Sparkling seas, sun-washed villages, and ancient statues
This two-island route offers some fine walking on two contrasting islands, each with its own special flavour. The scenery in both is splendid and the walking very fine; while the larger island of Naxos has a great variety of sights and walks, its smaller cousin Amorgos reminds one of earlier times when tourism in the Aegean was far less developed. The sea, with its swimming opportunities, is always at hand, and we help you to find the best.
On Naxos you are based in or near Naxos Old Town, whose Venetian heritage is clear in the Kastro dominating the labyrinthine alleys, a cornucopia of little blue-and-white shops and restaurants. Courtesy of the local bus service (backed up by our enthusiastic taxi man Giannis when needed), the best walking on the island is available to you. Visit the half-finished, ancient statues (Kouros) lying in a farmer’s field, the pretty villages of the interior (Apiranthos, Filoti and Chalki), and the beach at Lionas, where you can be royally lunched, and sleep the afternoon away after home-made honey raki and a swim. Walk to the temple of Demeter or ascend Mt Zas, the highest mountain in the Cyclades at 1000m, and get back in time for delicious filo pastries in the village bars.
Amorgos is quite another matter. Lonely and far less developed, the walking embraces the authentic culture of the island while giving some thrilling views and experiences – notably the Monastery of Chozoviotiza, clinging limpet-like to its cliff, followed by a walk along the spine of the island back to your pension in quiet Aegiali. Two further walks will take you through the villages of the northern end of the island, and to a windy outpost, accessible only by a cliff path.
Standard option (see “itinerary”): 7 nights (4 Naxos, 3 Amorgos), but you can choose to stay longer on each island, and hire a car locally if you wish to explore each more fully.
Single island options also available (recommended for shorter stays). Minimum stays on each island: Naxos 3 nights (July/August 4), Amorgos 2 (July/August 3). Minimum total stay 5 nights.
Note that ferry transfers between the two islands are lengthy (2-4 hours) and that access to Naxos is either by ferry from Santorini (2 hrs), Mykonos (1½ hrs) or Piraeus (6 hrs), or by daily flight from Athens only. Flight and ferry times may mean an overnight near the airport on either the outward or return journey. We advise you to discuss your flight plans with On Foot Holidays first before settling on the shape of the holiday.
Walked by On Foot staff: Simon, Mary, Harriet and Fi
REVIEWS: For independent walker reviews of this route submitted to the Association of Independent Tour Operators visit AITO.com.
TRAVEL ADVICE: To find the latest travel advice from the Foreign & Commonwealth Office for UK citizens travelling to Greece, click here. Citizens of other nations will also find it useful, but should always check their appropriate local agency.
(filmed by Richard and Sarah Madden, using a Panasonic Lumix GH5 camera)
Island hopping in the emerald Aegean
All tour descriptions and conditions are given in accordance with the information of On Foot Holidays