Update: Greece Contains Fires

August 30, 2007

Fires Near Athens Impact Cruises

Update: Olympia tour availability is still unpredictable in light of Greece's fires. Joyce Gleeson-Adamidis, Cruise Critic's Athens-based contributor, writes in: "On the news today was a story of a large group of people that were booked to see Olympia and obviously had been canceled. A few people, on their own, decided to try their luck, which I think was mostly to see the fire damage .. they were able to only see part of the site itself, but not the museum."

(August 29) -- Most of the fires that have ravaged parts of Greece are now contained, according to media reports. And though grass and trees at the stadium that hosted the ancient Olympic Games were burned, the construction itself has been saved.

There are conflicting reports about whether Ancient Olympia's museum and archaeological complex have reopened. Some Web sites say "yes," though tour availability is still unpredictable. According to Joyce Gleeson-Adamidis, Cruise Critic's Athens-based contributor, it's closed and "there is a state warning for travel in Greece to be careful until September 10 for unexpected fires."

Costa changed two itineraries this week to avoid fire-plagued areas in Greece -- Costa Serena visited Mykonos instead of Katakolon, near Olympia, and Costa Mediterranea subbed in Corfu. Carnival Freedom is not slated to call at the port until its next cruise.

Gleeson-Adamidis tells us that the Greek community is currently focusing on relief efforts: "Banks have wiped out the debt of those who lost everything including wiping clean credit card balances and loans. Construction and steel companies are rebuilding homes and communities burned for free. Cyprus is rebuilding a complete community that was wiped out. And more [help] is coming in...."

Stay tuned to Cruise Critic for any additional information and itinerary changes.

--by Melissa Baldwin, Senior Editor