It’s that time of year when winter slowly begins to descend across Europe like a damp. clammy shroud, and many of us just mentally curl up and hibernate. We go out when we need to but, in general, we just stock up on the wine, batten down the hatches, and pray for an early arrival of spring.
But nothing sharpens the appetite for travel like anticipation of trips to come. And knowing some of the options ahead might just add a little warmth and brightness to those long, leaden winter nights. So, with time and money also being key considerations in these straitened times, why not consider a short, exhilarating three or four night cruise to the Greek Islands and Turkey out of Athens on Louis Cruises in the spring?
There are quite a few advantages here. Firstly, the cost is very reasonable- around £200 per person, based on two sharing an inside cabin. Then there’s the time scale. For the three night cruise, you’ll need to fly to Athens on the Thursday night and stay overnight. You’ll be home by late Monday. For the four nighter, flying on the Sunday prior to a Monday sailing will have you back at home late Friday. So it’s not a huge drain on your time.
The ships themselves are relatively small; comfortable rather than luxurious, with a smart casual dress code. The welcome is very warm and the ships are perfectly attuned for cruising these waters- vital on such a short, high density trip as this.
So you’re probably wondering ‘how soon can I get out there?’
The first three night cruise begins on the 38,000 ton Louis Olympia on March 14th, 2014. The weather by then should be more than agreeable enough to enjoy the best hospitality that the islands have to offer. This three day cruise leaves Piraeus- the port for Athens- at 11 in the morning. Here’s the full skinny for the itinerary:
Day One: (Friday)
Depart Piraeus 11.00
Arrive Mykonos 18.00
Day Two: (Saturday)
Arrive Kusadasi, Turkey 07.00
Arrive Patmos 16.00
Day Three: (Sunday)
Arrive Heraklion, Crete 07.00
Arrive Santorini 16.30
Day Four: (Monday)
Arrive Piraeus 06.00
Yes, it’s a busy few days, and it will pass at one hell of a rate of knots. But in that short space of time, you’ll see and experience more than many people do in an entire lifetime. From people watching in Mykonos, to strolling the stunning ancient ruins of Ephesus (see previous blogs), a late dinner ashore in Patmos, strolling the quayside in Heraklion and, as a finale, the stunning sunset from the Olympian heights of Santorini, it’s a fabulous feast of options.
The four day cruise (Monday departures) follows a similar route, but also allows for a full day in historic Rhodes, usually on the Wednesday. Whichever option you decide to choose, it’s a wonderful, whirlwind tour through some of the most amazing waters anywhere in the world.
And, hopefully, you’ll even come back with a sun tan. See you out there in March, maybe.