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Winter Holiday in Greece

My wife and I are in the early stages of planning a two month vacation in Greece next February and March and would welcome advice on how to divide our time. Initially we were looking at about four weeks in Athens, but many guide books suggest that may be too long. We are senior citizens and would prefer to use public transportation where feasible. We also tend to favourite self serviced apartments rather than hotels.

We would very much appreciate your advice and suggestions.

Many Thanks

The Gannons

Posted by
20866 posts

I wouldn't choose to spend four weeks in Athens. Four weeks in other capitals (perhaps not Brussels...), yes. But Athens is noisy, crowded and--except for a rather limited area around the Acropolis--Not Old. I'd do research on the various museums and historic sights, estimate (generously) how much time it would take to see them, add time for day-trips, then add a day or two for extra wandering around, and spend the rest of my time elsewhere. Because of its geography and limited rail network, Greece probably doesn't work as well as some other destinations when you prefer the base-city approach (which I also like).

Nafplion sounds lovely (on my list for next time), and western Crete is worth a good bit of time. Others here can tell you whether Chania is the best base there.

Posted by
16883 posts

KTEL buses serve lots of town-to-town connections, if you're flexible and willing to confirm schedules as you go. But for some touristy destinations, bus service can be quite limited in winter. I would not hesitate to rent a car any time that it adds convenience or makes a certain destination possible.

Posted by
1299 posts

We always spend a couple of weeks in Greece in December, often in Athens, and often a week or ten days there in March as well. It’s a nice time of year to be in Greece - everywhere is quieter and it has a different feel - although the weather can be bad, especially in February.

Whether four weeks is too long in Athens is a matter of taste. We enjoy getting a nice apartment in an interesting neighbourhood, pottering about, going to local markets, getting to know local restaurants and bars, and generally not doing a lot. If that’s for you then four weeks is fine. If you want to be doing something different every day then it’s too long.

If you do opt to spend a longish time there you can easily spice it up with some day trips: Delphi is lovely and Aegina worth a visit.

I second the suggestion of Nafplio. A beautiful town and easy to reach on public transport. We’ve written on our blog in (perhaps boring!) detail about how to do this

http://www.greekramblings.org.uk/Nafplio_getting_there.html

There are lots of good Airbnb places in Athens and a handful in Nafplio.

Thessaloniki is interesting but is further north and will be cold and likely wet in February and March.

A lot of the islands are very quiet at that time of year but Crete is lively and you could easily spend a couple of weeks there.

Alan

Posted by
106 posts

Hello,

The best places to be during winter time in Greece are mostly located South. Such destinations are warmer as well during this season.

Thessaloniki is a bit cold those months since it is set at the North of Greece. I think it would be better to visit Thessaloniki and Halkidiki during summer time.

As for the winter... a 2-week stay in Athens would be ok. It is surely enough for your sightseeing. If you stay longer, you might like to organise day trips to Nafplion, Meteora, Hydra or Spetses, Delphi, Corinth and Mycenae. Crete, Rhodes and Corfu make excellent choices as well is you are into the island lifestyle :)