Best way to travel around Greece

Greece is an achingly beautiful country steeped in history and culture. Every year tourists from around the world travel to Greece for a swim in the beauty of Mediterranean, a stroll across ancient ruins and an appetizer on authentic Greek food.

As a seasoned traveler, let me tell you that the only way to get a real feel for Greece is by traveling from one place to another like this. The various kinds of transportation each have their own advantages and disadvantages. Today I will share you complete guide and list on best way to travel around Greece.

Key Takeaways

  • Buses: Convenient and budget-friendly for intercity travel. The extensive network is operated by KTEL and ΚΤΕΛ. Tickets are available at stations, kiosks, or online.
  • Trains: Ideal for exploring the mainland, offering scenic routes like Pelion Railway. Affordable tickets can be purchased at stations or online.
  • Ferries: Best for island exploration, connecting the mainland to islands. Major companies include Blue Star Ferries and Hellenic Seaways.
  • Domestic Flights: Time-saving option for longer distances. Airlines like Aegean Airlines operate from major airports. Check baggage restrictions and book in advance.
  • Renting a Car: Provides freedom and flexibility. Available at major cities and airports. Be aware of rental procedures and driver’s license requirements.

Also Read Best Way to Travel Around Scotland: Train/Bus/Cycling (2024)

Public Transportation Options: Best Way to Travel Around Greece

Getting around Greece couldn’t be easier with several public transportation options at your fingertips. From buses to trains, ferries, and domestic flights, choosing the right option can make a significant difference in your travel experience.


Buses are a convenient and budget-friendly option for intercity travel in Greece. The country has an extensive intercity bus network, operated by several companies, including KTEL and ΚΤΕΛ. Buses run on time, air-conditioned, and offer comfortable seats. Ticket prices vary depending on the destination, but they are generally affordable. You can purchase tickets at bus stations, ticket kiosks, or online.


Trains are another option for getting around Greece, mainly if you plan to explore the mainland. The country’s railway system is not as extensive as its bus network, but it provides an excellent way to explore scenic routes such as the Pelion Railway. Train tickets are affordable and can be purchased at train stations or online. However, train travel may not be suitable if you’re in a hurry or have limited time.


Ferries are the best way to explore Greece’s beautiful islands. With several ferry connections linking the mainland to the islands, you can hop from one island to the other, marveling at the beauty of the Aegean Sea. Major ferry companies in Greece include Blue Star Ferries, Hellenic Seaways, and Anek Lines, among others. You can choose between fast or slow ferries, depending on your preference and budget.

Domestic Flights

Domestic flights are a time-saving option for traveling around Greece, mainly if you have limited time or plan to cover larger distances. Domestic airlines operate flights from major airports, including Athens International Airport, Thessaloniki International Airport, and Heraklion International Airport, among others. Flights are available to several Greek islands as well. You can find affordable flights by comparing prices on airline websites or via travel search engines such as Expedia or Kayak.

When choosing the right public transportation option, consider your budget, travel time, and destination. Choose a mode of transportation that best suits your needs and preferences to make your trip enjoyable and memorable.

Renting a Car: Freedom and Flexibility

Renting a car in Greece is the perfect way to explore the country at your own pace, offering you unparalleled freedom and flexibility. Car rental services are widely available in major cities and airports, so you can easily find a car that suits your needs and budget.

Renting Procedures

To rent a car in Greece, you need to be at least 21 years old and hold a valid driver’s license for at least one year. International driving licenses are also accepted, but they are not mandatory. You can rent a car online or in person at a car rental office. When renting, make sure to check details such as pick-up and drop-off locations, fuel policies, and insurance coverage.

Driver’s License Requirements

Ensure that you have your driver’s license with you at all times while driving in Greece, as it is a legal requirement. If you don’t have an EU driving license, a valid international driving license must be carried with the original driver’s license from your country of origin. Failure to present relevant documentation may result in legal action or fines.

Tips for Driving in Greece

Driving in Greece can be a bit challenging, with narrow winding roads and steep mountainous terrains. Make sure to familiarize yourself with the local traffic rules, speed limits, and road signs. Always wear a seatbelt, and ensure that you have enough fuel before venturing into the countryside. With a car, you can access remote places not easily reached by public transport, such as secluded beaches and mountain villages.

Major Car Rental Services in Greece

CompanyWebsiteLocationPrice Range (per day)
Avishttps://www.avis.grAthens, Thessaloniki, Crete, Corfu, Rhodes, Santorini, and other major cities and islands.$30-$100
Enterprisehttps://www.enterprise.grAthens, Thessaloniki, Crete, Corfu, Rhodes, Santorini, and other major cities and islands.$25-$90
Hertzhttps://www.hertz.grAthens, Thessaloniki, Crete, Corfu, Rhodes, Santorini, and other major cities and islands.$35-$120
Budgethttps://www.budget.grAthens, Thessaloniki, Crete, Corfu, Rhodes, Santorini, and other major cities and islands.$20-$80

Car rental services are an excellent way of getting around Greece, offering the freedom to explore without restrictions, making it an ideal choice for those who want to see Greece at their own pace. With so many options available, you can find the perfect rental car for your needs and budget to ensure that you make the most of your Greek adventure.

Island Hopping in Greece: A Unique Experience

Island hopping in Greece is a must-do experience, offering an unforgettable adventure through the stunning Greek archipelago. With over 6,000 islands to explore, there’s something for everyone, from the cosmopolitan Mykonos to the tranquil Naxos.

