The Greek islands have much more to offer than most would think: archaeological treasures, history, culture, dramatic landscapes overlooking an azure coloured sea and, of course, delicious food. Our week starts on the beautiful island of Naxos, before heading to Santorini and Paros. Exploring the irresistible island of Santorini on foot will certainly be the highlight of our week. Hopping from one wonderful island to the other, we enjoy a relaxed week of gentle walks through picturesque villages, lush valleys and sandy beaches.
The group flight usually arrives into Athens in the early evening and will be met and transferred to the start hotel in Rafina. Land Only clients should aim to arrive at the hotel this afternoon. In the evening our guide will hold a short meeting to discuss the plan for the following day, to give advice on the local area and to answer any questions.
Accommodation: Avra Hotel or similar
In the early morning, we catch the ferry to Naxos. The ferry will leave the port at 7.25am and takes about 5.5 hours. On board the ferry there is a selection of restaurants and cafes which will serve food and drinks throughout the journey. After checking in at our hotel, we will take a walk to explore the main town, Hora, a Venetian Castello town. The market area is a delight to wander through, with its craft shops, chapels and quaint restaurants. On the islet of Palatia stands the impressive Portara, ancient marble gateway, the entrance to the remains of the temple of Apollo.
Walk: Distance 2km Ascent 50m Descent 50m Time: 3 hours
Accommodation: Hotel Aeolis or similar
Today we trek the lush valley of Tragea, famous for its ancient olive and citrus groves. It is a great opportunity to discover the most authentic part of Naxos, where picturesque villages and churches punctuate our walk. We will wander along the ancient path in the middle of the Naxian marble quarries until we reach Kouros, the gigantic statue from the 5th century B.C. which was damaged during transportation and then abandoned ever since, lying under trees in the Melanes Valley.
Walk: Distance 8km Ascent 200m Descent 200m Time: 5 hours
Accommodation: Hotel Aeolis or similar
Today there is a free morning to explore Naxos. In the early afternoon, we take the ferry to Santorini (approximately 2.5 hrs). Santorini (locally known as Thira) is one of the most famous islands in the world. Known mainly for its beautiful beaches, it is a remnant of a volcanic cone whose top was blown off. A huge eruption (estimated 1650 BC) gave it its crescent shape and many speculate that it was the location of the legendary lost Atlantis. This beautiful island has a lot to offer to walkers, including magnificent views of the Mediterranean. In the late afternoon, we will have a walk around the town of Fira to enjoy the stunning views of the caldera.
Walk: Distance 2 km Ascent 100m Descent 100m Time: 2 hours
Accommodation: Hotel Sunrise or similar
The Six mile 'Cliff Trail' is a spectacular walk 400 m high above the Volcanic Caldera, a photographer's delight and not too challenging. Views out over the Aegean as far as the eye can see are virtually ever present as we wind gently up and down to the pretty village of Oia, home to many artists, galleries, boutiques and cafes. There is time to explore, relax and soak up the culture before we transfer back to Fira.
Walk: Distance 10km Ascent 300m Descent 300m Max Time: 5 hours
Accommodation: Hotel Sunrise or similar
This morning have free time in Santorini. Optional extras include a visit by bus to the buried city of Acrotiri, time at the famous black beaches of Kamari and/or a visit to the prehistoric museum of Thero in town. Leaving Santorini in the afternoon, we board the ferry to Paros, the journey is approximately 3 hours.
Accommodation: Hotel Pandrossos or similar
In the morning we visit the cathedral of Paros, built in the 4th century A.D., a masterpiece of Byzantine architecture and a relic of early Christianity. We take a bus to reach the heart of the island and the village of Lefkes, where we join the Old Byzantine path that runs all the way to the east coast of Paros. The route is believed to be about 1000 years old and used to traverse the entire island. Today’s route will pass through beautiful Cycladic villages as well as mediaeval villages. In the afternoon we take a bus back to Parikia.
Walk: Distance 7km Ascent 100m Descent 350m Time: 4 hours
Accommodation: Hotel Pandrossos or similar
We take the ferry back to Piraeus or Rafina (approx.5hrs) and transfer to Athens airport where the trip ends. Those on the group flights will be transferred to the airport for the return flight to London.
