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Santorini, Naxos, Athens Itinerary

Hi, everyone. I've been scouring this forum for a few weeks now, absorbing all the recommendations. I've come up with the following itinerary for our trip to Greece from 9/24/18-10/5/18 and would love feedback. Background: We're in our early-mid thirties and traveling as a couple. This will be our first time in Greece. We enjoy trips where we can walk as much as possible (vs. spending the day in a car/bus/train), trying new food, learning about history and taking in amazing views. My husband isn't a beach person so we'll probably only spend 1 day at the beach (Naxos). Here's the itinerary I've come up with so far:

Day 1: Arrive in Athens at 9:15am and immediately fly to Santorini at 11:55am
Day 2: Santorini (most likely staying at Espera's in Oia)
Day 3: Santorini
Day 4: Santorini
Day 5: Day in Santorini , Ferry to Naxos
Day 6: Naxos (most likely staying at Polis of Naxos Boutique Hotel in Chora)
Day 7: Naxos
Day 8: Naxos
Day 9: Day in Naxos, Flight to Athens
Day 10: Athens
Day 11: Athens
Day 12: Flight Home at 11:45am

Looking at the itinerary, I have a couple reservations. First, is 4 nights in Santorini overkill? I know Santorini isn't necessarily the most popular island on the forum; however, we'll be there at the end of September and I'm hoping it will be a bit quieter than the summer. I've considered booking one less night in Santorini and adding to Athens. Would this be a better plan?

If we do add an extra night to Athens, I'd love to visit Meteora but know I will need an overnight there to make it enjoyable. I'm a little nervous that by the time we get to Athens we'll be exhausted and not wanting to spend 5 hours there and back, even with the overnight. Thoughts on Meteora?

Thank you in advance for any and all feedback!

Posted by
2863 posts

No, 4 nights on Santorini is definitely not overkill. There's lots to see and do there. Your time there will fly by. Esperas is an excellent choice.

Posted by
831 posts

It looks like a well balanced plan. Well done. The only reason to cut a day from Santorini would be if your budget can't stand 4 nights and that doesn't appear to be an issue for you.

We were in Santorini late September last year and it was still busy but not overly crowded. The number of cruise ships really determine how busy.

Posted by
2814 posts

Sounds like a plan! We were in Santorini x 4 nights and Naxos x 6 nights last September. Actually less busier than we expected. That said, we stayed in Firostephani. We went to Oia in the am before the ship group arrived.

I think 4 nights in Santorini gives you ample time to explore the island. Lots to see in Naxos. Loved it. Due to limited time, may want to consider Meteora for another trip. Plenty of time in Athens is a plus.

Enjoy your stay!

Posted by
3 posts

Thank you all very much - I feel much better about our plan now that others' have vindicated our original choices. I think we are going to save Meteora for a separate trip, as mentioned. Thanks again :).