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Advice about Thesaloniki

This will be our first time in Greece. We are spending a week at a villa in Chania region, Crete. Afterwards we are planning on 2 full days in Athens. We have another 4 to 5 days available for travel and are thinking of driving from Athens to Thesaloniki. Just wondering if spending several days in the Thesaloniki region is the way to go. Or would you suggest another region.

We would like to settle into 1 place and do day trips to markets and small towns. We aren't that interested in seeing ruins during this phase of our trip. Your recommendations would be greatly appreciated.

Posted by
16796 posts

I enjoyed Thessaloniki for a couple of excellent museums and as a starting point for a road trip around northern Greece, but big city traffic might mean that it's not the best base for a lot of day-tripping in and out. If you do go to any archeological sites near there, the group of Macedonian Royal Tombs at Vergina is a top choice.

Posted by
14035 posts

I just spoke yesterday with a good friend who did that a year or two ago with her husband and another couple. They were disappointed with Thesalonika but enjoyed the small towns and seaside. They moved around a lot. Her comment yesterday was that driving times were often much longer than they'd expected. The apps figure driving at maximum speed limits, but the actual conditions often lower your speed considerably. Same thing happened to us in Portugal. The speed limit may be 80 or 90, and locals handle it but the curves and narrow roads can be daunting for a tourist.

Posted by
186 posts

I would split up your time by spending a couple of days in Thes/niki visiting museums, touring the major sights, and dining in their wonderful restaurants then heading to Halkidiki (about 1-2 hrs away, depending on where and which leg you go to) for another couple of days to relax and enjoy the beach. There is everything from camping to the Porto Fino resort and anything in between so you can choose according to your budget.