Two Weeks In Northern Greece

On their first trip to Greece, most people do the idealized Athens, Santorini, another island combination. Pretty much no one looks to Northern Greece. The people who do, though, are the people who enjoy lakes, mountains, hikes, and yes, also islands and beaches. The northern section of Greece is a mountainous region, but it does have amazing islands like Corfu, and great places with beaches like the Halkidiki Peninsula, so here is two weeks in Northern Greece.

Day 1:

  • Arrive at the Thessaloniki International Airport at 8 AM

  • Go to hotel: The Park Hotel

  • Have a little snack at Bantis (Maybe at 10?)

  • You will want to rest for a while, having just taken an international flight

  • At 12 PM, eat lunch at Zanthos and Visit the White Tower, the main landmark of Thessaloniki and in the center of town. Most of the writing is in Greek, so pick up an audio device for everyone.

  • Also, this area of town is one of the most photogenic, so make sure to take some photos

  • Then, visit the Macedonian Museum of Contemporary Art

  • Then, go to the western edge of the seafront, where you will find the first pier.

  • Visit as many as you can from this list: The Museum of Cinematography, the Museum of Photography, and the Center for Contemporary Art

  • Relax at the seafront Orizontes Roof Garden and look at the view and have a little snack or something

  • Lastly, come to Ladadika, the hub for dining in Thessaloniki. 

  • Have dinner there at Full Tou Meze, or any other interesting restaurant you come across

Day 2:

  • Have breakfast at the hotel (but don’t wake up that early, that’s boring.)

  • Visit the Exoches (The Grand Villas) these take longer than you may think, and it is possible to stay here until lunch

  • Have lunch in Panellinion

  • Visit the Roman Agora, which enacts what would would have happened there in older times

  • Then have some traditional Greek sweets at Hatzifotiou, a small shop with really good reviews

  • Take a walk by the sea, take pictures, and explore

  • Then have dinner at a seafront restaurant

Day 3:

  • Visit the Byzantine places of: 5th century Osios David, in Ana Poli

  • Walk down the charming alleys of Ana Poli until you see the Alaca Imaret, a 15th century mosque

  • Then, stand in line at Nea Folia, one of the best and most famous restaurants in Thessaloniki. Though the line is long, most reviews say it is worth the wait

  • After lunch, visit the Rotunda, also known as Thessaloniki’s Pantheon

  • After spending a couple hours here, just relax and spend the best of pretty much your final evening out in Thessaloniki

Day 4:

  • Take a day trip the the monasteries of Meteora: perched on high cliffs, they are both cultural and scenic- Meteora Day Trip

  • When you return to your hotel at night, you’ll probably just want to go to sleep

Day 5:

  • At 7 AM Take a bus to Ioannina- this will take about 4 hours, so pack snacks, and things to do

  • Once you have arrived in Ioannina, go to Akti Hotel, although there is a campground by the lake, and if you want to do that, you could.

  • Then, probably relax for a while and maybe take a stroll by the huge lake

  • Then, you’ll want to have lunch at Balsamico

  • After that, visit Ioannina Castle, a historic castle right by the lake

  • Then, take an inexpensive boat ride to Ioannina Island, where you’ll explore the town there, visit the museum, and take it some of the great views- then return

  • Relax a bit at the hotel, walk around the town for a little bit, visit some of the museums, like the Silversmithing Museum, the Municipal Ethnographic Museum, and the Byzantine Museum, and just hang out

  • Then, have a lakeside dinner at Kyra Frosini

Day 6:

  • At 8 AM, visit the Archeological Site of Dodoni- one of the oldest oracles of the ancient world.

  • After that it will most likely be lunchtime or past lunchtime, so eat lunch at a lakeside taverna.

  • Next, rent a boat and go around Lake Ioannina

  • Then, you’ll go to the Cave of Perama, a cave that stretches 5km into the ground

  • Return to the hotel, and explore anything of Ioannina that you haven’t seen already- and anything you want to see again. 

  • Have dinner at The Frontzou Politeia 

  • Get some rest! You have many hikes ahead of you.

Day 7:

  • Take a bus or taxi to Monodendri, the town at the start of the hike

  • You’ll go to the entrance of Vikos Gorge- named by Guinness World Records to be the deepest gorge on Earth.

