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Top 12 Family-Friendly Things to Do in Greece

While Greece may be a popular destination for honeymooners, it’s also one of the most family-friendly places in Europe for a vacation. The opportunity for recreational activities abounds, from hiking to sea kayaking, sailing, and swimming, while the myths behind iconic landmarks fascinate all ages. You can learn new skills from painting to cooking Greek dishes, sometimes with a local family, and enjoy plenty of delicious cuisine throughout your trip with plenty of options the kids are sure to love too.

Take the Acropolis & New Acropolis Museum for Families Scenic view of Parthenon Temple, Acropolis
Credit: Scenic view of Parthenon Temple, Acropolis by bigstock.com

Take the Acropolis & New Acropolis Museum for Families

What Is It? You can’t visit Greece without visiting Athens and its iconic Acropolis.

Why Do It? The best way to do it is on a private family-friendly tour, as you’ll get local insight from a guide who specializes in not only the history but providing an educational and entertaining experience for the kids. Climb Acropolis hill to check out the many monuments, including its crowning glory, the Parthenon, while learning about the history and myths behind them.

Good to Know: The tour includes a visit to the New Acropolis Museum which holds many treasures that were uncovered from the hill, from the Greek Bronze Age to Roman and Byzantine times.

Spend a Day at the Beach - Naxos Beautiful clear waters at Plaka Beach, Naxos, Greece
Credit: Beautiful clear waters at Plaka Beach, Naxos, Greece by K.C. Dermody

Spend a Day at the Beach - Naxos

What Is It? There are many beautiful beaches in Greece, but Naxos offers some of the best, many of which have been ranked among the most beautiful in Europe.

Why Do It? Naxos is also one of the most family-friendly islands and one of the country’s best-kept secrets, with the south-west coast offering the longest stretches in the Cyclades with sand made up of granite and marble that makes it whiter and brighter than other Greek beaches.

Good to Know: Plaka is a favorite, just minutes from Naxos Town, or Chora, with plenty of room to play or relax along with more well-developed areas that have umbrellas and lounge chairs. Even better, it edges crystal-clear and calm turquoise waters that are fabulous for swimming, including shallow areas for little ones to splash around.

Meet the Animals & Sample Treats at a Cheese Farm - Naxos Philema Food Tours
Credit: Philema Food Tours by Philema Food Tours

Meet the Animals & Sample Treats at a Cheese Farm - Naxos

What Is It? If you’re looking for a family-friendly tour that both the adults and kids will love while visiting Naxos, the Kids First Philema Food Tour is one of the best.

Why Do It? You’ll head to a cheese farm where you can cuddle up with goats, sheep, and maybe even an adorable lamb or two. Learn about how the animals help produce the delicious dairy items that are made here.

Good to Know: At the end, you’ll head into town for tastings of handmade ice cream and candy, something the kids are sure to look forward to.

Ride the Tram Up Mount Lycabettus - Athens Mount Lycabettus, Athens, Greece
Credit: Mount Lycabettus, Athens, Greece by bigstock.com

Ride the Tram Up Mount Lycabettus - Athens

What Is It? By hopping on the cable car to Mount Lycabettus you’ll get a spectacular panoramic view from the top that provides a great perspective of the city.

Why Do It? You’ll be able to gaze out at the Acropolis, Syntagma Square, the port of Piraeus, the Peloponnese mountains, and the sea. It rises 900 feet above it all, providing a ride that’s sure to thrill the kids. Plus you can tell them the myth behind it – the mountain was said to have formed when the goddess Athen dropped a heavy rock she was carrying upon hearing bad news.

Good to Know: There’s also a small chapel at the top to explore.

Crete Acqua Plus Water Park Entrance Ticket with Transport - Chania Acqua Plus Water Park
Credit: Acqua Plus Water Park by acquaplus.gr

Crete Acqua Plus Water Park Entrance Ticket with Transport - Chania

What Is It? If you’re in the Chania area, get a ticket to Acqua Plus Water Park which includes transport so for a more stress-free experience.

Why Do It? Crete is a great island for families and kids love the water parks, as it’s the perfect place to spend a hot summer’s day and let the younger ones burn off some energy.

Good to Know: There are more than 50 thrilling slides, including a huge wave slide, a lazy river, a hydromassage pool for relaxation, a W.O.W. ball you can bob around in, and much more.

Snorkel at a Pink Sand Beach - Kissamos Pink sands of Elafonissi Beach
Credit: Pink sands of Elafonissi Beach by © Patryk Kosmider - Dreamstime.com

Snorkel at a Pink Sand Beach - Kissamos

What Is It? Located along the southwest coast of Crete, about an hour from Kissamos in the Chania region, Elafonissi Beach is one of the island’s most famous beaches.

Why Do It? Its fine sands have a distinctly pink hue, stretching for about a mile. Contrasted against the transparent blue waters, it’s quite a sight and it’s also one of the best spots for snorkeling. With the water shallow and calm, everyone from beginners to the experienced of nearly all ages can enjoy it. Take advantage of the fantastic photo-ops, not only of the beach but the unique rock formations.

