The road to Parnassus shelter

Winter holidays in Greece

Greece's bright light welcomes you to experience the most unexpected winter holidays of your life
By Michael-Deffner
Greece's bright light welcomes you to experience the most unexpected winter holidays of your life
READING TIME
As long as it takes to eat a Greek salad

The tireless Mediterranean sun doesn’t stop to rest even in winter. The sun warms the landscape, just as it does even the chilliest spirit on the frostiest days of winter in Greece. These clear bright days are so beautiful that the Greeks call them ‘the joy of God’.

During your winter holidays in Greece, dress up warm and visit one or several of the many winter destinations you’ll find on the map.

In the famous mountain villages in the north or the Peloponnese, take a walk down the cobbled lanes and admire the traditional architecture. In your comfy B&B or cosy taverna, seated by the fire, you’ll find that Greece’s classic products – cheeses, hand-kneaded bread, olives, extra-virgin olive oil – taste even better than in the city.

You’ll dine on hearty soups and grandmothers’ recipes for local meat and vegetables produced right next door. They’ll be accompanied by home-brewed drinks from wine to raki and ouzo. In the morning, you’ll wake up with tea made from mountain herbs and homemade jams. 

Popular winter destinations in Greece 

An early morning stroll takes you through evergreen forests and to hamlets with glorious views along the way. If it has snowed, you’ll want to visit Greece’s ski resorts and enjoy your favourite winter sports. The snow queen here is Arahova with its lady in waiting, Livadi, below the Parnassos ski centre, considered Greece’s best. There are top hotels and non-skiers can go horse-riding or mountain-biking.

From Pelion’s ski resort at Agriolefkes, you can combine winter sports with exploring the mountains’ famed villages. Other excellent ski resorts can be found at Falakro (Drama), Kaimaktsalan, Vasilitsa, Seli, Karpenissi, Elatohori and Kalavryta. They’re all set in spectacular locations, conveniently close to archaeological sites, Byzantine monuments and hamlets virtually untouched by tourism.

Life in the big cities

Winter is when the cities come into their own. The mild winters of Athens and Thessaloniki make them ideal winter destinations for a quick getaway. Patras, Volos, Naoussa, Veria and Ioannina also have rewards for a winter break: walks, shopping, and entertainment, particularly during the holiday season. Winter is also a time to revel in the season’s festivals. Carnival in Patras, for example, is renowned throughout Greece.

In Kastoria, you might want to check out the Ragoutsaria, a three-day period of music played on traditional brass instruments, dancing, food and wine that has its roots in Dionysian rituals. And at Epiphany on January 6, you’ll want to see the Blessing of the Waters, though you probably won’t be tempted to dive for the cross thrown by the priest into the icy cold sea.

Plan your trip

Outdoor activities

Vikos Gorge Hike

Zagori Epirus Ioannina
Vikos Gorge Crossing! A fascinating hike in one of the most stunning gorges of Europe.
From: 70 €
Culture

Meteora susnet tour

Meteora Thessaly & Sporades
Join the ultimate small-sized sunset tour in Meteora and discover the hidden gems of this area! A 'life-seeing' experience rather than a sight-seeing experience.
From: 35 €

Read Also

Here is a selection of stories you may also like
Mount Olympus summit. The "Throne of Zeus" 2.919m

12 destinations that gave life to Greek mythology

Nature… the true guardian of Mt Olympus

7 magical getaways just 60mins from Thessaloniki

The peak of Mt Olympus

8 mythical experiences on Mt Olympus

Litohoro village is the starting point for day trips on the mountain

7 Olympian-sized reasons to discover Pieria

Hiking to the Black Cave and Via Ferrata

11 ways to reconnect with nature in Central Greece

Caldera view in Santorini

12 incredible places in Greece you have to see to believe

Leonidas Giannakopoulos - Eternal traveler, Metaxourgeio

Where to find the best street art in Athens

From the beautiful chapel of Agios Konstantinos nearby, you can look out beyond Livadi onto Cycladic islands… Sifnos, Milos and (on clear days) Tinos and Mykonos

Discover the 10 best things to do in Serifos

Ancient Parthenon Acropolis Athens

10 Best things to do in Athens with kids

Nothing keeps a true traveller-at-heart from the pleasure of exploring

6 Best Covid-friendly strolls in Athens

Who hasn’t dreamed of visiting Santorini The iconic caldera and chic Cycladic aura are part of you even before you’ve arrived.

12 Unforgettable things to do in Santorini

Mount Olympus summit. The "Throne of Zeus" 2.919m

12 destinations that gave life to Greek mythology