Whether you’re looking for a luxury getaway or a budget break to Greece, there’s something affordable for all. From the ancient history of Athens, where you’ll find UNESCO heritage sites such as the Acropolis, to the rich history of islands including Rhodes and Crete, the crystal-clear seas and pristine beaches of the Ionian and Aegean seas are sure to delight.
Combined with excellent-value food and drink (think seafood, olive oil and ouzo), you’ll find nightlife aplenty here, especially on Mykonos or Zante, and in the cosmopolitan city of Athens. Greece adopted the Euro (EUR) as its currency in 2001.
Dining out in Greece
With some of the finest and tastiest food in the world, Greek food has a history going back 4,000 years and changes depending on season and geography. You’ll find vegetables, olive oil, fish, wine, grains (mainly wheat) and meat (lamb, poultry, veal, beef, rabbit and pork) in abundance. Olives, are a staple of the Greek diet and add a savoury, herbal note to Greek cuisine. A three-course meal for two people in a mid-range restaurant will cost between £22-£36.
Specialities to try include dolmades, vine leaves stuffed with rice and minced lamb, and souvlaki, grilled meat skewers served with pitta bread and tzatziki, a refreshing yoghurt-based sauce.
Everyone is aware of moussaka, the classic Greek take on lasagne – layers of mincemeat, tomatoes, garlic, onion, aubergine and potatoes, topped with béchamel sauce and baked to perfection.
Greece is also famous for spanakopita – spinach pie with herbs and cheese, covered in flaky pastry.
A main meal will cost you between £6.30 and £13.50 in an inexpensive restaurant.
The price of drinks
A 500ml bottle of domestic beer costs between £2.70 and £4.50 in a restaurant in Greece.
A 750ml bottle of wine will cost you between £4.50 and £7.15 from a local supermarket.
White-wine lovers should sample Thea Mantinia 2016 Semeli – a full-bodied white with notes of stone fruit and floral aromas that goes well with creamy pasta dishes. For reds, try Domaine Lyrarakis Okto Red; a spicy wine from Crete with notes of fresh berries and touch of black pepper.
The national drink of Greece is ouzo, an anise-flavoured spirit that is traditionally served either with ice or very cold water. It’s clean and refreshing, and a great pairing with Greek food.
Drinking tap water in Athens is safe, but is not recommended on Greek islands and mainland towns. A 1.5-litre bottle from a local supermarket will cost between 30p–90p.
Out and about
Start your visit with a trip to the capital city, Athens, with a tour of the Acropolis. Costing from £26, a tour of the most famous site in Athens, situated in the centre of the city will give you the chance to explore a number of ancient ruins. If you have time, it’s worth visiting the museum too, with entrance from around £4.50.
Staying in Athens, make a visit to the old town, Plaka. A lovely part of the city, this historic neighbourhood is located as the base of the hill down from the Acropolis. Here you’ll find great shops to browse and restaurants and cafes to enjoy.
A Delphi day trip will include a fascinating tour the temple of Apollo, its museum and monuments. From Athens, a trip will cost from around £66.
If you enjoy being on water, try a sunset sail on a catamaran in Santorini. Explore the stunning coastline at sunset and relax on Santorini’s beaches with barbecue included, from £95.
A private tour of Rhodes Town will give you the chance to explore the old and new town, rich in architectural history, with a mix of classical, medieval, Ottoman and Italian styles merging together in a maze of quaint cobbled streets.
How much spending money should I take to Greece?
You should budget for around £45 per person per day for your visit to Greece or £315 per week, to include all food and excursions. Or try an all-inclusive deal.
Tipping in Greece
In restaurants, some bills will be rounded up already, but tip 5-10% of the bill for good service. In bars, one or two euros per round of drink, at your discretion, will be appreciated.
In hotels, tip housekeepers one euro per day and concierge a few euros for good service.
In taxis, tips are not expected but round up the fare to the nearest euro or tip the driver between 5-10% of the total fare.
*Prices correct at the time blog was published and are subject to availability. T&C’s apply.