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Combining Corfu/Kephalonia with the Cyclades--too much?

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Feb 4th, 2012, 10:01 AM
  #1
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Combining Corfu/Kephalonia with the Cyclades--too much?

Having been to Athens, Mykonos, Santorini and Crete, we wanted to visit the Ionians, which has proved difficult to plan. Now our itinerary includes both and I am wondering should I eliminate a couple of stops--if so, which ones?

Arrive Athens 5/27 - Fly directly to Corfu (3 nights)

Take high speed boat from Igoumenitsa to Kephalonia (stay in village of Lassi for 4 nights)

Fly to Athens and connect to flight to Milos (3 nights)

Ferry to Folegandros (2 nights)

Ferry to Santorini (3 nights)

June 9 - Fly to Athens then to US

If we were to eliminate an island or so, which would it be? Should we skip Corfu and Kephalonia completely and stay strictly in the Cyclades adding nights to the islands we've already chosen or possibly adding Naxos or Sifnos. Thank you for any advice and recommendations!
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Feb 4th, 2012, 10:41 AM
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No island is more than an hour by air from Athens, so if you are prepared to fly both ways to/from the Ionians, I see no reason why you shouldn't. You plan four domestic flights, so transport costs will be high.

Flights from Athens to Milos are on Dash 8-100 aircraft, which hold only about 30 passengers, and you will need to book ASAP once Olympic Air publishes its summer timetables. Sea Jets Consortium will have daily service between Milos, Folegandros, and Santorini, so barring cancellations that shouldn't be a problem. If you plan to spend your last night on Santorini, insure you have enough time to make the flight back to the US.
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Feb 4th, 2012, 10:53 AM
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Cephalonia is the largest of the Ionians, about 780 square kms, Corfu is second larger about 590 square kms. By comparison, Naxos which is the largest of Cyclades is about 430 square kms and popular but tiny Santorini is 75 square kms. Even for the smaller islands, 3 nights/2 full days are an absolyte minimum on my opinion.Although it has been several years since I've been on Corfu and Kefalonia, personaly I think that 4-5 nights on Corfu and 6-7 nights on
Kefalonia are a bare minumum to enjoy those two islands. Especially Kefalonia features sort of a more "mountainous" landscpare and it takes time to move from A to B on its narrow roads. Lots of nice places to explore, a pitty to rush around or miss most of what this island has to offer.
Island hopping among Ionians requires often a change on mainland, so it gets more time consuming too. Are you sure there is a fast ferry from Igoumenitsa to Kefalonia? On my knowledge this island is mostly served from Patras on mainland plus Killini.
Santorini is a repeat visit for you, so 3 nights might be fine, but 2 nights on Folegandros come down to one full day, and I don't quite see the point here... Milos is small but very diverse island with plenty to see, so I am not sure 3 nights will suffuce either. Of course everything comes down to personal preferences/traveling style...
No, I would definately not add more islands on the itenerary, even if dropping some. Which to drop is a personal call. If travel logistics work, personaly I would try to grab a flight straigth to Kefalonia, dropping Corfu, spending 5 or 6 nights there, then connect to Cyclades. I would serious concider dropping one more island here and add rest of nights to the others.
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Feb 4th, 2012, 10:55 AM
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Heimdall,
Thank you for your response. I wondered if you have been to Corfu, Kepalonia, Milos, Folegandros, or Sifnos. For you, any of these islands a "don't miss" or I could eliminate it? Thank you again for your help.
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Feb 4th, 2012, 12:16 PM
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Mariha has some good points, both about the size of Corfu and Kefallonia, and the availability of ferries. I'll confess to not being very familiar with the Ionians, but applaud your desire to try somewhere different from Crete and the Cyclades.

You can get from Corfu to Igoumenitsa, but I don't think you will find a ferry from there to Kefallonia -- more likely you will have to travel down the mainland to Patra. It seems to me you would be better off choosing either Corfu or Kefallonia and concentrating your time on the one rather than two.

For the Cyclades, your plan for Milos, Folengandros, and Santorini is workable, but fast paced, and reliant upon Superjet plus one or two conventional ferries that don't run every day. Since you've already been to Santorini, how about a flight to Milos, ferry from there to Sifnos, and another ferry back to Athens the day before your flight home?
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