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Itinerary hypothesis, solo travel

I am thinking of visiting Greece in late September-October, traveling alone, with one or more guided tours, without renting a car. My approximate budget is $3,000 US dollars (or 2574, rounded up to under approximately 2,600 Euros). This amount is supposed to cover airplane tickets to and from Detroit, food and water, lodging places, site and museum entrance fees, and transportation within Greece. I am aware that visiting Greece without a whole-trip group tour will be logistically more difficult than my past trips. (As I wrote in another posting, I am a 34-year-old man and my mother thinks I am nust or worse for traveling alone but she is less bothered by the possibility of me traveling with a whole-trip group tour, and with occasional exceptions, I usually prefer to buy my own supplies instead of eating in restaurants). Here is my supposed itinerary:

Day 1, Saturday: Leave from Detroit metro airport.
1st night, sleep (or not sleep) on the airplane

Sunday: Arrive in Athens approximately sometime between 9am and 12 noon. Airplane to Santorini. If time, Ancient Thira.

Sleep in Santorini 2nd st night

Monday: Museum of prehistoric Fira (page 422 Rick Steves Greece and...) If time, Megaro Gyzi museum (end of 424-425).
Sleep in Santorini 3rd night

Tuesday: Akrotiri site. More walking or other activity.
Sleep in Santorini 4th night

Wednesday: airplane to Athens, bus or rental car to Delphi.
Sleep in Delphi 5th night.

Thursday: Delphi.
Sleep in or near Delphi 6th night

Drive to Corinth and/or Mycenae. Drive to Nafplion on the coast.
Sleep in Nafpilon 7th night

Saturday: Nafplio
Sleep in Nafpilon 8th night

Sunday: Another ay trip from Nafplio?
Sleep in Nafpilon 9th night?

Monday: Drive to Olympia??
Sleep in Olympia 10th night??

Tuesday: See the rest of Olympia and otherwise occupy myself??
Sleep in Olympia 11th night??

Wednesday: Drive to Athens. Return the rental car.
Sleep in Athens 12th night

Thursday: Jewish museum, other museums if time.
Sleep in Athens, 13th night

Friday: Acropolis area (Parthenon, acropolis museum, other areas on the acropolis ticket as time allows)
Sleep in Athens 14th night

Saturday: Agora museum and outdoor area if not already seen; Bernaki museum or some other museum, if time.
Sleep in Athens 15th night.

Sunday: Fly back to Detroit.

Posted by
8823 posts

The answer to your last question appears to be favorable.

It looks like Delta/KLM have a 6 AM departure that arrives 140PM in DTW

Posted by
2891 posts

From the evidence you seem to be a very organized person ... and also, quite The Worrier (i.e., I do not know any 34-year-old men who consult their mothers about trip risks). Please try to calm down. I am FAR older than y our Mother (my 2 "children" are 50+, and since their teens have never consulted me about their travels) ... and I have travelled alone all over Greece, on many busses, not with trepidation but enjoyment. As for "risks", Statistically, in terms of personal crime rates, Greece is one of the safest countries in Europe. It's intercity (KTEL) bus network is excellent, modern and in my experience, excellent on-time record. The reason it doesn't have a national online advance reservation systems is that each "state" (prefecture) system is separately owned. Just accustom yourself, on arrival at a destination Bus Station, to getting a local printed timetable, or writing down the posted schedules. Calm down; breathe; take a Xanax. After the first day you'll relax, one hopes.

Your trip is logistically possible, though some could question the allocation of time.

CRETE --I gather you are a big fan of Minoan art and civilization, otherwise you would not fly to/from Crete simply to See Knossos & The Heraklion Museum. As long as you're going all that way -- On that Monday, if you rise early & take an 8 am bus, you'd have plenty of time to see Museum in the AM, and Knossos in afternoon (it's 30 minutes away on local bus), then take a KTEL intercity bus to CHANIA --- 2.5 hr trip on modern highway, vey enoyable scenery. Unlike HeraKlion (a concrete-box maze), Chania is THE most beautiful Old Town in Crete and 2nd only to Nafplio n in the Old Town Beauty Contest. Stay in a small budget hotel on THeotokopoulu Street (Casa Di Pietra u would love -5 rooms fab view) -- and spend that day, (Tuesday?) just exploring that fascinating town. THEN get a local bus to Chania Airport & fly back to mainland.