  • The hike will take you about 7 hrs, through the mountains and by rivers and streams

  • You’ll end the hike in Vikos Village, where you have to organize some sort of transport back to Ioannina. You should ask a taxi or something to wait there, at the time you think you’ll finish for you. But ask early, since thousands of people complete this hike every year, and in this area of rural Greece, there may not be many taxis.

  • By the time you return to Ioannina, your day will be almost over. 

  • You’ll probably want to rest, but if not, just take a nice stroll through the Old Town and by the lake

Day 8:

  •  At 9 AM, take a bus to Parga. You’ll have to make a stop at Igoumenitsa, where you can either take a bus or a taxi to parga, but, the bus is cheaper and takes about the same time, so you should probably just take the bus. 

  •  When you arrive at Parga, before you eat lunch or anything, check into the hotel- Ionian Beach Resort

  • Then, eat lunch at the closeby MED PARGA

  • Next, you’ll want to explore Parga:

  • Visit the Venetian Castle

  • Visit the Olive Oil Museum

  • Then, visit some of the beaches, like Sarakiniko Beach and Volos Beach

  • Have dinner at the Five Senses

Day 9:

  • Have breakfast at the Green Bakery

  • Pack a picnic lunch from there, and head to the Acheron River, one of the main rivers of Ancient Greece, that supposedly flowed into the underworld. It was the River of Lamentation

  • As you wade through the river, make sure to continue on a little further than most people do, and you’ll find some great spots to have your picnic lunch

  • Return to Parga

  • Rest for a while, probably until about 3

  • Then take a quick drive up to Ali Pasha Castle, where you’ll find amazing views and history

  • Once you return, just relax at the beach and swim

  • Have dinner at Agali Restaurant

Day 10:

  • Have breakfast at The Old Garden

  • Take a taxi to Igoumenitsa

  • While there, walk around the town and visit the Archeological Museum

  • Then, take a ferry to Corfu, widely known as one of the most beautiful islands in Greece. (I would highly recommend renting a car here)

  • Check in at the hotel- Serene Sea View Apartment

  • Then, if it is already lunchtime, have lunch at a restaurant that you come across

  • After that, explore Corfu Old Town- Make sure to check out the Archeological Museum and Casa Perlante and see the New Fortress and the Old Fortress

  • Then visit the historical Esplanade

  • Also see the Liston, an elegant old French arcade

  • And then visit St. Spyridon Church, famous for its Renaissance Bell Tower, which is the tallest in the Ionian Islands

  • After that long day, relax at the beach and have dinner at The Tandoori Bites

Day 11:

  • Have breakfast at Favela 17

  • Hike Mount Pantokrator- here is a guide– at the top of the mountain, you can see the Greek Mainland, Albania, and even Italy- and pack some snacks

  • Before you leave, visit Old Perithia

  • Return to the hotel and rest for a while

  • Visit the Achilleon, a mansion ordered to be built in the 1800’s by the Empress of Austria

  • Then, take a bus to Paleokastritsa, where you can visit the Monastery, see Angelokastro, and relax in Paleokastritsa Beach.

  • Return to Corfu Town and eat dinner at The Venetian Well

Day 12:

  • Eat breakfast at any cafe you find

  • Visit the Vlacherna Monastery, one of the most photographed places in Corfu, and from there, you can also visit Mouse Island, an island rumored to be odysseus’ ship before Poseidon turned it to stone.

  • Then, go up to Kassiopi, where you can explore this tiny fishing village and eat lunch at Grill and Chill

  • Make sure to visit Kassiopi Castle before you leave

  • Then, continue west to Sidari, where you’ll find Canal D’Amour Beach, one of the best beaches in Corfu

  • Return to Corfu Town and relax 

  • Eat dinner at Aegli

Day 13:

  • Eat breakfast 

  • Visit Agni Bay, and eat in some of the great tavernas there

  • Then, see the incredible Cape Drastis, which is a set of cliffs shaped in amazing designs and a beach

  • Then, drive to Porto Timoni and have lunch at any restaurant you see.

  • Visit Porto Timoni Beach

  • Then just relax and do whatever until about 5, when you can go to Loggas Beach, one of the best sunset spots in Corfu

  • Return to Corfu Town and eat dinner at Avli

Day 14:

  • Fly to Athens

  • Fly HOME!!!

Published by Dhatri, the Voyager

Hi! I'm Dhatri, the Voyager. Voyage the World is my travel blog, where I post itineraries, travel tips, and top ten lists. Join me on my voyages of the world!

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