Greece is a very popular destination for family vacations. Many people from different countries choose Greece for their holidays, because of its amazing environment and the great nature – for the special food and for the friendly people.
Before to book your vacation in Greece, you have to be aware of 3 things, if you want to make sure that your vacation will be great, but before that, let me share with you a few information about the country that you have to know.
The most of the people who visit the country, reach it via one of the main airports – they mainly land at Athens International Airport (Eleftherios Venizelos Airport). This is the number one gate to the country. The airport’s location is close to Athens city and it is connected to the Athens Region with a high way, named Attiki Odos (Attiki Street). Attiki odos connects not only the Athens airport with the city of Athens, but also with the rest of the country.
Once you start driving from the airport towards Athens on the Attiki Odos high way, at one point you will have three options (check here the official website) – first to drive inside Athens (there are many different gates, by the way, that you can choose based on the location that you want to visit) – the second option is to take the high way “Athinon – Lamias” at the exit Num 8, which gives you two options – either to drive left towards Piraeus port which is the biggest and the main port of the country (in case of you have already booked tickets with a ferry for the islands) or to drive left towards the North part of the country – the third option is to continue driving on the Attiki odos high way – almost after 30 to 40 minutes drive you will reach Elefsina’s tolls – at this part of the high way, the main high way from the center of Athens and Attiki Odos get connected – and from that point you can drive towards to the South part of the country.
Allover the country – at each and every high way – there are tolls. Everywhere you can pay either cash or by card – it will be easy for you if you have cash with you and especially coins to pass the tolls fast, due to in the most cases there are automated tolls options (so you don’t have to wait).
The first and the only tolls that you have to pay to enter Attiki Odos, driving from the Athens airport towards to Athens are located almost 2Km away from the airport and its price for a car is 2,80EUR.
Be aware of checking which exit from the Attiki Odos you have to take, because in case of you take the wrong one and you have to enter again Attiki Odos, you have to pay again tolls.
Regarding the tolls, due to there are more than one company that operate them, you can find full information at the below links (costs, emergency numbers, etc).
Attiki Odos (High way from Airport) – click here.
From Athens driving towards to the South – click here
From Athens driving towards to the South West – click here
In order for all the above information to make sense, I have to tell you that in order to explore the country, you need to rent a car. Honestly, I would not choose to travel Greece by using public transportation. First you will lose too much time but the most important is that you will lose the amazing views. The country’s nature is amazing, by driving around you will have amazing time and you will enjoy great places. All the high ways in the country are very modern (I cannot say the same for all the streets inside the cities) and I am sure you will not have any problems.
It makes sense if you rent the car from the airport – I know that it might be more expensive than renting a car anywhere else than the airport – but considering the cost of taking a taxi from the airport to Athens or using the public transportation plus the time you will spend, it still makes more sense to rent a car from the airport.
There are some websites that compare the prices of all rent – a – car companies (click here and here). Honestly, you can book with any company that gives you the best price – If I was a visitor, I would choose not to book a car in advance and I would rent a car once I would arrive at the airport (it is up to you).
The last thing that it might be useful for the planning of your vacation in Greece is this – if your flight departs from Athens International Airport, choose to spend the last days in Athens instead of staying first in Athens and the visit the rest places.
Many guests choose the stay in Athens once they arrive in the country – there is a big disadvantage on this scenario – if your last destination is not Athens, you will have to be in a hurry to reach the airport on time. It will be summer, the country will be sold out by tourists, for sure there will be traffic – do you want to add extra stress to yourself? If not, during your planning, make sure that Athens will be your last destination in the country (just to make it clear – you have to visit Athens – but visit it the last days before you leave the country – so that you will be close to the airport).
So, the three things that you have to be aware of before to visit Greece with your beloved ones or with your family are:
Rent a car – it will give you the chance to move faster and see more places (if you do not want to book, just get a car once you arrive at the airport).
Keep in mind – all the high ways are modern, you do not have to worry at all. The first high way that you will enter from Athens airport is the main entrance for the whole country.
Stay in Athens last – make sure that you will not have to be under stress during the last day of your vacation to reach to the airport on time.
If this article was useful for you, you can find more information for a vacation in Greece here.
Vasileios Totsikas is the Property Manager at Vida Hospitality – his English are not the best (I am sure you already got it from the above article), but his hospitality is great! Now, that I wrote the above sentence in the third person to look smarter than I am, I will continue in the first person – If I can be of any assistance regarding your vacation in Greece, feel always free to contact me via phone/message/whatsapp at +30-6979005260.