Take a day trip from Athens to Nafplio and the exiting region of mainland Greece, the Peloponnese, an area that contains numerous treasures of the ancient world. From the city of the fabled King Agamemnon, Mycenae, to the ancient theatre at Epidaurus or the elegant neoclassical city Nafplio, there is so much to see here. For these reasons, it is one of the most popular tours from Athens. The Peloponnese lies 80km west of Athens, beyond the isthmus of Corinth, with Nafplio being 138km from the centre of Athens. There are four ways to explore the Peloponnese: a Welcome Pickups day trip, an organised coach tour, a KTEL intercity bus journey or your own car rental.
Nafplio – Peloponnese
There are four ways to explore the Peloponnese: a Welcome Pickups day trip, an organized coach tour, a KTEL intercity bus journey or your own private car.
Head out on a day trip from Athens to Nafplio, Peloponnese on this exclusive, full-day tour with your own Welcome driver. Start your day by being picked up at your chosen pickup point in a comfortable modern vehicle and after a brief introduction, head along the Megara gulf towards the Peloponnese. Along the way, your English-speaking driver will inform you the history and culture of the places you will visit, and give insights to these wondrous locations. This private day tour has five recommended stopping points, as well as a number of stops along the way your driver will suggest for amazing views and photo opportunities. The route is also customizable, meaning you can choose any extra stops you would like to take within the time limit.
Recommended Tour Stops
Nafplio’s Old Town
Epidaurus and Ancient Theatre
Exploring the Peloponnese is a popular day trip from Athens and a tour with Welcome Pickups lasts 9 hours, giving you the chance to thoroughly explore this stunning region of Greece with your local friend on the ground. The tour is available from a single traveler up to twelve people. Please note that while the driver is a knowledgeable, friendly local, they are not a licensed tour guide and are therefore not permitted to guide you around the ancient sites. On top of the recommended stops, should you have time, your driver will then take you up to one of the most famous vineyards in Greece, the Nemea winery. There you can take a tour of the wine cellars, sample some of Greece’s finest red wine, and gaze out over the stunning vineyards as the sun begins to lower in the sky.
Welcome Pickups Tour Photos from Nafplio
How Much Does It Cost?
The tour cost begins from €330 for 1-4 people, €460 for 5-8 people and €550 for 9-12. These prices do not include entrance fees to the ancient sites or other attractions.
Where Do I Get It From?
Your Welcome driver will pick you up from any Athens hotel or apartment at the centre of the city. Welcome is a door-to-door service, so you don’t have to concern yourself with getting to where you want to go. Just let us know at the time of booking where the driver will pick you up from and after a friendly introduction, you will be on your way. You can also arrange to be dropped off where you wish in the centre on your return.
With Welcome, everything is arranged to provide you with the best tour possible and make the entire experience as convenient as it can be. Your transport is door-to-door, your driver is your local guide, your vehicle is modern and comfortable with all your necessary amenities onboard, including Wi-Fi. You can be sure that you are getting the greatest convenience right from the beginning to the end of the tour.
The Peloponnese is such a beautiful and underrated area of Greece that has so many exceptional gems to explore. This is the case for both the ancient history, as well as the modern culture that is present today. Therefore, you really need your local, knowledgeable friend on the ground to take your experience to that extra level, and that is what Welcome drivers do best.
Organised Coach Group Tour from Athens to Nafplio
Organised coach tours are a popular way of exploring the sites of interest and taking excursions from Athens to other areas of mainland Greece. Many companies offer coach tours to the Peloponnese and have a similar price range, time length, day schedule, etc. Tours have a passenger number of around 50, as well as a dedicated driver and tour guide. Tours typically visit Mycenae, Nafplio, and Epidaurus, with some also stopping at Corinth along the way. These tours from Athens to Peloponnese last around 10 hours in total, usually leaving at 08:30 and arriving back at 18:30.
How Much Does It Cost?
The cost of a ticket can vary from each company, as well as what season you are travelling in and how far in advance you book before the tour date. That being said, the general starting price for this tour is about €90 per adult and €55 per child. Some tours include lunch for an extra small fee.
How Often Do They Run?
These day trips last all day, so each tour only runs once in the day. Generally each company runs from around 8:30, but there may be a slight difference. Most tour providers do not run tours each day of the week, but run tours on Tuesdays & Saturdays, as well as some offering Wednesdays and Thursdays. It is best to check on the tour booking page for specific information.
Taking an organized coach trip is a fairly convenient way to explore the amazing sites of the Peloponnese. You can be picked up from a convenient central location, you are taken to all the sites on the schedule and there is a professional guide to take you around the sites. The downside is that the tour is limited to a specific schedule according to the needs of the group. Furthermore, being part of a large group may make access to the guide and more difficult and the experience may feel less personal.
Organised coach tours can be a great way to experience the sites if you have specific language needs, or would like to travel as part of a very large or exclusive group. It is recommended to book in advance so you can get tickets for your whole group at the best prices.
