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portia12 Dec 9th, 2006 11:42 AM

Greek Islands - What order?
 
We are going to Athens, Crete, Mykonos and Santorini. In what order should we do these Islands and is it best to fly or ferry between them?

NeoPatrick Dec 9th, 2006 11:46 AM

Don't you need to start or end or both in Athens? If so, I'd start in Athens, fly to Crete, take a boat to Santorini, then another boat to Mykonos, and probably fly back to Athens.

portia12 Dec 9th, 2006 11:57 AM

Thank you NeoPatrick. Yes, we do need to start and end in Athens but I wasn't sure about the order of the other islands. Your suggestion makes perfect sense. As an aside, I like the new kinder Patrick!

LeighTravelClub Dec 9th, 2006 12:02 PM

Santorini is an easy day trip from Crete. So it's Athens Crete Mykonos Athens. And it will be woderful.

Weadles Dec 9th, 2006 12:30 PM

I think NeoPatrick's suggestions sound great. The only change I might make is ( if possible) to go directly from Athens to Crete, even though it makes for a very long travel day.

Also, I would definitely recommend spending at least a few days in Santorini, particularly Oia. It's such a beautiful place, and I think it deserves more than a day trip.

portia12 Dec 9th, 2006 01:00 PM

Weadles, We have three nights planned for Santorini. I also Like Patrick's suggestions.

NeoPatrick Dec 9th, 2006 01:55 PM

By the way, we did a number of islands in a month long trip of Greece, but we did what I mentioned above. We had flown to Athens from Rhodes and then took a plane to Crete. We wanted to take a large ferry to Santorini as I was told it was so wonderful standing on deck and sailing into Santorini. But when we got to Heraklion, everyone, including four travel agencies insisted that there were only hydrofoils going on our day (despite what I thought I had read about a ferry on that day). So we gave in and bought the hydrofoil tickets. When we arrived at the port in the morning, there was a huge ferry just sailing out -- to Santorini. We were more than a little upset. Beware that travel agencies may only want to sell you the more expensive hydrofoil tickets and will tell you anything to do so. We had the time, and would have preferred the slow boat.

brotherleelove2004 Dec 9th, 2006 02:19 PM

Something to consider that no one has mentioned. You don't say when you'll be travelling, but the highspeed ferry between Crete and Santorini didn't start operating this last season until April 14. Most people will be travelling after that date, but if you aren't you should prepare yourself to use the domestic airlines that service these islands, Aegean and Olympic. FYI-Aegean has 19 euro (plus taxes) flights from Athens to all three of these islands.

http://www.aegean-air.gr/aegeanen/home/

You can get to Mykonos from Athens by plane or ferry, or from Rafina by ferry (and from Athens to Rafina by bus).

There are a couple of ferry options from Mykonos to Santorini: 1-the Hellenic Seaways Highspeed Catamaran already mentioned that sails between Mykonos and Crete with stops at Paros, Ios and Santorini, and 2-you can take the morning car ferry from Mykonos to Paros and catch the ferry that stops there at noon on the way to Santorini.

If you choose to rely on the ferry system instead of flying be sure you don't wait until the last day before your flight home to get back to Athens. Small as it might be, there's a chance of the ferry being cancelled due to high winds or mechanical breakdowns. It's best to give yourself a couple of days at the end to allow for this possibility. For that reason, save Athens until the end of your trip. Upon first arriving in Greece at the Athens airport either fly right out to your first island or immediately make your way to one of the ferry ports by express bus to catch the ferry to the first island you've chosen.

You can find a lot of information on the Airport's website about the buses, trains and Metro. Look under the "Transportation & Parking" sub-heading.

http://www.aia.gr/EN/default.asp

Ferry schedules can be found on www.gtp.gr and www.openseas.gr, but be aware that they're not usually posted on these sites until about a month before they're needed.


krissykris Jan 15th, 2007 08:51 AM

We are doing the same trip. Flying to Crete from Athens, then we want to go to Mykonos and Santorini(via Ferries) and back to Athens. should we go to Santorini and then Mykonos? Which is first and how long is the high speed ferry travel time for each?
Also, need hotel suggestions between $200-$300 for both places.
Suggestions on where to stay in Crete? We are considering Grecotel El Greco then going somewhere in Elounda. Is it a better value to try to purchase a package? Do the ferries leave Crete from Iraklion?

brotherleelove2004 Jan 15th, 2007 09:37 AM

Yes, Santorini is the first stop after Crete, then Ios, Paros and Mykonos. You can see that the 2007 schedule has been posted. Service begins on March 30.

http://www.ferries.gr/hfd/

It's 2 hours from Crete to Santorini and 2.5 hours from Santorini to Mykonos.

For Santorini hotel recommendations, which village have you chosen? When will you be travelling? Do you want a swimming pool? Do you want self-catering or hotel services?


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