greek islands ferry

Photo via Paradise in the World

The ever-so-popular Santorini is only one of the 1,400 Greek islands in total, of which 230 are inhabited. Choosing which one to go to is a task in itself. Whether you’re looking for the views, nightlife, history, or nature, each island has a unique edge to it.

Once you’ve chosen an island, taking a ferry is the only way you’re going to get there. So whether you’re ready to Instagram a Santorini sunset, windsurf in Paros, or party in Ios, here’s what to expect on the ferry ride there.

greek islands ferry

Photo via Travel Plus Wine

WiFi isn’t free.

I guess this is a given because in basically all of Europe it is difficult to find free WiFi. Luckily hostels are pretty good about free WiFi, but expect to pay up for a few hours of WiFi on the ferry. The ferries have comfortable lounge areas, so if you don’t want to pay for WiFi, your best bet is bringing along your travel journal or simply take a nap. The ferry makes for a good nap day during your travels since the rolling Aegean Sea beneath you lulls you to sleep.

There’s no perfect temperature.

There are three areas on a ferry. One that is entirely enclosed (and will likely be hard to find seats), another that’s halfway enclosed, and finally, the outdoor deck. Even in the summertime, one minute you are hot and one minute you are cold. It gets windy and cold on the deck even when it is sunny outside. Layers are key.

It might storm and you’ll be stranded at sea for a few hours.

When the waves pick up and the storm clouds come out, the ferry stays anchored for a while. No need to stress, though, you won’t actually be stranded at sea. You are probably within swimming distance (maybe) of your island, and there are too many waves for the ferry to dock. The anticipation is a struggle because you can LITERALLY SEE THE ISLAND FROM THE WINDOW.

Listening is key to not missing your island.

If you see someone frantically running around the ferry, they probably thought they missed their stop. The announcer speaks in Greek, and there is a recording that announces where you are arriving in English, but let’s be honest with ourselves, mo one ever understands those damn announcers on the subway, and it’s no different on a ferry.

Have you ridden a ferry before?

Sydney Pereira is a student at New York University trying to change the world while simultaneously making enough money to travel when she's not studying or writing. She's also an athlete, music-lover, and avid news reader. When she's not exploring NYC, fresh flowers from the farmer's market and a cup of hot tea on a lazy Saturday are equally fulfilling.


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