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Meteora advice ... thoughts about where to stay and/or to go for package deal from visitmeteora?

Hi all,
Thanks to those that have already provided some advice on our routing - the itinerary is starting to come together -
2 nights Santorini; 4 nts Naxos; 3 nts Nafplio; 3 nts ATH...

we have two extra days (three nts) and would like to take the train up to Meteora and spend a night there and tour around -
Any opinions on whether its worth it to pay for the full package tour from visitmeteora to get the train/tours/lodging ; or if its easy to put together the train; lodging and just sign up for the tours?

we also talked about keeping the car after Nafplio and then driving the other direction up to M and then back down into ATH but not sure we have enough time and also dont really want to drive in ATH city center either so thought it would be easier to drop the car back in ATH airport ,stay near train station and depart on the early AM train ??

(three of our party are BIG hikers, we all saw Gordon Ramsays Greek Vacation special and thought the scenery was so spectacular .. so now its become a must -do!! )

What say you ??? Thanks!!

Posted by
1688 posts

Why not keep the car and drive from Nafplio to Delphi for one of the three nights? Then drive on to Meteora for the remaining 2 nights, then back to the Athens airport to return the car. It won’t require city center driving. It WILL require some mountain road driving for the Delphi portion.

Posted by
14 posts

thank you - in meteora - did you sign up for any of the meteora tours through visit meteora? wondering how challenging the hiking tour is... we have one traveler with a knee replacement (not recently, but just want to see how doable it is )

any advice appreciated. tx

Posted by
1688 posts

I am not a hiker, just a walker, so can’t help you with that. I know someone the last part of last year posted about hiking there, so you might track that down in older threads. I drove to the monastery parking areas and walked the stairs required from there. It took almost a full day (was there on a day when most were open). But it is true, the scenery is amazing. I absolutely loved it.

Posted by
1504 posts

We rented a car near the train station in Meteora and drove to several monasteries. We stayed in a B&B but I don’t recall the name. It’s easy to do on your own.

Posted by
740 posts

Train to Meteora is just once a day. If it works for you great. We rented a car and are glad we did. Much more liberating way to see the monasteries and the villages around Meteora, and an easy highway drive from Athens.

Visit Meteora has great tours, hiking or by bus. Highly recommended.

For hotel, recommend Doupiani House in Kastraki (https://www.doupianihouse.gr/), right underneat the towers of Meteora.

Posted by
21 posts

We had similar itinerary - You will enjoy your time on the mainland. We stayed in Nafplio then drove to Delphi and Meteora (Kalambaka). It was easier having a car while in Meteora because we could stop at so many look out points at our leisure - vs going on a limited site tour. We were able to grab an awesome spot for the sunset. We could plug the lookout spots in our gps to easily get around. We stayed Doupiani House where the hospitality was amazing and omg the breakfast yum ( https://www.doupianihouse.gr/ )l
They also gave us a great guide to get around on our own. For those hikers in your group they can go on the hiking trail right outside the hotel vs those that may not want to do so can meet them up at the top! Enjoy!

Posted by
14 posts

thank you - good advice... any thoughts on priority of the monasteries or is it reasonable to expect we can see them all if we are there for a full afternoon and most of the next day?

Posted by
2119 posts

Meteora was a highlight on our trip to Greece. I’m crazy for unusual architecture and so I was determined to see all the monasteries. This required that we spend two nights in the area as they all have different open and closed dates. Here’s the 2022 schedule: https://meteora.com/meteora-monasteries-opening-hours/

We used a driving service - we were on a 5 day tour with Private Greece Tours and so we had someone drive us up near each monastery and wait while we toured it. We didn’t hike between them but - at least for some of the monasteries - the approach was an entertaining mix of trail, stairs, switchbacks and more.

The area is totally worth the trek! I loved it.

Posted by
21 posts

If you are driving / have car - you can check out the monasteries at your leisure- in 1.5 days easily and catch a sunset. Just note that not all are actually open to the public. You can definitely make it to the ones that are open and avoid when the tours are there. There are tons of look out points you can park at and take pictures and see the view of the monasteries you can’t visit. If you look at the monasteries on Google maps you can zoom in on the roads and see where the look out points are at and where to park. Once you get to town most hotels have maps with little icons where good spots are too as well. Enjoy! So beautiful.

Posted by
274 posts

We went to Meteora this summer and LOVED it!! We booked our own train tickets to Kalambaka and stayed at Hotel Kastraki, which we would highly recommend. We booked two tours with Visit Meteora: the half-day and the sunset. They picked us up at our hotel in the morning and knew all the best viewing spots. They do not overlap monasteries, which makes both tours worth while.

You could drive yourself from Athens and do your own tours when you get there. The roads to Kalambaka are easy to follow and the roads up around the monasteries are pretty nice, too! But, the best thing about the tour bus, is that you can LOOK at the vistas instead of worrying about driving, AND they drop you off to tour the monasteries without you worrying about parking.

This part of Greece has truly been a highlight of my travels in Europe. Most people I know do not take the time to wander into this corner of the world. You will not be sorry if you go!!