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Air

Most visitors to Greece arrive by air, which tends to be the fastest and cheapest option, if not the most environmentally friendly.

Airports & Airlines

Greece has four main international airports that take chartered and scheduled flights.

Other international airports across the country include Santorini (Thira), Karpathos, Samos, Skiathos, Hrysoupoli, Aktion, Kefallonia and Zakynthos. These airports are most often used for charter flights from the UK, Germany and Scandinavia.

Eleftherios Venizelos International Airport Athens' Eleftherios Venizelos International Airport lies near Spata, 27km east of Athens. It has all the modern conveniences, including 24-hour luggage storage in the arrivals hall and a children's playroom – even a small archaeological museum above the check-in hall for passing time.

Nikos Kazantzakis International Airport About 5km east of Iraklio (Crete). Has a bank, ATM, duty-free shop and cafe-bar.

Diagoras Airport On the island of Rhodes.

Makedonia International Airport About 17km southeast of Thessaloniki. Served by local bus 78 (half-hourly); a taxi costs around €15 to €20.

Airlines

Aegean Airlines and its subsidiary, Olympic Air, have flights between Athens and destinations throughout Europe, as well as to Cairo, İstanbul, Tel Aviv, New York and Toronto. They also operate flights throughout Greece, many of which transfer in Athens. Both airlines have exemplary safety records.

Tickets

If you're coming from outside Europe, consider a cheap flight to a European hub (eg London) and then an onward ticket with a charter airline such as easyJet, which offers some of the cheapest tickets between Greece and the rest of Europe. Some airlines also offer cheap deals to students. If you're planning to travel between June and September, it's wise to book ahead.

Departure Tax

Most airports levy a €13 departure tax for airport improvement; however, it's included in the price of the ticket.

Land

If you travel by land you can really appreciate the landscape, as well as the many experiences that go along with train or bus travel. International train travel, in particular, has become much more feasible in recent years, with speedier trains and better connections. You can now travel from London to Athens by train and ferry in less than two days. By choosing to travel on the ground instead of the air, you'll also be reducing your carbon footprint.

Border Crossings

Due to the ongoing refugee crisis, make sure you have all of your visas sorted out before attempting to cross land borders into or out of Greece. At the time of writing, all migrants were being denied access to the borders while EU passport holders were allowed across. As the situation is volatile, it's worth checking with the relevant embassies before travelling.

Overland from Western Europe

If you're keen to travel without flying and enjoy the independence of a road trip, you can reach Greece by heading overland to an Italian port and hopping on a ferry. A high-speed ferry from Venice to Patra takes around 26 hours. Patra to Athens is a 3½-hour drive.

Fancy a bit more convenience and speed than a bus or a car? Overland enthusiasts can reach Greece by rail through the Balkan peninsula, passing through Croatia, Serbia and the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia. Or head to the western coast of Italy (there are connections throughout most of Europe) and then take a ferry to Greece. Not only will you be doing your bit for the earth, but you'll see some gorgeous scenery from your window.

A sample itinerary from London would see you catching the Eurostar to Paris and then an overnight sleeper train to Bologna in Italy. From there, a coastal train takes you to Bari, where there's an overnight boat to Patra in the Peloponnese. From Patra, it's a 4½-hour train journey to Athens. You'll be in Athens within two days of leaving London. See www.raileurope.com for routes and tickets.

Greece is part of the Eurail network (www.eurail.com). Eurail passes can be bought only by residents of non-European countries; they should be purchased before arriving in Europe, but can be bought in Europe if your passport proves that you've been there for less than six months. Greece is also part of the Inter-Rail Pass system (www.interrail.eu), available to those who have resided in Europe for six months or more, and the Rail Plus Balkan Flexipass (www.raileurope.com), which offers unlimited travel for five, 10 or 15 days within a month. See the websites for full details of passes and prices.

Albania

The main crossing at Kakavia can have intensely slow queues.

Kakavia 60km northwest of Ioannina

Krystallopigi 14km west of Kotas on the Florina–Kastoria road

Mertziani 17km west of Konitsa

Sagiada 28km north of Igoumenitsa

Albatrans Runs buses between Greece and Albania.

Bulgaria

As Bulgaria is part of the EU, crossings are usually quick and hassle-free.

Exohi A 448m-tunnel border crossing 50km north of Drama

Ormenio 41km from Serres in northeastern Thrace

Promahonas 109km northeast of Thessaloniki

Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM)

Doïrani 31km north of Kilkis

Evzoni 68km north of Thessaloniki

Niki 16km north of Florina

Turkey

Kipi is more convenient if you're heading for İstanbul. The route through Kastanies goes via Soufli and Didymotiho in Greece, and Edirne (ancient Adrianoupolis) in Turkey.

Kastanies 139km northeast of Alexandroupoli

Kipi 43km east of Alexandroupoli

Train

The Greek railways organisation OSE runs daily trains from Thessaloniki to Sofia and to Belgrade (via Skopje), with a weekly onward train to and from Budapest.

Sea

Ferries can get very crowded in summer. If you want to take a vehicle across it's wise to make a reservation beforehand. Please note that tickets for all ferries to Turkey must be bought a day in advance – and you will almost certainly be asked to turn in your passport the night before the trip. It will be returned the next day before you board the boat. Port tax for departures to Turkey is around €15.

Another way to visit Greece by sea is to join one of the many cruises that ply the Aegean.

International Ferry Routes

Albania

Departure Point

Corfu

Arrival Point

Saranda

Duration

25min

Frequency

1 daily

Italy

Departure Point

Patra

Arrival Point

Ancona

Duration

20hr

Frequency

3 daily

Italy

Departure Point

Patra

Arrival Point

Bari

Duration

14½hr

Frequency

1 daily

Italy

Departure Point

Corfu

Arrival Point

Bari

Duration

8hr

Frequency

1 daily

Italy

Departure Point

Kefallonia

Arrival Point

Bari

Duration

14hr

Frequency

1 daily

Italy

Departure Point

Corfu

Arrival Point

Bari

Duration

10hr

Frequency

1 daily

Italy

Departure Point

Igoumenitsa

Arrival Point

Bari

Duration

11½hr

Frequency

1 daily

Italy

Departure Point

Patra

Arrival Point

Brindisi

Duration

15hr

Frequency

1 daily

Italy

Departure Point

Corfu

Arrival Point

Brindisi

Duration

6hr

Frequency

1 daily

Italy

Departure Point

Kefallonia

Arrival Point

Brindisi

Duration

12hr

Frequency

1 daily

Italy

Departure Point

Zakynthos

Arrival Point

Brindisi

Duration

15hr

Frequency

1 daily

Italy

Departure Point

Patra

Arrival Point

Venice

Duration

30hr

Frequency

12 weekly

Italy

Departure Point

Corfu

Arrival Point

Venice

Duration

25hr

Frequency

12 weekly

Turkey

Departure Point

Chios

Arrival Point

Ċeşme

Duration

1½hr

Frequency

1 daily

Turkey

Departure Point

Kos

Arrival Point

Bodrum

Duration

1hr

Frequency

1 daily

Turkey

Departure Point

Lesvos

Arrival Point

Ayvalik

Duration

1hr

Frequency

1 daily

Turkey

Departure Point

Rhodes

Arrival Point

Marmaris

Duration

50min

Frequency

2 daily

Turkey

Departure Point

Samos

Arrival Point

Kuşadası

Duration

1½hr

Frequency

2 daily

*The services indicated are for high season (July and August).