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Home > Member Reviews > dmbten's Port Reviews of Corfu, Katakolon (Olympia), Crete (Heraklion), Rhodes, Santorini

dmbten's Port Reviews of Corfu, Katakolon (Olympia), Crete (Heraklion), Rhodes, Santorini
Nautica cruise in September 2011
Member Name: dmbten
Cruise Date: September 2011
Embarkation: other
Destination: Eastern Mediterranean
Member Review: dmbten's Nautica Review
Port Rating: 5.0 out of 5+
Two couples rented a car and drove to Paleokastritsa. Maps were relatively easy to follow. Scenery around Paleokastritsa was spectacular. We also visited the Achillion Palace. After returning the car, we walked around Corfu city. This is an easy port to do on your own.

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Katakolon (Olympia)
Port Rating: 5.0 out of 5+
Two couples rented a car and drove to Olympia - very easy drive. I prearranged an Avis car rental before leaving home. Avis office is only a five minute walk from the location where the ship docks. There are several other local car rental agencies right in the same area. In retrospect, I would have rented from one of the smaller agencies and saved some money.

The Olympia Archaeological site is very large and a private guide is highly recommended. Prior to leaving home, we had contacted Niki Vlachou ( who was recommended in Rick Steves' guidebook. Niki was already booked the day we were visiting and arranged for one of her fellow guides, Ionna, to be our guide. Ionna was superb. It is recommended that you also use the guide to give you a tour of the museum. It is worth the extra cost.

Olympia is a great site to visit and should not be missed.

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Crete (Heraklion)
Port Rating: 5.0 out of 5+
Note that ship docks in Aghios Nikolaos.

Lefteris Nikiforakis ( had been recommended to us. Lefteris was already booked and arranged for one of his associates to be our driver/guide. We were disappointed in that our guide's English was not as good as we were led to believe it would be. We recommend that everyone agree on what sites to visit in advance. There was also some confusion here.

Our recommendation is to consider renting a car and driving yourself for a tour on Crete. Roads are quite good and easy to negotiate.

The Palace of Knossos is the main site to visit on Crete. Knossos is an absolute "must see". Two couples traveled together and chose to hire a private guide at the entrance to Knossos. Strongly consider doing this. It is worth the money.

Also allow time for the Archaeological Museum in Irkalion. It is under renovation and only one floor is open but some of the best items in the museum are on display.

Palace of Malia is closer to Aghios Nikolaos. However, the ruins are not in good shape and save time by skipping this site.

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Port Rating: 5.0 out of 5+
Two couples prearranged for a tour through Michael was our driver and had a very nice Mercedes taxi. Michael was a great tour guide.

He first drove us through the Old City because driving is forbidden after a certain time each day. Then we visited where the Colossus of Rhodes once stood and a few other sites in Rhodes City. Next came the Temple of Apollo with its theater and stadium. Then we toured the Acropolis at Lindos. The latter is great to visit if you have the time. It is a good hike to the top or you can ride donkeys. We tried the latter and it was a "hoot".

We finished by walking through the Old City on our own.

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Port Rating: 4.0 out of 5+
Pretty place but very touristy. Ship anchors off Fira. Take vernicular up to the city. Find a map and walk to the bus station and take a bus to Oia. The latter is the place where all of the "photos of Santorini" are taken. If you go to Santorini, you are kind of obligated to go to Oia.

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