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Helping picking an Island and All Inclusive Resort

Detroit, Michigan
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Helping picking an Island and All Inclusive Resort

We have read through about a hundred postings here and all the top questions. We are at the start of our planning process and we are finding all the different islands, resorts, and huge variation in pricing to be overwhelming. We have a ton of questions and we are hoping that you all will be able to help us. We are looking at Greece to vacation because of all the history, friendly people, beautiful luxurious resorts, and fantastic food. A little about us, we are from Michigan, USA. I am a history nut whereas my husband is into rest and relaxation, we are 35 and 31. So as a compromise we are planning on a 3 to 4 night stay in Athens and a 3 to 7 night say at an all-inclusive resort on a Greek Island. Our budget is 2000 to 4000 USA dollars including flight/ferry from Athens to the island. How long we stay will depend on cost. We would like to go September 2018 or May 2019 to avoid the huge tourist crowds in the summer. This will be our first time at an all-inclusive resort and to Greece. We have no idea what we are getting ourselves into! Would it be a better idea to just go with a travel agent on this?

How does an all-inclusive resort work on the Greek islands? Is all food included and available all day? Only certain times during the day and night? Are drinks included? Are activities included? Does it differ by resort?

We are so overwhelmed by how many islands there are. Please help us with some suggestions on an island and resort. We would like a modern resort that is tranquil, quiet not a huge party atmosphere. We would prefer a resort that is not situation in the midst of a city. All-inclusive, huge selection of food, multiple inclusive restaurants and drinks. Low wind. Swim up room (can't decide if this is worth the money yet). Possible gardens, foliage and greenery, beautiful large pool with lounges and available day beds that we will not have fight for, and Jacuzzis. The island must be safe for a woman to be wondering around alone. Excursions available at the resort for island tours/activities, I really would like to go kayaking. We would like a large room with a balcony and an amazing view that we would convince us to come back to Greece.

Also, Are there a large amount of mosquitoes and other biting insects in Greece that we have to worry about?

Edited: 12 December 2017, 04:34
Forestis
4WD, ATV & Off-Road Tours
Riverland
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10 replies to this topic
Shepperton, United...
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1. Re: Helping picking an Island and All Inclusive Resort

I think you'll have to tackle this in a different way.

The usual island suggestions from Athens are in the Cyclades, and as visitors generally like to immerse themselves in the local vibe, stay in locally owned and run hotels and apartments, and eat in authentic tavernas and restaurants, they are lacking in 5 star resort type venues of the type described by you.

Why not look at possible AI resort options and see what suits, then come back and ask about the area/island it's situated in/on. Something to start with....

telegraph.co.uk/travel/…

https://www.tripadvisor.co.uk/HotelsList-Cyc…

I don't think you'll have much of an experience staying in an AI resort in Greece, and might just as well make life easy and go to Cuba, Mexico etc.

Athens, Greece
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for Peloponnese, Athens
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2. Re: Helping picking an Island and All Inclusive Resort

AI resorts are generally outside of the towns or villages, often a good distance from shops, tavernas etc. & unless you go for the high end & expensive options they are very mediocre. Not the best choice in Greece at all, the vast majority of visitors stay in apartments, or hotels on a b&b basis. This gives you an enormous choice of where to go, what budget, & more than one location if desired.

Newmarket, United...
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3. Re: Helping picking an Island and All Inclusive Resort

I can't imagine going to Greece and staying in an AI resort, although many do. I once stayed at an AI hotel in Spain, and never again! Since you've already paid for your meals (and sometimes drinks too) the temptation is to stay in the resort to get your money's worth, so you don't see much else. Like the above posts, I like to stay in small hotels and eat my meals in locally run tavernas and restaurants.

South Pole
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for Lesbos, Zagorohoria
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4. Re: Helping picking an Island and All Inclusive Resort

In all honestly I don't think Greece & your holiday requirements match up. Greece is about local cuture, history, scenery, the vibe of meeting local people & enjoying the local ambience & fresh grown & cooked local cuisine. You will not get this in an AI & might as well be anywhere in the world.

