little Venice. The next morning, you’ll cruise out to Delos for a guided tour of the island, its mythology, and unique sites like the Terrace of the Lions

On day six, you’ll hop to the volcanic island of Santorini, where iconic white cubist architecture hugs the cliffs of an imposing caldera. Take one of the many walking paths around the island, dip in the pristine water, then savor fresh seafood at a taverna facing the aqua horizon. The next day, visit Akrotiri, one of the region’s most significant prehistoric settlements, where a local guide will shepherd you through Bronze Age ruins and well-preserved streets. 

After some time at the Archaeological Museum of Thera and the Museum of Prehistoric Thera, you’ll head to Crete, Greek’s largest inhabited island. There, you’ll visit the 3,500-year-old Palace of Knossos, then take a guided tour of Heraklion and its medieval streets. Enjoy an evening out in the Venetian city of Chania, then head to the ancient archeological site of Aptera in for a guided tour in the morning. 

On day ten, you’ll return to the mainland with a visit to Mycenae, home to the infamous couple Helen and King Agamemnon. Your guide will teach you about the site’s fascinating Cyclopean walls, the Lion Gate, and the Treasury of Atreus. Spend the rest of the day in Nafplio, a seaside town with the 15th century Bourtzi Castle in the middle of the harbor. Summit the 1,000 step climb to the clifftop Palamidi Castle, where you can enjoy stunning views of your final sunset in Greece. In the morning, it’s back to Athens and onto your next chapter. Learn more

Itinerary #4: Athens and Crete Family Adventure

See the highlights and learn the mythology of Athens before exploring the island of Crete on a family-friendly adventure. Kids of all ages will have a blast horseback riding, cooking, and trekking through the epic Samaria Gorge. 

Building a sandcastle on the shores of Crete
Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Athens, Welcome Dinner Athens
Day 2 Acropolis and Ancient Greek Mythology Tour Athens
Day 3 Athens to Chania Chania
Day 4 Trek Samaria Gorge Chania
Day 5 Chania Beach Day Chania
Day 6 Explore the Villages of Apokoronas Chania
Day 7 Family Cooking in the Botanical Park, Travel to Vamos Vamos
Day 8 Douliana & Almyrida Nature Walk and Beach Visit From Vamos Vamos
Day 9 Cretan Delicacies Vamos Tour Vamos
Day 10 Horseback Riding at Kournas Lake Vamos
Day 11 Return to Athens, Depart  


Your adventure begins in Athens, where you’ll spend your first two days visiting iconic landmarks, tasting local cuisine, and even seeing the Antikythera mechanism, an ancient astronomical computer housed in the impressive National Museum. You and your family will also take a guided mythology tour of the city, with stops at the Acropolis, Temple of the Olympian Zeus, and the Agora

Transfer the next morning to Crete, the largest of the Greek isles; you’ll arrive in Chania, a city and region in the northwest. Splash in the surf at beaches like Elafonissi or Falassarna, which is blanketed with vibrant pink sand. On day four, you’ll embark on an epic 11-mile trek through the stunning Samaria Gorge, a hike suitable for all ages. Rest your legs the next day with lots of time in the sand: visit the family-friendly shallow waters of Almyrida, the warm waves of Agia Roumeli, or Seitan Limania, which is close to the city. 

On day six, a guide will usher you through the villages of Apokoronas, home to old churches, Ottoman fort, and an ancient Minoan tomb dating back to the 13th century BCE! Immerse yourself in nature at the Botanical Park and Gardens of Crete, where an expert will help you pick fresh produce — ingredients for your Cretan cooking class. Stay in a traditional village guesthouse in Vamos; in the morning, you’ll take a guided walk to the ancient village of Douliana and go for a dip in the resort town of Almyrida. If all that walking has worked up an appetite, you’re in luck on day nine, when you and your family will learn about (and taste) specialties like local olive oils and cheeses.

Your final day on Crete begins with a spectacular family-friendly horseback ride around the turquoise waters of the Kournas Lake, which also makes the perfect picnic spot for lunch. Wander the charming town Rethymno, with its Venetian harbor and centuries-old lighthouse, then return for one more dinner at a taverna in Vamos. After breakfast the next morning, you’ll return to Athens and onto your next family adventure. Learn more

Itinerary #5: Mainland Greece Roadtrip

Perfect for history buffs, this road trip around the Peloponnese takes you to the heart of Classical Greece, with tours of ancient Athenian sites, a visit to Spartan and Olympian ruins, and plenty of time on the beach. 

The winding roads of Peloponnese
Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Athens, Welcome Dinner Athens
Day 2 Acropolis and Ancient Greek Mythology Tour Athens
Day 3 Travel to Nafplio Nafplio
Day 4 Nemea Winery Exploration Nafplio
Day 5 Mycenae and Epidaurus Day Trip Nafplio
Day 6 Castle of Mystras Mystras
Day 7 Areopoli & Mani Peninsula Areopoli
Day 8 Pylos & Palace of Nestor Pylos
Day 9 Olympia Archaeological Site to Nafpaktos Nafpaktos
Day 10 Visit Delphi, Travel to Galaxidi Galaxidi
Day 11 Return to Athens, Depart  


You’ll spend your first two days exploring Athens and taking a guided tour of Greek mythology and the real locations that inspired them — the Parthenon, Temple of Olympian Zeus, and ancient cemetery at Kerameikos among others. Enjoy the sunset in the ancient Plaka neighborhood over glasses of local wine or, if it’s open, gaze up at the heavens from the Athens Observatory.

On day three, you’ll hit the road. Your first stop is Nafplio, a seaside town featuring Bourtzi Castle, a 15th-century structure in the middle of the bay. Take a boat out to see where locals defended the city from pirates, or hike the 1,000 steps it takes to reach Palamidi Castle. The next morning, get a taste of the mainland with a day of wine exploration in Nemea, a wine-producing region known for it’s merlot-like for Agiorgitiko.

Dive deeper into history with stops at the ruins of Mycenae (and its mysteriously-built Cyclopean walls), followed by Epidaurus, an ancient city famous for its legendary healing powers and its acoustically phenomenal theater, built in the third century. You may even be able to see a performance on the ancient stage. The next day, you’ll visit the fortified town of Morea, home to Mystras, a Byzantine citadel, and UNESCO World Heritage Site. 

On day seven, your journey continues southward to the cobblestone villages of Mani; their stone tower houses and sea cliff panoramic views beg to be discovered. Spend the night in the restored village of Areopoli, where you can delight in freshly caught seafood at a taverna after exploring churches, stone architecture, and local shops. You’ll continue making your way down the Peloponnesian coast to the seaside town of Pylos, where you can spend the day wandering the Old Town or wade in the waves. 

Your final few days on the road are all about ancient life and myth with guided tours of Olympia and Delphi. That night, savor a portside dinner in Galaxidi, then wander its neoclassical houses as the moon rises over the peninsula. Enjoy a final breakfast, gazing out at the sea, before heading back to Athens for your next adventure. Learn more

Map

Map of 11 Days in Greece - 5 Unique Itinerary Ideas
Map of 11 Days in Greece - 5 Unique Itinerary Ideas