I feel like I'm swimming in information, but can't pin anything down! I'm quite an experienced DIY traveler on multiple continents with ex-pat experience in Asia, but Greece has me stumped. I hope experienced posters will take pity and help me find a way to focus! (At this point, I have consulted 6 guidebooks and numerous websites!)
I'm researching a June 2024 trip. Definitely Athens will be on the itinerary for 3 - 5 nights depending on the day tours out of town that I find interesting.
I would like include at least one other stop for several nights, possibly two other locations. I would call this an exploratory "Taste of Greece" trip, so just an idea of another side of Greece in addition to Athens would be ideal. I think we would be more comfortable flying to a second location rather than ferries, unless it is a ferry day trip. We will not rent a car which I recognize limits the sightseeing easily available. A beach day is not a high priority.
Looking for votes, advice, comments, thoughts on the following:
1) Santorini. I see it is expensive and heavily touristed. We would be interested in the topography and can handle crowds. If this was the chosen option, I would probably book 2 - 3 nights.
2) Mykonos. My research says "party town". We aren't partiers. I've always been intrigued by the pictures, but would the reality be possibly underwhelming? The focus would be the Old Town, probably 2 nights with one full day. Is Mykonos a possible day trip from somewhere?
3) Crete. No car which would limit touring. The interest is Knossos Palace and Iraklio Archeological Museum, uncertain of other sight-seeing without a car. Please share experience if you have any!
4) Your suggestions! If you have a favorite island or site or town, please share! Naxos has popped up in my research, but seems that a car is necessary.
If it helps, our general interests are history, culture, art, museum lovers. Enjoy walking, reasonable hiking (dislike rock scrambling) and we do swim regularly in the ocean at home, so not necessarily looking for a Greek ocean experience.