10 Day Discover the Cyclades on Wheels & Water
Athens - (ferry to Milos) Milos - (ferry to Santorini) Santorini – (ferry to Mykonos) Mykonos - (flight to Athens) Athens
This adventurous 9-night itinerary brings all sorts of opportunities for activities on wheels and in the water. Just some of the highlights include a tour of Athens’ Acropolis Hill and a 4X4 excursion on Milos to visit some of its hidden sights. Join a sea kayaking tour in Santorini to paddle around the caldera and on Mykonos, an entire day of sailing, complete with swim stops and a tour of the fascinating Delos archaeological site. You’ll find plenty of time for exploring on your own in between as well.
At a Glance
|Your adventure begins at Athens International Airport, welcomed by private transfer to the city.||Athens|
|Take advantage of a full day in Athens, including a morning tour of Acropolis Hill.||Athens|
|Catch the ferry to Milos, known as the ‘island of colors.||Milos|
|Embark on a 4X4 tour exploring the backroads of Milos, gorgeous beaches and hidden gems.||Milos|
|Cruise to Santorini, enjoying bucket-list sights like the caldera and lots of photo-ops.||Santorini|
|Join a sea kayaking tour to paddle through the sapphire Aegean alongside the caldera cliffs.||Santorini|
|Arrive by ferry to Mykonos, indulging in its many cosmopolitan delights.||Mykonos|
|Enjoy a full day of sailing, including a visit to the archaeological site of Delos.||Mykonos|
|Return to Athens by plane and enjoy the city at your leisure.||Athens|
|After breakfast meet your private transfer for your return to Athens International Airport.|
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Day by Day Itinerary
Arrival to Athens
Your enchanting adventure begins with arrival into Athens International Airport. You’ll be met by private transfer for the journey into the capital city itself where you’ll check into your hotel, get settled in and perhaps head out to do some exploring. The day is yours to do as you please – from nearly every vantage point you’ll be able to gaze up at Acropolis Hill, including Plaka, located in the heart of old Athens. It’s a wonderful place to just wander, strolling the narrow lanes lined with pastel-hued homes and enjoying the many shops and cafes. Some of the best shopping experiences can be enjoyed along Adrianou Street which separates this neighborhood from the Monastiraki district.
Enjoy a full day in Athens, starting with an Acropolis tour. Now you’ll be able to explore more in-depth what you’ve seen from afar, including the magnificent Parthenon that overlooks the city. Follow your expert guide who will provide the back story for the impressive landmarks you’ll be marveling at, and then enjoy the rest of the day at your leisure. You might want to visit one of the world-renowned museums like the National Archaeological Museum showcasing more than 11,000 exhibits providing a comprehensive overview of Greek civilization from prehistory through late antiquity. Don’t miss the 2,000-year-old computer discovered in a shipwreck off Antikithira Island – you’re likely to be surprised at just how advanced the ancient Greeks were.
Milos is your first stop on the island-hopping portion of your itinerary. Arrive by ferry to the ‘island of colors,’ the place where the famous Venus de Milo statue was discovered. Located about halfway between Athens and Crete, its diverse and spectacular landscapes are the result of volcanic activity that occurred during ancient times. You’ll have the rest of the day to enjoy it at your leisure. You might want to do some exploring, discovering the reasons for its nickname by visiting the beaches with sands that come in a variety of shades, including jet-black, white, shell and pebbled covered stretches all edged by crystalline waters in hues ranging from emerald green to turquoise.
Today brings the opportunity to discover the unspoiled western landscapes of Milos, traveling in a luxury 4X4 vehicle to reach remote areas that are inaccessible by standard vehicles. Just a few of the highlights include the famous Moon Beach, also known as Sarakiniko. This dazzling moon-like terrain features striking white chalky rocks that edge brilliant turquoise waters, ideal for swimming and cliff-jumping. Visit an impressive volcanic cave and venture over dirt roads that bring awe-inspiring views of the island. You’ll also stop to swim at Agathia beach and enjoy a picnic on its secluded sands. The last stop in Empourios along the seafront is optional, an ideal place to enjoy local specialties in a traditional taverna.
An island that nearly everyone is familiar with, Santorini is next on the agenda. As you glide across those sparkling sapphire waters into the port, viewing the dramatically steep caldera is sure to be an experience you’ll never forget. Enjoy the rest of the day relaxing or taking in some of the sights at your leisure, perhaps a photo tour of some of the most alluring spots, from the ancient wonders of the prehistoric site of Akrotiri to whitewashed Oia village with its narrow, winding streets, awe-inspiring cliff and caldera views or colorful stretches of sand at Red beach. There are plenty of lovely blue-domed churches to capture against a backdrop of the nearly always bright blue skies as well.
Experience those incredible views of Santorini from the water by joining a sea kayaking tour. You’ll get expert instruction before paddling behind your experienced guide, following the south coast as you gaze out at the picturesque beaches and steep cliffs. Enjoy a break at one of the enticing coves, swimming or snorkeling through the crystalline water. You’ll enjoy an iconic view of the caldera and Faros lighthouse on the southern tip of the island too. A sit-down lunch and snack are both included to help you keep your energy levels up, although the views are sure to keep you motivated.
Your next ferry ride will bring you to glamourous Mykonos, home to beautiful beaches and famous for its nightlife scene that attracts superyachts and supermodels. With the rest of the day yours, enjoy a refreshing dip in the cerulean sea or treat yourself to some indulgent shopping in town. You’ll find plenty of high-end designer names here like Louis Vuitton and you might just bump elbows with some of the rich and famous too. You’ll find jewelry, local art, leather goods, handmade accessories and much more. Afterward enjoy sipping tropical cocktails while watching the sunset and dining under the stairs at one of the many outstanding restaurants.
Enjoy a full day of sailing through the Cyclades, cruising on a yacht from Mykonos to visit the uninhabited isles of Delos and Rhenia. Along the way you’ll enjoy a stop to swim or snorkel in a secluded beach cove. The excursion can be customized, adding an extra stop for swimming or for a guided tour of Delos’ sacred archaeological site. UNESCO-protected, it’s filled with fascinating ruins, primarily dating to the 5th-century BC, though some are even older than that. You’ll be able to stroll through, marveling at the temples, statues, mosaics and a theater. Back onboard, feed your appetite with a light lunch, complete with Greek salad, paired with Greek wine, beer or soft drinks.
Catch your flight to Athens in the morning or at mid-day, returning to enjoy the capital city as you wish. You might want to wander through the ancient Agora, walking in the footsteps of ancient Greeks like Plato and Socrates. This was central public square during their time, not only a marketplace but a center for industry, religious activity and government. As you stroll, enjoy a view of the Acropolis, stopping to enjoy the aromatic herb garden and flowers and perhaps some of that irresistible Greek coffee and great people watching. There’s also a museum with finds from 5,000 years of Athens’ history, including a child’s potty seat.
Departure day is here. After breakfast this morning, it’s time to meet your private transfer to return to Athens International Airport for your flight home or wherever your travels might take you. If you’d like to continue your vacation, here or somewhere else, be sure to contact our travel experts to find out how we can help.
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