Greece help needed: Athens, Naxos, Santorini

We will be traveling to Greece later this month. We’ll have a couple days in Athens, and more in Santorini (Oia), and Naxos (Agios Prokopios). We’re looking for great food in a relaxed atmosphere. All price ranges ok, but don’t want anywhere stuffy. In Athens we’ll be near the Parthenon, and we’d love the very best couple meals we can get.

Thanks very much in advance for any help you can give us.


If you like splurge breakfasts, I love the breakfast /brunch buffet at the St George Lycabettus Hotel, which can be purchased without staying at the hotel. They have outdoor seating on an upper floor terrace, and there’s a view of the Parthenon. Lots of regional dishes, cheeses, rice pudding (rizogalo), sweets. It’s in Kolonaki, an upscale neighborhood with a lot of galleries which has a different vibe than Monastiraki or Plaka.

It’s possible to book a breakfast or lunch reservation online here

I follow Akis Petrezikis, who is a celebrity chef with several restaurants. They might be trendy. I would probably check one out.

I haven’t been to Santorini since 2007. The 2 regional dishes I’d recommend you try are the tomato keftedes (vegetarian) and then fava, which is a spread made from split yellow peas, not fava beans. The soil is Santorini is special, which makes their tomatoes a little more special.

Enjoy the watermelon. It’s fantastic in Greece.

My 3rd cousin is involved with Athens Insiders, which may be a useful guide.

I love the pastry shops in Greece. Adding this for reference.

I look forward to your trip report!


Haven’t been to Naxos or Santorini. But if a taxi driver in Athens comes up to you and offers to take you somewhere, don’t take it. That’s how to get cheated.


Also applies in Rome, Madrid and Nice. And Toronto! Unfortunately!

I was scammed in Athens, once, as well. Our relative ordered our next taxi, once she found out how much we had paid, and told the driver not to gouge us. It was around half what we had paid on the trip out to the relative’s apartment. And I had topped that scammer well, because he seemed so friendly, and I didn’t know how much the trip was supposed to cost.

As soon as a taxi driver seems a little too friendly, that’s a sign I’m about to get gouged.


Those menus are so different from what I’d expect. They look like they’re from California restaurants. Athens sure has changed!


Our favourite meal in Greece (made my Top 10 meals of 2022) was at Soil (Michelin 1 * in Athens) - we also stayed near Acropolis and walked there, albeit some hilly bits. It may look formal but they were very helpful - prices, I thought, were fair, although the feel is much more upscale - but worth the splurge. Lovely garden setting.

We had excellent breakfasts at a small corner restaurant that I’m speculating on its name, as it seems to be in the right location relative to our hotel - but can’t guarantee the name: “Coffee Joint” -Vourvachi 5-9, Athina 117 43, If you’re close, check it out.

Santorini was a disaster for food. Wouldn’t return for anything! Party town, and the resorts had bad service and worse food. Good luck! But try the Santorini Assyrtiko wines.
Didn’t go to Naxos.


My favorite place in Athens is a touristy place near the Acropolis Museum called Liondi. I only had one dish both times I went, the roast lamb and it was very, very good. The chef wandered by and chatted for a time, he is a good sort that loves food and people. I take that back, I had baked feta with sausage and that was pretty good too.

There is a very good middle eastern bakery/cafe in Monastiraki, Feyrouz. Loved the lentil soup and the kibbeh. Owner/manager/son (the one with hair) is a treasure, very good sort. They are all good but if he has a moment he is a great source of info.
Great pedestrian street. Feyrouz sits on two sides of the street so pick the place/side that works for you.

Another favorite is the basement place Diporto. Not fancy, actually the opposite of fancy, but hearty and cheap. Go early before they start to run out of the favorites. A friend actually refused to go down the steps to this place a month or two after I told him about it. His loss.
Kostas near Agia Irini has great fast food/gyros. Again, go early before the few tables get snatched up. Great walking street.

Oh and it is worth it to walk the “West Monastiraki” neighborhood around if only for the “life sized” dragon on the roof of Little Kook. That is a bizarre gem. I can not remember the actual neighborhood name

None of these are fine dining, but they are all fun places with good to very good food.

Naxos is one of my favorites and Oia is a joy if you go in the off season, not sure what the busy time is but I will share my faves on those two islands soon.


I think my husband B and I went to Naxos but we have to check our collective memories/photos.

And I agree about the Santorini white wines, Sigalas is the well-known winery, deservedly so.

Greece is high on my list for a destination with 10-year old Spring Onion next year.


One more thing! LOL! If you are in Athens it is VERY VERY nice to be the first group into the Acropolis! I think they open the gate at 8am but walking up to it with no one ahead of you and a pack of punters close behind is phenomenal!!!
I had breathing issues so I did not break the tape but I was in third or fourth last time! And if you go on Sundays, the Greek Army raises the flag over the Acropolis right before (again, I think it is 8am) you are allowed in, which is cool too.
Oh, I forgot the sandwich place Montakiou near Klafthmonos Square on Stadiou.

