Tuesday, 22 February 2011

Greek driving

Right, when it comes to driving, Greeks seem to have the perception that they don't have to follow any rules. They probably didn't even go through the hassle of taking a driving test... why bother when you can just pay someone off, eh? 

When driving around in Greece or Cyprus, it is literally like a battle field; every man for himself!

Here is a classic example of Greeks not following the rules...

I remember being on holiday when I was younger and coming across a sign that said "no bike parking". The whole post sign was surrounded by at least 50 bikes - no joke. I can't find the picture of it anywhere though, but it was pretty funny!

Speaking of bikes and mopeds, they don't tend to follow rules at all. They don't stick to their lanes, speed like mad and expect that everyone should keep out of their way! Be warned if you are about to cross the street or if you are even in a car as there is likely to be a bike somewhere around..

File:Narrow streets of Gaios.jpg

Traffic lights... imagine streets without them! Actually, just go to Greece. It's pretty much like they don't exist! OK, so maybe it's not that bad, but red lights seem to make people impatient! If the lights are amber and turning red, you'll find that Greeks will speed up to try and beat the red light rather than slow down like you're *meant* to! Even if the red light catches them out, they'll do this thing called "creeping" where there will slightly edge forward every few seconds until they are practically sitting in the middle of the cross road!

Liti Traffic Lights

Finally, the mountains. Greece and Cyprus are very mountainous. They're so beautiful and offer the most stunning views, but getting up there is probably going to cause you a heart attack if you're not used to it! As I have already expressed, Greeks like to speed. This includes up mountains... Curvy, windy roads on mountain edges, to be precise. All I can suggest, if that you do your 'stavro' (cross) and hope for the best!

File:Road through the mountains at Karpenisi, Evrytania, Greece.jpg

Oh and while you're up in the mountains, watch out for the sheep!

What are your experiences of crazy Greek driving?


  1. You're so screwed if you have a greek instructor as well!

  2. Absolutely. "Eh don't go around the roundabout, it's only a little one you can go over it!" *fail...

  3. the thing about the bikes, mopeds, etc is true, but I highly disagree over the licencing part. you obviously haven't been to Greece in decades! You can't drive without a licence unless you come from romas… nobody drives as dangerous as the british in Britain (I'll do whatever I want and I expect others to be polite enough to let me do it). Greek driving can be loud (horn beeps everywhere), but drivers under 50 are quite responsible and nothing like their ancestors. A few exclusions of course exist, mainly in villages and a minority of drivers in Athens.
    The terrible roads greeks have to face every day, just proves how skillfull they are.


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