Posted April 7th, 2012, 02:05 AM
Last edited by Goldygolfer; April 7th, 2012 at 02:08 AM
Thanks Goldy for your information - I will be checking into both of the private tours you mentioned for Rhodes and then Ephesus.
In Ephesus, did you book a full day tour? With terrace houses, i assume the full day is the way to go?
Any advice for Athens, i have read many reviews, some say private tour and some say DIY. I know DIY is totally do-able, but private guide seems more efficient and more productive?
Recommendations for Mykonos?
Ephesus - Yes, we did what was described as a full-day tour, but it was actually only about 6 1/2 hours. We were back in Kusadasi by around 3pm and some of us opted to be dropped at the bazaar which is very close to the port and great for shopping - if that's your "bag". The Hello Ephesus tour took in the museum in Celkuk, the remains of the Temple of Artemis, St John's Basillica and nearby mosque, House of the Virgin Mary, the ruins of Ephesus including the Terrace Houses (a must) and lunch (included in the price) at the Carpet School.
Many on CC rubbish the Carpet School but we found the demonstration quite interesting and did not feel pressured to purchase (we didn't). The lunch was typical local food and served in the gardens. There were about 10 of us from our Roll Call and we paid US$60 pp. Our guide was Bulent(Bill) Orkus and he was excellent.
Athens - There were many taxi drivers at the port gates, offering to drive us around for about 150 euros. We walked right by, planning to walk to the metro station and completely DIY. However, as we walked along, there were other taxi drivers offering cheaper prices. One eventually offered his services for 80 euros - just 20 euros each for the whole day.
We decided this was too good to pass up. He took us to all the main attractions - Acropolis, Hadrian's Arch, Changing of the Guard at the Palace, Plaka, etc.
Taxi drivers in Greece are not licenced guides and cannot accompany you into the sites, but he drove us around and was always waiting for us each time we returned. He did not request payment until we were back at the port. Entrance to the Acropolis was an additional fee and we could have joined a group with a guide had we chosen to. This is offered near the entrance.
Mykonos - We treated this port as a lazy day (quite welcome with the busy schedule on Med cruises) and just wandered around the town. The windmills are only a short walk and we had lunch at a taverna in Little Venice - a great place to people watch while enjoying the local wine.
There are very nice shops here - some quite up-market. I bought my most expensive "momento" here - a gold omega chain with an Athena pendant. Not cheap at all, but I love it and always receive compliments when I wear it (which is often).
Rhodes - Many will say that this is an easy port to DIY, but we enjoy having a driver who will tell us lots of interesting things - the history of the building or scene we are looking at, what it was like to grow up in the Old Town, where and how they live, stories about their family, etc. These are the extra "bits" that don't come in a guide book. JMHO.
Your group of 4 is the perfect number for a taxi tour.
Enjoy your cruise. I'm sure you will. So many of the ports around the Med are really interesting and different.