Please note: the ferry port can change depending on the season and you might return to Rafina.
During your holiday you stay at the following hotels. If you'd like to extend your time at any of these or, if you'd like to enhance your stay with an upgraded room, just let us know at the time of booking.
Our aim is to provide holidays that are unbeatable for choice and flexibility. We've listed our most popular travel options below, however you aren't limited to these - we can tailor-make virtually any holiday to suit.
Here at Headwater we thrive on feedback from our customers. It's the only way we can continue to develop, and where necessary improve, our services and ensure our holidays continue to be the best they can be. As this is a relatively new holiday, we don't yet have any customer reviews available from our customers, but here are the comments that have been received from previous Exodus travellers.
I had never been to Greece before and decided that this trip might be a good place to start. I wasn’t disappointed. It was well organised with walks of just the right distance and variety for me and in good company. All hotels were comfortable although plumbing a little variable! Thanos was an excellent guide and insured that we got the most out of the trip. Nothing was too much trouble. He was particularly good at organising mealtimes; choosing excellent restaurants and swiftly calculating everybody’s individual bill at the end. I thought all three islands were beautiful but particularly Paros . Santorini is definitely worth a trip for sensational views and a great walk but not somewhere I would return as just too busy in the main centres -a forest of selfie sticks! My only regret is not spending a few days in Athens at the beginning or end but all round a superb trip. Thank you Exodus. I’ve already booked the next one!
A really enjoyable, relaxing trip. Accommodation was excellent in all places, our guide Cecile was fantastic, Greek food is wonderful, and the walks were brilliant. Everything was well organized. I hadn't been to the Greek Islands before, and this tour was the perfect introduction to this beautiful corner of the world. Santorini was overflowing with tourists (there were three cruise ships there when we arrived, and the chaos at the ferry terminal--which is not where the cruise ships go--was truly something to experience) but everyone should visit this stunning and unique island once in their lifetime. The walk on Santorini was incredibly beautiful (although hot--very little shade). Naxos and Paros were more laid back, also stunningly beautiful, and exactly what I dreamed the Greek islands might be like--I took SO many photos! You have some time to explore on your own. The walks are not difficult, and the pace matches the group--steady but no rush. You need sturdy walking shoes for sure, but not boots. If you often walk with a pole, bring it as paths are rocky and uneven in many places. You do spend a fair few hours on ferries but that's part of getting around between islands, so bring a book and enjoy the experience. I'm sure all groups are different, but ours was a really nice mix of people from the UK, NZ, Australia, and the US, with a median age in the 50-65 range. If you're even thinking about this trip, don't hesitate--just book it.
Despite a last minute itinerary alteration due to ferry timetable changes, thus was a well-planned, wonderfully lead week mixing somewhat challenging walks with sightseeing and wonderful fellow travellers. We sampled many local dishes in lovely tavernas and village eateries and enjoyed some very amusing moments. A great week.
A chance to see the parts of Naxos, Santorini and Paros that maybe most don't see. The trip ran smoothly, expertly organised by Cecile, and the weather was beautiful, late 20's. I travelled on my own and joined a lovely and friendly group of 15 (3 couples, and the rest of us single, aged between 40 and 70). We chose to have most meals together. All hotels had a swimming pool, all 3 star and air conditioned. My favourite hotel was on Naxos and it definitely had the best breakfast. A lovely traditional island with lots going on, a good beach, excellent restaurants and beautiful countryside. I would definitely go back to Naxos. Santorini was beautiful with fantastic views, but very steep, noisy, expensive and busy, especially when a cruise ship arrived! My knees struggled a bit on the uphill parts of this, the longest, walk. I cheated and left early for a bus back to the hotel. Definitely glad I went by cable car both ways to the boat trip too! Most walked down and got the cable car back up, which wasn't scary by the way, and avoided using the few little donkeys still having to walk up and down the hundreds of steps. Paros was delightful and relaxing, a sleepy traditional island with beautiful beaches and countryside, lovely shops and restaurants. If you want to shop wait until you get to Paros, especially for clothes, in the lovely and cool sheltered streets. I arrived home from this holiday pleasantly tired and very happy, definitely one of my favourite trips.
