How to stay cool in the Greek Summer

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You’ve decided to come to Greece for your summer vacation–after all, there’s so much to see here:  
There are free things to do in Athens
– some amazing ancient wonders in Greece beyond the Acropolis
– so many islands to explore such as Rhodes, and Zakynthos
– lesser visited islands such as beautiful Hydra–a mere 45-minute ferry ride away from Athens.
Greece is undoubtedly a beautiful country to explore in all seasons.  My Tips for Travelling in Greece gives an excellent overview of how to understand the weather during different seasons.   
This article will explore how to stay cool in Greece during the increasingly hot summer months.

blue and white chair under white umbrella on beach during daytime
Photo by Marko Kelecevic

Summer temperatures in Greece

The hottest month in Greece is August when temperatures are said to average 29 degrees C (84 degrees F), but in reality get much hotter than that, especially in Athens with the concrete buildings just absorbing the heat…and can reach to 40 degrees C (104 degrees F).
The Greek islands are somewhat cooler with their sea breeze, but Crete, for example, can reach 37 degrees C (98.6 F) as early as June. 
Mainland Greece such as the Peloponnese with destinations like Kalamata on the coast and Nafplio, Greece’s original capital, can see temperatures of 32 C (90 F) and even high 30 Cs / low 100 Fs respectively in early June.

There’s no doubt about it.  Summer is a hot time to visit Greece so here I present some options for staying cool during this period. 

NOTE: There will be some affiliate links here for the purchase of any products.  I will earn a commission at no extra charge to you.

woman sitting on poolside setting both of her feet on pool
Photo by Angelo Pantazis

Stay out of direct sun from about 11am-4pm

Many of you will think I’m exaggerating.  No–as well as getting super hot (see above), with it obviously comes the sunburn and dizziness associated with spending time in the direct sun. 
If you insist on sunbathing, then at least slap on Sunscreen and a hat, preferably a sunhat that has an SPF 50 factor.

Stay hydrated

This may sound like an obvious one, but you’d be amazed at the amount of people who go abroad to a hot country and think the beers will keep them hydrated. According to The Independent:

It is recommended to drink around eight glasses of water per day which equals around 1.5-2 litres per day

but not all in one go, space it out.  
So carry around water with you in a cooling reusable water bottle to help the environment by not using plastic bottles. 

man in white crew neck t-shirt drinking from black sports bottle
Photo by Nigel Msipa

Cover up

Loosely covering up is the way to go–and not just from a customs and etiquette point of view, but also to keep those beating sun rays off. 

  • Keep the sun out of your eyes with SPF sunglasses, and cover up with these sun protection pants
  • There’s also a whole host of Long sleeve UV protection shirts to choose from to keep you protected too.
  • A shawl or wrap is a good idea if going into a church–it can cover your shoulders and legs.
  • Keep your neck cool.  These neck-cooling towels are great and in an array of colours to go with any outfit.  I use them during the day and you simply wet them, shake off the excess water/squeeze them out then wrap around your neck to keep your body temperature down.  The great thing? They come in a waterproof pack so once you’ve finished with it, you can pop it back in without getting your clothes damp.
Greek Church - Athens - LifeBeyondBorders
Copyright Rebecca Hall

My Greek Island Packing List is a great download to help you check you’ve got everything.


All of the above come under safety, but in Greece the Civil Protection regularly sends heat and other weather-related alerts to cell phones.  Here’s how to enable your cell/mobile to receive these:
– Open Settings on your phone
– Tap Notifications, then Wireless Emergency Alerts
– Choose how often you want to receive them  


Be sure to exercise caution when spending time in the sun.  To summarize:

  • Loosely cover up
  • Wear SPF30-50 sunscreen
  • Make sure you drink plenty of water at regular intervals
  • Loose shirts are great, not just for the sun but for going into churches too
  • SPF pants/trousers are a godsend
  • Try a handheld travel fan 

Enjoy your Greek holiday!

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How to Stay Cool in Summer in Greece by LifeBeyondBorders
Copyright LifeBeyondBorders