5 Days in Greece.. what to do?

Oct 13th, 2012, 01:05 PM
  #1  
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5 Days in Greece.. what to do?

My sister and I just booked a trip for Mid-November and 5 of the days we plan to spend in Greece. We are not into clubbing, but we ARE very into sightseeing, history and seeing the non-touristy things! We plan to spend two days in Athens and would like to go to an island for the other three days or what would be the best thing to do! I would greatly appreciate any ideas. Thank you
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Oct 13th, 2012, 01:25 PM
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For mid-November I would either stay in Athens, or combine Athens with 2-3 days visiting Nafplio and the Argolid area. The islands will be dead, but there is much to see around Nafplio, in fact more historical sites than on any island. The other advantage is that it is only 2-3 hours by road from Athens, with none of the worries about ferries. If you want to travel independently, either rent a car or take an express bus from Kiffisou Station in Athens. There are also guided tours by Chat and Key (do a Google search for their programs).
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Oct 13th, 2012, 01:31 PM
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Thank you for the quick and informative response. My sister really has her heart set on visiting one of the islands, in your opinion do you think we would be wasting time that could be better spent elsewhere. We would be happy spending a day or two on an island exploring the scenery even if not too many things were open. Obviously, however we are not framilar with the area and hence reaching out for a second opinion. If we were to go to Nafplio what would recomend?
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Oct 13th, 2012, 01:36 PM
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Also, any suggestions for our stay in athens besides the obvious historical sights?
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Oct 13th, 2012, 02:49 PM
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jeandiament: In November, the islands won't be the "Greek Islands" your sister may imagine/dream about.

I'd seriously consider Heimdall's recommendations.
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Oct 13th, 2012, 03:40 PM
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When we were in Napflion, we took a day trip to the island of Spetses. They also offered trips to Hydra. If you are interested in history, then the area around Napflion is perfect for you
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Oct 13th, 2012, 03:41 PM
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All the islands will be dead by Mid November and absolutely boring, with nothing to do....

The only exception would be Hydra, which is very alive especially during the weekends when Athenians use to visit, and from the Cyclades Syros, with Ermoupolis, the capital city of all the Cyclades islands. Ermoupolis has a large permanent population and is a very nice city.

Having only 5 days though i really doubt, if you have enough time to go to an island... personally i like Heimdall's recommendation much better.

November would be an ideal month to explore the mountainous region of Arcadia, an area full of quaint little villages with small boutique hotels, and a wonderful nature for hiking... not far away from Nafplio.

As for Athens, there's plenty of things to do , museums, archaeological sites, fabulous restaurants, nice suburbs either on the sea or in the north etc....
We have been recommending non touristy areas to many, that wanted to visit Athens... can't recall not even one having followed our advice.... Hope you can be the first one

What is your budget? Knowing that we could recommend suitable hotels in both Athens and Nafplio....
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Oct 14th, 2012, 12:29 AM
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There seems to be a consensus here. I love the islands in summer, but wouldn't dream of going off season unless it were to visit friends. I usually go to the islands in June or September, then end each trip with 2-3 days in Athens. Last September when things were beginning to slow down on the islands, I moved on to the Peloponnese, and had the best time ever. There is much more to see, and autumn weather is better on the mainland.

If you must go to an island, take a day trip from Athens to Hydra, or perhaps Spetses from Nafplio. Any other island will take at least half a day to reach by ferry, and another half day to return to Athens. You could, of course, fly to an island that has an airport, but with transfers, airline check-in, etc would still eat up half a day each way.
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Oct 15th, 2012, 11:31 PM
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Another voice added to say stick with the Mainland. 2 days Athens & 3 days Nafplio, or vice versa, would be ideal.
In Athens you can never run out of things to do & Nafplion is close for travel & surrounded by sites, as well as the town itself. (I'll be there again on Sunday!)
Some photos from Athens over the last few years,
http://www.flickr.com/photos/yiassas...7623227125128/
Nafplion
http://www.flickr.com/photos/yiassas...7627978527871/
Nafplio Palamidi,
http://www.flickr.com/photos/yiassas...7627979126889/
Near Nafplion are Ancient Tyrins, Nemea, Epidavros, Mycenae for starters,
http://www.flickr.com/photos/yiassas...7628103750378/
http://www.flickr.com/photos/yiassas...7625185408035/
http://www.flickr.com/photos/yiassas...7627978690183/
Also not far from Nafplio is Kefalari church,
http://www.flickr.com/photos/yiassas...7627979292699/

