shark in Greece

Shark Attacks in Greece: Is it Dangerous to Swim?

Are you fond of swimming and loving Greece but wondering about shark attacks in Greece?

You probably know that beaches and clear blue water are often linked with summer holidays, right? Well, Greece is a top spot for beach lovers all over the world. Swimming is also a great way to relax, but how about shark attacks in Greece?

It’s a must-see place because of its beautiful coastlines, old ruins, and delicious food. But recently, there have been more shark reports in Greek waters, making many tourists wonder if it’s safe to swim there.

Let’s dive in and find out!

Is it safe to swim in Greece?

Yes, it is generally safe to swim in Greece. Shark strikes are very rare, and it’s mostly safe to go to the beaches to swim in Greece. But like anywhere else in the world, you should always be careful and aware of your surroundings.

Paleokastritsa Beach
Paleokastritsa Beach

Listen to what people say, try to stay close to the shore, and don’t swim in places where sharks have recently been seen.

Also, it’s best not to swim at dawn, dusk, or night, when sharks are most likely to be around and show the most activity.

So, it’s generally safe to swim, snorkel, and do other fun activities like water sports in Greece’s clear, beautiful seas.

Are there dangerous sharks in Greece?

Even though there are shark species in the waters around Greece, most of them are not dangerous to people. You’ll find the Mediterranean Sea around Greece, which is home to about 47(!) different kinds of sharks, but only a few are dangerous.

These include the Great White Shark, the Tiger Shark, and the Bull Shark. But it’s important to know that these potentially dangerous sharks are rarely seen in the Mediterranean, and even less often do they attack.

Most of the sharks in Greek seas, like the dogfish shark and the basking shark, are harmless. So, even though there are sharks in Greece, most of them are not dangerous to you or will pose a threat to you.

Are great white sharks common in Greece?

There aren’t many Great White Sharks in Greece or the Mediterranean Sea as a whole. Even though they have been seen on occasion, it is thought that they are very rare.

Great Whites don’t like the Mediterranean Sea because the water is too warm and there isn’t enough food for them there.

shark attacks in greece - The Great White Shark
The Great White Shark

Also, many shark species, including the Great White, are becoming less common in the Mediterranean because of hunting, overfishing and pollution.

Where are the most sharks in Greece?

There are sharks in the water all over Greece, but there is not a specific place where you’ll find an abundance of them.

The Mediterranean Sea, which is all around Greece, is home to many different kinds of sharks, but most of them don’t usually hang out near the shore or where people swim.

Most sharks like to swim in deeper water, away from where people swim and where the water is shallow. Sharks may also be drawn to places with a lot of fish or seals, which are their natural food.

Local officials and lifeguards are well-trained and ready to deal with any possible dangers. If dangerous creatures are seen, they will warn you.

Overall, there are sharks in the water around Greece, but there is no one place where they are most active, and the chances of seeing one are very low.

How many people have died from shark attacks in Greece?

In Greece, shark attacks are very rare, and only a few have been reported in the last 100 years. Since 1900, only 15 shark attacks have been reported in Greece, and only a few of them were deadly, according to the International Shark Attack File (ISAF).

Compared to other parts of the world, this is a very small number. To put it in perspective, you are more likely to get hurt in Greece by a car accident or a bolt of lightning than by a shark.

However, interestingly enough, Greece leads the table with sharks attacks in the whole of Europe!

What are the most dangerous sea creatures in Greece?

