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Greece - Traveling

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Entry requirements

Organizing your trip

Means of transport recommended in town

In Athens there are trolley buses (ILPAP), regular buses (ETHEL) and three metro lines. Tickets for buses and trolley buses can be purchased from the Athens Urban Transport Organization (OASA) at various booths and kiosks situated around the city. Only Bus Line number 040 (Syntagma - Piraeus) and the bus lines to the Airport operate 24-hour schedules. The two Tram lines are perfectly integrated with the rest of the Athens metro network, the underground and the suburban line, creating an urban network of rail transport 156 km long.
In Thessaloniki there is regular bus service. Tickets can be purchased from the Thessaloniki Urban Transport Organization (OASTH) desks.
Athens has a reliable subway system (ISAP) that consists of three major lines. The old line runs north-south between Athens (suburb of Kifissia). Line 2 runs between Sepolia and Dafni and line 3 runs between Ethiniki Amyna and Syntagma. Tickets can be purchased at every Metro and ISAP station. The construction of the Thessaloniki metro started in June 2006 and should be completed by late 2012.
Maps of urban networks: Map of Athens and Thessaloniki metro

Means of transport recommended in the rest of the country

The rail network serves the main towns.
The maritime network is extensive. Safety conditions for ferry and car-ferry links conform to international regulations. They are very frequent, especially in summer.
Frequent delays are typical at Athens airport, as the airspace is saturated particularly in the summer period.
Name Type Domestic flights International flights
Olympic Airlines Major Yes Yes
Aegean Air Major Yes Yes

Traveling by yourself

Recommendation: The main motorway network links Athens to Patras (Peloponnese) to the south and Salonika to the north. The motorways are generally good quality but the rest of the road network is sometimes in bad condition. The fatal accident rate is the highest in the EU countries, mainly because of speeding and the bad state of the roads.
Find an itinerary: Mappy


Different forms of tourism

Historical: - In Athens : the Acropolis
- Péloponnèse : Mycènes, Epidaure, Olympie
- The Mount Athos
- The Cyclades : Mykonos, Thilos, Santorini
- The Dodécanèse islands : Rhodes
- Crete.
Cultural: For art and culture, visit the Greek National Tourism Organisation (in Greek).
Nature: Evros and Axios rivers, Mt Olympus, The Pindus Mountain. For further information visit the Greek National Tourism Organisation.
Thermal: There are many spas all over the country.
Beach: Discover the fabulous beaches of Greece and the Greek Islands, just one of the many reasons that Greece is one of the most spectacular destinations on the planet. There are volcanic red, black, and white sand beaches, pebble beaches, crystal clear blue Aegean waters and interesting covers to explore.
For sea tourism (including water sports, cruises, yachts, marinas) please click here
Winter sports: Over the past decades skiing has witnessed a spectacular rise in popularity among Greeks.  At present, 19 ski resorts operate on the mainland meeting modern standards, which lend themselves to the development of winter tourism and are particularly popular with both Greek and foreign visitors.
Outdoor activities: Rambling, Diving, Bicycle touring, Golf

Living conditions

Health and safety

Health precautions: No vaccinations are required before entering the country. For visitors at high risk of rabies infection, vaccination should be considered. A yellow fever vaccination certificate is required from all travelers over six months of age coming from infected areas.
Although Greece is geographically situated in southeast Europe, health precaution measures that apply in this country’s case are the same as those for traveling to Western Europe. Tourists visiting Greece in the summer must keep in mind that the sun radiation and the heat may be very intense.
For further information on sanitary conditions: The American government’s Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Time difference and climate

Map of the time zone: Athenes (GMT+2 in Winter, GMT+3 in Summer)
Summer time period: From March to October.
Climate: The average temperatures in Athens are in January of 10°C and June of 30°C.
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Food specialties: - Kourabiedes (butter biscuits): a thick, moist biscuit served traditionally on New Year’s Day.
- Tiropita: flaky pastry with Feta which is the traditional Greek cheese (a mild, ewe’s milk cheese).
- Feta salad: a salad of tomatoes and cucumbers with feta.
- Dolmatdakia me rizi: stuffed vine leaves.
- Tzatziki: yoghurt and cucumber, used in Greece as an hors d’oeuvre or as a sauce to accompany aubergines, fried courgettes or grilled fish.
- Moussaka: aubergine gratin.
- Melitzanosalata: aubergine salad.

In addition, you can find a wide variety of olives such as Kalamata or Bolos, accompanied by a glass of Ouzo which is the traditional Greek drink.
Drinks: Wines are made throughout much of Greece, but the most traditional is the white Retsina. Other popular whites include Boutari and Cambas, which come from the island of Santorini.  The island of Crete is also known for a variety of good red wines.  The most popular Greek beer is Mythos.
Ouzo is by far the most popular aperitif in Greece and it has a strong anise-flavor.  This liqueur is served with a small glass of ice water, and when the two are combined they form a cloudy refreshing drink. It is very common to have an ouzo during appetizers.
Dietary taboos: No restrictions.


Getting some knowledge: Learn basic Greek.
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