NAFPLIO -- As for local trips ... unless you have specific interest in Corinth (it's big with Christians who want to see the platform St. Paul stood on), I'm not sure it's worth a day trip, and also it would involve a LOT of backtracking (look at a map) . How about EPIDAURUS?? Its ancient theatre is world-famous, the bus trip over there is scenic. You can take a 9 am bus over, see all that's worthwhile, get a return bus about 1 pm -- and have a half-day to explore the fascinating castles, lanes & byways of Nafplio itself. I don't remember if I included in your past thread this link: -- cllick on EVERY LINK. Invaluable ... do NOT miss the walk around the peninsula ... unforgettable views.

OLYMPIA - that trip could take you most of the day -- backtrack to Corinth and connect w. Olympia bus. On Day 2 in Olympia I wouldn't stay over -- because that trip to Delphi could be another looooong trek. I think you have to go back to Athens! Or Else take a bus to PARGA, another bus across the Rio Bridge... and then somehow get to Delphi. Look at a Map. This is where not driving is a mistake. Frankly I think you might do better to switch things around ... when you arrive back from Crete, take X93 ?) bus to the Liossioon KTEL bus station (the bus for Mainland) and go straight to Delphi, spend the night, come back to Athens, take bus from liossion bus terminal to Kifissos Terminal (the one for Peloponnese), and go to Nafplion. Here are links to the 2 bus stations -- that give timetables to/from Athens, trip durations, and ticket costs.

Posted by
396 posts

This is probably too much detail so early in your planning, but just an idea: As a little break from sightseeing, we booked a kayak trip from this group: They have short trips out of Nafplio and a longer trip from Nea Epidavros, which is near Epidavros. I love the idea of getting out on that clear blue water and it's nice to build a variety of activities into a trip. I suppose it will depend somewhat on the actual dates for your trip whether the weather will accommodate it. They have trips of a few hours up to about 6 hours.

Another activity to consider is a food tour. There seem to be many in Athens. We took a food tour in Rome on our first night and met some great people. It was very welcoming and helped us feel at home and get the layout of the city.

Posted by
2891 posts

Woo, Lia. We have just (on this thread & previous thread) been accustoming him to the idea that busses in Greece are not too risky. A kayak may be a Bridge Too Far! Mike, I jest ... kayaks are super fun, and you'll have a life vest.

Posted by
782 posts

I had also thought of visiting santorini/ Thira instead of Crete. Perhaps I should see Santorini and save Crete for another trip. I don’t necessarily have a greater interest in Minoan culture than Mycenean or classical-antiquity-era Greek culture. On Santorini I would at least see the museum of ancient Thira, and the Akrotiri ruins, and see various scenery while walking, and so on. Would it be a shame to visit Greece while skipping Crete, or should I just acquiesce to I skipping it, assuming I will be able to see Crete some other time?

Perhaps when I leave Olympia, I should take the bus to Athens, and then see Delphi as a day trip or overnight trip from Athens. I want to sleep in Athens on my last night in greece, so that it will take the least amount of time for me to get from my hotel to my airplane back to Detroit.

My only excuse to see Corinth might be the canal, and some ruins - I don’t know anything about them yet. Epidaurus is one of the places listed in Rick Steves Greece: Athens and the peleponnese 4th edition; perhaps Rick is right that the odium or ampitheater at Epidaurus is what I would find more worthwhile than Corinth. Whether Corinth (or any place in Greece) has anything to do with Christianity, the New testament, and/or saint Paul, is beyond the scope of my interest.

Posted by
396 posts

There is simply too much to see in Greece/Crete/islands to cover in one trip of two weeks, even hitting just the highlights. My point in mentioning in another thread that our trip includes Crete as our 'island hop' was just to offer that up as a possibility. It's about the same amount of travel time as Santorini but there is more to see in Crete so it needs more time if you want to see a significant part of it. I'm accused by my family of not knowing how to relax : ) We go on active vacations that don't build in a lot of down time. Hey, 'relaxing' is what home is for, in my view. But other people have different priorities or energy levels. You may want to balance out the transit time in your itinerary so you slow down a bit on an island like Santorini. That seems more possible in Santorini in shoulder season, as you are planning. Having said all of this, I've only planned one trip to Greece, so I defer to Janet and stanbr who have tons more experience.

