How Did People Travel Ancient Greece?

How Did People Travel in Ancient Greece?

Travel in Ancient Greece was significantly different from modern times. The Greeks had various modes of transportation available to them, ranging from walking to using animals and ships. Let’s explore how people traveled in Ancient Greece.

1. Walking

Walking was the most common mode of transportation for people in Ancient Greece. Whether it was short distances within a city or longer journeys between towns, walking was a practical and essential means of travel. Greek cities were often designed with narrow streets, making walking the most convenient option.

2. Animals

Animals such as horses, mules, and donkeys played a crucial role in transportation during Ancient Greece. These animals were used for both personal travel and the transportation of goods. Horses were particularly favored by the wealthy and were commonly used for military purposes.

a) Horses

Horses were primarily used by the aristocracy and the military elite in Ancient Greece. They provided a faster mode of transportation compared to walking or using other animals. Horses were also used for chariot races during sporting events like the Olympic Games.

b) Mules and Donkeys

Mules and donkeys, known for their strength and endurance, were commonly used by traders and travelers to carry goods over long distances. These sturdy animals could navigate rugged terrains more easily than horses.

3. Ships

Ships played a vital role in ancient Greek travel due to the country’s geography with its many islands and peninsulas.

Ships allowed Greeks to navigate across bodies of water and connect different regions. They were primarily used for trade, exploration, and military purposes. The Greeks were skilled shipbuilders and sailors, and their ships were advanced for their time.

4. Chariots

Chariots were another mode of transportation in Ancient Greece, particularly during the Mycenaean period (1600-1100 BC).

These two-wheeled vehicles pulled by horses were used by warriors in battle and for racing events during festivals. However, as time went on, chariots became less practical for everyday transportation.


Ancient Greeks had several means of transportation at their disposal. They relied heavily on walking for short distances, utilized animals like horses, mules, and donkeys for longer journeys or carrying goods, sailed ships to navigate the seas, and even used chariots during certain periods. Exploring how people traveled in Ancient Greece provides valuable insights into the daily lives and culture of this fascinating civilization.