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ISLAND GUIDE: 72 Hours In Greece

Image of Santorini - Luke Latty on Contiki

When you think of Greece, you generally think of the idyllic Greek Islands, crystal clear waters, beaches, white domed cycladic homes, cheap eats and beautiful pastel coloured sunsets.

But don’t be fooled, as Greece is for everyone, from the history buffs, the culture fiends,the foodies and the sun seekers, to the night-life lovers and die-hard fashionistas.

This is what 72 hours in Greece should look like. Ultimate summer holiday much?

1. GET CULTURED IN ATHENS

First things first, Athens. If you’re into history, Athens is a must-do. Get amongst all the action by doing a locally guided walking tour, where you’ll get to learn more about the fascinating ancient history of this incredible city. The Plaka district is the oldest section of Athens and a short walk from the famous Acropolis and Parthenon. Once you get to the top, soak in the crisp summer air over Athens as you take in the city from all angles.

Image of Athens by Luke Latty for Contiki
Image of Athens - Contiki

2. EAT LIKE A LOCAL

Taste the local mediterranean flavours in Greece, where the wine is cheaper and the meals are richer in flavour. Wine n’ dine at a taverna, or hit up a rooftop bar. The Greek cuisine involves plenty of freshly cooked seafood, meats, gyros, bread, moussaka and salad, so you can munch to your hearts content feeling (relatively) guilt free.

READ: 11 of the best cheap Greek eats 

Image of Athens dinner - Contiki
A plate of pasta with octopus and vegetables, inspired by the flavors experienced during 72 hours in Greece.
Gyros - Contiki

3. EXPLORE THE ISLAND OF SANTORINI

No trip to Greece would be complete if you didn’t explore the Greek Islands, especially when you want to escape from the heat of the city in Athens. If you’re strapped for time, why not feed your wanderlust and visit the infamous Santorini – an island that will make your jaw hit the floor with its overwhelming natural beauty and rugged landscapes. Visit the town of Fira, go shopping for souvenirs, head to a winery and finish the day by watching the sunset in Oia (pronounced ‘i a’).

The volcanic landscape, white washed buildings and breathtaking scenery set against the deep blue Aegean sea is enough to have you packing your bags and jumping on the first Greece bound flight.

READ: 9 ways to explore Santorini 

Airlie Walsh in Santorini with Contiki
Image of Santorini, shot by Luke Latty - Contiki
Santorini - Contiki

4. JUMP ON A BOAT RIDE

Want to see active volcanic islands and the full landscape of Santorini? Be sure to jump on a greek islands boat cruise which will take you to the volcanic island of Nea Kamini. There you’ll cruise past lava formations and get up close and personal with the active crater. This is a perfect swim stop for you to soak up the atmosphere of the islands.

READ: A Quick guide to Santorini with A pair & a spare 

Image of boat trip in Santorini - Contiki
A man standing on a boat in the water during his 72 hours in Greece.

5. FINISH THE DAY WITH A SPECTACULAR SUNSET

Wherever you are in Greece, whether it’s Santorini, Mykonos, or Ios, the sunset is unlike anything you’ve ever seen before. Santorini, however gives you the ultimate ‘pinch me, i’m dreaming’ moment. The best place to witness a magical sunset is in the village of Oia. Grab yourself a glass of wine and watch the sun go down with your mates.

READ: Life Without Andy Adventures in Santorini with Contiki 

Image of Santorini sunset in Oia - Contiki

Stop dreaming and make sh*t happen!

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