There is no better way to discover the beauty of all the Greek islands and their world-renowned sights than on a luxurious Greek island cruise. With so many beautiful beaches featuring crystal-clear waters and incredible attractions, including Parthenon, it’s easy to see why the Greek islands are such popular cruise destinations.
Only a fraction of all the Greek islands in the Aegean Sea are inhabited, and taking a cruise to some of the most popular Greek islands like Mykonos, Paros, Rhodes, Santorini, Crete, and Corfu allows you to truly experience the laid-back Mediterranean lifestyle in the best way.
Read on to find our list of the best luxury Greek island cruises to plan a trip to the Greek isles you’ll remember forever.
Azamara Greek Island Cruises
The cruise line Azamara Cruises has so much to offer, including more time to explore Greece than most other cruise lines. With Azamara, you get to visit all the amazing Greek islands on your own time.
The multi-night Greece Intensive cruise offered by Azamara includes an overnight stay in Mykonos, where you’ll find authentic Greek whitewashed houses, enticing wildlife, and ancient Venetian windmills around every corner.
Azamara also offers shorter Greek island cruises that still allow you more than enough time to explore the white sand beaches, cobblestone streets of the Old Town, and the mesmerizing countryside of Crete.
With a fleet of four excellent cruise ships, the cruise line prides itself on its unique shore excursions that offer authentic experiences you’ll be hard-pressed to find anywhere else.
Celestyal Greek Island Cruises
Celestyal Cruises is another example of a cruise line that offers an exceptional island-hopping experience in the Aegean Sea. Two cruise ships set sail in Athens and take you on an unforgettable journey to Santorini, Patmos, and Mykonos. Celestyal’s longer cruises include a visit to Heraklion and Rhodes.
Eclectic Augean cruises of seven nights make a stop in the port of Mykonos for a taste of the vibrant city life and allow you to stretch out on the idyllic island of Santorini. Based in Cyprus, this cruise line is famous for offering guests outstanding local cuisine onboard that includes delicious Mediterranean elements and Greek delicacies.
Star Clippers Greek Island Cruises
Star Clipper brings the golden age of sailing to life with their tall ship accommodating 170 guests on summer cruises across the Aegean Sea. With this cruise line, you can experience what it’s like to sail on a majestic four-masted ship that stops at some breathtaking islands during the journey, including Athens, Malaga, Sardinia, and so many more.
The cruise line’s Greek Islands itineraries range from 5-night adventures to 11-night journeys, with some of the best ports of call you’ll ever find on a Greece cruise. Some cruises are themed according to the movie “Mamma Mia,” and even stop at some noteworthy sites and beaches where the movie was filmed.
The Cyclades, one of the six major Greek island groups located southeast of mainland Greece, are included in cruises that transit the Mycale Strait, which connects Anatolia to Samos in Turkey and is less than a kilometer wide at its narrowest point.
Windstar Greek Island Cruises
The cruise line Windstar features six intimate cruise ships that visit some of the hidden ports n Greece, including Patmos, Monemvasia, and Nafplio, in addition to the more popular Greek islands like Mykonos and Santorini. Guests can expect to discover many fascinating ancient ruins, the cultural heritage of the Greek islands, and countless pristine Greek beaches.
Ranging from seven- to 19-night cruises to extended 85-day journeys, Windstar showcases the best of the Greek islands and sets sail from Reykjavik.
Ancient Wonders of Greece, a 9-night Windstar cruise, entails sailing a roundtrip from Athens, exploring many renowned sites of ancient Greece, and learning more about Greek history and the tales of the Greek gods. This trip even allows you to take a dip in the lagoon that was believed to be the bathing site of the goddess Athena.
SeaDream Yacht Club Luxury Greek Island Cruises
SeaDream has two intimate ships that can accommodate 112 guests that take you on luxury Greek island cruises described as yachting instead of cruising.
The ships’ cuisine is quite unique and includes raw dishes prepared with organic ingredients. The sailing is all-inclusive and cruises through the noteworthy passage of Corinth Canal, an artificially-made Greek canal. During the cruise between Venice and Athens, the cruise line offers a wonderful wine-tasting package where guests can sample some of the finest wines with their exquisite dinner.
Variety Greek Island Cruise
Variety Cruises is based in Athens and offers a truly immersive cruise to the Greek Isles. Sailing from the large island of Crete to the mesmerizing Cyclades, such as Santorini, Kea, and Mykonos, Variety takes guests on a journey through the ancient world’s rich culture.
Variety’s fleet of eight small cruise ships sail roundtrips of seven nights starting from Athens.
Classical Greece sails across crystal-clear ocean waters to the idyllic island of Kythira, a lesser-known treasure in the Aegean Sea. The cruise line also offers mini-cruises of four nights each during the fall and spring seasons that sail to Delos, Santorini, Syros, and Mykonos.
Sea Cloud Greek Island Cruises
A Greek Isles cruise across the pristine waters provides the ideal backdrop for a romantic trip, and Sea Cloud works to enhance such an experience to the fullest. The line offers two lovely ships, accommodating 64 and 94 guests, respectively. Both ships are designed in an old-fashion ship style yet include all the modern luxuries you may need.
During an 8-night voyage, you will travel from Thessaloniki to Athens, stopping at fantastic destinations, including the island of Folegandros, which remains unvisited by many mainstream cruise lines. You will have the chance to take in the picturesque views of the sea and the entire island from the high-perched village of Chora.
Seabourn Cruise Line Greek Island Cruises
If you’re interested in a Greek island cruise on a stylish and contemporary ship, Seabourn Cruise Line has what you need. Known as the sleekest, most luxurious cruise ships sailing to the Greek isles, Seabourne’s ships offer all-inclusive cruise deals with in-depth explorations of the history and natural beauty of Greece.
As the vessels are relatively small, these Greek Isles cruises are able to port in many destinations that are inaccessible to larger ships.
Among the cruise line’s sailings are the highly-praised Greek Isles and Maltese Magic cruise. Beginning its voyage in Greece Athens, their itinerary includes a visit to magnificent islands like Rhodes and the Dodecanese Islands, where historic ruins telling the tales of encounters between crusading knights and Italians with Greek inhabitants are abundant.
Virgin Voyages Cruises to the Greek Islands
The laid-back vibe of the popular Greek islands of Mykonos and Santorini emphasizes the ethos of Virgin Voyages perfectly. You can expect upbeat adult-only events and a wide diversity of shore excursions and adventures in Greece.
Virgin’s seven-night greek islands cruise visits both these must-see destinations with an overnight stay in the lively center of Greece Mykonos so guests can get a taste of the exciting nightlife as part of their unforgettable holiday.
A Virgin Greek Isles cruise is not all parties and drinks, however, as these itineraries also include various interesting excursions where you will get a chance to explore an archaeological museum, the famous Blue-domed churches of Greece, pristine beaches, the ancient ruins of majestic castles, markets in the quaint narrow streets of Greece, and so much more.
The newest addition to Virgin Voyages’ fleet, expected to set sail in 2023, will also visit unmissable places like Croatia.