Travel and the Art of Compromise.

By Posted in - Europe & Featured Post & Greece on October 17th, 2011 A boat in Thessaloniki, Greece.

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A boat in Thessaloniki, Greece.
Thessaloniki, Greece | Hipstamatic

Massachusetts, Mexico, San Diego, Massachusetts, Amsterdam, Serbia and now Greece.

It’s been a fun, but busy month and now we find ourselves behind the 8-Ball (in terms of work) in Thessaloniki, Greece. So, we have chosen to forgo our original (and a bit challenging–financially and logistically) plans of island hopping our way to Turkey.

Instead, we will spend our time exploring northern Greece while making our way to the Turkey border, hitting such spots as Meteora and Mt. Olympus.

Beth and I (especially Beth) are a bit disappointed that we can’t make it to any of the islands, in particular Santorini, this time, but we know its the right thing to do.

Despite, being closer to the islands than we’ve ever been in our lives, the reality is we are still just a bit too far away to make it really work. Getting to Santorini from Thessaloniki would require a five hour train ride to Athens and then a seven hour ferry ride the next morning. After a couple of epic planning sessions, we finally came to terms that we just don’t have the time to fit the islands in this time around. So, we’ve decided to make it a priority to come back to Greece in the future and spend at least a month pitching tents (apparently the country is a camper’s paradise) and island hopping.

It seems like traveling and compromise go together like Joan Rivers and plastic surgery, so I’m curious have you ever had to put a place on the back burner despite it being within reach? If so, did you ever make it back?

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(16) awesome folk have had something to say...

  • Simon -

    October 17, 2011 at 8:38 am

    Well, not sure yiu sould feel that sad for not seeing Santorini. I recently spent a week in the Cyclades, in Mykonos and Folegandros. I just had a quick stop in Santorini and I can’t say that I really enjoyed it. Sure, it’s nice. But I found it far too touristic and somehow… Fake. On the other hand, I truly fell in love with Folegandros where you can still breathe the Greek atmosphere. Will soon write about it, so… Stay tuned!
    Happy travels.

    • Randy -

      October 17, 2011 at 9:52 am

      @Simon, Thanks for the tip about the various islands! Folegandros sounds like exactly what we are looking for. I definitely look forward to checking out your upcoming stories about your time on the islands. As far Santorini, I had a feeling it may be like that, but it’s suppose to be a fantastic place for photography so we figured it would be worth it.

  • Christy @ Ordinary Traveler -

    October 17, 2011 at 8:59 am

    Well at least you get to see some of Greece! I’m jealous. 🙂 We were bummed that we didn’t see a lot of the islands south of Vietnam and Laos, but I still have hope that we will go back.

  • Randy -

    October 17, 2011 at 10:20 am

    @Christy @ Ordinary Traveler, Yeah, we are really enjoying Thessaloniki. We basically have been just hunkering down in our 1 star hotel in the morning and night, and then treating ourselves to a nice lunch in the afternoon. I think tomorrow we are going to head to Meteora to see some mountain monastery.

    Yeah, I’d really like to see those islands too! I’m sure you guys will make it back.

    Beth and I were bummed we didn’t have a chance to contact you when we were in San Diego, but everyday was pretty much a Kalp family adventure by day and a scramble at night to get caught up before the trip. Next time! 🙂

  • Andi of My Beautiful Adventures -

    October 17, 2011 at 11:14 am

    That pic is gorgeous!!! Sorry you can’t island hop.

  • Michael -

    October 17, 2011 at 11:43 am

    I rented a small apartment in Oia on Santorini during the slow season a few years ago and don’t regret it. That’s the secret with places like that. avoid summer like the plague!

  • Michael -

    October 17, 2011 at 11:45 am

    ooops, answer the question. Yes, I put North Vietnam on the back burner a couple of years ago, because I felt I didn’t have time to do justice to North and South on the same trip. No worries, I’ll be back!

  • Turtle -

    October 17, 2011 at 9:27 pm

    That’s a really tough call. I would have gone the other way and chosen the travel over the work, but you’re right, there is no point rushing through places because you don’t get the full experience!

  • Holly -

    October 18, 2011 at 2:51 am

    Well, I agree with you compromising has a lot in common with travel but it actually has with every aspect of our life the important thing is never to stop traveling!

  • Steve -

    October 18, 2011 at 3:07 am

    Hi Randy,

    Great story and you are so right about the compromise – can often go a long way to turning what feels like a disaster into a totally new experience.

    Reminded me of when I went inter-railing over 20 years ago (christ that’s a long time) to meet my friend Craig who moved to Saloniki to teach English (and he is still there). We stayed in Saloniki a few days before island hopping – Santorini, Mykinos and Paros – all beautiful islands in their own right. Night cruises from one island to another, sleeping on the boat wherever you can and arriving just at sunrise is sublime. Then spending the nights sleeping on the beach. I don’t know if it’s different now but i would recommend pencilling it in to go back and trying again 🙂

    The link I have added goes to my friend’s Teacher Dude’s Grill & BBQ – a completely great blog for anyone who wants to know what’s really happening in Greece. Craig has to hide his face due to reprisals by the police.

  • Bethany -

    October 19, 2011 at 1:42 am

    @Steve, Alright its settled, I want to island hop like you did! That sounds amazing; what an adventure. Also, thanks for adding the link. I look forward to checking out your friends site. -Randy

  • Bethany -

    October 19, 2011 at 1:45 am

    @Turtle, Normally, I would too. But having done that for pretty much my whole life, I know that if I didn’t settle up now, I would have been playing catch up the whole trip. Yeah, I couldn’t agree more about not rushing. I always think its better to see less and absorb me of your region than jet from place to place. -Randy

  • Bethany -

    October 19, 2011 at 1:50 am

    @Michael, Yeah, we figured we’d miss most of the tourists in the islands, which is why we did want to try to hit this time around. Next time. 🙂 I could also see how it could be difficult to do North and South Vietnam in the same trip too. Definitely something to think about before we head over there. -Randy

  • Bethany -

    October 19, 2011 at 1:54 am

    @Andi of My Beautiful Adventures, Thanks Andi! Thessaloniki photographs pretty well!

  • Canyoning Wales -

    April 25, 2013 at 3:39 am

    Ah that’s such a shame you had to miss out the islands. I;m sure you’ll get the opportunity to give it a go again. It’s almost like saying, “I’m sorry you couldn’t get a fork to eat the cheese cake with, you’ll have to use a fork.”…You still get to see all of Northern Greece!

  • Andrew Darwitan -

    September 21, 2015 at 4:21 am

    Understand how it feels. I went to Greece quite recently and was faced with the tough option of choosing between Meteora and Zakynthos. We did Meteora (awesome!). We managed to squeeze in the Cyclades islands into our itinerary though (Mykonos, Paros, Santorini). We love Santorini—sure, Fira and Oia are very touristy. But if you spend a little longer in Santorini to do hiking or visit the less-crowded beaches, the beauty truly shines. Anyway, I hope you get to visit Greek islands sometime soon! =)