Top day trips from Athens to nearby islands

Easy and fun island day trips!

Athens, the Greek capital, is a wonderful destination that offers amazing experiences and unique attractions. If you’re visiting this summer, you can try out island hopping from Athens!

Whether you’re interested in a one-day island cruise from Athens or you’re looking forward to the ultimate Athens island-hopping adventure, the capital city of Greece is a great starting point for your tour. 

So, where can you go on a day trip from Athens? Find the best Athens island-hopping options below and book your ferry tickets online on Ferryhopper!

Chapel above the port of Piraeus

View to the port of Piraeus in Athens

Island hopping from Athens: our top suggestions

You can visit many islands close to Athens. The islands of the Saronic Gulf and the Cyclades are the closest to Athens. The 3 ports of Athens serve frequent ferry routes to many destinations. Most ferries to the Greek islands depart from the port of Piraeus, but there are also year-round routes from Lavrio and Rafina, making island-hopping trips from Athens easier than ever!

So, what islands can you visit from Athens? You can travel by ferry from Athens to nearby islands such as Aegina, Agistri, Hydra, Kea, Spetses, Poros, and Kythnos, as well as other beautiful islands of the Aegean Sea, such as Rhodes, Santorini, Mykonos, Milos, Crete, Lesbos, Kastellorizo, and so many more!

If you’re interested in 2-day trips from Athens to the Greek islands or a multi-day holiday break (on top of your regular holiday break), have a look at the best island day trips from Athens:

Hydra island day trip from Athens

Hydra is a peaceful island in the Saronic Gulf. If you want to spend memorable holidays in a cosmopolitan and idyllic setting, Hydra is an excellent choice. In Hydra, you can visit remote beaches such as Avlaki, walk among important historical sites and impressive mansions, and attend concerts, artistic performances and cultural events.

Day trips to Hydra from Athens are easy to plan, with up to 2 daily ferry crossings year-round. Ferries to Hydra depart from the port of Piraeus in Athens. If you want to include a road trip in your journey, you can also drive to the ports of Ermioni and Porto Cheli in the Peloponnese and catch the ferry from there.

The ferry trip from Athens to Hydra lasts only 1.5-2 hours on average, as it is mainly serviced by high-speed ferries. Tickets for the ferry from Athens to Hydra start at €36.

Tip: bear in mind that cars and motorcycles are not allowed on the island. Discover more Greek islands for car-free holidays here.

Hydra town and port

The beautiful town of Hydra

A refreshing day trip from Athens to Agistri

Agistri is one of the best islands to visit with friends, as it is an easy-going destination with impressive nature, amazing tavernes and beautiful beaches. In Agistri, you can spend relaxing moments by the sea, visit clothing-optional beaches such as Chalikiada (one of the favorite beaches among camping enthusiasts in Greece) and go hiking, cycling, kayaking and diving!

There are frequent ferries from Athens to Agistri throughout the year. In the summer, there are around 6 daily sailings to Agistri from the port of Piraeus. High-speed ferries to Agistri arrive at the port of Myloi, while standard ferries travel to the port of Skala.
The duration of the trip with a high-speed vessel ranges from 50 minutes to 1 5. hours, with ferry tickets costing approximately €13.

Tip: if you’re thinking of going camping this year, take a look at Ferryhopper’s camping essentials list.

Visit Aegina, the island closest to Athens

A day trip from Athens to Aegina island is a favorite among locals and visitors! In Aegina, you can swim at beaches with plenty of visitor services, such as Agia Marina, or remote coasts, such as Portes. Aegina is also an ideal destination for foodies due to its local products and a great option for history enthusiasts. The sanctuary of Aphaia in Aegina is one of the most impressive ancient monuments in Greece!

The best way to travel to Aegina is by ferry from the port of Piraeus in Athens. If you’re visiting in the summer, you can catch the ferry from Athens to Aegina daily. There are up to 30 crossings per day from Athens to Aegina, as it’s one of the most popular island day trips from Athens.

Aegina is just 1hour from Athens and it’s perfect for weekend breaks, as it is the closest Greek island to Athens. Ferry tickets start at €9 and you can travel from Piraeus with the ferry companies of Hellenic Seaways, Saronic Ferries, San Lorenzo Ferries, and Aegean Flying Dolphins.

