This year has been an exceptional one for travelers and many countries are seeing overseas visitors return in record numbers.
But some countries are more popular than others and in many cases, such as in this stunning European destination, it’s easy to see why.
From its amazing sunsets to its iconic white and blue architecture, Greece is a bucket list destination for many.
As a result, Greece has seen a record number of foreign visitors from January to July this year. An incredible 16.17 million travelers chose to visit the country.
Over 700,000 of those travelers were from the United States. This is an increase of 43.5%, showing that demand for Greek travel remains incredibly high.
Whether you choose to visit mainland Greece or one of the many populated Greek islands, you will find stunning beaches and mesmerizing landscapes. A rich history and well-preserved artifacts. And warm and welcoming people and delicious food.
Here’s why travelers are choosing to visit this stunning European destination in record numbers this year:
Greece is famous for its beautiful Mediterranean beaches with the bluest water you’ve ever seen. Greek beaches regularly feature on ‘world’s best beaches’ lists.
Three of the most famous are Navagio Beach in Zakynthos, Myrtos beach on Kefalonia Island, and Balos Beach in Crete. These were all featured in a comprehensive list of the world’s 50 best beaches.
Greek beaches are known for being breathtakingly beautiful, clean, and welcoming.
Their diversity and crystal clear waters that are perfect for swimming means that you could visit a different Greek beach every day of your vacation and experience a different facet of the country.
Easy To Explore
Greece isn’t a particularly huge country, which means that traveling from city to city or from island to island isn’t difficult. In fact many people travel to Greece specifically for island hopping!
On the mainland the railway and bus networks are great. If you want to travel from island to island, then you’ll find that there are ferries connecting all of the major islands both to the mainland and often to each other.
Earlier this year, Uber even launched a private chartered boat service on the Greek island of Mykonos, allowing tourists to travel where they want and when they want.
You can even fly between locations in Greece as there are 46 international and domestic airports in the country and most of the larger islands will have an airport on them.
Safe For Travelers
Greece is amongst the safest countries in the world.
The U.S. State Department has awarded it a Level 1 travel advisory level which means that visitors should exercise normal precautions but there is no specific advice for traveling to the country.
Wildfires ravaged parts of the country during the hottest summer months and this was widely publicized by the media. These fires were devastating and many Greek people lost their homes.
But wildfires happen in Greece every year, and these fires were well-controlled and had minimal impact on tourists in the country.
Aside from this, tourists are very unlikely to experience crime or violence when traveling to Greece. This makes it a great choice for female travelers or solo travelers.
The only concern is petty street crime, which can be a particular problem in popular tourist destinations and big cities like Athens. But this is something that happens in most major tourist destinations.
Greek culture is famous around the world. From philosophers like Plato, Socrates, and Aristotle to the Greek Gods and stories from Greek mythology everyone knows something about Greek history.
And Greek art and architecture are considered some of the best and most important in the world too.
When you visit Greece you can step back in time and explore ancient cultures. You can walk through the Acropolis in Athens or sit under the plane tree of Hippocrates in Kos.
The Greek people are also warm and welcoming to visitors. And their laid-back and relaxed approach to life is contagious! Take the time to sit on a terrace with a drink, eat delicious mezze, and embrace not only the Greek culture but also the Greek way of life.
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This article originally appeared on TravelOffPath.com