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Honeymoon in Greece: Athens - Santorini - Crete? Suggestions needed!


Nov 14th, 2011, 06:31 PM
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Join Date: May 2008
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Honeymoon in Greece: Athens - Santorini - Crete? Suggestions needed!

Hello to all you fellow Greece lovers!

My fiance and I have recently purchased our plane tickets to Greece for our honeymoon (May 13-23). We arrive the morning of the 13th in Athens and are thinking of immediately hopping a ferry/plane to get our trip started and will need to return to Athens by the 22nd.

We know we want to hit Santorini and are also throwing around the idea of heading to Crete, Mykonos, or some other smaller island convenient to our route. While we don't mind being on-the-go, since this is our honeymoon, we thought we might want to narrow it down to 2-3 islands total so we can do more relaxing. I know Santorini will be touristy, but generally we love to go somewhere with a mix of beautiful landscape/beaches, towns for exploring, a fun local scene, and great food (although I'm sure that won't be hard to come by!).

Does anyone have any suggestions for:

-Which island(s) to visit in addition to Santorini?
-How many days/nights to stay in Santorini?
-Where on the islands to stay (what towns/areas)?
-Any specific search engines/travel agencies to use to book accommodations. We want something special (maybe even with a private jacuzzi - although this may be a pipe dream!), but don't have the funds to spend over $250 or so per night on average. I'd love to do a mix of in-town and water-front hotels as we move from island to island.

Thank you in advance for any suggestions - any help would be really appreciated. We can't wait!
Megan8178 is offline  
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Nov 14th, 2011, 09:14 PM
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We were just in Greece in September, and I can highly recommend Crete + Santorini + Athens for the 10 days you've got allotted. We stayed in Chania which was terrific (great sightseeing, great restaurants)- you can easily rent a car and drive to Falasarna which we found to be one of the most beautiful beaches we've ever been on (and we've been on quite a few, from the Caribbean to Hawaii, Mexico and French Polynesia). You can spend a day/night in Iraklion (Archeological Museum, Palace of Knossos)(we liked the Lato Boutique Hotel a lot) and then catch the early morning ferry to Santorini. 4 days would be perfect on Crete.
In Santorini stay in Oia- absolutely magnificent. Rent a hotel room somewhere on the caldera side- this will be the part of your honeymoon you'll truly never forget. With 3 days you'll get a decent taste of this magical island.
I'd fly back from Santorini to Athens. Stay in the Plaka. With 2 full days you can cover the highlights of Athens- 3 days would give you more breathing room, but given your timing I'd allocate more time to Crete and Santorini.
el13207 is offline  
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Nov 14th, 2011, 09:30 PM
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Congratulations Megan! You picked a memorable spot for your honeymoon.
There are so many great islands so you might want to read up to narrow the choices based on what you like to do and how you want to spend your time.
Santorini has spectacular views and it is so romantic - it would be a great first stop for a few days. From there you could ferry to Crete - It is like a country unto itself so you will want to spend more days to explore there. I also recommend an island like Paros or Naxos for a taste of a charming island with more of a real life feel. Paros has great beaches, charming villages, antiquities, and a bustling port town.
But back to your ten days in May, it might not be real beachy weather. Here are a few possible choices: fly to Santorini, 3days -ferry to Crete, 5 days -fly back to Athens, 2 days. Or to fly Santorini, 3 days-ferry to Paros, 3 days-ferry to Athens to explore the mainland (like Naufplion area), 4 days. If you want mostly island time: fly to Santorini, 3 days-ferry to Paros3,days-ferry to Mykonos,2 days-ferry to Athens,2 days. Save a couple of days for Athens at the end to enjoy the highlights of the city and allow for any transport issues. You can get lots of info from Matt Barrett' s website or reading posts here. I like to hang out with a coffee in the travel section at a local bookstore. Enjoy the planning - it makes the trip last longer.
parosblue is offline  
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Nov 16th, 2011, 02:10 AM
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Hi, we have been to Santorini twice and think it's so beautiful. It's such a unique place. Last year we stayed in Oia at http://www.filoteravillas.gr/home.html

