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Greece Cruise

I am thinking about doing a cruise for a week. It is $750 US and I think it is a good deal. I am currently living in France for the semester so the flights are not expensive to get there. The cruise starts and ends in Venice. The ship stops at the following destinations for the amount of time I indicated below. Do you think that is enough time to see these places or do you think it is unreasonable? Does the price seem right if compared to plane or train?

Day 2 Bari (Italy) (12:00 PM to 6:00 PM)
Day 3 Olympia (12:00 PM - 6: 00 PM)
Day 4 Santorini (7:00 AM to 1:00 PM)
Day 5 Mykonos (6:00 PM - 11:00 PM)
Day 6 Rhodes (8:00 AM - 6: 00 PM)
Day 7 Dubrovnik (Croatia) (8:00 AM - 1:00 PM)

Posted by
4555 posts

I think if you want to see anything properly (with the possible exception of the Rhodes stop), you're going to be at the mercy of the tours sold aboard ship. Have you considered easycruise? Pretty basic accommodation, but lots of time in port throughout the Greek and Mediterranean islands....and cheap! We used them the one year they tried the Caribbean, and we wish they were still there! Your cruise will be wasting two days coming down the Aegean....and while Bari's not a bad place to visit, I wouldn't put it on a cruise itinerary.

Posted by
18 posts

I forgot to mention that I was going in Mid April. Do you think that would be a good time? maybe there would not be as many tourists? I am also hoping it will be warm enough.

Posted by
87 posts

My experience is that there is never "enough" time to see the places that you are visiting :). It looks like a nice "sampler" cruise. It's hard to compare this to a plane or train trip because many of these places are actually or practically unreachable by train. Ferries are available but you would probably cover less ground than with this route and this is probably cheaper by the time you pay for hotels, etc....the trade off is that it's a cruise and you will have more limited time and flexibility (plus be surrounded by other tourists--April should help with this (as opposed to June or July) but I would go expecting crowds and be pleasantly surprised if there aren't any!). I think it's really a matter of your priorities. The price seems good--check easycruise if you haven't yet just to compare.

Posted by
4555 posts

By mid-April you should be fine, although the upper half of the Aegean may still be a little cool. Again, I'm not sure it's good value to only have port stops that are 4 or 5 hours. Between the time you get off, and the time you have to be back on, you'll be lucky to get 3 and 4 hours respectively at those stops. You might want to check to see which port they take you to for "Olympia," since I don't think there's one close by large enough to take a cruise ship. I think easycruise would easily beat your quoted price, stage you out of southern Greece, and give you more time in port.

Posted by
2 posts

Have you considered the small charter yachts? They are slightly more expensive at $1100+ 7-days, but can get directly into port and are more personable. Also, a small village isn't suddenly swamped with passengers from a mega-ship. I am also on the budget route, but still want a great experience - I'll probably only go once!
http://www.charterayachtingreece.com/
http://www.greektravel.com/
I am planning a July vaca and haven't yet decided between a land based or cruise vacation. Any input would be appreciated. Both of the above sites are run by individual people, not a company that I've found in my research.

Posted by
2790 posts

I agree this is a good "sampler", a 'snapshot' of the most-promoted Greek destinations. Don't expect much anything beyond fleeting impressions of the port area at most stops. Some tips:

OLYMPIA -- Site not close to port so u may have to do ship-sponsored excursion. WONDERFUL Museum & site.

SANTORINI -- skip excursion or not? Ship stops at Old Port. Excursion folks get first-dibs on launch; big delay!! for others. Only ways to clifftop are (1) a cable car with looong line, thus MORE delay; (2)ride on poor whipped donkey up 400 steps or (3) climb up steps. You're young; just do it! Go to Bus Area (map)
http://hotels.santorini.net/fileadmin/hotels_santorini/single_hotels/Aigialos/aigialos_map.jpg
Take bus to OIA http://www.santorini-web.com/map.pdf -- and whip out camera for famous Caldera-view pix! Bus back to Fira Town. Now 10:30 or 11. U have two choices about archeology wonder of Santo, Akrotiri (buried town), alas closed presently. (1)Arch Museum, by Cathedral - Great 3D exhibits, (2) Nokimos Conf. Center http://www.therafoundation.org/ see map;just beyond cablecar. fab pix of dig & its famed murals, PLUS marvy hiiigh caldera view. Grab a gyro in town square, head for cable car! Zip-- visit over!!

MYKONOS-- only time to wander the town's mazey agora and look at jewelry stores, DKNY, Cartier, etc.

RHODES -- Ship right by Old Town.. u can do lightning swoop thru O.T, street of Knights, Grandmaster palace & if u want, Grab bus near Quay for Lindos.. Ruins atop a high cliff. Scenic! Neither is all that authentic; over-restored by Mussolini's Fascists -- but Old Town WALLS & major buildings are awesome!! U can't "restore" them; they are real, from days of the 15th C knights. On Tues & Sats they used to allow walking on top of wall . A line@2:45 pm at G'master Palace -- if still available, a don't-miss!!

PS:Ignore Easy-Cruise recommends. They are cancelling tours left & right, may be bankrupt by now.

Posted by
4555 posts

Janet,.....so far, not....at least, not any closer than any of the other cruise lines.