Sometimes to make a decision I try to imagine what do I pictured myself doing in this trip that made it appealing to me. Like just relaxing, or being on the water, beautiful views, experiencing music and dance, seeing rural life, having a meal in a fish taverna on the beach, sampling local life and opportunities to talk with locals. Once I get a rough itinerary together I start making sure these are included in the trip. The food tour we took in Rome, for example, was one of the highlights of the trip because we got to see a lot of modern, local life in a short period of time.

Posted by
2891 posts

Mike, your answers show that you are trying to make decisions without adequate information. I read on another thread that you are a Librarian -- what!!! With a shelf-full of Greece guides, you are going on guesswork? It doesn't matter if guides at your site are 2012 editions instead of 2017 -- you would not be consulting them for restaurant or hotel prices, but for general ambience and highlights which do not change.

I STRONGLY advise to go to place of work and take out ROUGH GUIDE to GREECE -- it is the most thorough and Candid, both of which are vital. It will tell you all about Corinth ... that Ancient Corinth is NOT near Modern Corinth, and you probably would have to taxi there... that the Canal is not readily visible from the modern highway, you would have to get a ticket to Isthmus in order to access the Old Bridge. Stuff like that. It also would tell you about seeing Athens highlights efficiently -- which also BTW is the strong point of Rick Steves' book. The Lonely Planet Guides do not have the deep background they used to have, but are well-organized for logistics. For ROUGH GUIDE, you can photocopy key pages or - gasp! -buy a copy. On Amazon, used copies can be as little as $10 for the edition before the newest. You wouldn't have to take the Big Fat Guide with you -- you can (carefully) pull the relevant sections off the backing, & create "spines" w. duct tape and presto! you have pocket-size "guide-ettes". So please please please do some homework -- as a librarian isn't that what you always advise patrons?? -- so you don't spur us to spend time on your behalf setting up scenarios, only to say... well, I just said such &such, I really don't know anything about it yet, or why I would choose it. That does not respect your advisors. Look up some stuff first.

As far as staying in Athens your last night, of course I would advise it, all of us Old Hands do. But that does not mean you have to do a DAY trip to Delphi. For example, if you'd done any research, you would know it takes 3.5 hours each way on a bus, 7 hours out of your day. MUCH better to take a noonish bus, arrive late afternoon, see museum then, enjoy sunset, see Ruins in AM before tour crowds arrive, then take noonish bus back to Athens. I have done it both ways and that is my recommendation. AND, as recommended before, I think a good time to do this would be when you FLY back from whatever island you choose (crete or Santorini)... I dont recommend a plane flight to ATH, then a loooong bus ride to Olympia. Do some study of timetables.

You also express anxiety about being close to the airport the night before your homebound flight. The first way to reduce anxiety is to NOT book a flight that leaves before 10 am or so. You must be in check-in line 2 hours before departure (altho it's stupid, you then spend a long time sitting in the departure lounge, but those are the rules). Thus, a 10 am flight means 8 am arrival. A bus or taxi to airport from Central Athens takes about 60 minutes. That means leaving your hotel befor 7 am. If you want to be closer, there are a couple of budget hotels 10 minutes away -- Hotel Peris, and Hotel Pantheon, and St. Thomas B & B. Peris used to have a free to/from Shuttle, maybe charges now, others will call taxis. St. Th is nicest, in an olive grove, with a pool, and buffet breakfast. staying close may relieve your jitters.

Posted by
782 posts

My thought to visit Creat had to do with vague ideas about Minoan culture or its approximate importance or other irrational reasons, not because you mentioned it as the island you visited, in another post. Lonely planet and Rough guide both have guides just on Crete. Corinth is the first place described in the Peleponnese section of Frommer’s Greece.

