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Planning our next trip- help shorten itinerary!

Planning our next trip- help shorten itinerary!

Jul 17th, 2019, 11:31 AM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 361
Planning our next trip- help shorten itinerary!

Soo, looks like South America will have to wait (yet again). We're planning our trip instead to Turkey/Greece. I've been to Turkey before but my sister and her daughter want to go specifically to Istanbul and all three of us are looking at Cappadocia too. I'm trying to accommodate our schedules and trying to create itineraries where her husband could join us for one part and then fly back home (he has fewer vacation days). My husband could also possibly join us at some point while we are in Greece.

Our interests: we love hiking, the outdoors/nature/viewpoints, getting lost in alleys, admiring turquoise water (and sitting for up to an hour on a sandy beach, don't swim), some history (very old history and ideally outdoors not in a museum). We can handle "some" crowds and touristy things are usually that way for a reason. However, love places that are off the beaten path but beautiful too. We also have dozens of places around the world we'd still like to see so (realistically) I need to plan this trip as if it will be our last one to Greece. Moreover, I need to keep it to 14 days (maybe 15) maximum for my sister/niece and myself. My sister's budget is lean so we will most likely prefer apartments and try to eat out only once a day. She also hates flying so I'm trying to accommodate her fear.

I'm looking at a 2 week trip that essentially combines:
Istanbul
Cappadocia (hiking, the balloons, an amazing looking place)
Athens (Acropolis/Parthenon)
Santorini (the views just look beautiful, bucket list place, con: seems pretty expensive)
Naxos or Paros (hiking, says they have better beaches)
Crete (I understand we'd have to focus on an area, beaches, history seem amazing but seems like we'd have to only go to Crete as our Greek island)

Any way to do this trip by combining most of the above (I'm open to leaving out Crete and maybe should cut Cappadocia?)

Trip 1:

Option a (con: can we really go to Greece and not see the white and blue buildings, ugh):

4 days(Days 1-4) in Istanbul (I'll join them on the 4th day)
3 days (Days 5-7) in Cappadocia (take local flight)- want to do the balloon ride and hiking
On Day 8 (early morning-- 5 days) Fly back to Istanbul so husband can go back to the States and we take a later flight out of Istanbul to Crete through Athens. Focus on North West of the island.
On Day 13 Fly out of Crete to Athens (2 days)- my sister and niece will likely have to leave Athens. I'd have 3 more days for a total of 5 in Athens which just seems like too much.

Option b (con: doesn't give us time together in Athens):

4 days(Days 1-4) in Istanbul (I'll join them on the 4th day)
3 days (Days 5-7) in Cappadocia (take local flight) - want to do the balloon ride and hiking
On Day 8 (early morning-- 3 days) Fly back to Istanbul so husband can go back to the States and we take a later flight out of Istanbul to Santorini through Athens.
On Day 11 Take a ferry from Santorini to Naxos (3 days).
Day 14 Take a ferry from Naxos back to Athens -- here's my dilemma, they won't have any time for Athens but how can one go to Greece and not see the Acropolis at least. (for me, I'd have another 4 days and spend them in Athens with day trips).

Option c (con: really want to go to Cappadocia, has the hiking and adventure and activities we love):

4 days(Days 1-4) in Istanbul
On Day 5 sister/niece fly to Athens to join me there. We spend 3 days there.
On Day 8 we take a flight (or ferry) to Naxos and spend 4 days there.
On Day 12 we take a ferry (my sister hates flying so trying to reduce flights) to Santorini (2 days) [Meanwhile i haven't used 4 of my days, lol, ideas if this is chosen?]
On Day 14 go back to Athens... ugh cutting it super close. May be able to do this and we all fly out on Day 15.

​​​​​​​Advice???
layanluvstotravel is offline  
Jul 17th, 2019, 12:05 PM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 3,007
I'll admit something--seeing the Acropolis from the taxi was better than walking up there with 500 other people. If they are lucky enough to return to Greece, they are almost certain to go through Athens. So, plan the trip you want now and not as if you will never be back.
As a fellow hiker, I have to tell you that I will probably never top Cappadocia. Two full days there would feel very limiting to me.
If you have extra time in Athens you want to fill, Nafplio is not far.
yorkshire is offline  
Jul 17th, 2019, 12:25 PM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 13,839
You mention hiking so Crete’s Samaria Gorge May interest you.
HappyTrvlr is online now  
Jul 17th, 2019, 09:59 PM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Jul 2019
Posts: 1
The Necessary internet gadgets to carry

Originally Posted by layanluvstotravel View Post
Soo, looks like South America will have to wait (yet again). We're planning our trip instead to Turkey/Greece. I've been to Turkey before but my sister and her daughter want to go specifically to Istanbul and all three of us are looking at Cappadocia too. I'm trying to accommodate our schedules and trying to create itineraries where her husband could join us for one part and then fly back home (he has fewer vacation days). My husband could also possibly join us at some point while we are in Greece.