Even though most of the water around Greece is safe to swim in, there are a few sea animals that can be dangerous (besides the sharks):

  • The Mediterranean Moray Eel: This eel lives in the Mediterranean Sea and hides in cracks in rocks. It usually stays away from people, but if it feels threatened or scared, it can bite you. The bite can seriously hurt, but it’s not venomous.
The European Moray Eel
The European Moray Eel
  • Weever Fish: This fish lives on sandy seafloors and is very good at hiding. It has spines on its dorsal fin that can shoot venom and cause you intense pain and swelling. Even though the poison really hurts, it’s usually not life-threatening.
The Weever Fish
The Weever Fish
  • Purple Sea Urchin: This urchin lives on rocky seabeds, and its sharp spines can cause painful puncture cuts. Even though the spines are not poisonous, they can break off and get stuck in your skin, which means they have to be taken out by a doctor.
The Purple Sea Urchin
The Purple Sea Urchin
  • Jellyfish: There are many different kinds of jellyfish in the water around Greece, and some of them can hurt when they sting. The Mauve Stinger (Pelagia noctiluca) is one of the most common jellyfish in the Mediterranean. It can cause painful stings, redness, and swelling.
  • Barracuda: Although attacks on humans are very rare, there have been stories of barracudas mistaking shiny objects, like jewelry, for prey and hurting people as a result.
The Barracuda
The Barracuda

It’s good to know that most of these animals will try to stay away from you and will only fight if they feel threatened or provoked. You are much less likely to run into wildlife if you are careful, aware of your surroundings, and leave it be.

Boat Tours in Greece

Knowing that it’s generally safe to swim in the Greek waters, it’s a great idea to have a lovely day out on a boat with some fun activities. There are three amazing tours around the Greek islands that I would like to recommend:

Book your Snorkeling and Boat Tour in Crete here!

If you’re closer to the island of Naxos and really love the scuba dive, then the following tour is perfect for you:

Book your Scuba Diving Tour in Naxos here!

The lovely island of Corfu also offers a great boat tour with a great beach BBQ included to enjoy:

Book your Full Day Boat Tour in Corfu here!

These tours will give you a fantastic experience when you’re visiting greece and when you want to combine a relax swim with fun activities!

Sharks attacks in Greece: FAQs

The information below is related to shark attacks in the Greek waters and will give you some more great insights!

Does Crete have sharks?

Crete is the biggest island in Greece. It is surrounded by the same water as the rest of Greece, so you could definitely find sharks here. But it’s still very rare to see a shark, and there’s no reason to worry more about them in Crete than in any other part of Greece.

shark attacks in greece - Beach in Crete
Beach in Crete

As said, the local officials and lifeguards are well-trained and ready to deal with any possible dangers. If dangerous creatures are seen, they will warn you no matter where you are in Greece.

How important are sharks to the ecosystem in Greece?

Sharks are very important to keeping the balance of life in the ocean. As top feeders, they help keep the number of other marine animals in check. This helps keep coral reefs and seagrass beds healthy.

Even though there aren’t as many sharks in the Mediterranean as in other parts of the world, they are still an important part of the environment, and their presence is good for the health of the sea as a whole.

A healthy shark population can also help the local fishing industry by reducing the number of smaller predators fish that eat species that are important for the fishing industry.

Are you more likely to be attacked by a shark at night?

Studies have shown that shark attacks are more likely to happen at night, at dawn, and at dusk, when sharks are more active. But it’s important to keep in mind that shark attacks are very rare, no matter what time of day it is.

Risks can be kept to a minimum by using common sense and following the rules of the area. For instance, it’s best to swim in groups because sharks are more likely to attack if you’re swimming alone.

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    The Wrap-Up: Shark Attacks in Greece

    Even though there are sharks in the water around Greece, the chance of being attacked by one is very low. Most sharks in the Mediterranean Sea aren’t dangerous, and it’s very rare to see a shark that could be dangerous.

    Be careful and listen to what people say, and you can safely enjoy the beautiful beaches of Greece. Remember that sharks are an important part of the sea’s environment and that their presence is good for the sea’s health.

    So, pack your swimsuit and sunscreen and get ready for a great beach vacation in Greece and don’t be scared of potential shark attacks!

    Curios about more animals in Greek? Check out my post about the national animal of Greece!

    Do you want to discover more of Greece, check out my post about Kassiopi in Greece or my post about the largest islands in Greece!!

    And if you’re interested in this specific shark topic, check out my post about sharks in Croatia!

    Your restless voyager,


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