I looked at two guidebooks so far; Frommer’s Greece, 2006 edition, and I bought Rick Steves Greece: Athens and... three weeks ago; he gives the best information on opening and closing times, transportation, and so on; nobody, not even Rick steves, can say exactly which bus trips will be possible. Rick Steves guides are fine for the places he picks but he only covers the sites he has personally visited. Matt Barrett’s picture of the two bus schedules, makes it seem like a bus trip from Olympia to Athens takes ten hours.

After Nafplio, is it best to return to Athens, then figure out whether it is worth renting a car to go to Olympia or skipping it? It looks like it is probably only possible to plan bus trips by starting from and returning to Athens. Even the bus station in Athens seems hard to get to.

No I don’t expect anybody to plan my trip for me, that is what a whole-trip guided tour is for, where the tour operator provides a chartered bus, arranges for guides, sets everybody up with group dinners in fancy restaurants with table service, gives everybody an extra large, expensive room in a hi-class hotel, the people will be married couples near retirement age or older, and so on. I don’t want to ask a tour operator for fruit or special food to enable me to stick to my diet, I would rather buy my own supplies, so that I won’t feel or seem like I am nuts; It is impossible both worry about taking a trip and plan said trip - but I am at least trying to avoid feeling like I am doing something stupid or trying to prevent my mother from being right; I didn’t realize how difficult Greece is compared to Italy; perhaps I should look up the cost of renting a car, but then the idea that Greece is a cheap country to visit will be false and my overall estimated cost might go over my budget.

I don’t want to get into trouble, or worse, at the airports, for looking suspicious, for being a man solo traveler. I always get pulled aside for extra sets of questioning and bag inspections and pat downs. At the moment, I cut my beard to 1/2 to 3/4 inches every few days with an electric beard trimmer - I have wondered whether completely shaving myself would make the security people happier. How strict are the airport security people: do they ban you from flying if you show up 1 hour and 59 minutes before your flight leaves?

Posted by
5262 posts

No, Mike, they won't ban you from flying for showing up a minute later than two hours ahead. But it's wise to follow the two-hour recommendation because delays can happen, checked baggage has to be loaded, IDs have to be checked, everyone has to go through metal detectors, and so on. It would be three hours, by the way, for a transatlantic flight.

My only two-cent pieces of advice would be: (1) Skip Olympia unless it's really important for you to see it. It's a long way out of your way and skipping it would free up time for your other destinations. (2) In Athens try to visit the Archeological Museum (not to be confused with the also-great Acropolis Museum), which is well north of the Acropolis and worth at least half a day including transit time. You can get there by subway plus a short walk, or by taxi.

I haven't tried to do a Greece trip using KTEL buses but it seems like it would be perfectly doable for a solo traveler, especially one who travels light. Greece is a "harder" destination than Italy because terrain may complicate transportation and the alphabet requires some study and translation, but it's a much less expensive country and the people couldn't be more welcoming and friendly. Hospitality to strangers (philoxenia) is part of their culture. Safety (pickpockets aside) is not an issue. You'll love it.

Posted by
782 posts

Perhaps you are right that I should skip Olympia. I never had much interest in sports; pan helenic games were also held every 4 years at Delphi, and every 2 years at Isthmia, and Nemia.

I am not fully against the action of driving itself; the decision of whether to rent a car would depend on whether the site I am thinking of driving to is worth my seeing instead of another site, and the cost and duration of a bus trip versus the cost and duration of a car trip, and how difficult or easy it would be to rent a car (I have never rented a car); how hard or easy finding a parking spot would be, the overall cost of renting a car (the quoted cost + any extra insurance costs + fuel + road tolls + parking fees, and so on) and whether the overall final cost of renting the car would put me over my whole-trip budget. Perhaps a good compromise would be getting a car for just a one or two day road trip, the rest of the time taking a combination of intercity busses, local public transportation. I won’t rent a car just because in the Detroit area, almost nobody uses public transportation; I may consider renting a car if doing so would be much better than the buses.

Posted by
5262 posts

Rome2rio can help you decide the best way to travel from one place to another. It provides basic info about alternative means and can also connect you with bus or car rental companies. Auto Europe has good info about car rentals and can be used to reserve a car if you want one. You should get an International Driver's Permit (IDP) if you'll be driving in Greece -- available for about $15 from a AAA office in the US.

