Where are the floods in Greece and Türkiye, and what does it mean for your trip?

Flooding has spread across south-east Europe, with one town getting a whole season’s rainfall in just 24 hours

Liv Kelly
Written by
Liv Kelly
Contributing Writer
Floods in Istanbul
Photograph: Alamy

Severe flooding in parts of Greece, Türkiye and Bulgaria has killed at least seven people, and left hundreds stranded with ‘no way to get food’.

The floods began after heavy rainfall earlier this week, and come after much of Europe, including Greece, has been experiencing extensive wildfires as a consequence of this summer’s extreme temperatures.

Here is everything we know so far about the floods in Greece, Türkiye and Bulgaria. 

Where in Greece is the flooding?

The flooding in Greece has mainly occurred on the holiday island of Skiathos. On the mainland, the worst affected areas are the city of Volos and the nearby mountain region of Pelion.

Villages such as Agria, Portaria, Tsagarada and Stagiates have all experienced flooding and unstable power supplies, and power cuts were also reported in Corfu.

Police in Greece have ordered people to stay in their homes and hotels, away from the streets, and banned traffic in the affected areas. Dangerous sea conditions in Greece also halted ferries to and from Skiathos.

The authorities issued mobile phone alerts warning people to stay indoors across other regions in central Greece, the Sporades islands and the island of Evia.

Why is Greece flooding?

Storm Daniel has battered western and central Greece since Monday September 4. Volos, which is a coastal port city, has experienced its average autumn rainfall of 74.5cm in just 24 hours, according to local experts.

Is Greece prone to floods?

Greece typically experiences flash flooding, with urban areas being particularly affected. These floods have been caused by unseasonably heavy rainfall, which has primarily impacted the central and western regions.

As is the case with the wildfires, the impact of the climate crisis is making extreme weather events only more likely in the future.

What part of Türkiye is flooded?

Two neighbourhoods in Istanbul have been hit by severe rainfall and flooding. Around 12 people were trapped in a library and had to be rescued, and some underground stations were closed.

Two people were swept away from a campsite in the Kirklareli province, north-western Türkiye, near the Bulgarian border, which has also been experiencing flooding.

Can I get a refund if I choose not to travel? 

Jet2 have cancelled holidays to Skiathos, as of early this morning (Wednesday September 6), according to Travel Weekly. A statement posted on their website reads: ‘We are sorry to inform you that due to the current and forecasted weather affecting the island of Skiathos we have taken the difficult decision to cancel your flight and/or your entire package holiday tomorrow. We know that this is not the news you would like to hear, however, the safety and well-being of all our customers and crew is paramount.’

A flight from London Stansted Airport on Monday was diverted to Thessaloniki. Skiathos airport also cancelled six UK-bound flights, due to the ‘extraordinary weather.’

Travellers are encouraged to contact their travel and insurance providers directly to find out about refunds. Unless you are travelling to an area directly affected, a refund is unlikely. 

What’s the latest UK Foreign Office advice? 

The UK Foreign Office issued a travel alert, stating that ‘Adverse weather conditions, including floods, are affecting some regions. The situation can change quickly.’

The website advised following 112 Greece on X/Twitter for official updates.

It also warned of the continued wildfires across Greece, including within populated areas, and of severe weather conditions in Calabria and Sicily, southern Italy.

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