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Stumped on Day 12 in Piraeus

I’m happy with most of my September itinerary but am stumped at Day 12 when my ferry arrives in Piraeus at 16:05 (the earliest ferry from Sifnos). From that point in my itinerary, my plan is to head to Peloponnese.

However, getting from the port to Athens Airport to pick up a car means I probably wouldn’t get on the road until at least 6PM. Since I’ll be driving and navigating by myself, I’m concerned that I wouldn’t get to Nafplio before dark - and I don’t know the roads or the area. So now I’m considering staying overnight in Athens again on Day 12 and pick up the car at the airport early the next morning for my drive to Corinth, Nafplio, etc. That way, I can take as much time as I want/need for the drive and still arrive Nafplio in plenty of daylight.

Any suggestions for that - or anything else in my itinerary? If I do that on Day 12, should I stay in central Athens again or just spend that night near the airport to get an early start with a car? My aim is to reduce stress and not worry about time, especially since I'll be quite relaxed after 10 days on the islands! I welcome all feedback.

Day 1-2 - arrive from U.S., overnight (2 nts) at Attalos Hotel in Athens. (I’ve already been to Athens so no need to stay here longer)
Day 3—7 - ferry to Serifos, overnight (4 nts) Alexandros Resort
Day 6-11 - ferry to Sifnos, overnight (5 nts) Geronti Pension
Day 12 - ferry to Piraeus, arrive 16:05, overnight Athens???
Day 13 - subway to Athens Airport to pick up rental car
Day 13-18 - drive to Nafplio, overnight (5 nts) at Marianna Pension
Day 19 - drive to Athens Airport, fly to Jordan

Nancy

Posted by
335 posts

Would it work to pick up the car as planned and drive to Corinth that evening and spend the night there? May be hire a car and driver to take you from the port to the airport. I used Welcome Pick-up, just make sure they know you are coming by ferry.

Posted by
412 posts

You can pick up a car at Piraeus Port and drop it off at Athens International Airport. Europcar.com has several car rental companies you can do this with.

Posted by
260 posts

If you want to leave on the day of arrival in Piraeus why don't you rent a car at the port of Piraeus?

Going to Athens airport to rent a car means losing almost an hour in transport and going in the opposite direction if you go to Nafplio.
From Piraeus you will be about 30 kilometers closer to Nafplio. And on Day 19 you can return the car to the airport.

In September the sun sets around 7:30 p.m., so you might arrive before dark.

However do not forget that if the arrival of the ferry from Sifnos is scheduled for 4:05 p.m., it is a theoretical time, it may arrive later.

By the way, seeing the places and accommodations you have chosen in Sifnos and Serifos I think you are going to have a good holiday :)

Posted by
24 posts

Yes, I’ve asked car companies for a quote with a pickup at the port. Maybe it’s a language thing but I don’t have a lot of confidence in the way they’re phrasing their responses to me. If I went with the highly recommended Athens car rental ACR, can I have confidence that they will meet me at the port with a car?
If I did that I would plan on stopping overnight somewhere around Corinth and start my visit to those sites in the morning. Anyone have a good hotel or pension recommendation in the Corinth area?

Posted by
2864 posts

Have not done this myself but have read reports from those who did, successfully. No, do not stop in Corinth itself -- while perfectly fine as a modern city, it is mainly concrete structures (Google to check), not historic, instead take the roadsigns to the Ancient site, beyond the city, and there are some small hotels, bnb's just a few hundred yards from the entrance.. JUst google "HOtels Ancient Corinth" That will give you an early start to the ruins and (if u are ambitious climber) to the heights. Remember, the heights are oldest parts. Read up beforehand to get the most from visit. PS: I find that the "PLanetware" website has the best print-to-take maps of most ancient Greek sites.

And yest, that rental company is VERY reliable. If u are worried, then reserve, and then the day before, just e-mail (or telephone) them just as recheck.

Posted by
260 posts

It's probably a language problem, these companies rent hundreds of cars every year... But if you don't have the feeling, forget ACR.

There are other rental companies in Piraeus, such as Hertz or Thrifty which are on Akti Miaouli Avenue which runs along the port about 300 meters from the arrival of the Seajets ferries at Gate 9, but I do not know if they would come wait for you at the ferry.

Have you contacted "Bycar" and "Apollo Rent a Car" who have good reviews?
"Bycar" can bring the car to the port when the ferry arrives
"Apollo" (office near the port) have automatic cars.
These two rental companies are certainly cheaper and just as reliable than the major rental companies and offers the same services.

In both cases you can return the car at the airport.

https://www.bycar.gr/

https://apollorentacar.gr/rent/index.php

In Corynthe you can take a trip on the canal if possible. It was closed two months ago due to a landslide

Posted by
24 posts

It just occurred to me that I'll arrive at the ferry port on a Sunday afternoon. Will a car rental company deliver on Sundays?

Posted by
106 posts

I have the perfect hotel for you that is 45 minutes west of Athens on the way to Nafplio. I always stay there when my flight into Athens arrives at night because it's right off the toll freeway and so not a problem at night, gets me well out of the city, and nearly to the Corinth Canal.

They have this wonderful outdoor restaurant over the sea that always gets me in the proper mood on the first night.

Hotel Cokkinis in Kineta.