Driving in Greece, even on rural highways, might not be a good idea if you're not used to driving at home. Speed limits are treated as advisory, people pass pretty abruptly, some roads are narrow, people often drive on, or halfway on, the shoulders. Don't even consider it in Athens.

Posted by
782 posts

I revised my supposed itinerary.

How many days does it take to see Santorini “properly”?

Have any of you taken an airplane from the USA to Athens and then another airplane right away to somewhere else in Greece?

Will I feel like it is a shame to visit Greece but not see Crete, or sould I just skip Crete and not care that I am skipping it?

Will the cost of renting a car make my trip go far above my supposed whole-trip budget?

Should I spend more time in Athens instead of Nafplio and/or instead of Olympia?

Posted by
1117 posts

How many days does it take to see Santorini “properly”?

Depends on whom you ask. Some people will tell you that their half day cruise ship stop, one look at the crater, and one sunset at Oia was quite enough. We spent two weeks there with friends a couple of years ago and weren't bored for a minute. That said, had it been only for ourselves, we would have reduced that to a week, but our friends were first time Greece visitors, and we wanted them to have a memorable island experience.

Have any of you taken an airplane from the USA to Athens and then
another airplane right away to somewhere else in Greece?

Not from the USA but from Germany. So what is your question on that?

Will I feel like it is a shame to visit Greece but not see Crete, or
sould I just skip Crete and not care that I am skipping it?

If I were you, I would leave Crete to a later vacation and have some more time to spend at the other destinations. Crete is so big that it's almost a country of its own. I would feel like I'd only be rushing through everything in order to be able to include that on my itinerary.

Will the cost of renting a car make my trip go far above my supposed
whole-trip budget?

You might want to get some more advice about that car question. I can answer for Athens and for the smaller islands: We never got a car. In Athens, it's going to be completely in your way. And most of the islands have a surprisingly good and punctual bus system, very unlike any mediterranean clichés.

So the question is going to be if it makes sense for you to rent a car for those other mainland destinations, or if there is good public transportation to those too.

I don’t want to get into trouble, or worse, at the airports, for
looking suspicious, for being a man solo traveler. I always get pulled
aside for extra sets of questioning and bag inspections and pat downs.

If you'll allow me to comment on that... From what I have read from you so far, I think you are probably stuck in a bit of a self-fulfilling prophecy there. You obviously worry a lot and feel that they may think you look suspicious, and they in turn will sense that you feel uncomfortable and start taking a closer look at you.

So relax. Do you have anything on you that would give them a reason to feel you're a suspicious person? Of course you don't. So you can walk right through there with complete self-confidence, can't you? And if they give you a pat-down, so what. They do that at random with lots of travelers. Since you haven't got anything hidden on you (I hope), just let them go about their business.

I didn’t realize how difficult Greece is compared to Italy

Now what makes you think that?
Greece is one of the safest countries I know, and we always got everywhere by public transportation. You'll have to find your way around at first just like in any country, but I really don't see why that would be more difficult than anywhere else.
Most people speak at least some English and are very helpful. If you learn to say three words in Greek ("hello": "kalimera" in the morning and "kalispera" in the afternoon/evening, "thank you": "evkaristo") in Greek, they'll be thrilled and even more happy to help you find your way.

Posted by
15031 posts

I didn’t realize how difficult Greece is compared to Italy

After several visits to Italy and one to Greece with an RS tour, I have to agree Mike. Italy has a great rail system that allows you to plan easily and move efficiently through much of the country. While it's easy to get around Athens by bus and metro, it's not nearly so easy to get to other parts of the mainland on your own without a car or to find information about bus lines and schedules. And getting to the islands is at least as difficult to plan, with multiple ferry lines and seasonal changes in schedules as well as moving around each island.

I love to drive and I'm very comfortable with a manual transmission. I've driven in Spain, France and Italy (even the Amalfi Coast) without major problems - and most of the minor ones were my own fault. After taking the RS tour through the Peloponnese, I would still be reluctant to drive there.

