Holidays Resorts in Greece
You'll find big, modern beachfront resorts occupying the coasts of larger islands like Crete (pictured), Rhodes and Corfu
Other smaller islands served by direct flights, where people head specifically for the beaches, include Mykonos, with its sandy south-coast party beaches; Skiathos, where pine-scented sandy Koukounaries stands out; and Kos, where the white sands of Tigaki beach give onto shallow sea, making it ideal for kids.
On all these islands you’ll find organised beaches, with sun beds and umbrellas for hire, showers, water sports facilities, bars and tavernas. There are lifeguards on duty during daylight hours and the beaches are cleaned daily. The best maintained have been awarded a Blue Flag (blueflag.org) for high levels of water cleanliness, environmental management and safety, with 430 such beaches throughout Greece in 2016.
Scroll down for a list of tour operators offering beach holidays to Greece.
But for some people, the beach means escapism – getting away from the crowds and reconnecting with nature. The sort of beaches where you can do this tend to be isolated and difficult to reach, and generally have limited facilities – so you should bring your own bottled water and a roll-up beach mat. Some of the best are on Crete’s south coast (Preveli, Plakias and Matala), the west coasts of the Ionian islands (Porto Katsiki and Egremnoi on; Shipwreck Beach on Zakynthos; Myrtos beach on Kefalonia), and some of the lesser visited Cycladic islands, such as Andros, and tiny Koufonissi.Amorgos, Antiparos, Astypalea and Lefkada (pictured) may appeal to those who prefer to get back to nature Credit: NoraDoa - Fotolia
If the back-to-nature approach appeals, you might also consider camping – Amorgos, Antiparos, Astypalea and all have low-key waterside campsites, popular with young and alternative-minded Greeks. Some remote beaches are even “clothing-optional” – Captain Barefoot’s Naturist Guide to the Greek Islands (barefoot.info) is an excellent source of information, which is continually updated by people who have visited the relevant beaches.
When to go
The sea is warm enough to swim from June through to September, and hardy types will also manage in May and October. Most beaches do get very busy in peak season, especially in August, which is when most Greeks take their holidays. Jane Foster
Tour operators offering beach holidays to Greece
provides holidays to seven islands including Crete, Rhodes and Lefkas, with late deals and value for money all inclusive packages on offer.
is a singles specialist offering hotels in Athens, Rhodes, Paros, Zante and Skiathos with no supplements for sole occupancy of double rooms.
operates to a large selection of islands in the Cyclades, plus north-east Aegean and Dodecanese. Crete options are focussed on the eastern region.
focuses on made-to-measure holidays at a package price, with one of the largest selections of islands including some lesser-known options.
concentrates on just under a dozen islands including Skiathos, Kefalonia, Paxos and Alonissos.
Islands of Greece includes some lesser-known Cycladic options in its large portfolio. Island hopping, fly-drives and luxury holidays are also available.
is one of the biggest package operators to the islands, with a wide range of accommodation in over 30 regions.
has a large Greek programme, with a particularly large choice of hotels on Crete, Corfu, Mykonos, Rhodes and Santorini.
specialise in hotels, villas and island hopping itineraries particularly in the Pelion, Cyclades, Peloponnese, Crete, Paxos and Skyros.
offers a collection of top-end hotels in Corfu, Crete, Halkidiki, Kefalonia, Kos, Mykonos, Peloponnese, Rhodes, Santorini and Skiathos, plus villas through its sister company Oliver's Travels.