By Marissa Tejada
There are several amazing Greek island day trips from Athens you can plan for. Greece’s ancient yet modern capital is the primary entry point to Greece, rich with archaeological sites, vibrant nightlife and unique urban flair. Athens is also a launching pad for Greek island excursions that are perfect day trips, each one just about an hour ferry ride away.
Here’s a look at the most popular Greek island day trips from Athens. You can easily organize a taxi from Athens airport to the ferry terminal by pre-booking before arrival.
Just 15 minutes on a ferry departing from the Port of Perama (west of the Athens port city of Piraeus), takes you over the waterway that was once the scene of the most strategic game-changing battles of ancient Greece: Battle of Salamina.
Today, Salamina is a quiet island destination where many working class Athenians head out for the weekend to get away from city life at their summer cottages. If you are looking for stunning waters set in a relaxed, low key atmosphere — this is a day trip for you.
Some of the top beaches include Psili Ammos, Iliakti, Aeanteio, and the southern beaches of Selinia, Saterli and Kaki Vigla. Also worth visiting is the Fanoromeni Monastery and the Archaeological Museum of Salamina.
With one of the most stunning island harbors in all of Greece, Hydra is the gem of the Saronic Gulf. It’s also unique as the only Greek island free of any cars.
Here donkeys do the heavy lifting and transport, adding to the rustic feel of the island. Admire the noble stone architecture and get lost in Hydra Town’s inviting maze of stone paths and bougainvillea drenched lanes.
If you get inspired to be creative, you wouldn’t be alone. Artists and writers including Arthur Miller, Leonard Cohen, Melina Mercouri and Sophia Loren all have visited and stayed for a while.
Just a one hour ferry ride takes you to Poros island, where Poros Town greets visitors at its port and is the main town to explore, lined with stone paths, cobbled lanes and a hilltop clock tower with stunning views.
There are beautiful beaches too including sandy Askeli and Love Bay which is bordered by fragrant pine forests.
Aegina is one of the closest islands to Athens, only 16.5 nautical miles from the port of Piraeus. The ancient Aphea Temple is a must-see site, and forms an equilateral triangle with the Parthenon of Athens and the Temple of Poseidon at Sounion in southern Athens; often referred to as the “holy triangle” of the antiquity.
Aegina Town is the main town, lined with historical buildings, museums, shops and cafes. There are many smaller villages including Kypseli, Agii and Vagia and beach resorts like Agia Marina, Perdika and Souvala.
Just under an hour ferry ride from the port of Piraeus is Agistri – often overlooked by international tourists – making it a calm island getaway for a day or a weekend.
The landscape here is strewn with greenery and pine trees that meet aqua blue waters. There are four towns to explore including Megalochori, Skala, Limenaria, and Metochi. The best beaches are Halkiada, Dragonera and the tiny island beach of Aponisos.
For a Day Trip or Weekend
That sums up the best Greek island day trips from Athens, each one is explorable within a day or if you have more time, for a weekend.
During the summer season, frequent ferry connections between many of the islands make it possible to plan a few days of island hopping.
GUIDES WE RECOMMEND FOR GREECE: CLICK PHOTO TO LOOK INSIDE ↓
INSPIRED?! PIN THIS TO YOUR TRAVEL PINTEREST BOARDS ↓