Moni islet in Aegina

The virgin islet of Moni off the coast of Aegina

Explore the traditional Spetses

Spetses is one of the most cosmopolitan islands in the Saronic Gulf and it’s a top destination for couples. The day trip from Athens to Spetses is perfect if you’re after romantic moments and quaint views.

The island is distinguished by its regal architecture, impressive buildings, crystal-clear waters and off-the-beaten-path activities. While in Spetses, you can explore the town on a horse-drawn carriage, go hiking through the beautiful forest or visit the magical Bekiris cave.

Ferries from Athens to Spetses depart from the port of Piraeus up to 7 times per day. The Athens - Spetses ferry route is mainly operated by high-speed ferries, but there are conventional vessels too.

The ferry crossing duration from the port of Piraeus to the island of Spetses is around 2.5 hours with a fast ferry. Tickets for this route start at €48.

Have the best day-trip to Kea

Kea is the closest Cycladic island to Athens and a top destination for relaxing and peaceful vacations. In Kea, you can enjoy local delicacies such as ksinotiri and loza, visit amazing monuments, such as the Lion of Kea, and discover the island’s nightlife in the villages of Ioulis, Vourkari and Gialiskari. As for the best beaches, Ferryhopper suggests that you visit Sikamia and Xyla.

The best way to travel to Kea from Athens is through the port of Lavrio. Ferries from Athens (Lavrio) to Kea are usually daily in the summer months.

Occasionally, there are more ferry crossings from the port of Piraeus, but you may have to change ferries at Syros or Kythnos before reaching the island.

The trip duration from Athens to Kea is just 1 hour, making it one of the top one-day island trips from Athens. Tickets for the crossing are normally around €13.

Tip: if you’re looking for more easy-going Greek islands to visit this year, have a look at our favorite Greek islands for relaxing holidays.

The lighthouse of Kea

The lighthouse of Kea

Discover the beauty of Poros

Poros is a marvelous green island in the Saronic Gulf. It’s a perfect destination for weekend breaks, as it is easily accessible both from Athens and Peloponnese. 
The island of Poros is great if you’re looking for an island with a strong traditional character and modern amenities. You can explore the scenic alleys of the island, have fun at the lively bars, take the boat to the beautiful lemon tree forest of Galatas or visit the beautiful Love Bay beach.

Ferries to Poros depart from the port of Piraeus in Athens multiple times per day. Most ferries from Athens to Poros are high-speed, reaching the port in less than 1 hour. The duration of the trip depends on the ferry itinerary.

Tickets for the Athens - Poros ferry crossing cost about €17-€34, depending on the type of vessel you’ve chosen.

Tip: from Poros, you can also travel directly by ferry to Hydra and Spetses. This way you can have a multi-day trip from Athens to 3 islands!

Hop on the ferry to Kythnos

Kythnos is a beautiful island in the Cyclades with majestic beaches, impressive nature, breathtaking hiking trails and a relaxing atmosphere. Even though the island is close to Athens, it has retained its authenticity and traditional way of life. While in Kythnos, we recommend that you swim at Kolona, explore the cave of Katafyki and admire the view from the Castle of Oria.

You can travel to Kythnos by ferry from the ports of Piraeus and Lavrio in Athens. Taking the ferry from Lavrio to Kythnos is the most popular option, with daily departures in summer. The trip duration is 1.5-2.5 hours, depending on the type of vessel. Tickets for the crossing from Athens (Lavrio) to Kythnos start at around €16.

The Piraeus - Kythnos ferry route is available with 3-4 weekly ferry crossings in the summer. The journey duration from Athens (Piraeus) to Kythnos is approximately 3 hours, with tickets costing around €30.

Tip: find the latest Greek ferry schedules and Greek ferry ticket discounts to plan your trip this summer.

Kythnos island as seen from the ferry deck

View from a ferry departing from the island of Kythnos

You can find more ideas on Greek island day tours from Athens on our Map of ferries. Plan your Athens island-hopping adventure, find travel tips for 3-day island cruises from Athens or island day trips, and book cheap ferry tickets easily!