3 islands, legendary Peloponnese sites
guided with vehicle support
Tour destinations: Athens, Hydra island, Spetses island, Poros island, Epidavros, Nafplio
The Argo Saronic region in the southeast corner of the Peloponnese Peninsula is where everything encourages you to pedal at a gradual pace, or siga-siga (slow, slow) as the Greeks say. We bicycle, swim, smell the lemons, shop for quality souvenirs and take enlightening archaeology tours of legendary antiquities.
The tour introduces you to three islands, two World Heritage Sites, the incredibly lovely city of Nafplio which you will rate your favorite. The region is known for its Nemean wines where wine-making from ancient days continues to inspire and delight visitors.
During the tour you will also get in the kitchen to learn how to make a traditional Greek meal, and then you will get to eat it. There will also be a Greek spirits night of liqueur flavors you’ve probably never tried before and whose tastes are unique to Greece. Learn a few handy phrases during a one hour Greek language lesson, and then you can greet the locals.
We recommend you take the Athens Add-on which precedes the Saronic Jewels spring tour and follows the fall tour. You will immerse yourself in the culture of Athens and Attica region with exciting activities: Historic Central Athens bike tour (90% traffic free), Acropolis & Acropolis Museum with professional guide, Temple of Poseidon coastal cycling, walking food tour of Greek cuisine.
|2023 Dates||June 4-13 and Sept 23 – Oct 2|
||Athens, see Add-on tab|
|Arrival transfer||See Extras tab|
|Tour Start Point||Athens|
|Tour End Point||Athens|
|Total Mileage||327 km or 203 miles|
||767 feet 234 m|
|Rating||Moderate – see Rating System|
Day 1 Athens
Welcome to Historic Central Athens for the first day of the tour. The meeting point of the tour is Acropolis pedestrian walkway. Today is for relaxing, adjusting to jet lag, meeting fellow cyclists on the tour and getting fitted for your road bike and test riding it on the Acropolis walkway. Welcome Dinner.
Day 2 Hydra island & Spetses island
Early morning transfer to Piraeus port for the two-hour hydrofoil transfer to car-free Hydra, an elegant island attracting high-end artists whose paintings, jewelry and clothes fill the local shops. As Hydra is also bike-free, the day’s activity is a hike up to a monastery offering tremendous views. Late afternoon sea transfer to adorable Spetses island. Hydra hike 6 km, 3.7 miles, from sea level to 1561 feet, 476 meters
Day 3 Spetses island
Spetses is so small you can circumnavigate the island by bike in a couple of hours. At a half-way point enjoy swimming at a beach with a marvelous sea cave accessible where pirates hid out. Optional visit to the Laskarina Bouboulinas Museum – she was a national heroine who commanded her own fleet during the Greek Revolution 24 km, 15 miles
Day 4 Poros island
Return to the Peloponnese mainland by water taxi and hug the coast eastward on mostly flat terrain to reach Galatas, the port opposite Poros, from where you take a ten minute ferry to the island. Put on your aprons for dinner to prepare your meal in a traditional Greek cooking class. 57 km, 35 miles
Day 5 Epidavros
Hop on the ferry again back to the Peloponnese mainland to bike to the serene coastal town of Epidavros. The route has spectacular views overlooking the Aegean Sea. Pit stop at the LIttle Epidavros Theatre. 39.30 km, 24.40 miles
Day 6 Nafplio
A gradual climb brings us to Ancient Epidavros, the 3rd century BC outdoor theatre seating 13,000 spectators with impeccable acoustics. Epidavros was the most famous healing center in ancient Greece, focusing on mind, body and spirit. Continue biking to Nafplio, the first capital of modern Greece, and the prettiest city in the Peloponnese. 48.50 km, 29.80 miles
Day 7 Nafplio
Bike Nafplio to Ancient Mycenae on mostly flat back road. Tour Mycenae with a professional guide. After lunch cycle back to Nafplio. Pre-dinner wine tasting of famous Nemean wines. 46.60 km, 30 miles
Day 8 Kalamaki Beach
One hour vehicle transfer to Ancient Nemea, one of the four sites where athletic games were held (the most famous being Olympia), and the one with the finest stadium entrance. From Nemea cycle to Ancient Corinth, the Roman ruins where St. Paul preached. Photo op in front of the Corinth columns. Home stretch leg to the seaside hotel on Kalamaki Beach. Partake in our Greek Spirits Night! 48.60km, 28 miles
Day 9 Athens
Cross the Corinth Canal, the waterway that turned the Peloponnese peninsula into an island in 1893. Cycle the old national highway, hugging the sea to reach the ferry crossing to Salamina island. Lunch at Salamina’s fish market. Then cycle to the second ferry that takes us to Piraeus port. Farewell Dinner. 63.30 km 39 miles
Day 10 Departures
Athens Add-On, 4 Nights
Day 1: Athens – Arrive and Welcome Drink
Day 2: Historic Central Athens Bike Tour & Acropolis + Acropolis Museum
Start the morning with a three hour Athens Bike Tour that is 90% traffic free stopping at 25 points of interest, including famous sites like the changing of the guard at Parliament and unheralded sites like the Pynx where democracy was born and Socrates’ prison. Bike tour is 11 km, 6.8 miles. After lunch in an outdoor taverna at Plaka visit the incomparable Acropolis with a professional archaeology guide and the Acropolis Museum holding the monument’s treasures.
