We’ve all seen the photos of gorgeous white buildings sitting along the pristine coasts of Greece. But the beauty doesn’t end on the coast. Throughout the country, there are several hidden gems that will leave you absolutely speechless. Greece is just one of those places that deserves to be appreciated. But if you had to pick the best of the best, which cities are the most picturesque?
Get your cameras ready because we’re going to highlight the nine most beautiful cities in Greece. Of course, beauty is subjective, and there are several other destinations worth noting, but in this article, we’re going to focus on the must-see locations.
So, without further ado, let’s roll!
When you’re talking about the most beautiful cities in Greece, Athens simply cannot be ignored. If you’ve never been there, we guarantee you’ve read about it in a history book. The city is not just the capital, but it’s also the largest in the country and home to many of Greece’s wonders. But what makes it so beautiful?
Athens sits along the gorgeous Mediterranean Sea, and it has some of the loveliest sunsets you can imagine. To amplify its beauty, many ancient structures sit perched on the hills, which creates an incredible ambiance.
One of the most beautiful spots in Athens is the site of the Temple of Poseidon. Not much of the building is left besides its pillars, but its location on the coast makes it one of the best locations to watch the sunset in Athens.
Oh, and if you’re planning a Greece to Italy trip, Athens is a great location to kick off your itinerary!
One of Greece’s most enticing qualities is the thousands–yes, thousands–of islands it has. And as you can imagine, many of them are some of the most gorgeous locations in the world. Let’s turn our attention toward the city of Rhodes, which is conveniently located on the island of Rhodes.
The city sits on the northern point of the island, and you can enjoy viewing its medieval architecture with picture-perfect views of the water. As you walk through the plaza and narrow streets of the old town of the city, you’ll be transported back in time to the 14th century. This historic part of the city is one of the best well-preserved towns in all of Greece–in 1988, it was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
So, whether you’re a history buff or someone who enjoys old architecture and coastal views, Rhodes is the place to be!
Up in northwestern Greece, in Western Macedonia, the city of Kastoria is a sight to see. Kastoria is a lesser-known destination that highlights the beautiful mountain region of Greece. The city is located on Lake Orestiada, and it has a history that dates back all the way to the Byzantine Empire. Back in the day, the city once prospered from the fur trade, and the beautiful buildings built by wealthy merchants can still be seen today.
Visiting Kastoria today gives you a taste of new and old architecture, and the city is well known for its wonderful cafes. There’s nothing quite like sitting outside with a cup of coffee while you watch and listen to swans move through the lake.
Kastoria is also one of the most beautiful cities in Greece during the winter. As the temperature drops, the lake freezes over, and the mountains are covered in a gorgeous coat of snow. If you’re looking for a place to see Greece’s beauty with fewer crowds, Kastoria is the place to do it!
Over on the northwestern coast of Crete (a Greek island), the city of Chania is stunning. The city was occupied by the Byzantine Empire, Venetians, Ottomans, Egyptians, and now, the Greeks. All those different cultures left their mark on the city, and visitors can now gawk at the charming architecture that’s been preserved.
Walking down the narrow alleys, you’ll have to remind yourself that you’re not actually in Venice. As you make your way closer to the harbor, the gentle sea breeze will wash over you, and once at the coastline, you’ll be met by the brilliant blue water. Many of the buildings along the harbor are painted in blues, yellows, and reds, and with the mountains in the background, it makes for quite the photo opportunity!
If you’re wondering about the best time to visit not just Chania but the whole country, take a look at everything you need to know on how to plan a trip to Greece!
Corfu is one of those destinations that should be high on your places-to-visit list. The city is located on one of the Ionian Islands, also named Corfu, which is just off the western coast of mainland Greece. All throughout Corfu Old Town, you’ll come face to face with stunning Venetian-style architecture and historic buildings that will make you wish we still designed structures like that today.
One of the city’s highlights is the 15th-century fortress that gives you breathtaking views of both the scenic water and historic buildings. Corfu, like many places in Greece, has been well preserved, and you can enjoy strolling by old mansions, French-style flowered squares, and much, much more!
Xanthi is known as the city with a thousand colors for its multicultural experience. The city is in the region of Western Thrace, located in the eastern part of the country–an area of Greece that’s not as frequently visited. This part of the country is home to lush, green mountains that make the light-colored buildings pop out in front of you.
Because Xanthi was on the trade route between Europe and Asia, the city has its own unique vibe that can be seen through its buildings and traditions. You can explore the mosques, churches, synagogues, and bustling markets to truly get a feel for how special and beautiful this city is.
Oh, and if you’re in the area around February, add the Xanthi Carnival to your travel plans to see all of the city’s quirkiness blend together!
Up in northern Greece–Central Macedonia–Veria’s blissful environment is something to behold. The city is engulfed by greenery and sits on the foothills of the Vermio Mountains. Travelers who visit will be in the perfect position to discover wonderful villages and monasteries further up the mountains.
But the city doesn’t just rely on its gorgeous geography; Veria itself is delightful. Its history goes all the way back to ancient Macedonia, and the remnants of the historic buildings and monuments can still be seen. Because it’s not a major tourist hub, the city has been able to keep its original charm, which greatly adds to its beauty.
If you’re trying to figure out how to squeeze Veria into your trip, here’s a little refresher on how to create the perfect travel itinerary!
Argos is the longest continuously inhabited city in Europe, and it’s so stunning that it might as well make it on the list of the ten most beautiful cities in the world. The city’s history goes all the way back to the Bronze Age, more than three thousand years ago, and you can still enjoy the view of several renovated and preserved structures.
The city is surrounded by lovely green hills full of trees. No matter where you are in Argos, you’ll never be too far away from a quiet place in nature. The several ruins in Argos, including the amphitheater (known as Argos Theater), seem to naturally blend in with the environment around them.
Although Argos has a lot to offer visitors, it often gets overlooked. So, consider putting it on your 11-day Greek travel itinerary, as it’s only an hour-and-a-half drive from Athens!
Just west of Athens in the Peloponnese region, Nafplio is, without a doubt, one of the most beautiful cities in Greece. When it comes to charming sights, the city has them all. You can walk through the streets and get inspired by lovely Turkish fountains, explore Byzantine churches, and admire neoclassical buildings. All of this architectural goodness is enhanced by the views of the post-card-like coastline.
To get a look at all of Nafplio’s beauty, a trip up to the Fortress of Palamidi–constructed by the Venetians–is well worth it. From the historic site, you’ll have the best views of the city, its cliffs, and peaceful boats sailing in the distance. Climbing up to the fortress to watch the sunset will be an unforgettable experience.
In our 10-day Greek itinerary, we put together a wonderful list of things to do in Naflpio!
The geography of Greece is spectacular, so it’s no surprise that it’s home to gorgeous cities. Depending on where you’re coming from, visiting the country might be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. So, why not make the most of it and visit the most beautiful cities in Greece (or at least a couple of them)? We guarantee you won’t regret it!
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