A Guide to the Best Public Transportation in Greece

Posted Feb 27, 2024 · Guide

Greece's diverse landscapes, from its sun-drenched islands to its historic mainland cities, beckon to be explored. Thankfully, the country has several public transportation options to make your journey smooth. Let's delve into the best choices and how to navigate them:


1. Ferries: Your Gateway to Island Paradise

Greece is synonymous with its idyllic islands, and ferries are your lifeline to reach them. From bustling ports like Piraeus (Athens) to the quieter harbors of the Cyclades, a vast network of ferries can transport you to destinations both popular and secluded. Here's how to plan your island hopping:

  • Ferryhopper: This user-friendly platform lets you compare routes, timetables, and companies, and book your tickets conveniently online. https://www.ferryhopper.com/
  • Ferries in Greece: Find detailed information on ferry routes, ports, operators, and other essential details. https://www.ferriesingreece.com/
  • Types of ferries: From traditional, slower boats to high-speed catamarans, Greece offers different ferries to suit your budget and speed preferences.


2. Buses (KTEL): Connecting the Mainland

The KTEL bus network forms the backbone of Greece's mainland transportation. These comfortable and well-maintained buses offer an affordable way to reach cities, towns, and many picturesque villages across the country.

  • KTEL Buses Website: While mainly in Greek, this website provides routes, schedules, and ticket information: http://www.ktelbus.com/
  • Local vs. long-distance: KTEL buses operate both locally within regions and offer long-distance intercity routes for traveling between major hubs.


3. Trains: Scenic Routes with Potential

Although Greece's train network is less extensive than some other European countries, it still offers enjoyable routes. The primary Athens-Thessaloniki line is a popular choice. For scenic beauty, consider the historic routes within the Peloponnese region, particularly the Diakopto-Kalavryta railway, known for its breathtaking mountain views.

  • TrainOSE: Greece's national railway company website provides schedules, ticketing options, and information on their various lines. https://www.trainose.gr/en/


4. Athens Metro: Efficiently Navigate the Capital

If your adventures include Athens, you'll love its modern metro system. It's the most efficient way to reach the top attractions within the city. Three lines conveniently connect the center to Piraeus (for ferries) and Athens International Airport.

  • **Athens Urban Transport Organisation (OASA): ** This site is your information hub for the metro, bus, and tram networks in Athens. Find maps, fares, schedules, and plan your journeys here: https://www.oasa.gr/


Additional Tips for Smart Travel

  • Peak season planning: Especially in summer, ferry and bus tickets can sell out quickly. Book your travel in advance to secure your seats.
  • Check timetables: Bus and ferry timetables can change depending on the season, so double-check them before your trip.
  • Validate your tickets: Always validate your ticket before boarding buses, trains, or the metro in Athens.
  • Be prepared for delays: It's the Mediterranean—schedules can be flexible, so allow for delays in your travel plans.
  • Athens Transport Pass: If you are spending time in Athens, consider purchasing an integrated transport pass for unlimited travel on the Metro, buses, and trams. You can find more information on the Official Athens Guide: https://www.thisisathens.org/getting-around/public-transportation-metro-bus-tram.
  • Enjoy the Journey: Greece's public transport options can be part of the adventure. Whether gazing at the turquoise seas from a ferry deck or traversing lush landscapes by train, relax and soak in the stunning scenery!


Greece is a delightful mix of bustling cities and serene escapes. With a bit of planning, you can use its public transportation to discover its treasures at your own pace!



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