This walking holiday starts on the Greek island of Naxos and continues, island hopping around the islands of the Small Cyclades, ending at the notorious island of Santorini.
Naxos is the largest and most diverse island of the Cyclades. You’ll hike mountains, valleys and plateaus. There will be lots to see during your walks: springs, rivers, caves, small villages, old chapels, towers, statues, local wildlife, unique customs and cultural happenings. And Naxos is home of the longest sandy beaches in the Aegean Sea.
South of Naxos lies a group of small islands called the Small Cyclades; Amorgos, Iraklia, Koufonisia, Donousa. These islands have been very isolated until recently, so they still remain unspoilt. They’re a small haven of peace where you can find Greek hospitality and traditional culture.
Santorini (or Thira) is one of the most sought after holiday destinations for a good reason! It will take your breath away with its white Cycladic houses lining the cliff tops, the amazing views to the Caldera and Nea Kameni (the volcano), the spectacular sunsets, the excavated ancient cities, the black and red beaches. Few places in the world combine such amazing sceneries, beautiful beaches, ancient cities, gastronomical food, fabulous wine… and an active volcano!
This walking holiday in Greece has an eco focus! Your hosts will inform you about the unique flora and endemic and common species you’ll encounter while walking around the Greek islands using presentations, photos and observations.
Accommodation on Naxos
During this walking holiday you’ll be staying in a lovely authentic family-run guest-house at a very central location. The owners are very hospitable and helpful and known to provide the most delicious breakfasts. You’ll receive full details on booking.
Walking on Naxos
Naxos and Small Cyclades walking holiday itinerary
Flexible itineraries are available based on the needs of our guests. We can organise a more challenging or a more relaxed-pace itinerary offering you more time to relax and enjoy the sea and sun of the Cyclades. 7, 10 and 14 day itineraries are offered.
Solo travellers are welcome. It’s always more fun to walk with a group of like-minded travellers.
Day 1 – Arrival. You are met at the port or airport and taken to your guesthouse. Relax on the beach, briefing on our itinerary, history and culture of the island. Walk the narrow alleys of the old town and the castle reservation. Supper at our favourite local tavern.
Day 2 – A hike from the beautiful village of Apiranthos built at the foot of Mt. Fanari, with its Venetian towers, pretty old two-story houses, marble paved alleys with arches and picturesque squares. While we have a drink we’ll introduce you to the unique biodiversity of the Aegean and the islands of the Cyclades that will definitely make your walks more interesting! We’ll then take the trail to the summit of Fanári and admire the panoramic view of the Cycladic islands.
Continue through impressive landscapes and rock formations towards the villages of Kaloxylos and Chalki. Kaloxylos is one of Naxos most picturesque villages, situated in an area lush with olive, plane and oak trees, well-known for its pretty houses and especially for the rare flowers in their courtyards. Then on towards another beautiful village, Chalki, where we’ll end the day with a delicious supper that the owners prepare with their own organic ingredients.
Day 3 – Today we’ll start our walk from the village of Filoti and walk at the highest peak of the Cyclades, Mount Zas, which stands at an impressive 1,004m. Enjoy stunning, panoramic views of the surrounding land and the deep blue of the Aegean sea. On clear days, you can see all the Cycladic islands that surround Naxos. Zas is an important hideout and nesting place for many migratory and resident birds such as the Griffon vultures which we hope to spot for you!
On the way back we’ll explore the biggest cave on the island with impressive stalagmite structures. We’ll then continue to a shady spot by the water source of Argion, which is an ideal spot for a picnic and enjoying the peace and quiet of nature.
Day 4 – Today we’ll walk from the tranquil village of Koronos through a very remote area of the island, with stunning nature and mountain views. The smell of local herbs will accompany us and depending on the season you’ll be able to gather thyme, oregano, lavender, sage to name a few. Around April and May wild flowers including rare species and orchids are abound. The path will lead us to the beautiful beach of Lionas with its multicoloured pebbles. We’ll reward ourselves with a refreshing swim at its crystal clear waters followed by a delicious supper at one of our favourite fish taverns of the island.
Day 5 – We’ll take the ferry to the pirate island of Amorgos also known from Luc Besson’s movie ‘Big Blue’. We’ll stay at the stunning bay of Aegiali known for its long sandy beaches, picturesque fishing port and by the four traditional villages built at the top of the hills surrounding the bay. Today we’ll walk the circular ancient path, covered with various endemic and local herbs and flowers, around the villages of Tholaria, Stroumbos and Langada. We’ll have supper at the local kafenio and if we are lucky we’ll have the chance to admire the local musical instruments, violin and lauto.
