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2023 Trip

Hi guys🤗

Could anyone help a couple of young-thinking Pensioner husband and wife, aged 72 and 67 years respectively.

We should like to travel to Greece in 2023, by train/ferry around May time. Would like to use an island as a base for two weeks, and ability to travel to other islands at will.

Obviously we will need to get to the base Island by train/ferry from UK, and we have a blank canvas, so any ideas/suggestions-especially actual experiences, would be gratefully appreciated.

Accommodation, preferably 4 star or reliable-experienced knowledge, we are fairly active, no problems hills etc, but would love to be close to tavernas for experiencing different cuisine opportunities.

A must is, the ability to visit other islands from base accommodation.

If response is too lengthy, the my email is adhall1949@gmail.com .

I live and will travel from Beccles Suffolk, and timings/dates are completely flexible.

Daily travel suggestions most welcome, and accommodation can be B&B/ Half-Board

Regards😇😇🤗

Alan Hall

Posted by
65 posts

Hello Alan,
I have no personal experience of the Greek islands, but why don’t you have a look at My Greek Odyssey on either Channel 4 or Five for ideas? It’s a wonderful series of programmes by an Australian of Greek ancestry and he visits practically every island and is so enthusiastic that it really whets your appetite. I ended up wanting to go to most of them…

Posted by
1304 posts

I’ve never tried to get to Greece by train but if I was going to then ‘the man in seat 61’ would be my starting point

https://www.seat61.com/Greece.htm#london-to-greece-by-train

I’m not sure using one island as a base and travelling to others ‘at will’ is possible: islands are too far apart and ferries not frequent enough. There are places where you can do a day trip to another island but I can’t think of many where you can reach several islands. It makes sense to think of the ferry schedule like a tube map, with different lines. Have a look at this map to get an idea. I can’t vouch it’s 100% accurate but it looks more or less right for areas I know.

http://www.greeceathensaegeaninfo.com/ferry-info-greece/greek-islands-ferry-chart.htm

Other people will no doubt be able to correct it, and me, as necessary.

Sounds like a great idea. Have fun.

Alan

Posted by
907 posts

Just a friendly suggestion - I wouldn't post my personal email address on a public forum. Recipe for spam. :-)

Posted by
1915 posts

I agree that Greek islands aren’t well suited for the idea of using one as a base and daytripping to other islands.

Thus the term “island hopping”, where you base yourself on an island for a few days and take day trips from your hotel to various sights on the island. Then you ferry to a new island and repeat the process.

A variation on this — on some of the larger islands — you can visit just one island and change locations every few days.

For instance, my husband and I spent 3 weeks on Lesvos, staying in four locations on the island, giving us a complete change of scenery. We took several day trips from each location.

In September we’re going to Crete for almost a month and and again will base ourselves in several different places on the island.

If you are open to flying, there are flights from London to some of the larger islands, getting you there in 3-4 hours.

Posted by
82 posts

Hello,

There are over 200 inhabited islands in Greece.
What you need to do first is choose which group of islands you would like to go to.

The Cyclades, The Ionians, The Sporades, The Dodecanese Islands?

Generally ferry connections will not allow you to find a base island that allows you to go back and forth to several other islands.
If you want to visit several islands by taking the ferries you have to do what is called Island Hopping. Which means going to an island A then to an island B, then C, etc. without going back to the same island

Posted by
259 posts

There are more than 200 inhabited islands in Greece, you have to see which group of islands you would like to visit.
Cyclades?
Dodecanese?
Sporades?
Ionians?

Unless you are staying for several weeks, the ferry routes make it difficult to do what you want to do even in a single group of islands.
Stay on a base island and see other islands successively from this base.

I have known people who had booked accommodation on the "base island" for several weeks and who went from time to time to visit another island for 3 or 4 days. During this time they continued to pay accommodation on the base island + accommodation on the other island.
It's a solution, but you have to be able to afford it.

What is generally done is "island hopping" which consists of going to an island A then from island A to island B, then from B to C, etc. depending on the ferry possibilities.