Voyage to Crete by ship with
Grimaldi Minoan Lines
To date we have talked about our trip to Crete,of its wonderful places,of what we ate and what to carry absolutely in yoursuitcase but important thing to talk about is how we got there. We have chosen(alas) the ship, specifically Grimaldi Minoan Lines;Now we will not dwell much on the price list because you know that it can vary depending on the place, booked, the month of departure or the booking times but we will stop to explain to you how the trip takes place, the pros and cons of choosing the Grimaldi Minoan lines.
The first thing to specify is that in order to arrive in Crete by ship it is necessary to make a stopover in Patras; The Grimaldi Minoan Lines on the journey to Patras also stops at Igoumenitsa, so in total it is about 24 hours of navigation.
From Patras you travel by car to Piraeus and start again with Grimaldi Lines, to Heraklion, the port city of Crete, and its capital and shipping hours are about 7.
We left Ancona and embarked with a Citroen C3; the embarkations with the car are everywhere long and chaotic, this also applies to Grimaldi.Once on board the car you find yourself in the middle of a river of confused people asking where to go according to your reservation. The staff is often too quick to provide directions in an English not always ” perfect”, also because we remember that the cabin crew is mostly Greek.
Our booking includes the bridge passage, almost always very cheap and for this reason also quite crowded. In addition, in the open sea on the bridge there is a lot of wind, as well as many people stretched out or even organized with tents, so it becomes difficult even to walk. We organized ourselves to sleep with an inflatable mattress that we inflated and arranged in one of the ship’s common rooms, in which we then slept with many other people.
The ship is quite clean and there are many common spaces such as living rooms, bars, restaurants even a smoking room, all equipped with power outlets and we assure you that they are essential to charge mobile phones and tablets during this really long journey; by the way, forget 3G.4G and the phone line, until the port your mobile phone will not give signs of life. The bathrooms are very clean and have showers. The restaurant is a kind of canteen whose food is quite good but the price is definitely too high.
If in Ancona the passengers seemed to us many, you have no idea how many become once docked at the port of Igoumenitsa. So don’t be surprised at the number of people you’ll find in the hallways and stairs sleeping (honestly it seemed all too high to us). Another thing, the swimming pool that you often see in the Grimaldi Minoan advertisement, forget it because it is completely devoid of water, in a nutshell not accessible.
PIRAEUS (Athens) – HERAKLION(Crete)
However, the situation changes drastically once they arrive on Greek territory. Landed in Patras,you move by car lost Piraeus ,port of Athens, from which the route starts to Crete. The ship, also Grimaldi Minoan Lines, this time smaller seemed much more welcoming to us, including staff and passengers seemed to be related to the ship’s possibilities. Here we had a standard cabin, with bunk beds, clean and cozy.. despite the rough sea the night passed in a much more pleasant way than the previous one spent in the corridor.
The restaurant, whose cuisine was as good as on the first ship, has more affordable prices and on the right budget you can make a full dinner even in a more orderly and quieter way.
recommended for …
In general, the ship trip is great for those who have a rather long period of vacation or as we know that they will have a lot of time to spend in a specific place, so do not have to worry about spending about 4 nights, round trip, by ship.
In addition, the price is tempting for those who have a spirit of adaptation and can adapt to sleeping in a bag or on a sofa.
not recommended for …
not suitable for those who have little time to spend on the trip and families with children; It is true that the cabin solves the problem of the night and the hygiene of the little ones for whom shared bathrooms are not so recommendable, but the journey is too long and chaotic and for children it could be stressful and boring.
Let’s not forget that, given the costs faced for lunch, dinner and breakfast on the first ship, it could ultimately prove very expensive for a family of 4.
Not recommended even if you do not board with a car or do not rent a car in Patras, as in our itinerary the second part of the journey from Piraeus was provided.