All Greek islands are very different it almost feels as if you are visiting a different country with each visit. Island hopping as a vacation began as a way to experience the real Greek Islands with freedom, and as a local, well almost.
Some islands, such as the Ionian Islands are much greener and have a little more rain. Samos in the Saronic Islands has a much drier and hotter climate.
The one consistency is the warm welcome that Greek people give to visitors as they are all equally welcoming.
Island hopping in and around the Greek Islands can be an entertaining, enjoyable, fun and rewarding way to explore and have a great holiday. It is suitable for all ages but would need to be adapted for the less able-bodied traveller. The cost can be reasonable and the possibilities are endless.
Here is some advice on Island hopping in Greece, for the novice.
There are so many islands to choose from. Some are near to mainland Greece so to visit these islands you could base yourself on the mainland and hop to and fro. The Greek Islands are in groups such as the Dodecanese, Aegean, Ionian and the Saronic. You could hop around the islands in a particular group or travel further distances. The choice is yours.
To organise an island hopping holiday you have a few choices.
For me, however, the best way is DIY, 'Do It Yourself'.
Most islands have regular ferry services which local people use to get to work or go shopping on the bigger islands, for example. If you travel on these ferries you have the freedom to pick where and when you will travel, and go native.
Research your islands well.
Some Greek Islands are great if you want a peaceful laid back atmosphere with gentle country walks. Others have wild night-life for the young and young at heart. So consider what you want to get out of your holiday before choosing the islands. Check out the Internet when considering your holiday. This will enable you to finalise ferry timings and prices, and cost your holiday out fully or just roughly.
You can probably book through a travel agent.
Some visitors will want to know that they have accommodation waiting for them whilst others will be happy to find something when they arrive. Remember though that at certain times of the year the islands will be busy and accommodation, which is good and good value, may be hard to find.
Don't pack as you would normally. If you are going to be constantly travelling you need to travel as light as possible.
An example of an organised hop
The Yorkshire Dales is an area of outstanding natural beauty in England. Certainly it may have changed in more recent years but on the whole it is still fairly unspoilt. In fact it is the perfect destination for those wanting to explore the English countryside and its pretty villages.
For walkers there are miles of countryside to explore. Dotted around the area are farms, English pubs, cafes, Tea Rooms, restaurants, towns and more.
As children we would visit distant relatives of my Mum who lived in a small village a few miles outside of Skipton. Skipton is a busy market town and used to hold the bus station with all the linked services around The Dales.
We would take a train to Leeds where we would change trains hopping aboard the Trans-Pennine express which would take us on to Skipton. From here we would take a bus to the small village of Hetton.
Skipton is often called the Gateway to the Dales as it is on the Dales boundary. The bus stopped at the road, at the edge of the village of Hetton meaning that a steep walk was needed to get to our destination. The small village had a few houses, a farm, a pub that doubled as a shop selling almost everything and some beautiful countryside.
Even back then the village was becoming a little more built up as retired mill owners from Bradford began building beautiful homes in the village.
A fish and chip van would visit the village a couple of times a week and, barring the pub, there was no place to eat out. Of course, I am talking about more than 50 years ago and so this will have changed no doubt. However, the area was green, peaceful, pretty and a great place to base yourself for touring The Dales.
The house where we stayed had fields at both the back and the front of the house. At the back these steadily climbed upwards. There were sheep and cows in the field in the day-time and as Townies we loved to play in these fields. The fields at the front sloped down to a valley. In the distance though was Cracoe Fell rising high above the area. We could just see the cross at its summit.
Fairy Walk, as my distant cousin called it, was a pretty little round trip walking through the village. There was a little bridge over the brook and some beautiful countryside.
The Yorkshire Dales has been a designated a National Park for more than 50 years. In 2009 there were 60th celebrations as National Parks had been established since 1949.
The Dales is a perfect destination for walkers, cyclists, horse-riders, caravaners, campers and those who simply want to enjoy rural England. As primarily farming country the Yorkshire Dales epitomises a rural England almost of the past.
For bird watchers and photographers the area is also perfect.
You will discover pretty villages, museums, towns, cities, history and much more. There is the Dales countryside museum which is in the old railway station at Hawes which is in Wensleydale. Wensleydale also produces its own cheese of the same name that is Wensleydale. This of course has been immortalised by the animation Wallace and Gromit.
Touring the countryside you may meet traditional Yorkshire folk some of whom may still speak with a broad Yorkshire accent.
Towns such as Harrogate, Grassington, Settle, Malham and Kettlewell all nestle in the Yorkshire Dales. These are just a few of the places to see though. The choice is vast.
No matter which season you choose to visit the Yorkshire Dales there will be plenty to entertain visitors.
Where in the world do you want to go today? One Woman uses personal experiences to show you some of the best places to visit in the United Kingdom and beyond. Enjoy!