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Help planning 2 week honeymoon in Greece

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Hello,
My fiancé and I are planning a 2 week honeymoon in Greece arriving on July 1st.
After reading a lot reviews I've put this tentative itinerary together.
Arrive in Athens,
Spend extra day in Athens
Fly to Crete
7 days in Crete
Fly/Ferry? to Santorini
4 days in Santorini
fly home


Does this seem like a good itinerary? Any suggestions. I would love recommendations of things to do in all three locations as well, especially Crete.
In Crete we want to be at a resort and relax and swim in the water, and we'd also like to visit some ruins and archeological sites.
Thanks so much!

  • Report Abuse

    Yes, it's a good itinerary. What would be better is if you were to fly to Crete immediately upon arrival and save Athens for the end so you have those extra days to return to the mainland in case of some unforseen problem with transportation when you're on Santorini.

    As for what to do, go to www.tripadvisor.com and find the Crete and Santorini forums, then type "what to see and do" into the search box that's just above the list of postings. You'll get all the suggestions you could want, but if you can't find the answers you need just send a Private Message(PM)to anyone you think might be able to assist you.

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    If you look at the ground portion only, it is not bad.

    However, many problems arise by not integrating what you have into other critical parts of the TOTAL itinerary.

    I don't know where you are coming from, so I can only tell you generality. Crete to Santorini is a boat. Plane trip requires back tracking to Athens.

    You have following options:
    your thinking: home-ATH, ATH-HER, HER to JTR by boat, JTR-home
    home-ATH, ATH-JTR, JTR to HER by boat, HER-home
    home-HER, HER to JTR by boat, JTR-ATH, ATH-home
    home-JTR, JTR to HER by boat, HER-ATH, ATH-home

    How to evaluate?
    Feed the flight part to matrix.itasoftware.com, use timebar option. It tells you departure/arrival/layover pictures of many options.

    Are layovers acceptable? Do you like departure times?

    Do you like the arrival times? How well do they integrate into the ground portion? If your flight arrive early in Athens from home, what are you going to do if you cannot check-in. You can drop luggage at hotel, but you cannot change. Would you rather have traveled on to Santorini or Crete instead?

    How does the return flight look like? How long does it take on how many planes? Depending on where you live, flights from JTR or HER can be excruciating experiences. In my case, it would have been a 25 hr trip on four planes because of the timing. I left Santorini days earlier to reduced the trip home to 18 hrs on two planes. My friend decided to take the 25 hr route. His wife mentioned how uncomfortable were the flights and she would never want to do that again.

    If you are from the U.S. and require a transcontinental flight to get home, think about if you have/want to do it. That can be a 8-9 hour flight from Europe, then 2-4 hours layover, followed by 5-6 hrs in a sardine can single aisle plane you get nickled and dimed. A great way to end a honeymoon.

    Look at the boat schedules. Boats don't run that often between islands. Sometimes not everyday whether it is schedule or due to weather or mechanical issues. Certain boat trip direction might make more sense than another.

  • Report Abuse

    Alexis, greg's thoughtful analysis (of the transport options you have to decide about) points up the difficulty of advising you, when you give partial information. It helps to say where you are from! I'm guessing USA (from your syntax), but it makes a difference whether you'll have a 15-20 hour journey with plane changes, from West Coast, or whether you're taking the PHL or JFK nonstops for 9-10 hours. In latter case, you arrive 9 - 9:30 AM, relatively perky, and ready to hop on an immediate flight to Island. That's what I do. But if you're from CA, and drag in at 5:30 pm. exhausted, you might want to stay in a little B & B near the airport and just veg out, and take an early AM flight to an island.

    I am not sure what Greg means by the 5-6 hours in sardine can plane. He may be referring to flights to Europe on bargain airlines, to connect to a US-bound flight from Paris or london.

    Brotherlee is quite right, most efficient transport strategy on arrival in ATH is fly to Crete -- I like flying into Hania, because u will have to leave from Heraklion to take fast-ferry to Santorini. Going back to mainland, flight vs ferry depends on time/cost considerations. Time is 50 mins vs. 8-9 hours ... but in July, flight cost can be several x that of plane. It's your call. I agree, best to have your athens time at the end. You'll be reinvigorated from your wedding-exhaustion by time on islands, and also mor familiar with GReece, so better able to handle a big city efficiently for a day or 2 of Athens Sightseeing. one last tip: When choosing your International round trip, try to find a home-bound flight that leaves no earlier than 9 or 10 AM. You must be there 2 hours ahead of departure, and getting to airport tkes 1 hour -- so if you choose a 7 AM departure, than means leaving your hotel at 4 am ... which pretty much wrecks your festive last night in GReece.

    Congratulations on choosing such a super honeymoon destination ... and it sets up a rationale to return for anniversaries! -- TJ

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