Greece Packing List: What to Pack for Your Trip to Greece

By Stacey Ebert

Nestled amidst the Mediterranean, Ionian, Adriatic and Aegean Seas, Greece, with her indomitable spirit and culture, bridges East and West. Whether you’re exploring the history of democracy in Athens, hitting the islands for some relaxation, checking out the archeological mecca of Delphi, or drinking some ouzo at the country’s hippest cocktail spots, Greece is bound to hook you.

On my first trip to Greece, we hopped a ferry to Corfu and stayed at the famed hostel The Pink Palace. After a few idyllic island days of sun, sand, and sea, we made our way (via train) to Athens. I can still see the local kids we pushed on the playground swings. I still remember the moment that we reached the top of the Acropolis. And I can still close my eyes and be on that island hostel balcony taking in the sunset over the bluest water I had ever seen.

Regardless of where you’re headed in Greece, your adventure begins before you take off. Dream up your most exciting trip, research city, and island excursions, decide on your mode of travel transport, then, figure out what to pack in your backpack.

Packing Basics

Whenever you set off on a trip of a lifetime, there are a few things you can’t forget. You’ll need your identification, trip paperwork, and medications.

No matter what else you pack, don’t forget:

  • Wallet: With ID, passport, cash and cards
  • Travel Documents: Including travel insurance and visa paperwork if needed
  • Medications: Daily, necessary, and allergy – carry extras, copies of prescriptions and generic names of medicines 

Make an extra copy of the front page of your passport and your credit cards in case of loss.

Keep a copy of your important documents, insurance paperwork, and prescriptions in at least two places: on your phone, and in the cloud. A paper copy is a great idea for backup, but store the copies in a different place than your originals.

Personal Item for Greece

Whether you’re flying to Greece or arriving by land or sea, you’ll want to pack a personal item. You’ll want a daypack that keeps your necessities within reach on a day of sightseeing or beachgoing.

A packable bag, like the Outbreaker Daypack, is a good solution because you can pack it away in your carry on luggage when you aren’t using it.

Use the Personal Item Packing List to make sure you have the basics covered then, for Greece, add:

  • Sunscreen, bugspray, and mosquito anti-itch ointment (travel sized)
  • Sunglasses

Packing Electronics for Greece

Hopefully, you can enjoy the natural beauty and history of Greece rather than spending time on your computer.

  • Laptop and charger (if needed)
  • Tablet and charger
  • Smartphone, headphones, and charger
  • Kindle and charger
  • Adapters/converters (Greece uses the “Euro” plug)
  • Camera, memory cards, connecting cables, and charger (if needed)
  • External battery

What to Pack for Greece: Clothes

The vibe in Greece is casual and laid back. Aim for a blend of classy but low-key, lightweight, functional, and travel-friendly. You’re likely to go from mountains to the sea, and city to the country during your time in Greece. Remember that layers are your friends. Durable sandals or solid walking shoes are a must.

Sunglasses, a light blazer, and a scarf can pull together any outfit.

Here’s what to pack for Greece:

  • 3-5 pairs of socks
  • 4-7 pairs underwear
  • 2 bras
  • 3 short sleeve t-shirts or tank tops
  • 1 long sleeve shirt
  • 1-2 skirts or sun dresses
  • 1-2 pairs of casual pants, shorts, capris, leggings or skirts
  • 1 pair jeans
  • 1 pair flip-flops
  • 1 pair comfortable non-slip walking shoes
  • 1 pair nicer shoes for evenings out 
  • 1 pair pajamas or athleisure clothes that do double duty
  • 1 set workout or hiking gear
  • 1 lightweight sweater or jacket
  • 1 swimsuit

Packing Tips

Many of the hotels, restaurants, and cruise ship casinos require jackets for men at night and a slightly more upscale ensemble (including shoes with straps) for women. Consider which activities you’ll be doing when packing.

If you’re traveling to the islands or beaches, consider water shoes to keep your toes safe from coral and slippery, rocky outcrops in the sea.

Blend in by avoiding “travel clothing” or t-shirts with culturally specific slogans or symbols that scream “tourist.” If you’re visiting cultural or religious sites, pack a scarf for your shoulders and at least knee-length bottoms out of respect.

How to Pack for Greek Islands and Cruises

If you’re headed to the Greek islands, pack neutrals, whites, and blues to fit into the island lifestyle.

Consider adding:

  • Formal dress or blazer for evenings out
  • Another bathing suit
  • Extra beach outfit including a coverup or sarong
  • Cardigan, shawl, or pashmina for those chilly island, air-conditioned, or on deck evenings
  • Beach tote bag (or a daypack that does double duty)
  • Wet/dry bag 
  • Wide-brimmed hat
  • Rash guard or sun protecting clothing
  • Small handbag for evenings out
  • Long sleeve, loose button down shirt
  • Linen, loose fitting, lightweight pants
  • Sundress (mini/maxi)
  • Natural sea bands, ginger tablets or other over-the-counter preventative motion sickness meds if you might need them

Greek Island and Cruise Tips

  • The most popular time to cruise the Greek islands is July and August
  • Party time on the islands means jam-packed beaches, larger tour groups at historical sites, longer lines, and hotter temperatures
  • Be sure to bring a hat, sunglasses, sunscreen, and bug spray
  • Keep a water bottle with you and stay hydrated

What to Pack for Greece: Spring and Summer

While the cities, countrysides, and island retreats are always open, the majority of travelers flock to Greece during the summer season. Most are willing to brave the crowds and handle the lines in order to be there when the skies are blue, the waters warm, and the sun shines bright.

If you’re looking to ditch the peak craziness, consider heading to your Mediterranean destination in the shoulder season of mid-April through early June or even spending time later in September when the temperatures drop with the arrival of autumn air.

Check the specific regions to which you’re traveling. Temperatures will differ from cities to coastal regions. 

What to Pack for Greece in Spring

Spring in Greece falls between March, April, and early May. Temperatures range around 55-65 degrees Fahrenheit. Mild rainstorms and chillier temperatures are a possibility.

For spring in Greece add:

  • Rain jacket
  • Travel umbrella
  • Close-toed shoes
  • Scarf for cool days

What to Pack for Greece in Summer

Summer in Greece ranges from late May through the end of August. Expect temperatures to range between 75-90 degrees Fahrenheit. Islands can have dry heat and cooler evening breezes while inland locations can be severely muggy and hit well over 100 degrees Fahrenheit.

For summer in Greece add:

  • Water bottle
  • Wide-brimmed hat
  • Sunscreen and bug spray
  • Extra swimsuit
  • Lightweight layer
  • One extra pair of shoes or flip flops

Places to Go in Greece

Greece is jam packed with historical sites, epic scenery, and deep mythology. Follow your heart wherever it may lead – whether it takes you to UNESCO heritage sites like the Parthenon, cobblestone streets of the islands, or countryside cafes to share stories with locals. Here are some places not to miss:

In Greece old world and new collide. Whether you’re off to experience the colors of Corfu, the peaks of the Acropolis, the ruins of Delphi, or the magic of Santorini sunsets, Greece doesn’t disappoint.

When packing for Greece, remember:

  • Pack light in a backpack and buy what you can locally
  • For the islands, casual and comfortable beach attire is a must
  • Comfortable, sturdy footwear is non-negotiable 
  • If visiting during peak season, book accommodations early and be prepared for crowds
  • Always remember the absolute necessities: travel documents, insurance & sunscreen