Luxury Ferries in the Greek Archipelago

Luxury Liners Lavish Ferry Travel in the Greek Archipelago

Ferries are the lifeblood of the Greek archipelago, connecting mainland Greece with dozens of inhabited islands. Many travelers find that a ferry ride is an essential part of their Greece trip.

The biggest ferries offer sleeping cabins, great for long overnight routes. On the larger ferries you can reserve economy seats (airplane style seating) for a small extra fee.


Seajets operates a fleet of high-speed passenger and car ferries, including a prestigious World Champion Jet that earned the title “Passenger Line of the Year” at the Lloyd’s List Greek Shipping Awards in 2018. Their ferries offer both air-conditioned open-deck seats or indoor lounges depending on vessel, business facilities and bars-restaurants.

The company’s 14 high-speed ferries connect 26 destinations across the Aegean, from Heraklion on Crete to Kos and Astypalaia in the Dodecanese Islands and the Sporades. While the majority of routes are seasonal, some run all year round.

Traveling by ferry is an affordable way to island hop in Greece, though it’s worth considering flying if possible, especially for long routes. Ferries can sometimes take three times as long as flights and the waters around the Greek archipelago are notoriously choppy, leading to many people getting seasick. If you’re planning to drive, it’s also easy to rent a car in Athens or on one of the islands and bring it onto the ferry for your island-hopping adventure.

Blue Star Ferries

Blue Star Ferries, formerly Strintzis Ferries, is the largest ferry company in Greece. Their fleet of passenger / car ferries connects the mainland to a variety of destinations including popular Cyclades islands such as Santorini, Paros, and Naxos. They also have a number of itineraries that connect to the Dodecanese islands, including Rhodes and Kos.

All Blue Star ferries are well-equipped and offer plenty of amenities to make your trip as comfortable as possible. Onboard there are bars, cafes, restaurants, and shops. Some ferries even have cabins to allow you to sleep comfortably during the journey.

Families with children are always welcome on Blue Star ferries, and they’re treated with a lot of care and respect. They’re given priority boarding. If you have a child aged five or younger, they travel free in Economy Class seats or at 50% of the cabin fare (excluding LUX cabins). Other discounts are available for students with ISIC cards, Greek Domestic combined with Greece-Italy ferry plus train tickets, and for military personnel. There’s also a frequent traveler program called Blue Star Miles that offers members rewards.

Hellenic Seaways

Hellenic Seaways offers a large fleet of conventional ferries and high-speed vessels that can accommodate foot passengers, cars, trucks, buses, motorcycles, and bicycles. The company also has a variety of routes that connect the Saronic, Sporades, and Cyclades islands. Its fast boats can cut island hopping times by 50%, making them a convenient choice for those looking to get in and out of the Greek islands quickly.

On Hellenic Seaways’ ferries, you can enjoy comfortable lounges and cabins, airplane-style seats, open and closed-type bars, restaurants, and shops. They offer free Wi-Fi onboard and a fully-stocked cafe-bar. You can even meet fellow passengers at the coffee bar and mingle with locals and travelers alike!

The company’s Highspeed fleet offers quick travel between ten destinations in the Aegean, cutting travel time by up to 50%. The three vessels in the fleet – Highspeed 4, 5, and 6 – are equipped with modern reclining airliner-style seats, allowing you to relax during your trip. You can complete a quick and easy web check-in online, up to two hours before departure!

Superfast Ferries

In Greek mythology, a starliner (also known as a pleasure liner) is a large civilian ship built for leisure travel. These ships are a subtype of the more general passenger ship classification and include purpose-built luxury ships as well as converted freighters.

Ferries connect Athens to a variety of popular islands, including Santorini, Paros and Naxos. In addition to the standard passenger and car ferries, there are several high speed liners that can get you to the islands in half the time. The New Express Aeolis shown in the photo above is like a giant speedboat and revolutionized island transportation and tourism on Lesvos and Chios.

Tickets are sold on board the ferry and can be bought in advance online or from the ticketing agents in and around the port and train station. It’s best to book ahead of time, especially for the summer months when the ferries fill up quickly. A small number of ferries also run to and from Turkey and Italy and between mainland ports such as Patras, Igoumenitsa, and Athens.

Minoan Lines

The Minoan Lines company was founded in Heraklion, Crete, in 1972 and is now one of Europe’s largest shipping companies. The company has a large number of ships and carries out its activities with the philosophy of continuous renewal of the fleet in terms of luxury, speed, and safety.

With their ultra-modern ferries, Minoan Lines offers luxurious travel to many of Greece’s most famous islands including Crete, Santorini, and the Dodecanese. Travelers can enjoy a relaxing ferry trip with comfortable cabins and lounge seating areas, an a-la-carte restaurant, indoor and outdoor bars, mini-shops, and more.

In addition to providing luxurious transportation, the company also offers tours of each island it visits. These excursions are a great way to learn more about the culture and history of the Greek Islands. Onboard, passengers can also relax in the sun by the on-deck swimming pool or cool themselves with refreshing drinks. They can also purchase a wide selection of world-famous products to take home or as gifts.