Did you know that Greece is one of the oldest countries on earth? Its borders have been in the control of Grecians for over six millennia. Greeks brought the concepts of democracy and Western civilization to the rest of the world. This beautiful country played a key role in advancing law, science, architecture, art, science, religion, and literature. Greece is therefore excessively rich in culture and history.
In addition, Greece has a complex geology. The country straddles the African and European tectonic plates and has been gracefully sculpted by nature’s forces. As a whole, this southeastern European country is magnificent and regal. It has it all: thousands of stunning islands, volcanic formations, exquisite turquoise waters, and pristine beaches. Its ruins and monuments are unrivaled in quality and authenticity. Below are some of the most beautiful places in Greece.
8 Of The Most Beautiful Places in Greece
The land of the Greeks is definitely worth a spot in every traveler’s bucket list. There are so many beautiful historic places to tour. We’ve saved you the trouble of scouring the internet trying to find where to go first. Here are the eight most stunning places in Greece you should visit.
1. Parthenon Acropolis, Athens
Your visit to Athens would be incomplete without the food tour experience and a visit to the Acropolis. The Parthenon is the single most important historical site in all of Greece. It is also a sought-after destination by global travelers, its breathtaking beauty captivating all that sees it.
The Parthenon is composed of the ruins of an ancient classical Greece temple. They built it for the goddess Athena, the principal deity of the Athenians. It is over two thousand years old, spread on top of the Acropolis, a high hill in Athens.
The Acropolis of Athens is also known as the Sacred Rock. You will need to take a hike up its slippery rocky ground to get to the imposing temple at its very top.
The Acropolis’s elevation makes the Parthenon visible from most spots in downtown Athens. In ancient times, the Acropolis was a military base and fortress. Its view of the adjacent sea and land gave it a unique military advantage. In the Mycenaean age, it became a place to worship Athena after an oracle declared it so.
They erected three temples on the spot on top of earlier temples’ ruins in the classical period. In 480 BC, the temple at the Acropolis fell under the Persians. Pericles then rebuilt the Parthenon, beautifying it with classic Greek sculpting and architectural techniques. At its height of influence, the temple had cost the people of Athens over 469 silver talents.
This is the astronomical sum that made it into an impressive limestone and marble tower and one of the most important religious sites in Europe. The temple of Athena has been turned into a mosque and church in its lifetime. Sadly, most of its sculptures have been carted away. The Parthenon is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of the most beautiful places in Greece.
The literal translation of the word ‘Meteora’ is “hover in the air”. This term refers to the tall, magnificent rock formations that make up Meteora.
It is difficult to encapsulate all of Meteora’s beauty in words. First, its geology is extraordinary and its formation puzzling. Its bewildering rock rises are not your typical hard volcanic plugs. They are a composite of sand, stone, and mud conglomerate topped off with sandstone.
Their odd existence results from millions of years of earth movements, water, wind, and temperature-induced weathering. While these towering rock’s unusual shapes would wow any visitor, they are also archives of ancient history. Their caves have had human occupation for millennia, carrying artifacts as old as the Paleolithic age.
As if that were not enough, Meteora has a deep spiritual significance as well. It has been home to ascetic monks since the 9th century AD. The very first of these religious hermits made the rocks’ fissures and hollows their homes. In the early 11th century, more monks moved to Meteora to seek solitude in this magical place in Central Greece.
The 14th century brought about monasteries’ construction, as the monks sought refuge from Turkish attackers higher up the rocks. At Meteora’s spiritual peak, it was home to 24 monasteries. The rock’s inhabitants would use baskets or mobile ladders to travel up and down the cliff sides. Today, there are only six functional monasteries left in Meteora.
All the geology, history, and spiritual wealth in Meteora make it a photographer, hikers, history buff, and nature lovers’ paradise. It is also a UNESCO World Heritage and Natural site. Its most popular attractions include the Holy Trinity or Agia Triada monastery. There is also the Saint John the Baptist church, Varlaam monastery, the Katholikon, and the 1545 Roussanou monastery.
3. Delphi Archaeological Site
Ancient Greek women hardly held any positions of significance politically or religiously. They were mostly second to men, with no rights. Few of them ever made it past societal limitations.
Be that as it may, the Oracle at Delphi cracked this gender-biased ceiling. This lone female figure held so much power in that era that she had the final say in all crucial decisions.
The oracle at Delphi held office for a millennium as a result becoming the focus of the entire ancient world. Hers was religious, economic, and political power.
Today, the Delphi archaeological site stands as a testimony of her influence. According to Greek mythology, it is at Delphi that young Apollo slays the giant Delphyne, a dragon or, in other accounts, Python, a monstrous serpent.
The Delphi site lies at an altitude of 1800ft, perching between the two spurs of Mount Parnassus. The oracle was Apollo’s voice, the Greek god of music, light, prophecy, and healing. This makes the site as crucial to the history of the Greeks as the Acropolis of Athens. The massive sanctuary has a rich heritage and was the center of the world according to Greek myth.
A priceless gem and one of the most beautiful places in Greece, visit Delphi ruins to immerse yourself in an ancient culture in this historic site. It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, with classical attractions, for example, the Sacred Way, the Doric style Temple of Apollo, and the Polygonal Wall.
The temple’s ancient foundations are still standing strong. The remains of the Treasury that housed Apollo’s offerings and the theatre that hosted the Pythian Games are magnificent. You will also view the Stadion with its tiered stone seats, the Castalian Spring, and the Tholos.
