It’s possible to cruise the Greek Isles all year long, but the best time is May through October. July and August are the most popular months, and are also the region’s hottest: by cruising a bit earlier or later, you can enjoy smaller crowds and less heat. Many cruises call on one, two or all of the three most-visited Greek Isles: Mykonos, Rhodes and Santorini.
Mykonos has charming cobblestoned streets lined with artisans’ studios, shops and cafes. This island, known for gorgeous beaches, has a carefree atmosphere. Try some snorkeling or diving before visiting some of the many art galleries. Or, explore the interesting ruins on the nearby island of Delos, a popular shore excursion.
Rhodes is steeped in history, having been occupied since at least the 16th century BC. Stroll through the old town of Rhodes, a World Heritage site, or visit the village of Lindos, where the remains of an impressive acropolis overlook the sea. Unfortunately, the famous Colossus of Rhodes, a massive bronze statue of the Greek god Helios that once guarded the entrance to the harbor, was destroyed by an earthquake centuries ago.
Santorini is one of the world’s most magnificent-looking islands. Your ship will sail into the caldera of an ancient volcano overlooked by steep cliffs and the town of Fira. Take a cable car up to Fira to check out the delightful shops and soak in the view at one of the many cafes, or visit Akrotiri, an archeological site preserved under a thick layer 3,600-year-old volcanic ash.
Some cruises also visit islands not as well known as these three, but just as lovely. For example, a 10-night cruise offered by Regent Seven Seas that starts in Athens sails to Rhodes, Santorini, Mykonos and Lesbos before ending in Istanbul. A seven-night cruise by Royal Caribbean departs from Venice (Italy) for the Greek Isles of Corfu and Mykonos, then visits Dubrovnik (Croatia) before returning to Venice.
For more itinerary options for your Greek Isles cruise, talk Anita, with your Cruise Holidays personal cruise expert.