Istanbul? Athens? Crete?

Old Jan 2nd, 2006, 04:56 PM
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Istanbul? Athens? Crete?

We are planning a trip in the end of June for ~10 nights. We prefer to park ourselves in one place and sightsee vs. hop around too much. How would you allocate your time between these 3 places? Would you do 5 in Athens and 5 in Crete or 5 in Istanbul and 5 in Crete (and skip Athens)or spilt them equally? Would you do 10 nights diffrently?
Vacationer1 is offline  
Old Jan 2nd, 2006, 05:06 PM
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I've been to Istanbul & Athens and will be going to Crete in June. From my research it seems that Crete deserves 10 days in itself, and that's what I will be doing. I would do that or 5 in Istanbul & 5 in Athens.
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Old Jan 2nd, 2006, 05:24 PM
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I can recommend that you take the 5 days in Istanbul. It will be enogh to explore the city. The city is just fascinating. No where in this world you will find such divers historical sites still standing majestically. In last two weeks of Sept. I took a group of food editors/writers from the US. I am not a travel agent but, the Travelling Food writers/Editors leader is a friend an since I am native Turk, asked me to help. We stayed 5 days in Istanbul and it was not enough. Now, you are planning this trip in June. Turkey has become a very attractive to tourists who are interested not in casinos and gulf courses but, in history and historical ruins still standing from 4-5 century BC up to present, incredibly fascinating landscape in Cappadocia and the Mediterrenean Coast, which is again full of historical sites and excellent hotels along the shore.

Since, you are just mentioning Istanbul, I will be very happy to make a plan for you, recommend restaurants, some hotels (I dont own any or dont have any shares), give you some tips metro, bus services, taxis and boat trips along the boshphorus... One warning, June, July and August are the peak season and you may expect some crowd around the sites, particularly in Topkapi Palace, St. Sophia, Underground Cistern
and around some other sites.

I cant remember the website but, Turkish Ministry of Turism has a very good website that will give you some information regarding the museums, entry fees, which day they are open etc. Which will help your daily planing. Try, or you will end up with some info. If you like to have more information, please do not hesitate. Also, contact the nearest Turkish Consulate of Embassy and ask some pamphlets and city maps. If you dont get, I have extra Istanbul city map that I can mail. Bon Voyage!....
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Old Jan 3rd, 2006, 03:25 AM
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Crete is really not a place to SEE, but a place to be and enjoy. I think I have stayed there three months in total.

I have been to both Athens and Istanbul, and I prefer Istanbul (well, nothing wrong with Athens either). Seven days in Istanbul barely covered the essential sights, and did not leave space for any extras or "let the time pass by" moments. But if you want more than one destination, I would say that 4 days Athens, 6 days Istanbul.

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Old Jan 3rd, 2006, 03:31 AM
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I haven't been to Istanbul but I've been to the other two. Istanbul sounds like the city to go for from the advice of the other posters but personally I wouldn't then combine it with another city trip to Athens. I'd go for some R&R (with still lots to do and see) on Crete after Istanbul.
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Old Jan 3rd, 2006, 09:44 AM
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I've spent days in Athens on teh way to and from other islands; and I've spent weeks in Crete. I've not been to Istanbul, but I'd have to say, I think the best deal would have to be the whole lot in Crete, or, if you were to do a few days only, pick a town and stay there. You'll barely scratch the surface in 5 days.

Athens is doable in 3 days, I think
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Old Jan 3rd, 2006, 10:11 AM
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I have been to all 3. All are magnificent. Choose 2 of the 3 so you won't have to rush about.
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