If you are passing a local, even if you do not know them, always say hello in Greek - paying attention to the time of day.
If you are passing a local, even if you do not know them, always say hello in Greek - paying attention to the time of day. This should normally elicit a friendly response and make them and yourself feel good and allow the Greek person to see that you are a well-mannered and respectful visitor - they will love that. Obviously a street full of Greeks would be impractical and not expected unless you know someone.
Tourists have a dreadful habit of turning Greek people into the background props to their self-serving pleasure trip rather than acknowledge them as human beings with feelings, and use their trip as a sociological pleasure as well as a chance to chill out. It's simple expediency and makes a stay in Greece so much more enjoyable when we stick to good ambassadorial etiquette.
Additionally, speaking a few words of Greek in the restaurant, shop or bar will instantly proffer respect of some sort upon you. Greeks really do warm to people who are at least trying to speak their mother tongue. At the risk of stating the obvious the lingua franca might well be English but the Greek language is still alive and well and spoken fluently by Greeks - think about that!
Never stick your thumb up to any Greek - it's like telling them to stick a finger somewhere personal - if you get my drift. It won't mean good luck or 'good one' - most likely it will offend in some way or illicit nervous laughter. It's a no-no.
Never stare into the face of a Greek unless you are wearing dark glasses. Eye contact should be approximate, indirect and not full-on - don't stair into their eyes as it is considered very rude - unless you are in love with someone. Those meltingly lovely brown Greek eyes may seem like heaven, I know, but resist the urge. The belief in the mythical 'evil eye' whilst an ancient one is still prevalent in modern Greece - believe me. They see the evil eye as a genuine power to cause harm or even kill, just through the ability of some people to cast the 'evil eye' and affect damage their victims. Sounds like rubbish and myth but old beliefs still linger. Glancing is always best.
Sorry - but you can't go to a bar or eatery dressed like that!
Unless you are eating/drinking at a beach establishment, then swimming costumes or beachwear are not suitable for restaurants or bars and Greeks will be offended if you do not bother to cover up. This disrespects their sensibilities and tourists should always honour this aspect of Greek ethos. Greeks have a formal side which is steeped in tradition and is an expedient to good relations and interaction between Greeks and visitors.
In the evening it is polite for men to wear long trousers and women to dress so that their breasts are fully covered (no décolleté faux pas!).
The Greeks hate loud music and noise unless it is coming from a suitable bar or whatever local agreement has been made regarding noise levels.
Never play loud music anywhere unless you have permission from the owners of the place you are staying at. This is especially true of the quiet islands and resorts where islanders are used to peace and quiet - as are many of the guests who go there for that particular reason. That's not to say raised voices are outlawed - the Greeks are generally gregarious, expressive and wear their hearts on their sleeves - and so quick to express consternation, anger or joy. That is why Greeks are so very interesting and lovable.
The dear old lady in black is probably a widow (hence the black) as well as a real person! Why not make her day by saying hello in Greek?