Good to Know: There are umbrellas and loungers along with a number of cantinas for food and drink too.

Explore the National Garden - Athens National Gardens, Athens
Credit: National Gardens, Athens by © Kkerekes740 - Dreamstime.com

Explore the National Garden - Athens

What Is It? While you might think a botanical garden would bore the kids, the National Garden in Athens is an ideal place to spend with them.

Why Do It? It not only features 500 species of trees, flowers, plants from across the globe but a playground, miniature zoo, and two duck ponds. It’s also the perfect spot to take a break from sightseeing and just relax. Many locals come here to picnic, read, and jog.

Good to Know: There’s also a children’s library that has a fairytale room, reading rooms, and a music and film room.

Off-Road Safari in Mykonos Off Road Safari Mykonos
Credit: Off Road Safari Mykonos by Viator.com

Off-Road Safari in Mykonos

What Is It? An off-road safari through Mykonos is a fun way to discover the island’s hidden gems.

Why Do It? You’ll get to see remote spots that few visits by traveling in a 4X4 vehicle, including stops at Houlakia Beach, known for its wild beauty, the ruins of Paleokastro which include the remnants of a castle, and the nearby village of Ano Mera. The peaceful inland village provides a glimpse of authentic Greek life and includes a restored 16th-century monastery in a whitewashed complex with a marble fountain and bell tower.

Good to Know: In between sightseeing, there will be multiple opportunities to relax among the island’s beauty and swim. 

Take the Train To Meteora Meteora, Greece
Credit: Meteora, Greece by Bigstock.com

Take the Train To Meteora

What Is It? The perfect alternative for saving time and enjoying a memorable ride is to take the train to Meteora.

Why Do It? Meteora is one of the top attractions on the Greek mainland, but visiting typically requires spending at least a night or two in the area as it’s more than a four-hour drive from Athens. You’ll leave in the morning and return by evening, with time to explore three of the six monasteries that sit atop dramatic cliffs rising more than 1,200 feet above the villages of Kalambaka and Kastraki.

Good to Know: The monasteries date back to the 14th century, built by monks seeking spiritual isolation and freedom from religious persecution, and from here you’ll enjoy some incredibly scenic views.

Explore Ancient Castles in the Peloponnese Bourtzi castle in Nafplion
Credit: Bourtzi castle in Nafplion by © Stockbksts - Dreamstime.com

Explore Ancient Castles in the Peloponnese

What Is It? The Peloponnese region offers many fascinating sights as the most important center of the Mycenaean civilization and you’ll also find walled cities and ancient castles, many of which provide spectacular views.

Why Do It? The seaport town of Nafplio is one of the prettiest in the eastern Peloponnese, home to the 15th-century Bourtzi Castle. It sits in the heart of the harbor, built to defend the city from pirates, something that’s sure to pique the kids’ interest. It’s kept watch over the entrance to the bay for over five centuries. The town traces its history to prehistoric times and has been controlled by the Venetians, Turks, and Franks, all of which left their mark. Wander through to discover medieval castles, centuries-old walls, Ottoman fountains, Venetian and neoclassical buildings, and more.

Good to Know: Climb to the top of Palamidi Fortress for one of the best views around.

Sea Kayaking in Kalamata Sea Kayaking in Kalamata
Credit: Sea Kayaking in Kalamata by Viator.com

Sea Kayaking in Kalamata

What Is It? For those with older kids, consider a sea kayaking tour that will bring you paddling along the coast east of Kalamata in the Peloponnese.

Why Do It? As you discover the sights, passing picturesque seaside villages along the way, your guide will fill you in on the history of the area. A stop on a remote beach for a picnic lunch with local Greek delicacies is included and you’ll enjoy time swimming too.

Good to Know: Before heading out through the turquoise waters you’ll get an introductory kayaking lesson.

Walk through Butterfly Valley and Cool Off at Seven Springs in Rhodes small waterfall and pool in lush Butterfly Valley, Rhodes
Credit: small waterfall and pool in lush Butterfly Valley, Rhodes by © Naumenkoaleksandr - Dreamstime.com

Walk through Butterfly Valley and Cool Off at Seven Springs in Rhodes

What Is It? Butterfly Valley is an area of stunning natural beauty in Rhodes, the largest of the Dodecanese islands.

Why Do It? The 600-acre nature park is lush and green with lots of trees and streams. In the summertime, it’s filled with colorful butterflies that come to reproduce and leave their eggs here. It’s enjoyable to wander through, strolling the paths that wind along the Pelekanos River, capturing photos near wooden bridges and waterfalls.

Good to Know: If you’re up for a trek, you can hike to the top of the valley for a panoramic view. From here, a short drive will bring you to the island’s east coast where you can enjoy more greenery at Seven Springs which includes an open-air eatery that overlooks the springs and a lake for swimming. It’s a fabulous cool respite from summer’s heat.

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