Athens is not only the cultural epicenter of Greece and Europe, but also a place that you can use as your base to explore some of the little greek islands around it. The greek islands near Athens provide a glimpse to the past with their cute fish villages and their unique green mediterranean landscape and the great thing is that they are all very well connected to Athens making them ideal for a daytrip (or 2…). Here are the best greek island tours from Athens:
BEST GREEK ISLAND TOUR FROM ATHENS: Hydra, Poros & Aegina Day Cruise with lunch
I am not going to lie to you: you should not even start trying to search for cruises or tours that will take you to Santorini or Mykonos from Athens and back in a day. It’s just not posible because these 2 islands are way too far and it takes 3-5 hours with a ferry to reach them. And back.
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THINGS TO KNOW ABOUT GREEK ISLAND TOURS FROM ATHENS
- All Athens boat tours depart from the ferry port of Piraeus (or Pireas). Here it is on Google Maps.
- You can always arrange your own ferry ticket to an island near Athens through booking from Ferryhopper, but you won’t get any guide or a full tour experience.
- The best islands near Athens to visit are Egina (Aegina), Hydra and Spetses. These are the most culturally rich as well with centuries of naval (and not only) history and are all worth at least 2-3 hours stay.
- Aegina is the famous “pistachio island”. In fact, the word for pistachio in greek is literally “Egina’s nut”. You will see them all over the island, and they are considered some of the best in the world.
- Hydra island is the famous island where this holywood movie was shot back in 1957.
- Spetses island and its surroundings are famous for being the greek tycoons’ Mediterranean heavens, with many of the richest greeks actually having villas in the area.
- There are not that many accessible beaches in those islands and your tour operator might choose to let you swim in just a random bech somewhere which is usually even better as these are the most magical ones.
- If you have more time than just a day trip from Athens, I highly recommend you stay 1 night in Hydra or Spetses as they are both super cute islands and are ideal for a weekend stay.
RECOMMENDED WEBSITES FOR GREECE:
Booking.com is the website with the most available rooms and Private Villas in Athens, Santorini , Mykonos & Crete (more than Airbnb!)
Ferryhopper is the best website to book your ferry tickets or check the timetables for Santorini, Mykonos , Crete & all greek islands
Get Your Guide has the best and largest variety of Tours in Athens and the greek islands (Santorini, Mykonos, Crete etc)
Rentalcars is the easiest way to rent a car or a quad for Greece with thousands of available options
Expedia has all the available flights to and from the greek islands