FWIW, I got a terrific deal last July renting via Enterprise out of a very out-of-the-way Athens location. It was about a 35 Euro cab fare but not so far as having to go to the airport and when I arrived I was the only customer. Got me out Piraeus and on the way to Evia much faster and returned the car at the airport, which is real easy.

Posted by
412 posts

YoPhilly
You can go to Europcar.com enter Piraeus Port as the car pick-up destination & enter Athens Int'l Airport for the dropoff destination ( or another dropoff destination) and the dates and times you want to get the car and drop off the car. A number of options from several car rental agencies will come up on the screen. If the car company is not open on Sunday, it will not appear.

Posted by
260 posts

It just occurred to me that I'll arrive at the ferry port on a Sunday
afternoon. Will a car rental company deliver on Sundays?

Apollo Rent A Car is open 24/7 (according to Google)

Posted by
2864 posts

Yophilly, here's another Philly saying -- it gets confusing switching back/forth between your two threads involving the same part of your journey ... I did say on the other thread, that I wholly approved of your dropping the nonsequential journey to Meteora, and allowing more time for Nafplio and the Argolid area... by now you know that this area is THE most dense concentration of historic ancient sites (besides being lovely countryside, with vineyards, beaches villages etc).

You also have had reassurances that on a Sunday YES you can arrange reliable car rental at Pireaus, with drop-off at airport. The final remaining question was... if it's getting dark, do you forge ahead to Nafplio, or make an interim stop -- and you have 2 good choices (1) Any one of several small hotels right by the site of Ancient Corinth, which you can google, and (2) Hotel Cokkinis in Kineta, just off the big highway, recommended by Will. I've investigated that before & recommended it https://www.cokkinishotel.com The website even has precise directions https://www.cokkinishotel.com/en/πρόσβαση-τοποθεσία-hotel-cokkinis/#content on getting off the big highway to reach the hotel (located on the Old Highway, right ON The sea).

BTW, I see that perhaps u saw previous recommends about staying up in the Sifnos hills at Geronti, and please give my greetings to Nikoleta and tell her I wish I were there too! Do spend a few hours wandering Appollonia & Artemonas lanes ... the loveliest hill villages in all of Greece with possible exception of Chora in Folegandros. Your camera will whirr!

Posted by
24 posts

Will, thanks for the suggestion of Cokkinis Hotel. That looks like a great option....gets me out of Athens traffic for the Monday morning, and I can stop for the night before it gets dark. Very reasonable rate and what a beautiful view!! I'm on it.

Janet, I'll drop off the other thread and post here. Thanks so much for your fabulous descriptions...if only I had weeks and weeks to explore the Peloponnese! I'm happy to have my measly 6 days. Yes, I did see your recommendation of Geronti on Sifnos and it is just the sort of place that calls me. After 4 nights beaching and hiking solo on Serifos, I want to be IN a town where I can hopefully socialize and meet locals who will remember me from day to day. I'll have 5 nights there and will be sure to tell Nikoleta you sent me. (I'd love any and all recommendations for Sifnos, e.g., did you rent a car there or were the buses adequate?)

I was able to get a decent-enough rate with ACR Athens Car Rental. They confirmed they will meet me at the port with my car even on a Sunday. I'll drop off at the airport before my onward flight to Amman for a tour of Jordan. (I'm taking full advantage of retirement!)

It's all coming together, thanks to all of you who are so generous with your time and willing to share the joy of discovery!

Posted by
2864 posts

I did fine with busses in Sifnos. ONly taxi was when I went down to Kamares one night for dinner with friends and we were quite late so took a taxi up the hill.

Posted by
2864 posts

YOPhilly -- More about Sifnos.... I DO Hope you've done some homework, totally worth it! Here are some worthwhile links:
• BEST Map - http://www.insifnos.gr/images/sifnos_map_bg.jpg
• ISLAND GUIDE - http://sifnos.e-sifnos.com/index.htm -- Very good section on beaches
• TRAILS GUIDES - https://sifnos.e-sifnos.com/what-to-do-in-sifnos/sifnos-trails.php - https://sifnostrails.com
• PHOTO BLOG on TRAILS - http://ptavocados.com/walking-sifnos/

Everyone has their favorite beaches & there are many fans of Kamares... I feel it's too surrounded by the port town & too close to the marina & pier, but that's just me. I do like Platy Gialos, at the far end ... (there are 3 stops of the bus along this long each)...and also Vathy Beach. There is a large "luxe" resort plunked in the center of the beach, but plenty of space on either side... one attraction of Vathy is that there are several nice tavernas, shaded by trees, that are directly on the sand... and when you're relaxing at lunch, your chairlegs will sink into the sand.. truly a barefoot place.

Up at Ano Petali /Appollonia (they are really just one village), Pension Geronti looks out over the valley on a bluff, just below the edge are gardens, people water their tomatoes & peppers before heading off to work... If you ask Nikoleta & you are lucky, you may get Janet's favorite unit, with the vine-covered patio -- the other units, with a looong balcony, have the same fine view. You all will hear roosters crow at dawn... what a lovely wake-up call!

For dinner 1 night, I do recommend walking the trail to the Square at Artemonas... for the mezedes at Margarita's. She does things with eggplant that deserve trophies. The flagstoned path has many steps, down into a valley and back up, but it helps to work off the calories!

Posted by
24 posts

Janet, thanks for the Sifnos info. I'm really looking forward to it and will report back after my trip.

Thanks to all for your responses. I've got my plan - and it's a good one!