Naxos & Santorini: walking trip
Discover two of the most beautiful islands of the Cycladen group in one trip!
In Naxos you explore the highest mountain of the area: Zas. From its summit you enjoy breathtaking views of the sea of olives around you that is in sharp contrast with the deep blue Aegean Sea. Naxos is an island of contrasts: a lively town and beaches and a rural countryside where life is still very traditional.
Santorini is probably the most photogenic place of Greece. The steep cliffs with layers in all colors are the result of an explosion of the Thera volcano thousands of years ago. In the flooded caldera of Santorini there is still volcanic activity, as you can see during your visit to the Kammeni Islands. White washed villages on the cliffs, interesting ancient sites and excellent wines, guarantee a perfect stay. And what is better than to discover this unique landscape on foot?
Itinerary Expand itinerary Collapse itinerary
Day 1: Arrive on Naxos
Arrival at Athens Airport and transfer to the port of Piraeus from where you leave by ferry, late afternoon, to Naxos. The ferry takes 5,5 hrs and you arrive in Naxos around midnight. In case your flight does not allow traveling to Naxos on the same day, you have to book an extra night in Athens and you travel to Naxos the next day in the early morning.
Villages along the way: Naxos Town
Day 2: Walk from Chalki to Melanes
You take a taxi or public bus to Chalki, located in the center of the Tragea plain. Today you explore this fertile inner land with olive groves and rich vegetation. There are some olive trees that are over thousand years old! You walk on cobbled paths via the Venetian Fortress Ano Kastro onto an ancient marble quarry where you find a 10m height statue of an unfinished Kouros from the 6th century BC! The walk ends in the nearby village of Melanes, where you take a taxi or a public bus back to Naxos town.
Challenge: 10 km, 150m climb, 150m descent, 3,5 hours
Villages along the way: Chalki, Pano Potamia, Melanes, Kourounochori
Day 3: Walk to Summit of Mt.Zas
Today´s walk starts at Filoti, a small village that you reach by taxi or public bus. From this village, built at the foothills of Mt. Zas, you start your walk to the summit of this legendary mountain. You may witness the cave in which, according the legend, Zeus -the father of all the gods- was nursed by an eagle. After your descend, you can optionally continue the walk to Apiranthos. From Apiranthos you may walk back via the saddle of Mt. Fanari to Filoti; a beautiful walk with breathtaking views!
Challenge: 13 km or 19 km, 500m or 900m climb, 500m or 900m descent, 4,5 or 7 hours
Villages along the way: Filoti, Apiranthos
Day 4: From Naxos to Santorini
You travel from Naxos to Santorini. The ferry usually departs around noon and arrives 3 hours later in Santorini. In the morning you may visit the Castle in Naxos (Chora) and also visit the museum. Or you can relax on the tempting sandy beach of Agios Georgios. The approach of Santorini by ferry is really unforgettable. You enter the submersed crater of this old volcano and will be impressed by the steep coloured cliffs and the whitewashed villages on top. It is said that the Minoan civilization disappeared suddenly at about the same time as the volcanic eruption, 3.600 years ago, or was this eruption the beggining for the legend of Atlantis?
Villages along the way: Naxos Chora, Akrotiri
Day 5: Walk from Perissa to Akrotiri
A transfer will take you to Perissa from where you start climbing, via an old path, up to a windy ridge. This part is one of the very few places that still exists from before the devastating volcanic outburst. You walk up to Ancient Thira: the capital of the island in Ancient and Roman times. The location is really fantastic! Then you descend walking another old path to the quiet inner parts of the island. You walk through vineyards (Santorini produces top class wines!) and along picturesque villages. Through this landscape of volcanic ashes and along the black beach you walk back to Akrotiri village.
Challenge: 16 km, 500m climb, 480m descent, 6 hours
Villages along the way: Perissa, Emporio, Vlychada, Akrotiri
Day 6: Walk from Fira to Oia
You travel by public bus to Fira, the capital of Santorini. Here you can explore the narrow alleys of this whitewashed town, built on the top of the volcanic cliffs. It houses a couple of interesting museums, such as the museum of prehistoric Thira and the Archaeological Museum. In the afternoon you make the renowned walk from Fira to Oia. Along the walk you will enjoy fabulous views of the lagoon and the spectacular cliffs, with its massive drops. Most of the walk is through a really nice wide mule-path. Sure you will make loads of photos during this walk along this scenic Santorini coastline. From Oia you have a transfer back to the hotel.
Challenge: 11 km, 270m climb, 350m descent, 3 hours
Villages along the way: Santorini, Imerovigli, Oia
Day 7: Travel from Santorini to Athens
A last free morning in Akrotiri at leisure before you are takenby the hotel owners to Santorini port, where you will take a comfortable and modern ferry to Piraeus. The journey to Piraeus is about 8 hours long. Upon arrival, you will have an organized transfer by taxi to your centrally located hotel in Athens.
Villages along the way: Akrotiri, Athens
Day 8: Departure
Depending on your flight departure today, you may have time to visit the Acropolis and the fabulous Acropolis Museum before you go by metro or bus to the airport for your flight departure.
Villages along the way: Athens