Just a 5 night stay here. First night in Athens, check out the Acropolis, etc. The morning on the 15th I take off on a 4 night cruise around the agean sea. Visiting Turkey, Mykanos, Crete, and some volcanic island. Return on the 19th and fly out.
Got in a day early so hooked up with an asian girl at the airport to get a bus into the city and find a hostel for the night. Went and did some sightseeing around the same places as the last time I visited. Nothing much has changed. Still scaffolding all over most of the monuments. I am signed up for a Contiki cruise through a bunch of the greek islands. This was my first cruise and I was interested to see what it was like. All in all, I won't repeat the experience. It gave a good overview of a bunch of the islands and a city in Turkey, but you never got enough time to do more than briefly see the city you stopped at or take the cruises packaged shore excursions (overpriced, I skipped them all). There are several islands I want to revisit for a longer stay. Mykanos and Santorini top the list. But like most things it is way cheaper to just fly into Athens and take a ferry out and find a youth hostel and go at your own schedule. Of course many of the luxories and food are wasted on me, but might be more economcal for travellers planning to stay at upscale hotels and eat out at fancy restaurants. I did like the all you could eat strawberries and whip cream they had several nights :) After losing quite a bit at the ship casino I managed to win it back the last night. With the exception of the other 20 or so people with Contiki who were in their 20's and 30's, the rest of the boat (maybe 700) were all old people. One more reason to avoid cruise lines in the future. Also a bummer was the weather, which stayed uniformily cloudy, rainy, and cold for the whole trip. Finally clearing a little on the last day. Did meet some nice people also travelling with Contiki who I will hopefully catch up with somewhere along the way.
-Out of Athens on April 19th