Being that I can be long winded, a reader question turned into a post...
***Question... perhaps a tough one to answer; if you were to go back and visit for an extended period (3-6 weeks) which country would you choose and why? The reason I ask is my wife and I just celebrated our 30th and all 3 countries are considered possibilities. We are also considering an overland trip from Cairo to Turkey which of course would take in several countries but not really allow one to 'soak' up the culture and flavour that spending an extended time in one country would permit.
Your thoughts... ***
Hi I'd rather be sailing;
Depending on the level of adventure and stimulation you want for your trip, you could easily spend all 6 weeks in any of the 3 countries I visited.
The most relaxing experience would be Dubrovnik and the next one would be Fira, Santorini though the rest of the island is much more laid back.
Greece would be interesting because you'd end up taking the ferries or hydrofoils to go from island to island.
From the 2 I saw on this jaunt, they were completely different. I didn't care for Corfu myself but I'm glad I was there. You could easily spend all 6 weeks exploring a handful of islands in Greece and not be bored whereas I find the Caribbean after a while, it becomes yet "another paradise island" with beautiful beaches. (no offence meant to Caribbean readers -- you folks have it good!)
In Croatia, it would be train travel to take you all over and from what I hear, the food is quite different depending on the area.
The island of Brac (off Split) is supposed to be gorgeous. D has a friend who is Croatian had recommended it. I never made it up that far on this trip but I would like to another time.
I can imagine finding it really easy to pass time in this country. The people I met were very gentle and not at all impressed that you are a visitor, meaning they don't stare at you because you are obviously so different. In the old town, the restaurants hosts were more vocal trying to get you to eat at their respective spots -- all harmless self promotion.
Turkey was the most "in your face" of all three countries I visited. I haven't written off Istanbul and will be better prepared when I go.
My best memory were the prayer calls. They were so peaceful sounding -- much contrast compared to the day to day market culture. I know I would have toughened up had I spend more time there. I guess I wasn't ready for the level of confrontation, that's all. I didn't at any time feel unsafe nor was I ever pushed or shoved.
If you are into history and ruins, Turkey is a great destination. I had a chance to got to Ephesus. If you happen to love Turkish food like me, you'd be in for a treat.
Turkey is a big country and I think 6 weeks would just barely scratch the surface. I would not call what I saw of this country relaxing though compared to the 2 above.
If you wanted a real adventure where you are on your guard and stimulated, then I would choose Egypt and Turkey.
If you wanted a bit of both, then add in one of the other 2 countries (whichever you could get to logistically easier or whether you like plane, train or ferry) and it would provide some balance and r & r.
What I would choose would depend on my mood. If D was coming with me, I would pick Dubrovnik and Santorini because of their sheer beauty and feel. Both places have a romantic feel. If I was going alone, I would chose Egypt and Turkey and make sure I learned the languages, get a chance to sail down the Nile and take a camel ride through the desert.
I am envious you are taking such a great amount of time. Congratulations on your 30th!