Trip Notes PDF
The Cyclades was our first location to launch SwimTrek in 2003, and now it’s grown to be a popular tour for those looking for that classic SwimTrek experience.
In the ultimate island hopping paradise of the Cyclades, we swim off the beaten track to experience some of the most beautiful scenery, isolated beaches, and dramatic coastlines of the Mediterranean.
You’ll also get to travel in style aboard a 40ft yacht, and get to stay in picture perfect island villages and hotels.
The Greek Cyclades SwimTrek tour is a rewarding experience – and as much as we don’t like to show favouritism, this is definitely one of our flag ship trips!
What's not included?
* This could change according to the selected itinerary based upon the ferry schedule for 2014. See Friday schedule under 'Itinerary & Map' for full details.
You can always jump onto the escort boat at any stage
N.B. The itinerary may vary depending on weather
These temperatures are indicative only and can change on a daily/weekly basis
Equipment to bring along with you
In addition to “normal” daily clothes, you will need to bring the following:
*It is advisable to have a pair of tinted goggles to cater for the sun’s glare off the sea during swims.
Guests have found it is easier to travel with a soft main bag/suitcase due to getting on and off ferries. In addition our main boat being a sailing boat will not have that much space.
Swim Hats, Flippers, Rash vests and Wetsuits
Please note that SwimTrek will supply swim hats. If you think you will want to use a wetsuit, flippers or a rash vest, we recommend you bring these with you in order to maximise your enjoyment of the trip.
If you think you would benefit from a wetsuit but don't want to commit to buying one outright you are now able to hire a wetsuit for £40 through the company Vigour Events. They will send the wetsuit directly to your door. For further information please click here.
Up to a maximum of 11 guests with 2 SwimTrek guides, a local boat pilot and 3 motorised safety escort boats.
There are various ways of getting to the islands and we have highlighted a couple of routes
Option 1: Travelling via Athens
Olympic Airways flies from Athens to Náxos so if their schedule permits, this is a good option (www.olympicair.com). See information below on getting from Naxos to Schinoússa.
Alternatively, flying into Athens requires a ferry journey to Naxos.
SwimTrek suggests reserving all ferries and flights TO and FROM the islands prior to travel at your earliest convenience
At Athens airport, leave the main entrance and turn right as approximately 200 metres further down is the bus stop for the X96 bus travelling direct to Piraeus harbour (1 hour). The ticket booth to purchase your fare is adjacent to the stop and the journey costs approximately €5. At Piraeus, get off the bus at the stop closest to Ferry Gate 7.
Ferries leave Piraeus Port daily for Naxos from 7-8am and 5-6pm. Depending on the type of ferry, travel time is roughly 5-6 hours. The price is €35-€45 one-way and tickets are available from outlets along the harbour front or online at Blue Star Ferries (www.bluestarferries.com) or Hellenic Seaways (www.hellenicseaways.gr).
Naxos to Schinoússa:
From Naxos the Express Skopelitis ferry (€13.00) leaves for Schinoússa at approx. 2pm each day (however this can change - Please check!). Tickets cannot be reserved in advance for this ferry service but you can purchase them from any of the travel agencies along the seafront such as Zas Travel.
Direct but infrequent ferries are available from Piraeus to Schinoússa with Blue Star Ferries, but these are not daily departures. Ferry schedules for all routes can be found at www.gtp.gr
It is possible to fly into Athens and reach the tour start point without staying an extra night in Naxos before the tour starts:
Option 2: Flying via Santorini
It is possible to fly into Santorini with Easyjet or various other charter airlines, and then catch a ferry from Santorini to Naxos. This is a faster option than flying into Athens but flights aren’t daily. Some guests who plan to stay a few extra nights in Greece have preferred this route. See information above on getting from Naxos to Schinoússa
You can fly back from Náxos to Athens with Olympic Airlines. Ferries leave Náxos for Piraeus between 9-10am and 6-6.30pm daily and travel time is between 5-6 hours. Always check the times!
For connections to/from islands not mentioned above Open Seas offer up to date ferry timetables.
Overnight in Piraeus:
The following hotel is a budget recommended, if you need to overnight in Piraeus prior to or after your trip:www.hotelphidias.gr. If you are arriving at the port, rail station, airport bus stop or on the metro the hotel provides a free shuttle bus service. To take advantage of the service it is important to contact the hotel first, either via email,firstname.lastname@example.org, or by giving them a call on +30 210 4296 480.
Our accommodation is of a good standard, based on twin-share and en-suite facilities. We use very good locally owned hotels.
For the first three nights we stay at the Archipelagos Boutique Hotel on Schinoússa. The twin and triple rooms at the hotel have a choice of single and double beds, the availability and price of each will be made clear during the booking process. Pictures and descriptions of each of the rooms can be seen here.
The last three nights of the tour we stay at the Hotel Paradise on Koufonissi where all of the twin rooms have single beds.
Single Supplements are limited at both hotels
All breakfasts and lunches are included except for one lunch. This enables you to explore and sample the abundance of traditional family run tavernas. Dinners are not included, as this gives you the option to choose where, when and with whom you would like to dine.
You will need extra money to cover such items as dinner, entertainment, souvenirs and your return ferry fare to Naxos (€8-€12). A single ATM machine is available on each island but these can be unreliable so we suggest withdrawing money in Naxos anyway. The local currency is the EURO (€).
Passports and Visas
You require a full passport, that should be valid for 6 months beyond the expected length of stay. You should check if you require a visa. Most nationalities including EU, US, Canadian and Australian citizens do not require a visa to enter Greece. Visa regulations do change. Please check!!
There are no essential vaccination requirements for Greece, but you should ensure that your tetanus is up to date.
Set on Ano Koufoníssi, this traditional white washed hotel offers friendly service and fantastic views of the coastline.