The Active Cyclades 12 Day Private Tour
Athens - Tinos - Naxos - Ios - Athens
12 Days Adventure Tour in the Cyclades
This incredible 12-day adventure is ideal for those who want a more active vacation while still enjoying plenty of time for relaxation. You’ll get to experience the Greek capital along with some of the Cyclades best lesser-known islands, avoiding the big tourist crowds for a more off-the-beaten-path experience.
Just some of the activities along the way include hiking, rock climbing, surfing, diving, mounttain biking and canoeing along with lots of opportunities for swimming in those crystal-clear turquoise waters.
At a Glance
|Flight to Athens - Afternoon at Leisure||Athens|
|Hymettus Mountain Bike Tour||Athens|
|Sail to Tinos - Afternoon at Leisure||Tinos|
|Tinos Climbing Experience||Tinos|
|Sail to Naxos - Afternoon at Leisure||Naxos|
|Naxos Guided Cycling Experience||Naxos|
|Naxos Sailing Trip||Naxos|
|Sail to Ios - Afternoon at Leisure||Ios|
|Ios & Islands Speedboat Experience||Ios|
|Ios Canoe Adventure - Beach BBQ||Ios|
|Sail to Athens - Afternoon at Leisure||Athens|
|Return Flight from Athens|
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Day by Day Itinerary
The fun begins the moment you land in the Greek capital of Athens, the birthplace of western civilization. After taking transfer to your hotel, the day is yours to spend as you like, as relaxed or as active as you prefer.
If you’ve had a long journey you might head to Plaka to relax at one of the outdoor cafes, taking in the scene, or get re-energized by climbing the Acropolis to marvel at the 2,500-year-old Parthenon, the Temple of Athena Nike and more, pinching yourself just to be sure you’re not dreaming. In the evening, enjoy a welcome dinner with a view of the Parthenon or a wine tasting at a downtown wine bar.
Today you will enjoy a guided mountain bike tour visiting the elongated mass of 1,026-meters-high Mount Hymettus, that runs on a north-to-south orientation and lies along the east flank of the iconic city.
Your cycling experience will begin shortly when you meet your “Insider” tour leader, who will accompany you throughout this excursion. You will be driven in a private luxury vehicle to the top of the mountain where you will meet your guide – a mountain expert with immense love for nature.
Set the pedals in motion! The route covers a total distance of 8 miles and is relatively easy cycling. It contains a straight downhill route, with a few slightly uphill parts, which will carry you through a mix of dirt and asphalt terrain, from the top of Hymettus to the 11th-century monastery of Kaisariani. After exploring this historic site you will move on to the rest-point of Kalopoula where you will enjoy a well-deserved beverage.
Hop on an early ferry to Tinos. While it may be not be as talked about as some of the other islands, that just means you’ll enjoy a more tranquil experience without the crowds. While it is popular among Greeks who make pilgrimages here in March and August, most visitors pass it by for neighboring Mykonos.
They’re seriously missing out on this place with beautiful beaches and a wide range of water sports opportunities, a fascinating rich history and charming traditional villages. The church of Panagia Evangelistria is not-to-be-missed with its icon believed to have healing powers, and you can also explore nearly 80 windmills, view Venetian ruins and embark on scenic hikes. Along the way watch for the intricately designed dovecotes dotted throughout the countryside, fortress-like stone structures that are known to attract pigeons with their elaborate geometric patterns.
Everyone from beginners to experts can join a thrilling outing today, climbing Exomvougo’s granite formations. Its craggy faces contain over 90 well-maintained routes bringing the perfect opportunity to learn a new sport or hone your skills. Either way you’ll work with a guide who will ensure an appropriate path is selected and provide the necessary high-quality gear. Once on the summit, you’ll be rewarded with a 360-degree panoramic view, and the Venetian castle that once served as the capital of defenses on the island. Keep watch for interesting looking items along the way, as artifacts have been uncovered here that date back to the Copper Age.
Tinos is also famous for its marble heritage, and you’ll be able to learn more about it, and the island’s artists while walking from Isternia toward Pyrgos, the center of marble art here. The largest village on Tinos, it’s renowned as the home of modern Greece’s most celebrated sculptor, Giannoulis Halepas, who created extraordinary works of copper, clay and marble. You can visit his home that now serves as a museum to find out how these expert craftsmen transform slabs of stone into statues and even palaces and stadiums. Finish your hike on Kolymbithra beach to relax in this protected cove with crystal-clear waters that range in shades from intense blue to emerald green.
