Greece is a country rich in history, culture, and natural beauty. From the ancient ruins of Athens to the breathtaking landscapes of Mount Olympus, there is something for every traveler to explore. If you’re looking for a recommended round-trip itinerary that covers the best of Greece in 10 days, then look no further! In this post, we’ll take you through a detailed itinerary that starts in Athens and covers several other destinations across the country.
In 2021 (I know, I’m super slow a posting about my travels) my brother and I spent just over 2 weeks in Greece, we do move faster than most travelers which is why I have committed our trip to Crete from this suggested road trip. This trip will be full of visiting ancient archeology sites, major city visits, and a dash of adventure.
Here is what the route will look like:
Round trip from Athens to Athens, the total distance will be just under 2000 km with the stops,
Here are some estimated costs for the trip:
- Accommodation: budget hotels can cost around €30-€50 per night, while mid-range hotels can cost around €70-€120 per night.
- Entry fees to sites and museums: prices range from €3 to €20 per site/museum.
- Meals: a traditional Greek meal can cost around €10-€20 per person, while fine dining can cost around €40-€60 per person.
- Canyoning experience in Mount Olympus: prices start at around €80 per person for a half-day excursion.
- Tolls €75 – €100
- Car Rental €1,000
- Fuel €200 – €250
Athens Day 1 & 2
Athens Arrive in Athens and check into your hotel. After a long flight, today should be spent resting. For some adventure check out Panathenaic Stadium,
On the second day, explore the city’s iconic landmarks like the Acropolis, the Parthenon, and the Ancient Agora. In the evening, take a stroll through the lively Monastiraki neighborhood and enjoy a delicious Greek dinner at one of the many traditional tavernas.
Other options, consider visiting the National Archaeological Museum and the Benaki Museum to learn more about Greek history and culture. In the evening, head to the buzzing Psirri district for drinks and live music.
Get ready to start the road trip tomorrow and pick up your rental car in the morning, Athens has plenty of public transit options so you can easily get around without a car and save on the rental car fee for 2 days. Check out my post here on my time spent in Athens.
Epidaurus Theater & Sparti Day 3
Form Athens make your way towards Saparti, on your way to Sparti, stop at the Epidaurus Theater, an ancient Greek amphitheater known for its remarkable acoustics. Afterward, continue on to Sparti and check into your hotel. In the evening, explore the charming town center and enjoy dinner at a local tavern.
Before heading out the next day, in the morning, be sure to stop at and out of the Archaeological Site of Sparta after it is a short drive to the Mystras Archaeological Site to explore the Acropolis and Fortification Castle of Mystras. Then make your way to Olympia, take your time you’ll be spending it’s only a 2-hour drive to Olympia.
Check out my post here on Epidaurs and Sparti.
Olympia Day 3 & 4
When my brother and I went to Olympia we spent two nights here, but that really wasn’t needed. We actually went to the Olympia archaeological site the same day we left Sparti. But for you, I would get into Olympia, get dinner and rest then tomorrow head out to the archaeological site and be sure you are well rested so you can sprint a lap in the first-ever Olympic stadium.
Check out my post here on Olympia.
Take your time in Olympia the drive to Delphi is 3 hours and you will be spending two nights in Delphi to catch up on some rest.
Delphi Day 4, 5, & 6
Arriving in Delphi from Sparti, check in to your hotel, walk the small charming town, and have dinner, in the morning get up early and get ready to spend the whole day exploring a UNESCO World Heritage Site known for its ancient ruins and stunning mountain views.
Spend the morning exploring the archaeological site and when it becomes to hot head into the nearby museum, which houses a collection of artifacts from the ancient sanctuary. This museum is included in the ticket price so definitely check it out.
On day two, take a scenic hike in the surrounding hills or visit the nearby village of Arachova, known for its traditional textiles and handicrafts. If you wanted to get a beach day in, now would be your chance, asteri beach. We did not do this since we already spent time in Crete.
Check out my post on Delphi here.
Kalabaka aka Meteroa Day 7 & 8
We spent one night in Kalabaka, You can certainly add a day here if you’re really hoping to explore Meteora. This area will most likely be the highlight of your trip, it is simply amazing. Pick and choose the monasteries you want to see and drive to them, do not hike up the hill, unless you are planning to spend a full day doing just that.
My brother and I visited two monasteries and that was the perfect amount, once on the day we arrived and one on the morning as we were leaving for Mount Olympus. We visited The Great Meteoron Holy Monastery of the Transfiguration the Saviour and Monastery of the Holy Trinity at Meteora.
Read more about my trip to Meteora here.
Mount Olympus Day 8 – 11
After seeing one last monastery in Meteroa begin your drive to Litochoro, a small town located at the foot of Mount Olympus. Along the way, you’ll enjoy breathtaking views of the Aegean Sea and the lush Greek countryside. Once you arrive in Litochoro, check into your hotel and take some time to explore the charming town. In the evening, indulge in some authentic Greek cuisine at one of the town’s many restaurants. You can certainly stay in other towns around the area but this is where we went and we loved it, the town is charming and easy to walk around. I will say driving an SUV up the hills to our Airbnb was a bit tight, so keep that in mind.
On the second day. I recommend getting a bit of an adventure in and check out canyoning in the Enipeas Gorge, one of the most scenic gorges in Greece. I booked my tour with Trekking Hellas Mt. Olympus. After a brief safety briefing, you’ll descend into the gorge, where you’ll jump into crystal-clear pools, slide down natural water slides, and rappel down cascading waterfalls. It’s a thrilling experience that’s sure to get your adrenaline pumping. After the canyoning adventure, spend the rest of the day relaxing at your hotel or exploring more of the town.
On the third day, you’ll hike to the famous Mytikas Peak, the highest point of Mount Olympus. It’s a challenging but rewarding hike that takes you through stunning alpine landscapes and past sparkling mountain streams. At the top, you’ll enjoy panoramic views of the surrounding mountains and the Aegean Sea. After the hike, return to your hotel and unwind with a massage or sauna session.
On your final day, take some time to explore the town of Litochoro or visit nearby attractions like the ancient city of Dion. In the afternoon, say goodbye to Mount Olympus and drive back to Athens, where you can catch a flight back home or continue your Greek adventure.
Check out my time at Mount Olympus here.
Thessaloniki Day 12 & 13
This is the part of our trip where we made a mistake, we took a day trip to Thessaloniki and clearly, this is needed to be an over night visit. An amazing city in my opinion and better than Athens.
Start your day by visiting the White Tower, which is the most iconic landmark of Thessaloniki. This tower has been standing in the city for over 500 years and used to serve as a prison and a fortress. Nowadays, it houses a museum that showcases the history of Thessaloniki and offers stunning views of the city from its top. Admission to the museum costs 6 euros.
After visiting the White Tower, take a stroll along the waterfront promenade of Thessaloniki, which offers stunning views of the Thermaic Gulf. Here, you will find plenty of cafes and restaurants where you can enjoy a delicious Greek lunch.
The last thing to see was the Rotunda, which is a circular Roman temple with mosaics. Another lesson learned on making plans by the minute, this was also closed because it was Tuesday so we were only able to get photos outside.
Read about my one-day trip to Thessaloniki here.
Return to Athens Day 13 & 14
For the last leg of your trip. Spend the first day strolling through the charming Plaka neighborhood and shopping for souvenirs. In the evening, head to the top of Lycabettus Hill for stunning views of the city at sunset. On your final day, visit the impressive new Acropolis Museum and enjoy a farewell lunch at a traditional taverna before heading to the airport.
Enjoy your trip to Greece, if I am missing anything please let me know in the comments.
Safe Travels, Cheers!