October travelers to Greece may be in for a treat. If recent patterns hold, the weather in many places will stay quite warm in October, as a trend to warmer Octobers continues. The first half of the month will be warmer than the last, and also less prone to high winds though they can occur anytime in fall. As a precaution, you may be better off flying island to island rather than taking the ferries.
In any year, Greece offers some good events and holidays in October. The national holiday of Ochi Day is celebrated throughout Greece on October 28th, commemorating Mextaxa's bold and unexpected refusal to allow Axis troops to cross into Greece during World War II.
Most of the festivals staged primarily for tourists have drawn to a close, but local cultural events continue. At Gythio in the southern Peloponnese, the local fishermen celebrate the catch of maridaki, a small fish. The festival is open to all and includes free food and wine. This one is definitely a bit off the beaten path, but it's a delightful way to experience an authentic event designed for the locals, not the tourists.
In Crete, the annual Chestnut Festival in Elos in the Ennio Khoria (9 Villages) district near Kissamos falls around October 15th, and 2014 will probably be about the same time, though confirm this date locally before you go. If you're a chestnut fan you won't want to miss this one; if you're wondering what a chestnut is, you'll still have fun. To get there from Chania, just go west on the Chania-Kastelli road and turn south at Kaloudiana, about 39 kilometers from Chania. If you plan to overnight, consider staying at this unique collective in Milia.
Another Chestnut Festival takes place about October 26-28th on the slopes of Mount Pelion in Northern Greece.
In October, some olive harvesting may be getting underway, so keep an eye out for photo opportunities and, if you're lucky, the chance to lend a hand.
Holidays, Festivals, and Name Days
October - Demetria Festival in Thessaloniki
October - Larissia - Eleftheria Festival
October - third Sunday - Crete - Elos-Kissamos Chestnut Feast -
October 1st - St. Romanos the Melodist
October 1st - Gythio - Fisherman's Festival
October 3rd - St. Dionysios the Areopagite
October 6th - St. Thomas the Apostle
October 7th - Name Day for Sergios
October 8th - Lesvos - Kaloni - St. Iganatios at Limonas Monastery
October 8th - Name Day for Pelagia
October 10th - Name Day for Evlambios
October 15th - Name Day for Loukianos
October 18th - St. Luke the Evangelist; Name Day for Luke
October 20th - Name Day for Artemios; Gerassimios
October 21st - Name day for Socrates
October 23rd - St. James, the Brother of the Lord; Name Day for Jacob
October 26th - St. Demetrios the Myrrh-flowing; Name Day for Dimitrios
October 26th-28th - Chestnut Festival on Pelion.
October 27th - St Nestor the Martyr; Name Day for Nestor
October 28th - Ochi Day - widely observed date of Metaxa's refusal to let German troops into the country.
October 30th - Name Day for Zinovia, Zenobia
Quick Look at Greece in October:
Mainland Weather: Pleasant to cool
Island/Coastal Weather: Pleasant to cool with increasing winds.
Prices: Moderate to low
Events: Local events; watch for the parades of Ochi Day on October 28th to snarl traffic and many businesses and other facilities will close for the day.
Facilities: Some island hotels and restaurants close. Transportation schedules are cut back. Higher winds may start to make boat travel between islands difficult. Hydrofoils generally stop at the end of October.
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