Day 3: Athens – Temple of Poseidon
We take an excursion to the magnificent Temple of Poseidon in Sounion at the southern tip of Attica Peninsula. Lord Byron carved his name in the marble but the graffiti cannot mar the temple’s geometric precision nor its stupendous views. Bring your swimsuit for a dip in the sea before returning to the city. Includes lunch at a seaside taverna. Option to bike from the Acropolis to Sounion, 60 km, 37 miles or vehicle transfer to Vari and bike from there, 42 km, 26 miles
Day 4: Athens –Athens Walking Food Tour
Take a walking tour that immerses you into Greek food, wine, local products, spirits. All things that stimulate the palate. Greek cuisine is one of the healthiest diets on the planet. The gastronomic guide takes you to places you would never know as a foreigner. 4 ½ hours 10:00 – 14:00.
Day 5: depart, end of tour
1420 euros per person for 4 persons based on double occupancy
1680 euros per person for 2 persons based on double occupancy
450 euros for single supplement
Accommodations: 4 nights in 4 star hotel within walking distance of Acropolis with daily breakfast.
Athens Bike Tour: 3 hours, hybrid bike, helmet, water bottle, front handlebar bag for cellphone, wallet, camera
Acropolis & Acropolis Museum: 3 hour private tour with professional guide, includes entry fees to Acropolis and Acropolis Museum
Temple of Poseidon: full day excursion, road bike, biking guide, vehicle support, entry fees to Temple of Poseidon, helmet, water bottle, front handlebar bag,
Athens Food Tour: 4½ hour walking tour, over 25 tastings at 11 food spots
* Welcome drink
* Breakfasts are included at the Athens hotel.
* three lunches
* no dinners
* All dinners
* Airport transfer on departure, requires minimum 4 persons, maximum 8 persons. See Extras tab
* Travel Insurance. See Extras tab
Cost in euros based on double occupancy
|10 Day Tour
||3150 euros per person
9 nights Accommodations: 3-4 star hotels, primarily family owned and operated, ranging from boutique hotels to seaside upscale hotels. Tasteful, clean, air-conditioned, private bath, abundant hospitality, comfort. All accommodations are standard doubles with option for upgrade. All accommodations serve breakfast, usually buffet style. Tour prices are based on double occupancy. Check single supplement price for a single room.
5 sea transfers: Piraeus to Hydra (hydrofoil), Hydra to Spetses (hydrofoil), Spetses to Kosta port on mainland (water taxi), Galatas port on mainland to Poros (ferry and Poros to Galatas (ferry),
Bikes: Specialized road bike. Triple chain ring, 27 gears, carbon fiber fork. Carbon Tarmac bikes are available as an upgrade for 70 euros a day. Electric bikes are available as an upgrade for 50 euros a day. Regular pedals or toe clips on request. You are welcome to bring your own clip-in pedals and shoes. See Our Bikes and Our Gear
Bike gear: helmet, water bottles, handlebar pouch, odometer
Support vehicle: (“sag wagon”) with bilingual driver who is also a bike mechanic. Vehicle carries spare parts, spare fully pumped wheels, floor pump, ice cooler, water, nutritious snacks, bike tools, first aid kit, day packs, luggage and gives you a lift if you get tired.
