Jump to content
Flora marg

Cruising around the Greek Islands

Recommended Posts

 

As I understand it P & O are taking cruises around the Greek Islands off of their cruising destinations is this true

my husband and I are now thinking seriously of cruising with Princess cruises as Grand Princess are sailing our favourite route

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Im not sure Sammy Sun. I only realised once i was pricing up the Oceana and comparing the old brochure to the current itinerary. I also noticed they've taken Kusadasi out too (presumably because of the troubles out there). Maybe it was down to the geography of the area.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It really is a shame to see Santorini removed. I wonder if it has something to do with the tendering services there. Perhaps P&O could not come to an agreement as I know most cruise lines use the local service there rather than their own ships tenders, at least they did when I last visited on a cruise. 

I love Santorini. It's one of my favourite places in the world so it's sad to see P&O take it off altogether. I actually really enjoyed Kusadasi too so again, it's a shame to see that port removed as well, albeit for more understandable reasons than Santorini.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
9 hours ago, sammy sun said:

It really is a shame to see Santorini removed. I wonder if it has something to do with the tendering services there. Perhaps P&O could not come to an agreement as I know most cruise lines use the local service there rather than their own ships tenders, at least they did when I last visited on a cruise. 

I love Santorini. It's one of my favourite places in the world so it's sad to see P&O take it off altogether. I actually really enjoyed Kusadasi too so again, it's a shame to see that port removed as well, albeit for more understandable reasons than Santorini.

I love Santorini too, but I think the delays for the cable car cause problems.  We have always found the tendering by the local seamen to be very efficient and much more pleasant than the lifeboats used in other ports.  Our visits have not been in the height of the season when there are many ships in port, but even in September and October we prefer to take the 'speed boat' direct to Oia and avoid the cablecar up to Fira.  The downward trip is not as  busy if you avoid returning to the ship at the last minute.

Sheila

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I do agree Sheila, the cable car issue can be frustrating there. I've been fortunate on the times I've visited there on a cruise as each time there has only been our ship in port so it hasn't been too bad. I can imagine it being much more hectic however if there were multiple ships in on the same day.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I was in Santorini last year with Cunard and we used the ships tenders. I first visited Santorini in about 1995 on an old Airtours ship, Seawing. Then the cable car was free and the town was still a quaint Greek village with tavernas, cafes etc. Somewhere I still have a picture of a local selling flowers from his donkey that was laden with them. Now the cable car costs 5 Euro return per person and must make a fortune for the local municipality. The little shops and the towns quaintness have gone, replaced by tacky souvenir shops. When will tourist areas learn it is their originality people come to see not buy a souvenir made in China or similar.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The first time I went there was on a cruise with my school in 1970. I don't think there was a cable car then & we all had to queue up near a wall & get on the next donkey to come along.  Having bashed our legs against the walls on the way up we all walked back down trying to avoid the donkeys coming up. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We have just booked a Greek island cruise on the Ventura next year, going to Santorini, Mykonos,Zakinthos, Katakalon, Athens, plus Palma and Gib, so Greek islands can't be off the itinerary this cruise in September 2018.

we only booked two weeks ago, nothing said about any problems.

y booked 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A couple of months ago the Santorini hoteliers complained about cruise ships dominating the sound and the quantity of passengers were ruining the stay of their guests. With regards the town, it stated the cruise passengers spent very little whilst the hotel guests added to the economy.

They asked for a considerable reduction in visiting ships and/or allowing only small and mid size ships/yachts.

The change,that appears unsubstantiated, could be their response!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 4/21/2017 at 7:49 PM, Oldworldtraveller said:

I was in Santorini last year with Cunard and we used the ships tenders. I first visited Santorini in about 1995 on an old Airtours ship, Seawing. Then the cable car was free and the town was still a quaint Greek village with tavernas, cafes etc. Somewhere I still have a picture of a local selling flowers from his donkey that was laden with them. Now the cable car costs 5 Euro return per person and must make a fortune for the local municipality. The little shops and the towns quaintness have gone, replaced by tacky souvenir shops. When will tourist areas learn it is their originality people come to see not buy a souvenir made in China or similar.

