Cruises in Athens

A trip to Athens would not be complete without taking a cruise to many of the nearby islands. There are dozens of excursions that take you to them; in this post I help you decide which one best suits your interests.

Carmen Navarro

Carmen Navarro

5 min read

Cruises in Athens

Cruise in Aegina waters | ©Herbert Frank

Greece has more than 2000 islands, and although not all of them can be visited with excursions from Athens (you would need to take a flight), there are some islands that you can visit with a one-day cruise from Athens.

Hydra, Poros and Aegina day cruise from Athens

Hydra| ©Mauricio Muñoz
Hydra| ©Mauricio Muñoz

With this one-day cruise from Athens, a vehicle will pick you up at your hotel and take you back to your hotel at the end of the excursion. You will visit three islands and you will spend between one and two hours on each one, but the cruise itself will also be an experience in itself. The islands you will see are the closest to Athens, located in the Saronic Gulf:


A small island with a high commercial movement where you will find beautiful colorful houses, landscapes to admire and great beaches. Your guide will tell you the history of a place that served as a refuge for pirates.


In the center of the island, on a hill are the remains of the temple of Poseidon and you can also visit places like the forest of lemon trees, but my recommendation is to take a walk around the harbor while watching the scenery.


When you get there you can take a walk around the city or make an excursion to the temple of Aphaea, quite popular in Greece.

What is included in this cruise

  • Expert advice from a guide
  • A Greek buffet lunch
  • A folkloric show during the cruise

Ana's Traveller Tip

These cruises are a quick excursion if your main travel destination is Athens, to enjoy the main Greek Islands in all their splendor you will need more time.

VIP day cruise to Hydra, Poros and Aegina from Athens

Poros| ©Anastasius
Poros| ©Anastasius

If what you want is to feel surrounded by luxury for a day and treat yourself during your trip, this one-day VIP cruise from Athens is an ideal option to achieve it. The main advantage of this activity is that you will not only enjoy the destination, but also the experience of the trip.

In addition to the visit to the islands of Hydra, Poros and Aegina, where you will have a free time of between one and two hours per island. This tour is available in English, Spanish, Italian and French. With it you will be out all day with everything included and once on the islands you will be able to tour them at your leisure capturing in your retina their fabulous landscapes and buildings.

What is included in this cruise

  • The transfer from your hotel in Athens to the ship in a luxury vehicle and vice versa.
  • A free business class buffet with Greek delicacies
  • Snacks and beverages at your disposal during the tour
  • A guided tour of Hydra Island
  • Discount in the ship's stores
  • Visit to the cruise bridge and meet and greet with the captain
  • Expert guides to call on during the tour
  • Priority embarkation and disembarkation on each of the islands

Ana's Traveller Tip

Some of these islands do not have sandy beaches, but you can find spots for a quick swim if you wear booties.

Tips for your Greek Islands cruise from Athens

Ruins of the Temple of Aphaia, Aegina| ©Aleksandr Zykov
Ruins of the Temple of Aphaia, Aegina| ©Aleksandr Zykov

The main purpose of day cruises departing from Athens is to give you the opportunity to get a closer look at the Greek landscape and some of its islands. That is to say, the beaches are not in themselves the main attraction of this boat tour. This is the first thing you should take into account before booking the experience in order not to be disappointed later on.

How to choose the right cruise

If you have had a quick look at the available offer, you will have seen that there are dozens of similar cruises departing from Athens. How to decide on one tour or another? My advice is to take into account a number of factors:

  • The price: these types of tours are not cheap, but you don't necessarily have to pay an excessive amount to enjoy them.
  • Free cancellation: you always have to consider unforeseen events. Choose a tour that gives you the security of being able to cancel 24 hours in advance without losing your money.
  • Time on the islands: the greatest added value of a day cruise is to be able to make the most of the time. Check before booking the estimated time you will spend on each of the islands included in the tour.
  • The services included: being able to enjoy the journey between the different stops is also important. Many tours have on-board services such as food or entertainment so that the time you spend on the boat is part of the experience.

What to bring on the cruise

Finally, remember to bring everything you need to spend the day in maximum comfort. It is important to bring sunscreen, a bathing suit in case you have the chance to enjoy a swim and comfortable clothes and shoes. You won't need much more during the trip.

Other islands worth visiting in Greece

Mykonos| ©Alex Korolkoff
Mykonos| ©Alex Korolkoff

If a one-day round-trip cruise is not enough for you, you have many more options to enjoy the islands of Greece. Before booking your accommodation in Athens, consider spending a few nights away on a multi-day tour or even organizing a tour on your own. This will allow you to visit islands further away from the capital such as:


With excellent beaches, nightlife and a landscape of white houses distributed on a mountain. It is the ideal place for any travel photographer.


Known for its parties and nightlife. You can arrive by plane and from there make the jump to other nearby islands. Or you can also sign up for an excursion to Mykonos from Athens.


Close to Corfu. It guarantees you relaxation and privacy and will not be too crowded because it is only accessible by boat.


Ideal to spend a few days enjoying both its landscapes and tourist sites such as the Castle of Monolithos or the natural park of Epta Piges.


It is the largest island of Greece and can be another point from which to start your trip around the country. In addition to landscapes and beaches, you can visit important archaeological remains.

Book an excursion to Mykonos from Athens

If you are interested in a cruise in the Greek Islands, you will also be interested in

The Acropolis, Athens| ©Dimitris Kiriakakis
The Acropolis, Athens| ©Dimitris Kiriakakis

Greek Islands cruises from Athens are an opportunity to discover more areas of the country in the same trip and not only stay with the image of the capital of Greece. For the same purpose, I recommend you to take a look at this article on Best Tours and Day Trips from Athens where you can find options to further expand your travel experience.

Sometimes we associate excursions to an exhaustive planning and discard them for the simple fact of having to spend nights away from our main travel destination, but a solution to this is in the organized tours. In the vast majority of them, in addition, you will have the services of a guide during the tour that will allow you to learn more about the history of the country and make the most of the time available.

Book a boat excursion from Athens