5 days is very little time & at least 1/2 of one of those days will be taken with travel & check in/out. Are these 5 FULL days, or do any of them include arrival or departure? If they do I would probably stick with Athens & do a day trip one day, maybe Sounion & maybe the Theatre at Thorikos, that's not on most tourist trails, unheard of by most (including many Greeks!) & is unusual as it is not the normal semi circlular shape, it's semi oval shape,
http://www.flickr.com/photos/yiassas...7629992881432/
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Oct 15th, 2012, 11:55 PM
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If you do go for the Sounion/Thorikos day trip I recommend lunch at Lavrio, choose a taverna in/by the fish market, wonderful & cheap! There are some pics of Thorikos & Lavrio in the last link I gave, but wait a while as they are not set for public viewing, I'm in the process of changing that now so you can see them.
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Oct 21st, 2012, 05:11 PM
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Thank you everyone for all of your advice. We are going to be there 5/12 days. I figured about 1/2 day would be spent coming and going. We are planning on staying in athens and renting a car and driving to Nafplio. We do not want so spend a ton of money, but we would not let money get in the way of cool things we want to do! I can not wait to see Mycenae. The theatre really looks appealling!
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Oct 21st, 2012, 07:20 PM
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I think you have made a good plan. I was not brave enough to rent a car but have taken the bus to Nafplio. Twice I stayed at Hotel Byron. http://www.byronhotel.gr/maineng.html
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Oct 22nd, 2012, 01:18 AM
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Driving is no problem at all! You will have a blast. Be sure to get to Epidavros to see the theatre there as well! We also really enjoyed seeing Nemea and the Corinthian Canal on the way to Nafplio.
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Oct 22nd, 2012, 04:58 AM
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I believe the picture of the theater linked above is Epidaurus. I do not think there is a theater at Mycenae.
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Oct 22nd, 2012, 05:38 PM
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No theater at Mycenae, as the beautiful structure is at Epidaurus. At Mycenae, walk through the wonderful Lion Gates. And if you are familiar with the stories of Agamemnon and family, you can act out the parts of Clytemnestra and Aegisthus scheming how to murder the king as frightened subjects watched over the plain to see him striding home. Naufpion is a lovely place to stay and wander. It is a good location to explore sites in the area.
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Oct 26th, 2012, 08:14 AM
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I am so excited! Thanks everyone!
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Oct 26th, 2012, 09:58 AM
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Okay so one more question! We were thinking to spend two days in athens and three on our journey to napflion and back.. we were thinking one full day and perhaps two nights in napflion and would have time to hit perhaps Thorikos and obviously Myceane. Is there any other really charming towns/villages we should stay at for a night on the way back? Or where would you spread out the time and which of these places will we want to stay a full day or a half day? Any suggestions would be appreciated. Also, any ideas even if they are a little touristy of fun activites to do(I tried looking for horse back riding in these areas and had no luck.. my sister and I grew up riding horses and thought it would be fun. but anything else similar to this as far as activites?)
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Oct 26th, 2012, 10:05 AM
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Actually we may do the Epidaurus rather than Thorikos, thoughts on this?
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Oct 26th, 2012, 10:07 AM
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Byron hotel looks amazing any similar places in Athens?
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Oct 27th, 2012, 11:55 AM
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Hi jeandiament,
I recommend you make Naufplion your base for the three nights. It's a lovely town and you could take day trips to Mycenae and Epidaurus. You'll still have time to relax in Naufplion, walk around the marble square, the narrow picturesque streets, the waterfront. There are lots of fine tavernas. I remember one wonderful late lunch on a narrow street with roaming musicians and delicious food. Definitely take the 1,000 steps to the top of the Palamidi fortress - amazing view - and hop a small boat ride out to Bourtzi, a small fortress in the bay. It is like a miniature castle and when we went, it housed an art show. We stayed in a wonderful small inn on a narrow street just off the main waterfront with steep stairs up to quaint and lovely rooms. There were only about 7 rooms in the place - can't remember the name. The ladies who ran it were wonderful.
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