The Greek Islands, season by season

As we mentioned in the previous article, cruises around the Greek islands only run from mid-March to early November, that is during the Greek spring and summer period.

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In the summer, with the Greek islands dry and scorched by the sun, the tourist season reaches its peak. Locals with rooms to rent entice the travellers as soon as they disembark from the ferries and prices rise. Sometimes, the meltemi, a strong and blustery northern Aegean wind, alleviates the heat but can also wreak havoc on ferry schedules, while delighting the windsurfers. In June the wheat is harvested in the fields and the cherries, apricots and peaches are collected. In July the figs begin to ripen. August is the month of the mass exodus from Athens to the islands, especially for the Feast of the Assumption, on August 15. At the end of the summer, the first ripe grapes are sold in the markets, temperatures begin to gradually fall.

Greek islands in the spring and autumn

Spring, which is called anoixi (opening), is the prelude to the tourist season on the islands. After spending winter in Athens or Rhodes, hoteliers head for the smaller Greek islands that are more beautiful than ever in the spring, strewn with poppies, chamomile, and cyclamen.

During autumn, the months of September and October remain hot in the Dodecanese, Crete and the Cyclades, although further north there may be rain and rough seas. October brings the summer of Saint Dimitrios, a pleasant heat wave that prepares the first wines. This is the hunting season.

The fishing season also begins, and the seafood fills the menus of the restaurants. In late October, many islanders head to Athens, crowding the ferries and wishing each other Kalo Chimona (good winter). But on the islands the traditional life continues: the olives are collected and the strings of garlic, onions and tomatoes are hung to dry in the winter.

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