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Possible pitfalls when planning an island itinerary

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Devizes, United...
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Possible pitfalls when planning an island itinerary

Following many requests for help with impossible or ill-thought out itineraries, several DEs for Greece have asked if we can put this information at the head of the forum as a "sticky".

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A visitor from a large country such as Canada, the US or Australia could be forgiven for looking at a map of Greece and assuming that they can choose any 3 or 4 islands for a two week trip and that travelling between those islands will be easy, given that distances in Greece would seem small to what they are used to. Over the past couple of months there have been dozens of new posts on the Greek forums from visitors who want to see islands, "W", "X", "Y" and "Z" but appear to have little or no idea where these islands may be in relation to each other, and most importantly, how to get from one to the next, if indeed you can.

Travelling within island groups is usually not too difficult, as there are regular inter-island ferry routes and even some flights available. It's when you want to travel between different island groups that problems can arise due to distance, time of the year, ferries that only run on certain days, or lack of routes at all. That's when peoples' plans come to a grinding halt.

So, please, before you start a new thread on the forums to ask for assistance on what may be a totally impossible to achieve itinerary, spend a little time to familiarise yourself with a map of Greece. Take a look to see the various island groups, where they are located, and more importantly, where they sit in relation to the other groups. They might only be a hundred miles apart but in many incidences, the only way from A to B is via Athens, which means additional expense and valuable holiday/vacation time spent in transit.

Remember too please, that any domestic journey in Greece will use up the better part of a full day so please consider this aspect when contemplating an itinerary of Athens plus three or four islands in a 10-day visit, it's simply not a practical use of your valuable holiday time.

Oslo, Norway
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1. Re: Possible pitfalls when planning an island itinerary

Very well written Graham. You don't say whether you have posted this for the TA. I have sent a request with a link to this post to the DE Experts for support to achieve this (a copy is sent for you).

Yorkshire Dales
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2. Re: Possible pitfalls when planning an island itinerary

Spot on Graham............Let us hope it will help the multi destination posters plan more realistically.

It saves a lot of time and avoids a lot of disappointment. :O) :O)

Harbin, China
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3. Re: Possible pitfalls when planning an island itinerary

I couldn't agree with you more GB.

Liverpool, United...
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4. Re: Possible pitfalls when planning an island itinerary

Great post GB.

Bath, United Kingdom
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5. Re: Possible pitfalls when planning an island itinerary

A terrific post. But bear in mind that it's not only visitors from Canada, the US or Australia that make these fundamental error. Over the years, many conversations I've had with Brits about hopping from island X to Y then Z would make you wonder if the UK has compulsory state education.

Bath, United Kingdom
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6. Re: Possible pitfalls when planning an island itinerary

...should be errors, not 'error' in that last post. My educational standards certainly slipped.

Newmarket, United...
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7. Re: Possible pitfalls when planning an island itinerary

Well written, Graham!

This year, with Orthodox Easter so late, I have seen many posts from people travelling in April, hoping to get from Crete to Santorini or Santorini to Mykonos, only to find there are no direct ferries. They are then faced with the prospect of going back through Athens or spending a night or two on an intermediate island en route.

The catamarans serving Crete and the Cyclades normally start their season a week before Easter. This year Easter is on 5th May, in 2014 it will be 20th April, and in 2015 on 12th April.

East Anglia
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8. Re: Possible pitfalls when planning an island itinerary

Good one Graham! Hope it becomes a sticky!

Bob

Holstebro, Denmark
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9. Re: Possible pitfalls when planning an island itinerary

Very clear advice, hopefully it will be taken onboard:-)

Devizes, United...
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10. Re: Possible pitfalls when planning an island itinerary

I have forwarded it to TA mods and am awaiting a response. I'm not singling out visitors from the US, Canada and Australia by any means, but they are three enormous countries and I merely wanted to use them as examples of "large countries" within the post.

The first paragraph, above the dotted line, is not meant to be a part of the sticky, but was posted here to explain what the thread was about, as many Greek DEs have been tearing their hair out these past few months with a huge rise in these "impossible itinerary" threads