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Ferry travel

New York City, New...
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Ferry travel

Hello,

I need to book ferry travel for myself, my husband and daughter June 27 from Crete to Santorini and then form Santorini to Athens on July 2.

How do I book ferry travel? Are there any specific recommendations to keep in my mind while I travel? Is it better to book tickets before hand from here in NYC or wait until I get there?

Devizes, United...
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1. Re: Ferry travel

Hi there

Ferry schedules here

www.gtp.gr

Booking site here

www.danae.gr

July will see things starting to get busy, I would book the tickets now.

Birmingham, United...
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2. Re: Ferry travel

Book direct with the ferry companies concerned then you collect paper tickets from their central agencies which are listed on their websites or in the respective ports.

http://www.hellenicseaways.gr/

http://www.seajets.gr/

http://www.bluestarferries.com/

New York City, New...
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3. Re: Ferry travel

Thanks for these links... It was really helpful to research options... I understand the benefit of high speed travel.. but do any of the vessels have outdoor seating and space to enjoy the beauty along the way? It appears that seating is limited to indoor space... which seems so unfortunate...

Kamala, Thailand
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4. Re: Ferry travel

No - highspeed is indoors. The slower Blue Star ferries have open decks and are always my preference, unless time is of the essence.

North Yorkshire...
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5. Re: Ferry travel

In recent years there has been a sea change (pun intended) in the quality of ferries plying the Aegean Sea. The old ferries (30+ years old) had loads of deck space and traveling between the islands on these old boats was an experience which nurtured many a travelers love of the Greek islands. I know this as I fell in love with the Islands by using these old tubs which usually arrived late (sometimes very late indeed) and you stayed on deck mainly because the facilities inside left quite a lot to be desired.

Since around the year 2000 newer ferries started appearing. They were faster (hence the name Express this and Express that) and more reliable. They also cost more to use. Then the Highspeeds started showing their face and the romance of ferry travel diminished because at the speed they traveled at having people out on deck was no longer a viable option. Plus they cost twice as much as the old boats but they got you there in no time in comparison with the regular ferries.

Then Blue Star (who had previously only run Italy/Greece services bought a couple of new (almost unheard of then) Korean boats to run domestic services. They proved very popular with tourists and locals alike as, in addition to being new, they did have deck space and were considerably quicker than the old boats. The only drawback is that the deck space is somewhat limited making securing a decent spot on deck a little difficult on a full boat particularly if you are joining it somewhere down the line.

The old boats have more or less disappeared now on the busy main lines - the one you will be taking nancybarton is one of those busy lines - so you are left with making a choice between Blue Star, one of the Highspeed Cats or one of the smaller Sea Jets. Other boats are available but if you have a look at Greek Travel Pages (GTP) as GB has suggested compare the departure/arrival times before deciding. For example I believe there is one boat the Prevelis which does the route but it is an old boat and the timings are very poor and it has started its journey in Rhodes so it could well be very late by the time it gets to Santorini. Be warned.

Were I to be raveling the route it would be a choice between the Highspeed and Blue Star and I would end up choosing based on what time of the day or night I would be on it and what my needs were in terms of speed versus cost. Both craft are about the best you will get on the line you are traveling. Hope this helps a little but certainly do book ahead particularly if there is an aircraft waiting for you in Athens.

Warsaw, Poland
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6. Re: Ferry travel

The Prevelis only sails from Crete to Santorini on Sundays so it would have to be 4 days late which is not very likely. On 27th June the OP is stuck with the fast ones but I would suggest taking the Highspeed5 as it is big and has some floor to ceiling windows for the views (although this route is rather boring).

oxford
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7. Re: Ferry travel

I loved the old ferries overnight crossings getting the sleeping bag out and sleeping on deck.

I sailed on the Samina overnight two weeks before it sank off of Paros

North Yorkshire...
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8. Re: Ferry travel

Now the Samina was an old tub.

We left Paros the day before it ran aground but I wouldn't have even considered it as it had been receiving bad reports for quite a while before the ill-fated voyage that saw it and so many poor people perish.

oxford
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9. Re: Ferry travel

One that had me worried the most was the appropriately named Poseidon, which we took from Brindisi to Corfu, it was listing from side to side like a rowing boat, but in a flat calm sea. I bedded down close to the lifeboats that night, but have since learnt that that wasn't always necessarily any better as more often than not they failed to launch.

North Yorkshire...
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10. Re: Ferry travel

Chappers

It sounds as though we have both had some 'experiences' on Greek ferries over the years. Did you ever have the misfortune to travel on the Ios Express (later renamed the Mykonos Express). It used to wander around the Kyklades and provided a useful inter island link when there wasn't anything else around although once between Naxos and Mykonos I thought it was my last as we were hit by a big swell, from the west I think, for most the journey. I thought it was going to sink. The bridge was almost in the sea each time a swell hit us. I stayed outside and got absolutely soaked but that was better than being in the saloon with all the sickies. Never been more glad to get off a boat than that one.

Just by way of an aside I think she was used during the filming of Shirley Valentine. Must have a look on YouTube sometime.