Our interests: we love hiking, the outdoors/nature/viewpoints, getting lost in alleys, admiring turquoise water (and sitting for up to an hour on a sandy beach, don't swim), some history (very old history and ideally outdoors not in a museum). We can handle "some" crowds and touristy things are usually that way for a reason. However, love places that are off the beaten path but beautiful too. We also have dozens of places around the world we'd still like to see so (realistically) I need to plan this trip as if it will be our last one to Greece. Moreover, I need to keep it to 14 days (maybe 15) maximum for my sister/niece and myself. My sister's budget is lean so we will most likely prefer apartments and try to eat out only once a day. She also hates flying so I'm trying to accommodate her fear.

I'm looking at a 2 week trip that essentially combines:
Istanbul
Cappadocia (hiking, the balloons, an amazing looking place)
Athens (Acropolis/Parthenon)
Santorini (the views just look beautiful, bucket list place, con: seems pretty expensive)
Naxos or Paros (hiking, says they have better beaches)
Crete (I understand we'd have to focus on an area, beaches, history seem amazing but seems like we'd have to only go to Crete as our Greek island)

Any way to do this trip by combining most of the above (I'm open to leaving out Crete and maybe should cut Cappadocia?)

Trip 1:

Option a (con: can we really go to Greece and not see the white and blue buildings, ugh):

4 days(Days 1-4) in Istanbul (I'll join them on the 4th day)
3 days (Days 5-7) in Cappadocia (take local flight)- want to do the balloon ride and hiking
On Day 8 (early morning-- 5 days) Fly back to Istanbul so husband can go back to the States and we take a later flight out of Istanbul to Crete through Athens. Focus on North West of the island.
On Day 13 Fly out of Crete to Athens (2 days)- my sister and niece will likely have to leave Athens. I'd have 3 more days for a total of 5 in Athens which just seems like too much.

Option b (con: doesn't give us time together in Athens):

4 days(Days 1-4) in Istanbul (I'll join them on the 4th day)
3 days (Days 5-7) in Cappadocia (take local flight) - want to do the balloon ride and hiking
On Day 8 (early morning-- 3 days) Fly back to Istanbul so husband can go back to the States and we take a later flight out of Istanbul to Santorini through Athens.
On Day 11 Take a ferry from Santorini to Naxos (3 days).
Day 14 Take a ferry from Naxos back to Athens -- here's my dilemma, they won't have any time for Athens but how can one go to Greece and not see the Acropolis at least. (for me, I'd have another 4 days and spend them in Athens with day trips).

Option c (con: really want to go to Cappadocia, has the hiking and adventure and activities we love):

4 days(Days 1-4) in Istanbul
On Day 5 sister/niece fly to Athens to join me there. We spend 3 days there.
On Day 8 we take a flight (or ferry) to Naxos and spend 4 days there.
On Day 12 we take a ferry (my sister hates flying so trying to reduce flights) to Santorini (2 days) [Meanwhile i haven't used 4 of my days, lol, ideas if this is chosen?]
On Day 14 go back to Athens... ugh cutting it super close. May be able to do this and we all fly out on Day 15.

Advice???
Thanks for the great posts The 2019 UEFA Super Cup is bound to be one of the most exciting soccer games of the year. I will be travelling to Istanbul for the Super Cup finals between Chelsea and Liverpool. I need to keep myself online since I will be live streaming. Am used to Pocket Wifis but the provider I have been using is a little bit slow. Do you have any options for me. I have tried searching online only to bump on Skyroam and rent n Connect anyone who have had their experience in Instabul
MakoMakokha is offline  
Jul 17th, 2019, 11:13 PM
  #5  
kja
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 21,368
Honestly, I'm having trouble seeing the differences between your plans, and -- sorry -- but I don't have the time just now to figure it out. If you want to be a bit clearer, I'll try to respond. In the meantime, from what I can easily see I'll offer the following comments:
  • You seem to think that 4 days is sufficient for Istanbul. Maybe, maybe not -- I wanted more than that.
  • It seems to me that you are planning on using magic carpets, so that you can allocate a full day to place A and a full day to place B without having to worry about how you will get between A and B or how much time it will take to do so. I would urge you to be a bit more realistic in your planning.
  • You seem to be trying to trim your times in every location to the barest of bones -- and maybe that will work for you, but doing so gives you NO latitude if weather is bad (hot air balloon don't actually go every day, at least not the safe ones!), etc.
  • The Acropolis is hardly the only major site in Athens, and while I hate to disagree with yorkshire, I thought it extraordinary. I do agree that visiting Athens again will be easier than visiting almost anything on your itinerary other than Istanbul, which is also very easy to visit (as a rule).
  • I also agree with yorkshire than giving yourselves only 2 days for Cappadocia is very limiting. IMO, you really need at least 3 nights, if not 4, to see even the highest of highlights of that extraordinary and unusual area.
  • And so on.
I would encourage you to go back to your guide books, think through your priorities, and come up with a few options that are more realistic. JMO.

Good luck!

Last edited by kja; Jul 17th, 2019 at 11:42 PM.
kja is offline  
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