Hmm… Camera issues. Argh.

Diporto. Yeah, down that hatch the women are gazing at doubtfully.


Karamandalika on Ermou and I Kriti, both regional specialists, were our faves on our April visit to Athens. Some recommendations from others on that thread.

Id also like to mention some spots that my very attentive daughter and son in law liked a year or so ago (with his comments) -

  • I Kriti (Cretan restaurant, in retrospect much better than restaurants in the countryside in Crete, but probably not as good as those in Heraklion

  • Tanini Agapi Mou (very much a wine bar in the contemporary style, but a spectacular list)

  • Travolta (you have to take the metro and the neighborhood feels very quiet but it is worth it, some of the best seafood I’ve ever seen)

  • To Kolouri of Psirri (small diner type place and wonderful) (note, I wasnt so impressed by this)

  • Αιόλου 68 (seafood-oriented, not as amazing as Travolta in terms of straight quality, but very good, and more tapas-oriented and experimental)


Santorini is going to be a bit of a scrum, I imagine. I have only been there between Valentines Day and April 1st and the crowds built in March, big time. But the food was really good and the views superb.
In Oia there is a pub/crepery/cafe near the bus stop that I really, really like called Hungry Donkey(crepes and burgers)/KooKoo Bar(calamari, sea bream, sausage, lamb) which are both, I believe, owned by the same couple. They love food and love to share that love by serving local products. I have been back a couple times over the past couple years and the wife recognized me and replaced my Red Donkey Beer with a Yellow Donkey and chastised her husband for forgetting what my favorite beer was. A year after we last discussed their beer list. Her husband apologized and gave me a complimentary Santorini Brewing glass that I treasure to this day. Love this place and the owners.

The second place in Oia I really like is Pelekanos. It has a view of the caldera that is simply amazing and the simpler items on the menu were a treat! Love this place! The pasta is rather good but the view and the vibe were the best aspects of this place.

Finally, a bit casual and fun, is Lotza. A very sweet older woman was very nice about going through the menu with me. Great clay pot pork dish, just outstanding! The gemista was delicious! Plus the sea bream looked good too. Not fine dining but good food with an emphasis on local foods.

Walking in Oia is a joy, great paths and nooks and views. The church is very nice. Some very chill cats live in Oia, they are well fed and much loved. And the working donkeys are pretty chill too. Not sure if they will be there at this time of the year. Saw a little cat try to ambush a donkey, the donkey was not impressed.

I have a few favorites in Fira, too but I need to head into town so I will put those in later.


I adored Santorini when I was there - we were staying in Kamari at a friend’s house & did a lot of tours all over the island. But this was in the mid-80s, and I wouldn’t dream of recommending any place anywhere I’ve not been to in less than, say, 5 years tops.

We’re hoping to visit a few Greek islands next summer, so I’ll be paying extra attention to your reports, @LulusMom1 :slight_smile:


Thank you all so much, this is amazing information! Very grateful, and I will spend the next week or so checking out all these recommendations. Keep them coming if something pops into your head. And I will definitely try to force an early morning on Acropolis day - that’s something I wouldn’t have thought of but it’s brilliant. Serious gratitude from me!


I’ve booked a dinner at Linou Soumpasis k sia in Athens and am strongly leaning toward a dinner at Αιόλου 68. Finally getting to research stuff, and that is helping me get very excited about this trip!


Yes! It’s so strange how the modern locavore movement has resulted in our seeing essentially the same menu everywhere.

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acropolis tickets are issued with a time on them. They WILL NOT let you in before your stated time. We got to the gate an hour early and just had to hang around and wait. There are also not very many entry gates to the Forum/Acropolis area, good idea to figure out your entrance point before you start tramping in one direction or another! Have a great visit!


the menus dont strike me as locavore so much as importation of standard dishes and cooking techniques by trained chefs and eating customs across national boundaries - maybe US brunch dishes are novelties in Greece (which like Turkey has some great breakfast foods and customs of its own and may not need an american style "brunch’. Anyway, much of the cooking in Greece, Italy and other mediterranean countries is already “locavore” - they cook primarily using very local produce, herbs, and other food products, which is one of the great joys.

I think most Greeks get their Greek breakfasts at home, and it’s a treat to go out and try a North American-style brunch.

Most Greeks I know personally (from the islands, in my case) don’t really eat breakfast. Mostly coffee and some toast, paximadi or koulourakia (similar to simit).

I had not ever heard of strapatsada (Greek eggs with tomatoes) until I went to Greece with a friend whose roots are on the western side of the Peloponnese. Her family eats a bigger breakfast.

The amazing brunch at St George Lycabettus is created for travelers I think. I love it. It’s a lot like a good German or Swiss hotel breakfast spread, but with more regional Greek stuff.

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Strapisada? Great dish! My favorite was at Pelican Kipos in Fira on Santorini. Great cafe and a very nice way to break your fast! And they have those sweet doughnut hole dessert things that are nice plus it is served in a greenhouse full of flowering plants.