I rarely give ten out of ten, but this came close. The sun shone every day, I slepped well and didn't put on weight. The walks were just right, leisurely as it said, I didn't want a route march, I do enough of that. The group was assorted, what more can I say ! J
A well balanced trip that gives a taste of 3 contrasting islands. Travelling in April proved to be an ideal opportunity to see a different side to Greece - quieter, greener and a comfortable temperature for walking.
This was a trip that stimulated all the senses, from the wonderful colours of the wildflowers on the walks and the blues and whites of the pristine villages we passed through, to the tastes and smells of freshly cooked seafood at harbour restaurants. Apart from all the experiences described in the trip notes we were lucky enough to have some added bonuses. These included a fantastic bazouki recital and Greek dancing in the old town hall at Naxos which included unlimited drinks, a trip to the astonishing excavations at Akritiri on Santorini and, as the ferry arrived early at Piraeus on the last day, a visit to the Acropolis in Athens. Our last night's meal turned into a celebration when we were surrounded by a wedding party! This was definitely a good time of the year to do this trip, a pleasant walking temperature of 19 to 25 degrees Celsius, everything looking fresh and generally not to busy (except for the main town in Santorini when the cruise ships were in). A wonderful Spring break with great company!
Walking was lovely and easy with enough challenges to enjoy. Group was nice. Food was amazing. Thano our leader was brilliant. So knowledgeable and helpful. He knew his history, culture, flora, fauna and all the people we met around and about!! He cared for the environment.
A fabulous way to see the islands, largely unspoilt fortunately despite their popularity. We were transported outside of the “tourist” area to ancient walking paths and walked through mediaeval villages. Our excellent Greek guide was able to fill us in with very interesting historical/local information to really get a picture of life in these islands.
Really enjoyable vacation. Cecile was a wonderful tour guide and all the three islands that we visited on the trip were lovely. I liked Paros the most but only by a hair. Naxos and Santorini were beautiful and was happy that we got to visit Akrotiri in Santorini. All very scenic and relaxed.
You can be confident that our pricing includes all the standard requirements of your holiday and many additional extras. Always ensure that you are comparing like for like when booking your holiday.
Find out about The Headwater Price Promise to ensure you're getting the very best value for money.
This 7 night guided walking holiday includes:
All accommodation (see below)
All transport and listed activities
Tour leader throughout
Flights from London (if booking incl. flights)
Arrival & departure transfers
How to book:
|29th Mar 2020||US$1549||Tour only: US$1549||Check availability|
|5th Apr 2020||US$1749||Tour only: US$1749||Check availability|
|26th Apr 2020||US$1749||Tour only: US$1749||Check availability|
|10th May 2020||US$1749||Tour only: US$1749||Check availability|
|17th May 2020||US$1679||Tour only: US$1679||Check availability|
|7th Jun 2020||US$1779||Tour only: US$1779||Check availability|
|21st Jun 2020||US$1679||Tour only: US$1679||Check availability|
|6th Sep 2020||US$1779||Tour only: US$1779||Check availability|
|20th Sep 2020||US$1779||Tour only: US$1779||Check availability|
|4th Oct 2020||US$1779||Tour only: US$1779||Check availability|
|11th Oct 2020||US$1779||Tour only: US$1779||Check availability|
|18th Oct 2020||US$1749||Tour only: US$1749||Check availability|
|25th Oct 2020||US$1749||Tour only: US$1749||Check availability|
|1st Nov 2020||US$1749||Tour only: US$1749||Check availability|
This holiday is operated by our sister company, Exodus
7 nights in 3-star hotels with en suite rooms
3 full days and 2 half days walking on 3 islands
Travel by public transport, boat/ferry and coach
Low altitude throughout
Due to the tailor-made nature of our holidays, we need a little more information in order for us to check availability for Walking on the Greek Islands. Simply complete the form below (fields marked * are mandatory) and a member of our sales team will contact you (when it's most convenient for you) to provide availability information, travel options and an accurate price. Of course there's no obligation, but if you do wish to proceed with a booking they will be on-hand to assist you throughout the process.
Alternatively, you can call our sales team on 1-800-267-3347 to discuss your requirements in more detail.