I do wholeheartedly agree with you on this OWT but I still feel Santorini, as a cruise port is more than just tacky souvenir shops. They're undoubtedly there, it's evident for all to see but if you're willing to explore, the originality still remains there. My advice for anyone visiting is to avoid such shops and head further afield or if you want to stay close by to the ship then focus on the amazing views and and try some of the restaurants there, ideally one on the cliff edge. Great food and superb photo opportunities.

Re the cable car, yes it is a pain that it's no longer free of charge but given the world we live in and the areas vast tourist attraction, I can't blame them one bit for making some money from it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 4/17/2017 at 11:30 AM, Flora marg said:

 

As I understand it P & O are taking cruises around the Greek Islands off of their cruising destinations is this true

my husband and I are now thinking seriously of cruising with Princess cruises as Grand Princess are sailing our favourite route

i rang bolsover to ask about taking greek islands off itinerys and they not heard anything .just a rumour some one started i think .we booked for next year on oceana and include santorni and rhodes  

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We stayed on Santorini for a week way back in 1988 and there were complaints then from locals/hoteliers about the cruise ship passengers.  The island has changed beyond all recognition since then, but I would imagine many cruise passengers have stayed much the same - as many of them do on any cruise to any destination - they take over a small town, drift about and spend nothing - 'why have a meal ashore when you've paid for it on the ship' - is a sentence I have heard so often it runs around in my brain.  

The locals in many areas can start to be less welcoming to cruise ships when they have little to gain and their comfort to lose, and Santorini is no different to anywhere else.  The island is now beginning to have a reputation as a more upmarket 'honeymoon and high class resort' it doesn't need hordes of people coming ashore to upset that and spend little.  I wouldn't be at all surprised if they reduced the number of ships drastically.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I went last May on the Ventura a wonderful cruise, the local boatmen tendered us back and It was chaos, one PO officer on the quay at Santorini  with queues  of passengers waiting under the hot sun while all the PO boats returned  empty   to  the ship  [something to do with the local boatmen's union we were told.]

I did'nt enjoy Santorini  it was    far to  commercialised from the early days and very  very crowded with queues , the other Greek islands were much better.

I see they are still doing the Greek islands next year,  Ibiza   has taken the place of Palma and Heraklion and Rhodes have also  substituted some of the ports on this years Greek islands cruise. CG

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I read that the number of cruise ships, allowed to anchor, was to be reduced due to pressures on the villages and lift to get passengers up the cliff. If this is right it will obviously lead to fewer cruises to the island.

i must say that with the new ships getting larger every time one is launched there will continue to be increased crowding of World Heritage sites and small villages which will ultimately lead to these lovely places becoming "off limits" to cruise ships. Make the most of travelling now as in he not too distant future a cruise may become a none stop experience.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I believe the intention was to 'unblock' villages and Heritage sites and this was to be achieved by limiting the size of visiting ships, and hence quantity of tourists. An earlier example being the attempts by Venice to claw back it's heritage and dispose of the cheap and tacky image generated.

Of particular note is that smaller ships tend to be in the premium end of the market. As mentioned in my original response on this topic, Santorini saw its primary income from hotel revenue. Perhaps they believe the premium cruise visitor whilst fewer in number will more likely stay for lunch and purchase quality souvenir and excursions.

As you correctly indicate this could reduce the number of ports available to the mass market, although I suspect this will be well received by those whose only wish is to ride the dodgems and water flumes on board rather than investigate the local culture and history.

Every cloud has a silver lining!!!!

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Having been to Santorini on previous land-based holidays, I can understand why they would want to limit the number/size of ships at anchor.  The town of Fira is very small and comprised mainly of very narrow lanes and alleys.  As has also been mentioned, if most pax want to land at Fira (rather than the small port area of Athinios, the strain on the cable car and mules is enormous!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×