You will learn how the island's history has been shaped by exploring the dramatic ruins of Kastri, the neo-classical town of Ermoupolis, the medieval village of Ano Syros to name a few. You will also be given unique insights into the unique fauna and flora of the Cyclades as well as experience the local culture and way of life.
By joining our walking holiday in Syros, Greece, you'll not only get introduced by a local to a side of the Aegean that few people know about but also to participate in our efforts to sustain this natural and cultural environment.
Most hikes will take place at the northern part of island, called Apano Meria. It is a mountainous area with deserted ancient paths that lead through astonishing landscapes with abandoned terraces, ruined windmills, caves, bridges, steep rocky cliffs, springs and small gorges to the virgin beaches of the island. It is a NATURA 2000 protected area due to its flora and fauna which is rich in common and indigenous species.
You'll be surprised as you may not encounter any other walkers within a week. The feeling of wilderness prevails although we're never far from civilization.
8-day walking holiday itinerary:
Day 1: Arrival at the island of Syros and transfer to our traditional, family-run guesthouse at the coastal town of Ermoupolis. Orientation and introduction on the history and culture of the island of Syros. Ermoupolis, an UNESCO World Heritage Site, is full of Venetian and neoclassical buildings which make it one of the most beautiful towns in Greece to walk around. Welcome supper at one our favorite local taverns where you can taste the island's acclaimed gastronomy.
Day 2: Today we'll make our way from the outskirts of the town of Ermoupolis onto a beautiful coastal trail towards the acropolis of Katri, very famous because of its findings from the early-Cycladic civilization (3200-2000 B.C.) During our walk you'll enjoy magnificent panoramic views of the wild north-east coast of Syros and the surrounding islands and go through the traditional settlements of Platy Vouni and Richopo. The smell of 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.
We'll stop for a swim, snorkle and lunch at one of the most isolated beaches of the island, Glysoura. We will then walk towards the ancient settlement of Katri where we'll have a break to admire its magical atmosphere. We'll end our day's walk at the village of Chalandriani and its local tavern with a drink and a meze.
Day 3: Today we'll take you to a very lonely part of Syros, its northern tip, Cape Dhiapori, and the most remote beaches of the island, Gria Spilia and Grammata. We'll hike from the valley of Kambos and follow the beautiful trail to Dhiapori. You're likely to spot on the way birds such as Cory’s shearwater calonectris diomedea, Eleonora’s falcon falco eleonorae, Bonelli’s eagle hieraaetus fasciatus, Audouin’s gull larus audouinii, the European shag phalacrocorax Aristotelis desmarestii, to name a few exciting sightings you could make during spring and autumn migration.
After a short break at the cape to admire the stunning rock formations and deep blue of the Aegean Sea, we will continue towards Grammata beach where you'll enjoy a swim and snorkle at its crystal clear waters. After a short walk we'll stop at the shaded beach of Gria Spilia for lunch and a rest before returning. In the evening we'll explore the little village of St. Michelle and have supper enjoying the most impressive sunset.
Day 4: Today we'll start our walking adventure from the elegant marble square of Ermoupolis. We'll walk through the narrow alleys of this “mysterious” town towards the quarter of Vaporia, an architectural splendor with beautiful neoclassical mansions, cobbled streets and arches. We'll continue to the top of the hill Dili reaching the famous Orthodox church of Anastasi, standing opposite to the Catholica church of St. George, a symbol of the harmonic co-existence of the two religions, where you can enjoy mind-blowing views of the harbour and Ano Syros. That's where we'll stop for a rest and a pic-nic.
Late in the afternoon you will enjoy one of the most pleasant strolls towards the medieval town of Ano Syros, built by the Venetians in the 13th century, and the surrounding rural area. Innumerable steps between narrow marble streets and old stone, white-washed houses with colored doors lead to the top of the town. The Catholic basilica of San Giorgio dominates. You will enjoy a panoramic view of the Ermoupolis and the neighboring islands of Tinos, Delos, Mykonos, Paros, Andros and Naxos. We will watch the colorful sunset and then enjoy local delicacies and traditional island music at one of the island's oldest taverns.
Day 5: Rest day. Opportunity to rest or explore the island's numerous beaches, the neo-classical town of Ermoupolis or the medieval town of Ano Syros. The options are endless and we'll be happy to offer you advice.
Day 6: Today we'll make our way towards the traditional settlement of Papouri and from there we'll take the ancient trail towards the beach of Varvaroussa, that is ranked amongst the islands' nicest beaches. You can have lunch and swim at the bays' secluded, turquoise waters. Our guide will be happy to take you snorkeling around the rocks of a little island inside the bay of Varvaroussa and introduce you to the unique underwater biodiversity of the East Med.
From Varvaroússa we will then enjoy a hike along the coast to the beach of Delfíni and then further to the bay and settlement of Kíni. The trails are very beautiful, the panoramic views are marvelous... We will end the day with supper at one of our favorite local taverns.
Day 7: Today we'll explore the south part of the island and the village of Chroussa, a village that is characterized by a forestry element in contrast to the rest of the island. It is here where the aristocracy, mainly ship owners, used to build their luxurious mansions. We'll walk through the old paved alleys of the deserted village and we'll explore the old derelict mansions, a walk through a world long gone...
We'll have a pic-nic at the top of the hill under the shade of pine trees while admiring the magnificent views of the endless deep blue of the Aegean sea and the islands of Naxos and Paros. We will then descend towards the coast. You'll have the opportunity at the end of our exploration walk to enjoy a swim and snorkle at one of the beaches around the bay of Vari.
Day 8: Breakfast and departure.
Our walks of this weekly walking holiday in Greece are graded as moderate. We will walk mainly on paths of moderate gradient with ascents of up to 500m in a day. We will walk up to 5-6 hours in the day including stops to rest and for lunch. Being predominately limestone some parts of our paths can be quite rough and stoney.
Flexible itineraries are available based on the needs of our guests. We can organize a more challenging or a more relaxed-pace itinerary offering you more time to relax and enjoy the sea and sun of the Cyclades. 3, 5 and 8 day itineraries are offered.
Solo travelers are welcome. It's always more fun to walk with a group of like-minded travelers.
We organize these walking trail holidays in Syros, Greece, all year round apart from July and August when it's too hot.
We have reserved for you a lovely authentic family-run guesthouse. It was built in the 18th century and was originally hosting the French embassy. It has been beautifully restored and converted to provide 3 really spacious suites with great views and 3 double rooms in the center of Ermoupolis. The owners are very hospitable and helpful and are known to provide the most delicious breakfasts.
Syros is the capital of the Cyclades, it is in a very central location and is very well connected with other islands in the Cyclades or Dodecanese if you wish to continue your holiday.
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