Home EuropeGreece 32 Greek Words that will make you want to visit Greece in 2023

32 Greek Words that will make you want to visit Greece in 2023

by ElenaSergeeva

The Greek language is one of the richest languages in the world with 5 million words. We have selected a tiny fraction of the words that we believe are quite fitting to transform the message of warmth and appreciation that we have for Greece. Do let us know which one is your favorite and makes you want to visit Greece in 2023.

Νησιά . NI – SIA : Islands Greece is home to somewhat, 6,000 islands and islets which are scattered across the waters of the Aegean and Ionian Seas. It is a country with the most inhabited islands, 227 to be precise! This is truly a unique phenomenon for the European continent.

Καλοκαίρι. KA – LO – KE – RI: Summer. A composed word from the adjective good and the noun weather – Good weather. Summer in Greece is like nowhere else. The long sunny warm days, the Greek islands waiting for their yearly visitors – ready to welcome them with open arms, the fresh fruit and the happiness on peoples’ faces. 

Φιλοξενία. FI- LO- XE- NIA: Hospitality. The Greek word for hospitality translates as “friend to a stranger”. In ancient times, Greeks placed a great emphasis on hospitality and showing generosity to those who were far from home. Until modern times Greek people’s hospitality is exceptional – based on a “what’s mine is yours’ mindset”. 

Εύνοια. EF- NIA: Beautiful Thinking. It implies the possession of a well-balanced mind, which exhibits goodwill and kindness. Greek people live a relaxed lifestyle, putting their happiness and psychological health above all others. 

Ευδαιμονία. EF- DE- MO- NIA: Happiness / Human “Flourishing”. Eu means good and “daimon” means “spirit”. This Greek word refers to the concept of one having a good indwelling spirit or being in a contented state of being healthy, happy and prosperous. 

Φέτα. FE – TA : Greek Cheese. The famous Greek cheese, made from sheep’s milk or from a mixture of sheep and goat’s milk.  Feta is used as a table cheese, in salads such as Greek salad, and in traditional savory pastries, like tiropita (cheese pie). 

Ούζο. U – ZO: National Greek drink. Dry anise-flavoured aperitif that is widely consumed in Greece. Traditionally Greeks drink ouzo in bars called “ouzeri”, which serve “mezedes” and are accompanied by Greek music in the background. Ouzo is also used as an antioxidant, as it is known to have healing properties. 

Κρασί. KRA-SI : Wine. The earliest evidence of Greek wine dates back to 6,500 years ago. Wine has been an important part of Greek culture since ancient times. The regions of Thessalia, Central Greece, and Attica possess the ideal climate for growing grapes.

Κέφι. KE – FEE: Uncontainable Joy. An individual has kefi when they are joyful, spirited, passionate and happy about life. It is the way Greeks express their positive emotions and their happy mood. A person that has kefi is also able to make others feel pleasant with their presence. Kefi defines the true spirit of Greece. 

Παραλία. PA – RA -LIA: Beach. Greece has a coastline which spans across 17,000 km – one of the longest in the world. Greece’s myriad of beaches includes pebbled beaches, golden stretches of sand, coastal caves with steep rocks, hidden bays and coves, luxurious cosmopolitan beaches as well as deserted, peaceful ones. 

Γαλάζιο. GA -LA -ZIO: Light Blue, The Blue of the sea, The Blue of the day sky. The Greek shores are world-recognized for their crystal clean light blue colours. The blue matching the sea colour of the Greek sky during all seasons of the year is also uniquely diverse. 

Έλα. E – LA: Come on, Hey!, Say it again?, Stop. One Greek short word with multiple meanings. A mystery of the fascinating Greek culture. It can be used to answer the phone “ela!” or when someone needs you to repeat what you say “ela?” or as come here “ela edo”. 

Δημοκρατία. DI- MO- KRA -TIA: Democracy. Demos stands for “the common people” and kratos for “strength”- The strength of the people. The word Democracy and the concept of it were both born in the city of Athens in the 5th century BC. 

Ιόνιο. I-O-NIO: Ionian Sea.  Latin Mare Ionium, Italian Mare Ionio, part of the Mediterranean Sea, naturally dividing Italy and Greece. The Ionian Sea is considered to be one of the world’s most seismically active locations and extremely beautiful too

Αιγαίο. E-YEOH. The Aegean Sea. “Lucky is the man, I thought, who, before dying, has the fortune to sail the Aegean sea.” – Nikos Kazantzakis. The turquoise waters of the Aegean Sea are home to most of the Greek Islands: Santorini, Mykonos, Rhodes, Crete – just to name a few. 