The next island on your adventure is Naxos, most well-known by travelers for its granite and marble beaches that make for some of the whitest and brightest in all of Greece. They’re also ideal for swimming, with the coast surrounded by crystal-clear warm blue waters.
You’ll step off the ferry at Naxos Town, with the rest of the day yours to enjoy the picturesque waterfront. It’s lined with enticing eateries and shops selling all sorts of wares, including clothing, gifts and souvenirs. You might want to take a stroll along the beautiful marble streets that wind through the hilly Chora, lined with well-preserved Venetian architecture. Pop into one of the cafes or restaurants with a rooftop patio to sample local dishes with a sea view.
Today is an opportunity to discover the hidden gems of Naxos on this cycling experience. You’ll get another opportunity for an active day by embarking on a tour of some of the island’s most alluring spots and hidden gems on two wheels. Head out with an expert guide along the west side of Naxos, experiencing some of the most famous beaches, including Plaka, Orgos and Mikri Vigla.
As you make your return via a different route, you’ll roll through charming scenic villages. Take the remainder of the day to explore the Chora, concentrating in the Kastro area which is focused around the Castle of Naxos. You might want to include a visit to the castle’s fascinating archaeological museum which showcases artifacts revealing a good glimpse of the island’s ancient history. Afterwards, look forward to visiting Agios Georgios Beach, sunbathing on the soft sands and enjoying the shallow warm water protected from winds.
Special thematic cruises can be enjoyed from Naxos that allow you to enjoy an unforgettable sale that combines that spectacular scenery with the opportunity to indulge passions like yoga, water sports and wine.
A yoga sunset excursion is especially popular among yoga practitioners and wine enthusiasts. Hop aboard a luxurious catamaran and practice poses with a certified instructor as you take in the incredible views and the salty sea breeze. The trip is timed to catch one of the island’s glorious sunsets – you might be able to gaze at its colors splashed across the Aegean as you perform the mountain or warrior pose.
Hop on the ferry to the last Cyclades isle on your itinerary: Ios. While many travelers visit to enjoy lounging on the sand during the day before taking part in the wild nightlife scene, there are plenty of different options for experiencing it as you’ll soon find out.
You might get started by checking out some of its scenic beaches like popular Mylopotas Beach near the main Chora, a long white stretch of sand with sunbeds for rent as well as offering isolated spots to toss down a towel and relax for free. There are lots of facilities, including beach bars and restaurants to take advantage of too. For something more secluded, the golden sands of Manganari Beach are farther away, lined along an enchanting bay with shallow emerald waters ideal for a tranquil swim.
Enjoy the thrill of whizzing around the coast of Ios in a luxurious speedboat, exploring various points of interest throughout the shoreline, including shipwrecks, reefs and underwater caves for snorkeling. In between, you’ll be able to soak up the sunshine on remote, isolated beaches, relaxing or perhaps tossing a Frisbee around.
You’ll get to spend time Mylopotas beach in the afternoon, swimming in its deep waters or just enjoying the scene from one of the many beach bars with a drink in hand, sticking around to watch the sunset.
Return to Mylopotas to embark on a canoe trip, paddling across Mylopotas Bay. You’ll spend a half-day out on the water, heading to a cove where the waters are calm and flat, providing ideal conditions. There will be stops for swimming and snorkeling in those enticing aquamarine waters, as well as a BBQ lunch to help keep you fueled for the rest of the adventure.
You’ll have the chance to scuba dive with an expert instructor, or simply continue snorkeling and swimming if you prefer. From there, head to Kolistani beach to continue the fun. This stretch of sand that can only be accessed by the sea is protected on all sides by rock hills, fantastic to spend time on even on a windy day
On your last full day of this action-packed adventure, you’ll return to Athens, but the trip doesn’t end just yet. Relax in the luxury surrounding of the hotel, the perfect way to relax and refresh before it’s time to say goodbye to beautiful Greece.
Alternatively, head out and explore the shopping district for excellent local products and bargains. Enjoy one last night, sampling the delicious local cuisine whilst admiring one last spectacular sunset from one of the rooftop tavernas.
Return from Athens
By now, Greece has surely stolen your heart, if it hadn’t already but this morning, your Active Cyclades Adventure has come to an end.
You’ll be met at your hotel for the transfer to Athens International Airport for your return flight home or your onward journey elsewhere.
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