Tour Leader / Bike Guide: the Tour Leader handles all the tour logistics and bikes with the group.
* Breakfasts are included at each hotel.
* 8 lunches — you choose from the menu.
* 9 dinners consisting of 2-3 appetizers and salad chosen by us and shared by the group. You are offered an entrée choice, usually a meat, fish or vegetarian dish. Dessert, house wine or beer, water or beverage.
Bike Routes: Options (1) RideWithGPS App tour routes to upload to your iphone or Android with voice narration – request a bike mount (2) GPX tracks to download to your device – bring your own bike mount
Cue sheets and cue sheet holders on request
Maps of the region
Trip packet: useful and interesting information about the regions, packing tips, general travel info for Greece
Archaeology tours: Private one hour archaeology tour with professional licensed guides at Epidavros and Mycenae.
Entrance fees: Entrance fees to Epidavros, Mycenae, Nemea.
Wine Tasting: Nemea wine tasting with local expert
Traditional Greek Cooking Class: takes place in Poros, led by local cook
CycleGreece jersey: short sleeved, rear pockets, locally made
CycleGreece lite backpack: 17” x 13”, 43cm x 33cm
Gratuities & 24% VAT taxes
* Airfare to/from Greece
* Transfers between Athens Airport and Athens — see Extras tab
* Travel insurance — see Extras tab
- Participants are required to sign our Waiver
- Participants are required to agree to the Booking Agreement
- Travel Insurance is required as a condition for participation in a CycleGreece tour
Carbon Road Bike
- Upgrade to a Specialized Tarmac Sport, carbon fiber frame and fork. Cost is 560 euros for an 8 day tour. See Our Bikes and Our Gear for more info
- Travel insurance is required to participate in a CycleGreece tour. For comparative rates see Insure My Trip. Cost of coverage depends on various factors including your state or residence, your age, dates of travel. Travel insurance is not provided for flights booked using frequent flyer mileage. Some policies require booking within 15 days of paying your trip deposit, such as, cancel for any reason or coverage for pre-existing medical conditions.
Airport Transfer On Arrival
- Private transfer from Athens Airport to Athens hotel. You are met at the arrivals exit by one of our team holding a sign with your name on it. We wait for you regardless of how late your plane may arrive. No waiting in taxi or bus lines. 170 euros per transfer for up to 8 persons.
- If you stay in Athens pre or post tour, we can recommend a hotel and book your room. We patronize a range of Athenian hotels in different neighborhoods and different budgets.
An indicative hotel for the Saronic Jewel tour is the elegant Grande Bretagne Hotel in Nafplio
We select the accommodations for guided tours based on quality, comfort, cleanliness, hospitality, location and charm. Most of the hotels on this tour are family owned and operated.
Hotels are included in the tour cost based on double occupancy. A single room entails an additional cost. Standard double rooms are provided but upgrade options are available.
All hotels are dependent on availability. In the event of no occupancy, we patronize comparable accommodations in the same location.
Click to open in Google maps
Overnight destinations and points of interest
BLUE Saronic Jewels overnight destinations
PURPLE Points of interest
RED Athens Add-on destinations
Guided tours require a deposit of 400 euros per person with the balance due 90 days prior to departure.
To make payment, click on the Book Now link which takes you to the secure Aegea Booking page to input your credit card information via PayPal. You may pay with a major credit card or Visa or Mastercard debit card or a PayPal account if you have one. You have the option to pay in euros other currencies. We pay all bank service fees although your credit card company may charge you a foreign transaction fee.
Alternatively, if you are reluctant to pay online, we can take your credit card information by phone. Please contact us to arrange a mutually convenient date and time for us to call you. We can also give you our bank account details if you opt to pay by bank wire transfer which usually has lower fees than those charged by a credit card company .
See details in the Booking Agreement which you must agree as a condition to participation in a CycleGreece tour. Participants are also required to sign a Waiver & Release of Liability.
Saronic Jewels Photo Gallery
Pre & Post Tour Add-Ons
TOUR RATING SYSTEM
FAQ’s FOR GUIDED TOURS