There are quite a few gorgeous places in Oia but we really enjoyed staying here and think it would be within your budget (not too sure how the US$ is doing though). We booked a small cave house as it was the cheapest and it was fine. We had a small kitchenette area, a double bed, TV and bathroom with jacuzzi and shower, toilet etc. There was also a small terrace area which was just for us to use but wasn't completely private, as in it wasn't fenced in or closed off and other people could walk by the terrace. It is a typically steep block, like most of Santorini, and the pool was on the lowest level. I was glad we didn't have a room down there, think it may have been noisy with people in the pool.

We also stayed here in Chania http://chania-pandorasuites.clickhere.gr/ and really like it as well, a few minutes walk into the harbour area where all the restaurants are. Chania was lovely, quite picturesque.

I'd say 3 days minimum in each place if you can manage it. Also you will save a lot of time by flying places, rather than getting ferries but the view of Santorini when arriving by ferry is one you will never forget. On the catamarans (twice as fast but twice as expensive as the ferries) you can't get outside for photos.

For accommodation I'd just check on TripAdvisor and then book direct with the hotel. That's what we usually do and it works well.

One trip we did which may appeal was: fly to Athens, flight to Mykonos, ferry to Naxos, ferry to Santorini, fly back to Athens. We stayed at each place for about 3 nights.

The Crete, Santorini, Athens trip would work well too but Crete is a very large island so you would only see a tiny bit. We found Mykonos Town to be extremely photogenic and while people say it's a party island, we didn't find that, probably because we weren't looking for it. Dinner, a walk then bed for us, we are not night owls.

I have probably raved on too much, Greece is a favourite destination of ours. Have a fabulous time.

KayF is offline  
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Nov 16th, 2011, 03:43 AM
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10 days including travel time not a lot

4-5 days around athens intercontinental.com from $55

bidding priceline.com betterbidding.com for me...

Join Priority club for free suite upgrades

ikies.com Oia santorini.com

Maybe a bit of Mykonos to/from

Crete a bridge too far in the time you have.

eurocheapo.com/athens budget tips map food great site

Greece is going bankrupt right now strike risk etc.

insuremytrip.com VERY wise.

Have fun!
qwovadis is offline  
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Nov 17th, 2011, 11:04 AM
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My husband and I recently had a vacation in Greece and we stayed in Mykonos, Santorini and Athens. Santorini is magical, but also really loved Mykonos - great beaches, a really neat main town, and a side trip to the holy island of Delos. There are a lot of really good restaurants on Mykonos, also.
mnapoli is offline  
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Nov 17th, 2011, 11:23 AM
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I agree with the others: in Santorini, stay in Oia for sure. Push your budget as far as you can manage to stay in a caldera view cave house. You won't regret it.

I did a similar trip at the same time of year, late May, in 2008, and that is a great time to go. We visited Athens, Mykonos, Naxos, and Santorini, and enjoyed all of them. We chose not to go to Crete because of time limitations. If it were my honeymoon, I'd see fewer islands and spend more time at each. I'd want at least 4 nights in Oia. Other people get bored more quickly but when we were there we barely wanted to leave our terrace because it was so wonderful.
cheryllj is offline  
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Nov 17th, 2011, 08:53 PM
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Totally agree with cheryllj.... Santorini and especially Oia have something magical....
I have been many many times to Oia, and it was always like being there for the first time. I could spend hours and hours on the terrace looking at that incredible view..... so for me 3 days are a must.
Crete is a wonderful island as well, but as it too big, you won't have the time to see all of it. Start in the west, Chania and Rethymnon are both very picturesque cities, and there is a lot to see.
Best way to see Crete would be starting in Chania and flying back to Athens from Heraklion.
During May the weather in Greece can be warm, but it won't be so warm that you can swim....
Keep at least 2 full days for Athens, so that you can see the Acropolis,the New Acropolis museum, the Plaka etc.
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