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2 week Greece itinerary - Athens + islands, but which ones??

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My fiancee and I are planning a two-week trip to Greece at the end of September for our honeymoon.

We both agree that we want quality over quantity, so we're interested in deeper/longer experiences in fewer places. Not interested in packing up and moving every two days. But it's so hard, there are so many amazing places to go! Neither of us has ever been to Greece. We are interested in culture, food, wine, history, natural beauty, and generally exploring. Beach resort lounging is great, but is not a priority - we can do that much closer to home.

The plan is to fly into Athens, immediately go to some islands for about 10 days, then head back to Athens for a few days (I hear this is a good idea in case any travel craziness happens, give yourself a buffer of a few days in Athens before flying out). The question that is eating my brain is, which islands? How many, for how long? I've been looking at Crete, Rhodes, Santorini, Naxos, Mykonos. Santorini is definitely in. I'm thinking of scrapping Mykonos because I've heard it's a lot of cruise ships, overpriced shopping, all-night partying, which is all great but just not what we're looking for in this vacation. Any thoughts on that?

Of the remaining, Crete, Rhodes, and Naxos, any thoughts on any of them being not-to-be-missed? Or any of them maybe not as high a priority if I have to whittle it down?

One issue with Rhodes is that it seems to be more difficult to get to than all the others I listed in terms of ferry schedules (only a few a week) and flights (you have to fly through Athens to get from other islands to Rhodes??). But it looks so beautiful and interesting and I've read a lot of impassioned people say this is their favorite island.

Then something I've heard people say about Crete is that it's so large and there is so much to do that you need 2 full weeks there and it's not worth it for just 3-4 days. But I don't understand the logic of that at all, as it seems like it would be much cooler to experience some of it than not to experience any of it.

I guess at the moment, an itinerary that seems to make sense would be to fly to Athens, take an overnight ferry to Crete, then 3-4 days each in Crete, Santorini, and Naxos, and then back to Athens for 2 days. I am just sad not to go to Rhodes from what I have heard people say about it.

And not to complicate it further, but would anyone recommend only spending maybe 7 days in the islands, and then adding another mainland or Peloponnese destination??? I hear great things about Olympia, Parga, Meteora, Delphi....

Anyway, I would be curious to hear some people's thoughts and opinions on this. Thanks!

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