Posted by
782 posts

One time, and only once, when I was 16, I tried learning to drive my aunt’t car while she sat in the passenger seat; she had a car with a manual transmission. Otherwise I only ever drove cars with the typical automatic transmission. I briefly thought stick shifted cars were more special that typical cars. Now I think it is irrational that manual transmissions still exist. Very few American drivers drive cars with manual teansmission. I do drive to work and various places; I drive an average of under 6,200 miles per year, while insurance companies think the average American driver drives 12,000 miles per year.

It had not occured to me to rent a car. But I also associate buses with something dirty and low-class; almost nobody in the Detroit area rides the local buses and there is no subway or commuter train system in the Detroit area. I am thinking of changing my mind and renting a car for one or more days to drive outside of Athens. I am vaguely aware that, for example, some people might take road trips across the USA; I might have thought of driving, in general, as a chore, or associated driving with getting stuck in traffic and the hi cost of gas.

I am thinking of taking an airplane from Athens to Santorini and back to Athens.

Posted by
1117 posts

But I also associate buses with something dirty and low-class

If you have seen one dirty and low-class house, would that make you believe all houses are dirty and low-class?

That is a very U.S. centered perspective. You go everywhere by car simply because you don't have a public transportation system to speak of. Obviously then, someone who can't afford a car and has to rely on those buses must be really low class.

Most Americans I know have never in their whole lives taken a train or a bus (in their own country), so it is understandable where that prejudice comes from. Because - to put it bluntly - that's what it is: a prejudice. And I think you felt that yourself when you wrote "I associate..."

Using public transportation - bus or train or tram - is a perfectly normal means of transportation in Europe, and it's not only much more eco-friendlly (thus good for your conscience) but also faster and more convenient than a car in many places.

Unless of course you belong to that class of people who use a chauffeur driven limousine or your private jet for mobility. :-)

Posted by
2891 posts

Not much point in trying to use logic with Mike L., he appears to be a hyper-hyper-anxious type, in his 30s still listening to his mother's worries, complete newbie in European travel and trying to apply his Detroit standards to a completely different situation & culture. He will ONLY learn from personal experience, no amount of reassurance or facts will sway him. For example, he cannot understand why the whole world isn't driving Automatic.... pays no attention to the much-greater mileage obtainable with stick shift, and apparently also is ignorant of the Much higher gas/petrol prices in Europe. So leave him be.

Posted by
3649 posts

While in Athens, in the Acropolis area, do go to the Ancient Agora itself -- not just the museum. Very uncrowded, excellent ruins, and one of the best preserved temples in Greece. If you decide to include it, let me know. I think I can remember a short way to get there from the Parthenon but I'll have to check my notes and maps.

Posted by
2948 posts

Modern auto engines do run better and get much better gas mileage with automatic transmissions than those with a manual transmission, all due to the use of the computerized component called the engine control module, fuel injection and complex transmissions. This applies to the small, economy models as well as luxury cars.

Posted by
3237 posts

You could also look at Matt Barretts website for the name of the local tourist agency he recommends. I think that's the one we used for an overnight partially guided trip that included Mycenae, Epidaurus and Naufplio. You might want to consider short guided tours for places that are difficult to reach on your own.

Posted by
782 posts

Revised supposed partial itinerary
Day 1, Saturday: Leave from Detroit metro airport.
1st night, sleep (or not sleep) on the airplane

Sunday: Arrive in Athens about 9am and 12 noon. Airplane to Santorini.
Sleep in Santorini 2nd night

Monday: Santorini. Sleep in Santorini 3rd night

Tuesday: Santorini. Sleep in Santorini 4th night

Wednesday: Santorini. Sleep in Santorini 5th night

List of what to see or walk past on Santorini:
Ancient Thira
Museum of prehistoric Fira (page 422 Rick Steves Greece and...)
If time, Megaro Gyzi museum (end of 424-425).
Akrotiri site
Possibly Ancient Thira
If time or nothing else to do, the lighthouse at the southwest tip, and/or a boat ride in the caldera, and/or more walking and sitting.

Thursday: airplane to Athens, bus or rental car to Delphi.
Sleep in Delphi 6th night.