Even top end AIs will rely heavily on imported food & drink & maybe non-indigineous staff, none of which will give you a real taste of authentic Greece. Nor is it likely to tempt you to return. I think you have to choose between a luxury holiday of food & facilities to suit which can be provided elsewhere OR travelling to make memories of a country & its people.

Bristol, United...
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for Messenia Region, Laconia Region, Magnesia Region
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5. Re: Helping picking an Island and All Inclusive Resort

I endorse everything said above and I would encourage you to plan a more local and less "luxury" experience in order to enjoy the best of Greece. But you do seem to have a very clear idea of what you want so if you are wedded to the idea of staying in a large resort, the two Costa Navarino resorts in the southern Peloponnese are designed to be sympathetic with the local environment and have good eco-credentials as well as providing a high-end luxury experience. They are located in a stunningly beautiful region of Greece close to lovely beaches and historical sites including Nestor's Palace (mentioned in Homer); Ancient Messene; and the castles at Pylos, Methoni and Koroni. You can easily "escape" the hotel to explore, shop and eat out in nearby small towns and villages that are still largely untouched and unspoiled by mass tourism.

http://www.westincostanavarino.com

http://www.romanoscostanavarino.com

bridgnorth
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6. Re: Helping picking an Island and All Inclusive Resort

Everything well summed up by the Bristolians , if you're going A1 the up market Costa Navarino is the way to go.

Just a couple of add ons; there's a golf course and daily domestic flights from Athens International to Kalamata airport. The weather is normally better in September.

Bristol, United...
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for Messenia Region, Laconia Region, Magnesia Region
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7. Re: Helping picking an Island and All Inclusive Resort

Actually I don't think the Costa Navarino resorts are AI in the sense of "all you can eat and drink for one price" (and which as said above seems to be usually of low quality in Greece). But they do meet the OP's request for luxury and multiple restaurants, and I believe they offer a package that includes meals and some drinks.

Detroit, Michigan
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8. Re: Helping picking an Island and All Inclusive Resort

Thank you for your replies! We do enjoy immersing ourselves in history, the people and the culture, thus the purpose of spending time in Athens. However, we wanted time to relax without any worries before returning from vacation. the Costa Navarino resorts looks like a beautiful resort. We have never been to an all inclusive resort, when we first started looking, we found the Thomson website and it seemed like all inclusive resorts were a norm in the Greek island. We didn't know that this is not the case at all. We will definitely do more research and post more questions as a come across them.

Edited: 14 December 2017, 01:20
Bristol, United...
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for Messenia Region, Laconia Region, Magnesia Region
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9. Re: Helping picking an Island and All Inclusive Resort

Thomson is a British mass market package holiday operator, not really for people who want to immerse themselves in Greek history and culture! So pleased to hear you are reconsidering!

Newmarket, United...
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for Antiparos
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10. Re: Helping picking an Island and All Inclusive Resort

Package holiday firms like Thomson like you to pay all your money to them up front, rather than spending in local cafes and restaurants. Many families with children book AI because it usually works out cheaper, they don't have to bring as much spending money, and the kids can pick what they want from the hotel's buffet. If that's the sort of holiday you want, fine.

As I wrote earlier, my only experience with AI was in a Spanish hotel which served international food in its restaurant. I had been looking forward to trying Spanish dishes, but instead was offered Chinese and other food I could have gotten anywhere. I remember a boy from one family who ate nothing but chips (french fries) at every meal.

There is nothing more relaxing than strolling down to a sidewalk cafe in the morning for a leisurely breakfast, taking as long as you want. I love trying a different restaurant every night after a stroll around town, looking in shops and maybe stopping for a drink. When the weather is nice, most people eat alfresco rather than in a stuffy dining room, and waiters never rush you to finish your meal. I would miss all that if I stayed in an AI resort.

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