KTEL Intercity Public Bus
One of the more common methods of public transport around Greece is the use of intercity buses, known locally as the KTEL service. Being a public service, it is the cheapest option available to anyone wishing to travel from Athens to Corinth, Mycenae, and Nafplio. There is a bus line that runs from Athens to Nafplio and stops at Fichte on the way, the nearest stop to Mycenae.
How Often Do the Buses Run?
Many buses run almost hourly every day of the week both to Nafplio and back to Athens. During weekdays buses start from 06:15 and 07:30 on weekends. There are also a number of buses on a separate route from Nafplio to the Theatre at Epidaurus. The first schedule shows the route and times from Athens (written Athina) to Nafplio via Mycenae (written Mikines) and the second from Nafplio to Epidaurus (written Epidavros).
Where Can I Find the Buses?
The KTEL station in Athens that has buses running to the Peloponnese and Nafplio is the KTEL Attikis station near the Viktoria metro station. The best way to get there is to take the metro line 1 (green) from Monastiraki to Viktoria. From the metro exit it is a three minute walk, firstly on Cheiden, then a left on 28is Oktovriou before a right onto Kotsika. If travelling to Fichti you will need to walk to the Mycenae site, which is 3.5km away, or take a local taxi. The KTEL station at Nafplio is known as KTEL Argolidas and is on Andreas Syngrou street near the Town Hall, the city courthouse and the municipal offices.
The KTEL buses are undoubtedly the cheapest option per person and on board they are comfortable enough. However, using the KTEL buses would mean needing to change buses if you wish to visit a number of ancient sites. You may also have to make use of local taxis, particularly if time is limited. You will also need to fit you visits around the running schedules of the buses. Therefore, the KTEL service can be a bit tricky to make a full day of sightseeing and requires a decent amount of organisation before hand.
The KTEL buses do not have an automated announcement about the stops. Some key stops are announced by the driver, but you cannot guarantee this. If you are stopping off somewhere but aren’t sure where it is, you can ask the driver to tell you when you are arriving or ask another passenger. Greeks are generally very friendly and kind and ask each other for help all the time.
Car hire is another option for you to be able to drive by yourself to the Peloponnese from Athens. This can be an exciting way for you to travel around the whole area and you will have the ultimate flexibility of choosing your own route, stops and timing. It is a good idea to plan the trip in advance so that you choose the best route for you, stopping at the places you want to see most. The journey time to Nafplio is approximately 1 hour and 45 minutes. You will need to book your car before arriving because car hire companies can be booked out a month in advance, particularly in the summer season.
Cost of Hiring a Car
This can be relatively cheap, depending on when you book, which model you choose, your age and if you pay online or at the pick up point. Starting from €25 per day, this can easily rise to €60 per day. However, rental companies will also require a deposit on the car, which may begin from €200 but could be as much as €3000, depending on the model. You will also need to pay for petrol, which may cost around €50 for the round trip, plus tolls on the national highways. If you wish to have a private tour guide of the archaeological site, this will add an extra cost. See the information above about licensed guides. Entrance fees to the archaeological site and museum will also incur an extra cost.
This can be a cost-effective option, easy to access and has the full flexibility of your own decision about the time you begin, the amount of time spent on the total trip, the route you choose, etc. However, it will require planning, organization, and booking in advance, particularly in high season. You will also need to take on the responsibility of getting around the Peloponnese and from place to place yourself. Furthermore, it can be stressful driving in Greece if you’re not used to it, particularly around and when leaving Athens city center.
Everyone these days has Google maps on their phones and this will be a great help in getting your way around from the KTEL stations to the places that you want to see. Also, don’t be afraid to ask locals if you’re confused or lost. Greeks usually speak a fairly good level of English, especially the younger generation, and are very happy to help people.
Licensed Tour Guides in the Peloponnese
There are some options on this list that include a tour guide and others which are just transport options. In this case, you may still want a licensed guide to show you around the ancient sites and/or the city of Nafplio. There are a number of ways guides can be hired, including via tour websites and guides’ private website. Alternatively, there can be guides outside the large archaeological sites for hire, particularly in high season. Prices for guides vary from guide to guide and the length of time the guide will be working. It is best to contact the guide you prefer ahead of time to work out a price.
If you choose to visit all these places on your own it will be challenging to find a a tour guide for the whole day especially in the summer booking should be made much in advance and the cost will be high.
Frequently asked questions
How to get from Athens to Nafplio?
There are four ways to get from to Nafplio: a Welcome Pickups day trip, an organised coach tour, a KTEL intercity bus journey or your own private car.
How far is Nafplio from Athens?
Nafplio is located 138km away from Athens, in the Peloponnese region and it takes about 2 hours to get there by car.
How do you get from Athens to Epidaurus?
The best way to visit Epidaurus is to take a Welcome Pickups tour from Athens. Otherwise you can take a KTEL bus or hire your own car to go there.
How far is Mycenae from Athens?
The archaeological site of Mycenae is 120km away from Athens. A visit to the site can be combined with a day trip to Nafplio from Athens.
How far is Olympia from Athens?
Olympia is further to the west in the Peloponnese and is about 250km away from Athens and 3.5 hours by car.
Save the article for later or share it with friends