Ταξίδια. TA- XI -DIA: Travels. “Experience, travel – these are as education in themselves” – Euripides. Greece offers thousands of travel destinations to fulfill each individual’s different tastes: from islands, big modern cities, traditional little villages, archeological sites, to hills and mountains. 

Βιβλίο. VI – VLI- O: Book. One of the greatest and oldest books of all time is Homer’s sequels Odyssey and Iliad. Both books are written poetically, reciting the journey of the Greek hero of Ithaca back home from the Trojan War and the latter the happenings of the Trojan war.   

Λουλούδια. LU – LU- DIA: Flowers. The perfect Greek weather and climate favours flowers to blossom and being kept alive without human interference all year around. Beautiful pink Bougainvilleas can be found climbing walls and naturally shading the streets in regions near the sea. They are the staple element seen in the glorious snapshots from holidays on the Greek islands. 

Αγάπη. A – GA – PEE:Love. In Ancient Greek there are many different words for love. The highest form of love, the love two people feel for one another, the love that parents feel for their children and vice versa is Agapi. Greeks use the phrase “Agapi mou” for their lovers, their friends, but also for strangers. It means “my love” and is used as a term of endearment.

Φιλία. FI – LIA: Friendship. “Friendship is a single soul dwelling in two bodies” – Aristotle Greek Philosopher and polymath (384- 322 BC). Filia refers to the love and affection two friends have for each other. In Greece people love and protect their friends like their own family. 

Έρωτας. E- RO -TAS: Intimate Love. Greek people are very passionate, therefore there are many different words for the various forms of “love”. The word Erotas is used to express a very strong form of loving someone. 

Ήλιος. HE – LIOS: Sun. In mythology “Helios” was the God of Sun. He was imagined to ride a golden chariot which brought the Sun across the skies each day from the east (Ethiopia) to the west (Hesperides) while at night he did the return journey in leisurely fashion lounging in a golden cup.

Οικογένεια. I-KO-YE-NIA: Family. Family is very important to Greeks and family values are passed on through generations. Greek families are very supportive of one another, they work together running their family businesses, they live together or nearby so they can visit each other and they take care of each other. 

ΌΠΑ! OPA !: Greek expression that may be used as an Exclamation, Utterance, Declaration, Affirmation or a lovingly gentle way of telling someone to stop! It is a word or pronouncement of celebration. 

Υγεία. EE – YE – AH :Health. Hygeia was the Goddess of good health and sanitation according to Greek mythology, which is where the modern words “hygiene” derives from. In Greece when people cheer, they say out loud the phrase “Stin ygeia mas” or “geia mas!”, which means to our health! 

Νοσταλγία. NO – STAL- GIA: Sentimentality for the past. The affectionate feeling of the past, especially for a happy time. 

Μεράκι. ME – RA – KEE: Greek adjective. The soul, creativity, or love put into something; the essence of yourself that is put into work. In villages and islands all around Greece not everyone has been trained for the job they do, but they do it from the heart, they do it with meraki.  They share a profound passion for their daily activities.

Ταβέρνα. TA – VER -NA: Greek Restaurant.  Small Greek Restaurant, simple in decoration, that serves Greek food and house wine. The taverna is deeply rooted in the Greek culture and has also become familiar to people from around the world as a staple Greek experience

Μεζέδες. ME-ZEH: Appetizers. It is a selection of small dishes inspired by the Meditterenean cuisine served as appetizers in Greece. Meze is generally accompanied by the traditional distilled drinks raki, mastiha, ouzo or tsipouro. 

Αθήνα. A-THI-NA. Athens. The beautiful capital of Greece and the heart of the Ancient World. Athens was the center of learning in the classical period, which has shaped the modern western-world.  Philosophers and Sophists would travel from across Greece to teach rhetoric, astronomy, cosmology and geometry.

Πελοπόννησος. PE-LO-PON-NI-SOS. ‘The island of Pelops’. The peninsula has been inhabited since prehistoric times. The name Peloponnese is derived from the Pelops cyclops from Greek Mythology, who was said to have conquered the island. 

Γάτα . GA – TA: Cats of Greece. Greece is inundated with stray cats, which despite being feral, are very friendly. The majority of them are born in the spring and survive due to the kindness of tourists and locals who feed them.

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