Hieyyy!!!! I was wonderin if someone could tell me whether it makes more economical sense and takes less time to either travel from greece to rome by ferry or travel to venice by train? I know it takes 40+ hours to take the train to rome which is really daunting!! any advice or stopover suggestions would be great too, thanks!!xx
I took the Blue Star ferry from Patras to Bari last summer and then took the train over to Rome. The ferry is an overnight thing (17 hours) but the train is only about 3 hours, if I remember correctly.
Cheers Angela!!! thats a great help, just tryin to work out itineray at moment and dont know whether to go to venice or rome first.
If you do Athens - Venice by train, the two most obvious stopping points are Thessaloniki (Greece - which except once a week in summer months only, you have to change there anyway) and Ljubljana in Slovenia (again, you have to change there).
Other places which are on the route and worth seeing include Skopje (Macedonia), Nis and, especially, Belgrade (Serbia) and Zagreb (Croatia). There are other places if you are happy to go a bit off track, or see less known places. In Slovenia, Lake Bled (and Bohinj) and the Postojna caves in particular are highly recomended to visit, and it's silly not to take the effort if you go that way.
Be careful with your planning, as certain sections - most notably the Thessaloniki to Skopje (and through to Belgrade) - only have a very limited service (i.e. 2 trains a day).
Something else to note is that obviously going through Macedonia, Serbia, Croatia and Slovenia, you will need to get local currency for each place which you may want to avoid.
There is a direct Thessaloniki - Ljubljana train daily which takes about 23.5hrs, so you can avoid stopping in Macedonia, Serbia and Croatia if you want to. If you don't get the direct train, you'll have to change in Belgrade. It is also physically possible to avoid changing in Ljubljana, by going Thessaloniki - Belgrade - Villach (in Austria) (((or even then via Salzburg?Innsbruck or Munich, although thats going more out of your way))), although connections from Villach via Udine to Italy are sadly very scarce during the day (1 or 2, depending upon when they cancel the second train) and several night trains.
A final option would involve going to Belgrade and then Budapest, or via Zagreb to Vienna, which would take you out of your way, but add one or both of those great cities to your list. Both have direct night trains (and Vienna a day option) to Venice.
One other thing to look at is that there are also ferries between Venice and Greece, which whilst they may take longer, could well be cheaper. I've never done it, and it's possible that they don't run in winter, but they do exist in summer.
Oh, and Bari to Roma is about 4.35 absolute quieckest on ES Italia, whilst most are over 5 hours, and (cheaper) intercity over 6 hours
I was looking at the ferry seating options and the cheapest option is the deck and the next cheapest is the economy airplane style seat. Can anyone tell me what these seats are like? The deck is outside, but what about the airplane style seat?