Q – We have a rather large, tightly-knit Greek family (so what else is new) and we’re planning to go to the islands in 2016 for a two-week spectacular trip. We thought it best to start now. Of course we’ll have all age groups and some will want to do their own thing. We have some decent financial reserves for this trip and were wondering if you could provide a few ideas we may not have thought of that we could bring to our travel agent.? We will likely number 23.

A – Sure. We’ve planned numerous family gatherings of this kind and we have some specific suggestions: Start with these  and have your agent think about including them in your itinerary:

Rent a yacht, preferably in the Cyclades island group, and spend six nights touring the best islands. Nothing will bring the family closer together, the per person cost will be manageable, and the crew will do all the work.

Try to get the family to an authentic wine village where they can join the locals in the harvest celebration while stopping their bare feet to crush grapes for next years wine.

Have the younger folks hike the Samaria Gorge on Crete. The hiking is memorable and the scenery is fantastic.

As a great finish, before flying home from Athens, charter a few helicopters and fly the family above the suspended in air” monasteries in the rock pinnacles of Meteora. Four of these impossible to get to structures still house small, monastic communities.

Do remember that you will want to carefully consider taking over entire restaurants for a party each night of your trip. That will involve a good deal of planning but the results will be well worth it.

You should start planning this trip fourteen months prior to departure.