The Greek Islands
The exotic islands of Greece are some of the most popular tourist spots in the world. Every year, thousands of wanderlusters converge in them to enjoy the wide range of attractions they hold.
Greece has over 2,000 islands covered with ancient ruins, active volcanoes, gorgeously golden, white, and black sand beaches, and colorful harbors.
The most popular of these islands are the Cyclades. On the southern waters of Greece, they are also the most exquisite postcard-perfect places on earth. They are an excellent blend of mountains, ruins, and cubistic white-washed villages.
The Cyclades borrow their name from the word ’round’. They form a cyclic shape around Delos, the Aegean Sea’s sacred island.
Since the Cyclades are one of the most beautiful places in Greece, they have a very high tourist turnover. They can be crowded in summer, the high tourist season. Some of the most popular of the Cyclades include;
Delos lies in the center of the Cyclades. The little island only measures 3km² (350.64 ha). According to Greek lore, it is the home of Artemis and Apollos.
In Ancient Greece, Delos had substantial religious and political clout. It held Apollo’s temple and was an important trading center in the second and first centuries AD.
Its rocky Mediterranean port attracted the ancient world’s wealthiest shipowners, merchants, and bankers in their dozens. In turn, they brought in artists, builders, and artisans that would build them decadent living spaces in the 2nd century AD.
The island’s prosperity declined with attacks and was eventually abandoned. It was later occupied, and its beautiful lime columns burned for reuse. That said, it has loads of attractions left. There is the House of Dionysius, the Terrace of the Lions, and the Sacred Harbor.
Milos is a colorful slice of heaven. A volcanic island, it has exotic features and magnificent landscapes that will capture your attention for a lifetime.
Milos has at least 40 gorgeous beaches. It is also an island rich in history, culture, indigo bays, and fishing villages. Its enchanting beauty shines the most on Sarakiniko beach’s moonscape.
This is one of the most Instagrammed places in Greece. However, this stunning beach is not your typical beach. It has very little sand. It is mostly a rocky beach covered in ash and pumice stone, giving it a bleached look. This unique beach and its turquoise waters make Milos one of the most beautiful places in Greece.
Kleftiko is another popular of Milos’ beaches. Kleftiko or the Bandits’ Lair was popular with pirates. The beach has elaborate caves, striking clear water, and grand geological formations. It is only accessible via a boat ride. Milos is the original home of the Venus de Milo, now at the Louvre.
Visit it in April and May to enjoy its blooming greenery contrasted by blue water and white rocky shores.
Tinos is the spiritual core of Greece. An enchanting island, it has a deep religious significance to the Catholic and the Greek Orthodox.
The name Tinos is the name of the island’s principal city as well. The island hosts large numbers of ecumenical pilgrims who boat in to worship at the churches of the Blessed Virgin Mary and Panagia Megalochari.
In summer, Tinos has a wide variety of festivities and excellent culinary fun courtesy of the pilgrimages. Tinos lies in the Cyclades’ northern curve, and besides its rich religious history, it also has pristine sandy beaches and beautiful Cycladic houses. It has 40 old villages cradling its beaches and scattered all over its hilltops.
The little towns of Ktikado, Tripotamos, Loutra, Pyrgos, and Kardiani have some of the most charming squares shrouded by aging sycamore trees. The island’s calming atmosphere and culture are deeply enchanting. Visit Tinos for exhilarating hikes and a good deal of water sport activities.
The island of Naxos is the largest of all Cyclades islands. It is home to excellent fare and scenery. Come to Naxos and feast like a god. Naxos is a stunner and the most self-sufficient of all islands in the Aegean.
Lore has it that Dionysus blessed Naxos with fertility. The god of wines regards and its high elevation traps clouds, bringing an abundance of rain. For this reason, Naxos is rich in local cuisine.
You will find cattle, sheep, and goats gnawing on wild thyme and oregano in the uplands. Rabbits and chicken lay hidden amongst its veggie-rich gardens, accentuating its idyllic feel. The local liqueur, Kitron, is unforgettable. Naxos is not as popular as Santorini or Mykonos, so it is less touristy – perfect for travelers who enjoy going off the beaten path.
It has a lot of ancient sites and monuments. Its imposing green valleys and mountains circled by gorgeous beaches make it as exquisite as any Greek islands. One of Naxos’ most popular historical monuments is the Portara. It is the last gate of the temple of Apollo.
The island’s main urban area is Chora. Chora has a magnificent Venetian castle, and it will charm you with its beautiful white-washed architecture.
Santorini’s elegance is world-renowned. The island of Santorini is the face of all Greek islands and tops the list of the most beautiful places in Greece.
Santorini is surrounded by the tiny islands of Asproníssi, Thíra, Palea, Nea Kaméni and Thirassiá. Together they form a crescent shape in the Cyclades southernmost tip.
The picturesque Santorini sits atop an active volcano that has a crater under the sea. It is from this submarine volcanic activity that the islands came to be. On this account, Santorini is not just a romantic exquisite island but a geological museum as well.
The island’s sunsets are epic, and its towns look like painting masterpieces as they perch up high on the edges of the island’s cliffs. Some of Santorini’s smaller villages are restful and easy and have excellent views of the Aegean. Here you will find lots of vineyards, castles, and culture. The islands have exquisite deep blue waters and red, black, and white pebbled beaches.
Will you visit Greece this year?
Greece is in a league of its own as far as charm, culture, history, pleasant weather, and outstanding vistas go. To view its most beautiful places, visit these unforgettable locations.
We’d love to hear from you and how your vacation in Greece went on. Hit us up in the comments section below and tell us what you visited.