Cyclades & Gods

16-Day Highlights Holiday Itinerary - Greece

Prices from £1,298 pp

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View day-by-day

Duration16 days / 15 nights (flexible)


ItineraryAthens - Galaxidi - Gialova - Nafplion - Naxos

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With ancient ruins, tasting traditional cuisine and plenty of outdoor adventures, this Greece itinerary explores many of the country’s highlights in just 16 days. You’ll discover the historic city of Athens, cook up a treat in Galaxidi, cycle and siesta in Gialova, taste locally made ouzo and finish your adventure by relaxing on the beaches at Naxos.

What's included

  • Accommodation – price based on 2 people sharing
  • Airport/harbour transfers in Athens and Naxos
  • Excursions as described below
  • Car hire and insurance – prices may vary depending on departure dates

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Location map

Your day-by-day itinerary

Ancient Athens

While many travelers stay in the cozy but touristic Plaka, we opt for the less busy, hip Psiri district where the Athenians also like to come. You sleep in a trendy hotel but are still within walking distance of Plaka and Monastiraki. You wouldn’t know it now, but this originally working-class neighborhood used to be the slum of Athens, it’s changed a lot and is now full of street art, old craft shops, vintage shops, atmospheric restaurants and trendy bars. Besides walking, the metro is the perfect way to explore Athens and is even adorned with archeological finds discovered during its construction. Head to the parliament building or the Acropolis Museum, one of the highlights of Athens. At the foot of the Acropolis is the Dionysus Theater, the oldest theater in Europe.

ruins and forest above buildings

Delicious Delphi

Today you’ll leave modernity behind and head to the Greek countryside, enjoying stunning views form the winding mountain roads towards Galaxidi. For the next few nights you will sleep in a simple but attractive room in a Greek mansion, looking out over the mountains or the sea from your balcony. After you’ve settled in, take it easy and go for a swim in one of the nearby fishing coves. Within walking distance of the hotel you will find several restaurants, cafes and shops. In the evening you can take a walk to the marina to end the day with a cool drink on one of the terraces.

a woman takes a selfie in from of some greek suins

After breakfast this morning, make your way to Delphi and with a bit of luck you’ll see the mist slowly clearing above the crumbling pillars. You have now entered the mystical heart of Greek culture, where ancient Greeks believed was the centre of the world. Following in the footsteps of the pilgrims, you’ll gradually ascend the site to the remains of the Temple of the Oracle. In the afternoon we will arrange a cooking workshop at your hotel, where you will prepare a spanakopita, a typical Greek savoury pie filled with vegetables. Once ready,  you will be left to you to enjoy this delicious, well-earnt meal.

Greek ruins sit above a green valley

Siestas in Gialova

Just above Pylos is the small seaside town of Gialova, an oasis of peace where you can fully let go and treat yourself to the good life. Gialova has a colorful bay with clear blue water and a golden sandy beach. Today you’ll check into your  apartment that is about a ten-minute walk from the beach.  In the evening, walk down to promenade, where you will find authentic Greek tavernas and terraces with a sea view.

sunset over a beach with people in the sea

Jump on a bicycle to explore the area around Gialova, cycling along the lagoon and stopping at different photo opportunities along the way. Eventually you’ll climb a little higher into the hills, where you’ll discover views of the lagoons with their sandy beaches. Be sure to keep an eye out for the number of different bird species in the lagoon – even flamingos are a regular here. You can also rent boats from the harbour and explore the lagoon from the water, or swim at one of the waterfalls that are less than a ten minute drive away.

colourful boats sit in a harbour

Sipping Ouzo in Nafplion

Arrive in Nafplion feeling like the first king of Greece who resided here in the mid-nineteenth century, before it became a popular seaside resort for the inhabitants of Athens. In addition to the colourful Italian-style buildings, you will also see Turkish mosques and fountains. Walk through the streets full of shops and tavernas to the harbor, where you can see the Twin Fortresses built along the rocky coast to protect the region. Check into your traditional guesthouse, perfectly located in the heart of the old city, and take the evening to relax.

a boat in a harbour with the sun

The next day you are free to explore the northeast of the Peloponnese by car. Get up early to get to the Lion Gate of Mycenae and the Amphitheater of Epidaurus before the crowds.  Not many travellers know it, but in Nafplion you can visit one of the oldest ouzo factories in the country and this evening you’ll be doing just that! This typical Greek anise drink has been traditionally distilled here by the same family for five generations. The friendly owner will give you a short but interesting tour of the factory  and tell you more about the history and production of ouzo. Of course there is also a tasting afterwards and you can enjoy the Greek hospitality with a small snack. Yamas (cheers)!

a line of drinks on a bar

Relax on Naxos

Today you’ll take to the sea and sail to Naxos, the largest Cyclades island, where we’ll arrange a transfer for you to your family run hotel just south of Naxos town. Within walking distance you will find the most beautiful sandy beaches, which is most people’s main reason to come to Naxos. In the evening, you have a variety of Greek cuisine at your mercy, from the meaty delight of pita gyros, freshly prepared fish or a salad bursting with locally-sourced feta.

Relax on Naxos

You’ll have the next couple of days free to do as your please, so after breakfast this morning, put your feet up, relax and unwind on the wide sandy beach that’s just minutes from your hotel. Sit with a cooling iced coffee in hand, feeling like a Greek God and maybe even treat yourself to a Loukoumadis – a kind of Greek donut. The following day, head out to discover the beauty this island has and take a fulfilling hike. Unlike most other parts of the Cyclades, the interiors of Naxos are rich with vegetation, making it a hiker’s paradise with stunning views throughout. Rent a car and drive into the interior in search of small, traditional villages, including Filoti with a cozy village square and Apiranthos where backgammon is often played in the street.

an aerial shot of the sea and mountains
David on a rickshaw

Speak to our Greece specialist, David

"For me, it's the hidden sandy beaches that made me fall in love with Greece. Everything is so picturesque and the local hospitality is just so welcoming."

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