A week-long cruise of the Greek isles sounds romantic, and that’s exactly how I intend to keep it! My guy and I maintain our Boomer romance by driving two and half hours between our homes in different Florida cities. The opportunity to cruise together offers a quality time escape, not to mention sightseeing within a region known for its scenic beauty.
Beginning in April, 2018, Celestyal Cruises rolled out a new seven-day Aegean Island itinerary, the only cruise line spending an overnight in both Mykonos and Santorini. This schedule allows a slower paced journey around the islands as compared to other three and four-day cruises. Plus, passengers may choose to linger for dramatic sunset dining atop volcanic Santorini or indulge in the famous nightlife on Mykonos without worrying about missing the boat. I also plan to do a lot of non-rushed photography along the way.
I am especially excited that the itinerary offers an in-depth look at significant archaeological sites: the Palace of Knosos in Crete, mystical Delos, the catacombs on Milos and the Library of Celsius in Ephesus, Turkey. Passengers may choose the excursion in Ephesus or make a 12- hour stop on the island of Samos.
As we both scheduled work in the New Jersey/Philadelphia area before the trip, John and I will begin our adventure with a nonstop flight from Philadelphia to Athens. We will fly the day before the cruise embarks. This is always a good idea as to eliminate worries about missed connections or late flights.
After dropping luggage at our Athens hotel, we will use the time to tour the ancient Parthenon and other monuments on the iconic Acropolis. We optimistically plan to have enough energy to continue on to the highly acclaimed glass- sided Acropolis Museum, opened in 2009. Hopefully, we will stay awake long enough for dinner.
The next morning, the date of embarkation, we are granted the hours until 5 pm to discover the treasures within the National Archaeological Museum and continue exploring the city. We will then catch a shuttle to the port in Piraeus, six miles southwest of Athens.
The Celestyal Crystal will be waiting for all to board in Piraeus. The Crystal is a medium-sized cruise ship carrying 1,200 passengers. She has 10 passenger decks, a pool, spa, fitness center and a few restaurants and bars. I’ll be reporting on these and our stateroom after we arrive.
Celestyal encourages cultural immersion through Greek cuisine, cocktails, music and entertainment. I hope to learn a few Greek dances, John does not! But, whatever happens, we will have fun as we discover the Aegean Islands aboard the Celestyal Crystal.
The seven-day all inclusive cruise itinerary runs from Monday to Monday.
- M Athens (Piraeus) 21:00
- T Mykonos 7:00
- W Mykonos 7:00
- W Milos 13:00 23:59
- T Santorini 8:00
- F Santorini 23:00
- S Crete 7:00 20:30
- S Samos 8:00 20:30 Or S Kusadasi 11:30 17:00
- M Athens (Piraeus)