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Cyclades choices

We're a family of 3 with a teenager and we're planning for a trip to Greece for three weeks starting mid-June. The last time I was in Greece was September 1985, so I suspect that my experience in Santorini back then will be very different from what we will experience next June. Originally, I saw us in a cave house (which were just being carved out back then) in Oia for about a week. In my recent research I have seen pictures of what looked like hundreds of souls crowding the streets of Oia to see the sunset. I have also read posts describing gigantic cruise ships unloading thousands to crowd the streets of Fira. Therefore I am reconsidering my original plans. I like the idea of landing in Athens (from Eastern US) and connecting the same day to a flight to Santorini (or another island). We like the idea of "settling" in on an island for a while, yet seeing more than one island is also appealing. We have enjoyed renting studios and apartment for 7 to 10 days elsewhere in Europe. I like to cook (so we would need a kitchen), browse food markets, walking, cycling, beach (swimming, reading, writing), some taverna evenings, wandering through the old towns. My wife and daughter will enjoy some shopping. We plan to spend our last 3 nights in Athens. Below is our current plan about which we would love suggestions that would help us avoid a crush of tourists. Also the accommodations that we have found have been outside of the Chora, plaka, etc. is that recommended? 1. Fly directly to Santorini, stay 4 nights 2. Milos for 8 nights 3. Serifos for 4 nights 4. Athens for 3 nights Not sure if Sifnos or Naxos would be better than Serifos.
Thank you.

Posted by
2794 posts

Like you, my first trip to Santorini was in 1985. Be prepared for a shock! I stayed in Oia for 6 months. I wonder if our paths crossed. Your proposed itinerary looks fine as long as you can make the necessary ferry connections on the days needed. It might be easier to accomplish this from Naxos (after Santorini) because from there you'd have more ferry choices. When you get closer to your travel dates THIS ferry schedule website will show you what's available.

Posted by
2418 posts

Charles, I think your schedule will work well ... because Milos in June has almost daily fast-ferry connections with Santorini. Won't be the cheapest, but convenient! And Serifos will be something more like the laid-back ambience you remember from the old days! Sifnos also quite quiet in June, good bus system. Here are my recommendations for staying at convenient places that avoid "tourist crush" (which in june really only is in Santorini) SANTORINI Villa Fotini, amazing budget gem in FIrostephani, away from crowds but easy 10-15 minute walk to heart. It's just 20 yards from rim-path view, next to best Old-Time Taverna in the iso, use of nearby pool, breakfast & port transfer included, 15 rooms, family run, unbelievable bargain prices. I love it! MILOS Suggest u stay in Pollonia MANY pensions w. family units w. kitchenettes http://www.milos-island.gr/rooms-apartments/pollonia.html we loved Capt. Stavros, Niki-Savvas or Villa Sosanna also praised. SIFNOS I also love here; in Appollonia look at Pension Geronti, on Platy Gialos Beach, Lodge Narlis, Akrogialia Pension. SERIFOS No questions, Livadakia Beach only 2 places on entire beeach: Coralli Bungalows or http://www.vacation-greece.com/hotels/cyclades/serifos/alexandros-vassiliki/ both wonderful!
ATHENS For ideal location budget hotel: Hotel Phaedra. Heart of Plaka, doubles for €70, balconies w. Acropolis view, rooftop terrace, 100 yards to Acropolis Museum hard to book (only 20 rooms) but give it a try.