The different island groups are the Cyclades, Dodecanese, Ionian, Sporades, and Saronic. The Cyclades islands are the most popular and include Santorini, Mykonos, and Paros. Each island group has its own distinct culture, history, and natural wonders to discover.

To explore the Greek islands, take advantage of the extensive ferry connections available. The Greek ferry system is efficient, reliable, and budget-friendly, making island hopping easily accessible to all travelers. Major ferry operators include Blue Star Ferries, Hellenic Seaways, and SeaJets.

Benefits of Island HoppingDrawbacks of Island Hopping
Unpredictable weather conditions travel timesDifficulty with finding accommodations during peak seasonUnpredictable weather conditionsLong travel timesDifficulty with finding accommodations during peak season

Island hopping in Greece is an adventure like no other. It provides the opportunity to immerse yourself in the country’s rich culture, history, and natural beauty. So pack your bags, grab your ferry tickets, and get ready for a journey of a lifetime!

Exploring Greece by Train: Scenic Journeys

If you’re looking for a unique way to explore Greece, consider train travel. The country’s railway system may not be as well-known as its bus or ferry networks, but it offers a different perspective on the country’s breathtaking scenery. One of the most scenic train routes is the Pelion Railway, which passes through the Pelion peninsula and offers stunning views of the Aegean Sea.

The railway system in Greece may not be as extensive as in other European countries, but it still provides convenient and comfortable travel options. Trains in Greece are generally punctual and affordable, making them a great option for budget-conscious travelers.

It’s important to note that not all parts of Greece are easily accessible by train. However, there are still several scenic routes to choose from, including the Athens-Thessaloniki line and the Athens-Kiato line. Trains in Greece often offer first and second-class options, with first-class providing more spacious and comfortable seating.

Train Travel Tips:

  • Book your tickets in advance for the best prices and seat selection.
  • Check the train schedules beforehand, as not all routes run daily.
  • Be prepared for delays, especially during peak tourist season.
  • Bring snacks and drinks onboard, as food options can be limited.
  • Enjoy the scenery and take plenty of photos!

Overall, train travel in Greece is a unique and enjoyable way to explore the country’s stunning landscapes. Whether you’re planning a scenic journey on the Pelion Railway or opting for a more practical route, the railway system in Greece provides an excellent alternative to other modes of transportation.

Adventure by Bus: Budget-Friendly and Convenient

If you’re looking for an affordable and convenient way to travel around Greece, then bus travel is a great option. The extensive intercity bus network connects all major cities and towns, making it easy to navigate and plan your journey.

Bus ticketing systems are straightforward to use, with many options available to suit different budgets and travel needs. From one-way tickets to multi-day passes, you can choose the best option for your itinerary.

One of the best things about traveling by bus in Greece is the opportunity to take in the stunning scenery along the way. Many popular bus routes offer breathtaking views of the countryside and coast, making for an immersive travel experience.

Intercity Bus Companies in Greece

Several intercity bus companies are operating in Greece. Here are a few of the most popular:

KTEL Attikis and Attica
Thessaloniki Bus Station Greece

Whether you’re traveling on a budget or just prefer the convenience of bus travel, exploring Greece by bus is a fantastic option. With a reliable intercity bus network, affordable ticketing options, and breathtaking scenery, it’s no wonder more and more travelers are choosing to adventure by bus.

Domestic Flights in Greece: Time-Saving Travel

If you are looking to cover larger distances quickly and save time, domestic flights in Greece are a great option. Greece has several major airports, including Athens International Airport, Thessaloniki International Airport, and Heraklion International Airport, among others. These airports are well-connected to different parts of the country, making domestic flying a convenient way to travel around Greece.

Greece has several domestic airlines, such as Aegean Airlines, Olympic Air, and Sky Express, that operate flights between major cities and popular tourist destinations. These airlines offer regular flights at affordable prices, making it easier for travelers to explore different parts of the country.

When booking your domestic flights in Greece, it’s important to keep a few things in mind. Firstly, be sure to check the baggage restrictions and fees imposed by the airlines. Also, consider booking your flights in advance to save money and ensure availability.

Overall, flying domestically in Greece is a time-saving and efficient way to travel around the country, allowing you to see more of its stunning landscapes and ancient wonders in a shorter amount of time.


What was the best way for the Greeks to travel around?

In ancient times, Greece had an extensive road network connecting even the most remote settlements. However, the easiest and most comfortable way to travel was by sea, especially as most of the more important urban centers were either on or near the coast.

What is the cheapest way to travel around Greece?

The cheapest way to travel around Greece can depend on various factors such as the number of people traveling, the distance, and the mode of transport. For short distances, train and bus services are relatively cheap and convenient. For longer trips, flights are surprisingly affordable. Ferries are usually affordable and worth shopping around on popular routes where various companies compete; slower boats are usually cheaper.

What is the best way to island hop around Greece?

The best method of Greek island hopping is by ferry. The Greek ferry network is comprehensive, so it’s easy to island-hop almost at will. The boats going between the islands include fast car ferries, slower traditional boats, sleek catamarans, and spidery hydrofoils known as “flying dolphins”.

Is it difficult to travel around Greece?

Getting around Greece isn’t a Herculean task. The country has an extensive network of planes, trains, and buses, as well as cities that can be easily explored on foot. Long-distance buses are well-organized, clean, and comfortable. Domestic airlines such as Aegean Airlines offer flights to all state capitals and many regional cities, making it easy to travel between iconic destinations. However, in cities and on popular islands, summertime congestion can be a significant problem.

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