Friday, March 7, 2014

It's Greece & Turkey in 2014!


The Acropolis.

Last night, I got the good news that I had been hoping would come!  My brother's leave request was approved and I can now begin planning our travel adventure for this year!  Yay!


Bro and I have been on four trips together so far - Guatemala in 2010, Mexico in 2011, Sri Lanka in 2012, and the Baltics in 2013.  All those trip locales were my idea.  This time around, when talked of what has now become an annual trip for the two of us came up, Bro suggested Turkey.  Initially, I was surprised as I somehow thought that Turkey fell into that category of "unsafe" places for Bro.  Of course, I was there, not once but twice, in 2008 and I have a lifelong love affair with the country.  So you can imagined how thrilled I was when he suggested we there.  Without hesitation, I  said, "Yes!" and then almost immediately, ideas about a second country to visit started to churn in my head.  Turkey is surrounded by wonderful lands to travel to, most of which I have not been to.  But surprisingly, it was not as easy to narrow down a second country as I had thought it would be. 

Eventually, one country surfaced to the top of the list - Greece!   I've held off on going to Europe because, generally speaking, it's so expensive to travel in when compared other other regions in the world.  But as a result of economic woes, Greece has become affordable.  I don't know how long it will remain that way so now's a good time as ever to go!

I'm now semi-retired which means I can travel whenever I want - very, very, very happy about that!  Our travel dates were then dependent on Bro's schedule.  The full trip is almost 4 weeks long and I had my fingers that Bro would get his leave request approved.  First request was rejected so we had to come up with a second set of proposed dates which have us leaving 11 days later.  The second request was approved so now the planning begins!

I have a lot of reading to do but my driving idea at the moment is to focus mainly on Greece as I pretty much already have a rough itinerary for Turkey in my head.  For Greece, I had read about self drive tours and since we had so much fun driving around the Baltics, I want to see if we can do something similar.  Of course, we need to have some time to visit a Greek island or two.....or maybe more.  I also want Bro to have more say in the places we go to and the things we do so the final itinerary will be one that we will have jointly decided on.  I will be seeing him in a couple of months so I have between now and then to map out a proposed itinerary that we can work from.

Cappadocia.

We also have to work out accommodations and flights.  For the places to stay, I'm going to back to my budget travel roots and look into guest houses and apartments.   We both love staying at the *homier* type places versus large hotels so my search will focus on finding those places as best I can.  I have a feeling that outside of the big cities, those will be the only options so this might not turn out to be that much of a challenge.  Flight wise,  we're traveling during low season so unlike previous trips where I purchased tickets well in advance, I will hold off until about 60-80 days out.  There are other details to work out as well but things will gradually fall into place as they always seem to do.

Even though I have the time on my hands, I have a LOT of reading and researching to do to come up with a proposed itinerary so I'm going to get going!  Pinch me.  I'm going to Greece and Turkey!