Need help please: I am traveling to Greece and am in the midst of figuring out my itinerary.
- Arrival in Athens April 20 (~ 10AM); departure from Athens May 27.
- Total of 36 days (excluding arrival & departure days)
I need help on 3 main issues:
(1) - (Though I usually do not plan anything on arrival/departure dates) I arrive on Easter Sunday and there will be other significant dates/events during my stay (e.g. St George feast, May day, St Constantine feast, etc.). How can I take the most advantage of those cultural events? Where would the best celebrations be held on those days (the idea is to see how I can work an itinerary allowing me to be at the right place at the right time).
(2) - (Admittedly vague/open question) Any itinerary suggestions?
As mentioned, I am in the midst of deciding on an itinerary. A priori and because I don't know better (yet), I am likely to include (not necessarily all and in random order) Athens, Delphi, Meteora, Thessaloniki, Hydra, Mykonos, Santorini, Rhodes, Crete (Hania, Iraklion, Knossos, etc.), Nafplion, Monemvasia, Kardamyli, Mani region (Vathia), Zakynthos, Lefkada.
But, what else or are there better alternatives (I know 'better' is relative but I am open for suggestions).
Background: male, 30's traveling with friend, can drive if needed. I generally like covering most of the different facets of the countries I visit (rather than visit a few places only) and I like variety as well as uniqueness (in terms of history, culture, geography, etc). Since it's my first time, I do want to include the must-do/see but, since my time allows it, I also want to include other things and sites (as well as those off the beaten path).
(3) - (Related to # 2 and will affect it) I feel that 5 weeks may a bit too long for Greece alone. I have no problem limiting my time in Greece in order to include other destinations in the area (Bulgaria, Albania, anywhere in the Balkans?) What suggestions in terms of other destinations and itinerary (including time allocation) can you help me with (realizing that it is not an open-jaw ticket)?
I know I am asking for a lot, but I hope I'll find a helping hand out there.
Thank you in advance and looking forward to your responses.