I’m looking at tours for 2023, specifically Athens & the Heart of Greece in 14 Days Tour. I am torn between going last 2 weeks in April or mid June. According to tour information average temperatures in April are 68°. June’s average high is 87. April also involves being in Greece during Orthodox Easter. I’m sure this can have positives and negatives. Anyone who has travelled in Greece during those months please provide feedback. Thanks!
I went the first two weeks in April this year. I am definitely not a hot weather person and thought the weather was perfect! Also the wildflowers were in bloom which was lovely. It even got rather hot on a few days. The sun is very intense. If you like hot weather, June might be for you, but if you’re not into hot hot weather April would probably be better.
We took this in April 2016 - weather was perfect for us - not too hot and humid but definitely sunny and comfortable. Loved the tour - we added 3 nights in Santorini after the tour which was awesome end to our Greek travels.
Having been there in late June, I definitely would have been much happier had it been cooler
We did not have the option to travel in April
We went in April 2018, which inspired a follow-up trip to Crete the next year. We arrived in Greece in time for both “our” Easter, and Orthodox Easter, one week later. That was interesting to experience, but even more so was that neither Athens nor the Peloponnese were not overwhelmed with crowds. Less heat, fewer people - that was a great combination in April. Maybe that would be a different situation 5 years later, or maybe those have traditionally been standard conditions in Greece.
June is warm and dry. The only time I went in late April/early May, we had dreadful heavy rain for days which put me off returning then.
I think Jennifer summarizes the trade offs quite well. Before late May there is chance of rain but weather is cooler. I was in Crete this year mid May for a conference before my husband joined me for a vacation and we had two days of miserable windy rainy weather. On the other hand, in early June on two different trips we have had some weather on mainland in high 90s.
I was in Greece this year during the last two weeks in April. Weather was great. It rained here and there but nothing that put a damper on our sightseeing. At first we needed a light jacket. By the end, nothing. Experiencing Greek Easter was fun.
I know a few people who live in Greece and they all say it's too hot from June-September. April is also less crowded.
Average monthly averages only tell you someone solved an arithmetic problem. Look at the daily historical data on timeanddate.com. Just for starters, I'd expect the second half of April to be warmer than the first half. An average in June of 87, when there are less likely to be big changes, means your highs will probably be mid80s to low 90s. I'd rather not be walking around archaeology sites for hours in full sunshine at temps around 90, but then I don't do well in the heat. Some people manage amazingly well (I've been watching tennis lately :-). Also look at the humidity in June. I believe Athens gets pretty humid, maybe the Peloponnese coastal towns as well. It may be hotter inland than in Athens or the coast.
From my own experience, in late April the sea is still chilly, the water is just warm enough to bravely go in for a few minutes and then happily dry off in the sun. In June it will be great for swimming. My tour was from about April 20. There were few tourists in any of the places we went to. Even Athens didn't feel overrun. I would expect June to be very different.
Our tour started the very end of March several years ago. The wildflowers were beautiful and the weather was nicely sunny and mild. I would heartily recommend April over June unless getting in the water is a definite goal.
How about April versus October...? 😎
I assume the tradeoffs are...
Both have mild weather (warm but not uncomfortably hot), crowds should be pretty much gone except at the most/worst over-touristed places.
April: Wildflowers, chilly water, but things/people are "fresh" because it's the beginning of the tourist season
October: Warm water, but some things/people are dry and tired because they've been dragged through six months of tourist abuse.
Any other distinctions/issues?
I went to 3 islands and Athens in October the year before Covid. I didn't have a sense of locals being tired of tourists
we did the Greece tour a few years ago. There were several days where we had free time and were able to go for a swim. So to me that would be a factor. I'd expect the water in April to be cooler than in June (although I haven't looked up the data). So for us we'd pick the June date for warmer water. If you have no intention of swimming in the ocean then I'd pick the April date for cooler weather and perhaps fewer crowds.
Thank you everyone for the excellent replies. My wife and I and another couple have decided to go on the tour which begins April 17, 2023. I am the only one of the four of us that will probably brave the chilly water. But the idea of less crowds, wild flowers and moderate temperatures in April won out.
If you expect to go in the water, take water shoes. All the beaches are pebbles, no sand. Have a great time!
My husband and I were on this trip this year. We were there for the last week of April and first week of May and the weather was beautiful! We had one day of rain in two weeks and the temperatures were lovely! Flowers were blooming - much nicer weather than my November trip with my daughter a few years ago! June would be a bit hot for me, but we're all different with regard to how much heat we can take.
Where will the group be on Orthodox Easter? We were in Athens and it was really lovely to see families celebrating and we had a traditional Easter lunch . . . but the negative was that our schedule had to be rearranged because all the sites close on Easter. Our guide did a wonderful job of working around it, but we did have to miss the train ride in the mountains because she just couldn't fit everything in. Just so you know - May 1 is also a national holiday in Greece and our schedule had to be rearranged again for that. Again, our guide, Iris, did a wonderful job with it and we didn't end up missing any planned activities. We ended up with a free day in Nafplio which was nice, and would have been even nicer - but that was the day it rained all morning and early afternoon. We made the best of it - a nice cafe with an awning!
We went in April and like others ended up there on Orthodox Easter. We had arrived on Saturday night — where they do all the big celebrations. And it was really cool to sit in a cafe and watch everyone come back from services.
Also, I think it was almost hot for me. We wore light jackets at night, but the days could be quite warm. I would not go later in the year.
Dean, my tour was the first two weeks in April and I happily went in the water. After the initial shock of the cold it was quite refreshing! I swam in Kardamyli and Hydra.