Day 6 – We’ll start the day with breakfast at one of the most scenic ‘horas’ in the Aegean. You’ll walk its narrow streets and can admire its numerous chapels, windmills, castle, picturesque white washed houses. We’ll take the trail towards the monastery of Hozoviotissa. Built into the face of a cliff, it provides a breathtaking view of the sparkling deep blue waters of the Aegean Sea. It is, with no doubt, the pride of Amorgos.
Then we’ll walk along the spine of the island, pass medieval hotels, deserted villages, breathtaking landscapes till we reach the bay of Aegiali. This is our favourite walk on the island. You will be rewarded with a delicious supper at one of the oldest taverns of the island.
Day 7 / 8 – Time to cross to the island of Koufonisi known for its turquoise crystal clear waters. Today you’ll have the chance to relax and explore that coastal sceneries, magnificent bays and beaches of the island.
Day 9 – Today we’ll reach the most unspoilt island of the Small Cyclades; Iraklia and the fishing port of Ag. Georgios with its colourful fishing boats. Iraklia has a population of 80 people who are known for their hospitality. We’ll walk towards the highest peak of the island, one of the few places where Griffon vultures live and breed. We’ll descend towards the main village where we’ll enjoy home made food at Maria’s place. You’ll be surprised by the quality of the food and ingredients from Maria’s garden.
Day 10 – We’ll take the ancient path that crosses the island inland, passes the deserted village of Ag. Athanasios till we reach the largest cave in the Cyclades, Ag. Ioannis cave. You’ll be surprised by the stalactite formations inside.
After exploring the cave we’ll continue towards a solitary bay with a wonderful beach that you can only reach by boat or on foot. We’ll have a swim, relax by the beach and enjoy a picnic. In the evening we’ll continue around the island towards the fishing port. Supper at our favourite fish tavern of the island where you’ll enjoy fresh fish caught by the owner.
Day 11 – Ferry to Santorini. Today we’ll take the trail that starts from the picturesque port of Fira and follows the rim of the caldera to Oia, passing the picturesque villages of Firostefani and Imerovigli. This hike is a spectacular, cliff-top walk with incredible views of the caldera, the volcano and the deep blue of the Aegean sea. This is the view that Santorini is so famous about and you will find out that you cannot get enough of it.
We’ll aim to reach Oia on time to watch the world famous sunset and then we will have supper at one of our favourite taverns where you will have the chance to try Santorini’s delicious dishes prepared with the local fine ingredients and also taste the local wine.
Day 12 – We’ll start the hike from the traditional reservation of Emborio. The trail looks like a gorge as it goes up in between two hills and underneath two arches. As you admire the beautiful vineyards on the slopes towards Akrotiri you will soon reach the 567m summit of Profítis Ilias. We’ll stop at the monastery for a snack and a rest.
We’ll then walk through a magnificent mountainous landscape towards ancient Thera, a must see! The excavations show remnants of houses, a small theatre, Roman baths, cisterns, a holy road and more, dated from the 9th century AD until the Roman time. We will finally take the path leading to the beach of Perissa, admiring the spectacular views and we’ll end the day with a beautiful supper by the beach.
Day 13 – We’ll take the boat to the volcano and walk the short, dusty path to the active crater. You will be stepping on the newest volcanic island in the East Mediterranean and you will see large pieces of magma. Next, we will head towards the hot springs where you can enjoy swimming in the sulphurous springs of the volcano.
We then continue to the small island of Thirasia which, although so close to Thira, remains totally unspoilt from tourism. You can choose to stay by the beach or walk the 150 large and sloping steps to the village of Manolas to admire the magnificent views towards the caldera and Thira.
Day 14 – Today you can relax and explore the island’s numerous beaches such as the red or black beach. You can also visit the ancient city of Akrotiri which was buried after a volcanic explosion and has now been excavated. There are many options and we’ll be happy to advice you. We’ll end the day with a farewell supper with live Greek music and fine wine.
Dates and Availability
This holiday runs from March until November, apart from mid July to the end of August when it’s too hot. In March Spring blossoms are already out. April to mid June is great for wild flowers, sunshine and moderate temperatures. The Easter period is recommended as it’s one of the most important celebrations in Greece and you’d have the chance to experience traditional feasts and gatherings. Then from September until the end of November there are warm seas, gentle weather and autumn flowers. Grapes and olive harvests are in September-November.
7-day, 10-day or 14-day walking holiday staying at a traditional family-run guesthouses:
All prices are per person for two people sharing a standard double room.
- 7 nights – Low Season €682 | High Season €737
- 10 nights – Low Season €974 | High Season €1,052
- 14-day package – Low Season €1,364 | High Season €1,474
Supplement for single rooms:
- 7 nights – Low Season €90 | High Season €90
- 10 nights – Low Season €129 | High Season €129
- 14 nights – Low Season €180 | High Season €180
Group and special offers are available.
Please contact the holiday provider, through the contact form below, for more information.