Friday: Delphi.
Sleep in or near Delphi 7th night

Drive to Corinth and/or Mycenae. Drive to Nafplion on the coast in time to arrive at a loging place.
Sleep in Nafpilon 8th night

Sunday: Day trip from Nafplio?
Sleep in Nafplio 9th night

Monday: Another day trip from Nafplio?
Sleep in Nafplio 10th night??

Tuesday: Bus or Rental car to Athens. Return the rental car if I have one.
Sleep in Athens 11th night

Wednesday: Athens. Sleep in Athens 12th night

Thursday: Athens: Sleep in Athens, 13th night

Friday: Sleep in Athens 14th night

Saturday: Sleep in Athens 15th night

Sunday: Airplane back to Detroit.

Supposed list of what I will see in Athens:
-Acropolis area (Parthenon, acropolis museum, other areas on the acropolis ticket as time allows); Agora museum and outdoor area; National Archaeology museum; Bernaki museum; at least briefly, the Jewish museum and if open to visitors, one or both of the synagogues, just to say I saw them; if time, museum of popular instruments, and/or more museums or more walking.

I have some doubt about whether my above revision has too much time in Santorini, or not enough time in Athens. Would renting a car cause my expenses to go over my budget?

Posted by
8823 posts

Hard to answer a question about a rental car 'busting' your budget. You need to compare cost of car, gas, tolls, vs bus or other forms of transport. Not knowing what you have to spend to get air tickets & lodging, no way to know how much is left over for food and transport and admissions.

You are the only one who can determine whether a rental car puts you 'over budget', once you add up all your other expenses.

Posted by
1779 posts

You will have to calculate whether you have enough money to rent a car. See what you will have to pay for accommodations. There no longer is a hostel on Santorini. We have a two week trip to Greece planned for next May/June that includes Santorini. It is fairly expensive I know. Go on and find some things you like for the days you are thinking of and add up the cost for the 15 nights.

We decided to rent a car for four days (Athens to Napflio and surrounding area) and I know even with a group of people it would be cheaper to take public transportation. We decided to splurge because was logistically much easier.


Posted by
8823 posts

Best case scenario on airfare is $1k , based on what I have found for the general time frame you mention

That leaves you about 100 euro per day ( at current exchange rate) for lodging , food, ground transport and admissions.

Were you able to do your other ( Italy?) trip on that amount?

Posted by
6876 posts

Best case scenario on airfare is $1k

Actually, you can get a few hundred dollars under that amount if you fly Turkish Air. Good airline and very competitive prices.

Posted by
5482 posts

Mike, I just wanted to thank you for coming to the forum and feeling free to ask your questions. That is what the forum is for. Sorry about the 1 or 2 unkind responses you have had.

I travel completely on public transportation in Europe and it is a great experience. You should have no qualms about using it. In fact, public transportation allows one to meet and talk with others. I would argue it allows for a more authentic experience because of the interaction.

Enjoy your trip and make sure you come back and tell us how it all went.

Posted by
782 posts

My trip to Italy cost just under $3,100. But I went on a tour of the Colosseum and nearby areas which cost $99, which now I feel like I could have done without, and I bought a few souvineers, which I won’t buy again. My trip could have cost under $2,900. How much did it cost you per day (total amount including the quoted amount + gas + parking + any extra insurance or fees) to rent a car?

Has anybody else here traveled to greece alone? Would it be that insulting to suppose that as weird as I had thought of riding buses (but my attitude is understandable as a person from the Detroit area, where only those few who are dirt poor, disabled, or can’t or don’t drive, use the buses), thats how dirty or weird you thought hostels are, and you assumed a trip costs over $5,000 per person? But I am necessarily looking for suggestions of loging places. I want to estimate the total cost of my trip if I am still going to take the trip.

Posted by
1779 posts


We are renting a van as we have six people which at a totally different price point than renting a car. But quite frankly, if I was traveling by myself I would rely on public transportation. I would not want to contend with driving in a foreign country without a second person to navigate and help figure things out. I think you could easily do your trip except for Olympia using buses. I have seen people on this forum describe going to Delphi by bus and I know you can easily get to Napflio as I researched it.

As far as costs go, I think you need to just look on or another site to get an idea of costs for accommodations. We have a group so what I have been looking for is different than what you need.