Greece is usually a popular destination in the summer and spring time. However, Greece has so much to offer during the winter time and here is a full guide for you.
Kourabiedes copyright Photographer: Adrianna Anastasiades
The traditional festivities
There are many traditional winter festivities carried out in Greece, but they mainly revolve around eating and drinking. In Greece and Cyprus it has always been a yearly tradition to bake Greek cookies called Melomakarona and Kourabiedes.
Melomakarona are egg shaped biscuits with the main ingredient being honey and they have nuts as a topping. Kourabiedes are almond cookies with icing sugar on top. These cookies are sold between November and December in patisseries and bakeries all over Greece.
Many people know that in the Greek culture they have alcohol spirits such as Ouzo, Raki and Tsipouro, but what they don’t know is that Greece has a drink called Rakomelo (Raki and honey).
You can get this drink all year round, but it is especially popular during the winter periods because it’s a warm drink. The flavour profile and ingredients for this drink represents the winter time, because it has honey and cinnamon inside. It’s also like a magic potion, since it’s known to help treat sore throats and coughs.
Rakomelo copyright Photographer: Adrianna Anastasiades
For New Year’s day, many Greek families like to gather round and cut the Vasilopita, which can be a cake or bread. Inside the Vasilopita is a hidden coin and whoever receives it has good luck in the new year ahead.
Where to go in Greece
Even though the Greek islands are always popular choices in the summer time, it’s actually best to stick to the mainland in Greece. There are so many beautiful towns, cities and areas to visit and are the perfect winter destinations.
Pixabay – Photos_kast
Meteora is known by many people around the world for its incredible monasteries that are nestled on top of the giant cliff tops. Even though many tourists visit during the summer time, it actually makes it an ideal destination to visit in the winter time because it has some of the most breathtaking views that you will ever see. You can stay at Kalabamka town, which is near Meteora, giving you a gorgeous view to wake up to.
You can catch a train from Athens to Meteora which would cost you 120 euros return and its a 4 hour ride both ways, or you can take a coach there which would be cheaper, but a 5-6 hour ride.
Arachova copyright Photographer: Adrianna Anastasiades
Arachova is considered to be the winter version of Mykonos, but don’t worry, because you can have an affordable holiday there. Arachova is known to have incredible views of mountains and the countryside, as well as a skiing resort and plenty of options for tavernas and bars. Arachova is a 2 hour drive from Athens, but it has a completely different atmosphere that you would love.
You can get the KTEL bus from Liossion bus station in Athens and it is a 3 hour journey. Prices can range between €15 – 30 euros.
Delphi copyright Photographer: Adrianna Anastasiades
Delphi is a town that has historical monuments and ancient grounds that you can explore. The town is small, but it has a high street that you can visit and panoramic views of other towns nearby. It’s a 15 minute drive from Arachova and a 2 hour drive from Athens.
You can catch the KTEL bus from Liossion bus station in Athens and it’s a 3 hour journey. Prices range between €15 – 30 euros.
Even though Pelion is a known destination for it’s crystal clear blue waters, it’s actually a great town to visit in the winter time too. Here you will find a town covered in a blanket of snow and trees that has golden leaves. It’s truly magical.
It’s a 3 hour drive from Athens, or you can catch the KTEL bus or train which is a 4 hour journey. Price ran range between €20 – 40 euros.
Thessaloniki is the perfect city to visit during the winter period, because you get to be part of a lively atmosphere and also experience the winter festivities that they have. This city is known to serve food in big portions, which is why you must dine at a local taverna and have a taste of the Greek cuisine.
Thessaloniki has an airport, but if you’re planning on travelling from Athens to this city, it can be a 5 hour drive by car or KTEL bus, or you can get the train that’s 5 hours long. Prices can be between €19 – 30 euros.
The Weather in Greece
When it comes to the weather in Greece during the winter period, it can actually change yearly. Temperatures can range from 20 to 10 degrees.
However, regardless of what the weather temperature is like, the best kind of clothes to bring for the winter period are light sweaters, trench coats or puffer jackets, thick leggings and comfortable shoes.