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Athens & 1 island.. 7 days.. what to chose?


Athens & 1 island.. 7 days.. what to chose?

Old Mar 14th, 2014, 01:20 AM
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Athens & 1 island.. 7 days.. what to chose?

hi there..we are a couple who want to visit athens & 1 island in june. we only have 1 week sp are keen the island hop isn't too arduous. we want a combination of city sightseeing (athens) & then some chill/activity time on an island with scenery & sandy beaches. we are not into overly "touristy" spots but like a bit of atmosphere & energy also. please help.. never been to greece & unsure of best options here. average budget.. keen for a bit of affordable boho chic! age bracket 30-35yrs. thanks guys!
EimearLyons is offline  
Old Mar 14th, 2014, 01:56 AM
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Crete and Rhodes are both popular.
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Old Mar 14th, 2014, 03:46 AM
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Or Naxos and Paros. Any of the islands you choose are within an hour of Athens by plane, many only 30 min.
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Old Mar 14th, 2014, 04:06 AM
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Santorini - hands down. You'll love it there. The flight is short and although there are no sandy beaches, the scenery is spectacular. If you're stuck on the beach idea, then Paros - Naoussa has a few within easy distance and a lovely, lively town with interesting bars and restaurants.

If you feel like a break from the hustle and bustle of Athens - there are beaches nearby. Vougliagmeni is a bus ride away from the city centre, and has a very swanky private beach (too expensive for us), a lovely public beach, and - best of all - an amazing freshwater lake that you can swim in. More details here -
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Old Mar 14th, 2014, 07:43 AM
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Crete is 9 hours with the Ferry.. And it is a huge island. Not recommended for such a small period. (Although it is wonderful island)

Rhodes is 12+ Hours with the Ferry. And it is a big island too.. 1,5-2 weeks is the best length for vacations in Rhodes.

Paros is a mainstream tourist island and Santorini as well. They pretty and small islands and near Athens. If you can stand the too many people, I recommend to visit one of them. But they are not too cheap island.. So keep it in Mind.. What about Syros?
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Old Mar 14th, 2014, 09:45 AM
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Paros or Naxos.
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Old Mar 14th, 2014, 12:48 PM
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Naxos or Paros. Easy to get to from Athens.

Mykonos: scenic, ok sandy beaches, VERY touristy, expensive
Santorini: VERY scenic, no sandy beach, VERY touristy, expensive
Paros/Naxos: ok scenic, sandy beaches, NOT touristy, not expensive

Mykonos and Santorini are big cruise boat destinations. Some who happened to be there on low boat count day might report back it was not bad. If you stay there long enough, there will be days with five or more boats with many of them with over 2000 passengers each. Walking in Oia/Fira in Santorini can feel like being in a big city subway station during the rush hour.

Naxos, on the otherhand, has no big cruise boat port. Even though it is on the main ferry trunk line between Santorini and Piraeus, it feels like what a Greek island might have looked like before the arrival of mass cruise tourism.

If you do travel to island on this tight schedule,

try booking flights like this:
home->island, Athen->home

and not like this:
home->Athens, Athens->home

The former is usually not much more expensive than the latter while saving time and have the carrier responsible for making the connection. Don't stay overnight in Athens twice. You don't have time for this. Adding island->Athens as a third leg to your booking might significantly increase the fare, but you have to try to see how it looks like. Compare that to booking island->Athens as a separate booking. You can also do Naxos/Paros -> Piraeus on various boats.
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Old Mar 15th, 2014, 07:31 AM
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Greg -- we agree it's more sensible to limit a stay in central Athens to either the start OR the end of one's Greece trip, but not both. However, the ease of achieving this depends very much on your start-point -- which neither you or the OP state (altho I know from your previous posts that you are from the US... and the OP's use of words like "guys" betrays the same). Even then, "USA" can mean very different strategies if you are from PA or CA !!

Your advice to fly direct from "Home" to "Island" is excellent ... however, it's not that easy from the USA as it is from Europe. In fact there is NO nonstop from US to a Greek Isle. Therefore options are 3 (or more?):
(1) land in UK, Germany, France, etc., & connect there, to a nonstop island flight. Drawbacks --only nonstops are to quite touristic isles = Santorini, Mykonos, Rhodes, etc. Can't go to Milos, Naxos, Paros, some others. Also, may not be a "cooperating airline" so separate ticketing, need to claim luggage, go thru security again etc.

(2) Fly in to ATH & transfer to domestic flight to ANY island. DRAWBACK - to get one of the limited (1 or 2x daily)flights to smaller isle, must arrive by early AM; no can do if also changing in an EU airport. Solution -- if you arrive ATH late in day, book a budget B & B near airport, eat a pizza & get over jet lag & catch the 6:30 AM flight to your island...

(3) Pick a flight leaving N.America (east) late afternoon, arrives 9 - 9:30 am next day, with most options to reach your isle in daylight. Drawbacks: usually more $$ than flight w. Europe connection. & West-coasters must leave away early on 1st day, to get the nonstop.

Since luckily I'm in an east-coast departure city, I choose #3, but friends from W. US or W. Canada favor the #2 option, simply because they've been on the road for 24 hours & need a bit of sack-time before moving on!

This complexity & time investment is why I often say that going to Greece, for North Americans, is not just a trip but more of a "Quest" (a long journey, with stress & Hazards). It also explains the different attitudes that Brits bring to Greek jaunts ... for them, it's like a New Yorker going to Florida = no big deal!
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Old Mar 17th, 2014, 01:29 PM
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Santorini is definitely the best option. You'll just love it.
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