The route for the 2017 guided tour is West to East, Chania to Herakleion. The tour starts the day before with test ride and fitting of the bikes on the Acropolis Walkway in Athens. That evening we rendezvous at Piraeus port to take the overnight ferry (private cabins) to Chania, arriving at 6:00 am.
Bike mileage listed for each day is that day’s standard bike route. Depending however on the cycling level of the participants, routes may vary by adding mileage or minimizing mileage with vehicle transfers.
Day 1: Chania
From Chania’s Souda Bay port we bike to the Akrotiri Peninsula to the end of the road to the Gouvernatou monastery. The stone path descends to Catholikon where St. John the hermit retreated over 700 years ago. The hike takes about 30 minutes round trip (1 mile) and roundtrip cycling to and from Souda Bay is 40.60 km, 25 miles. From Souda Bay, bike a back road to the old city of Chania. 13.80 km, 8 miles 54.40 km, 33 miles
Day 2: Chania
Morning bike loop up the gorgeous Therisos Gorge, climbing to 2336 feet (712 meters). Choice of lunch at a family run winery or a family run botanical park with organic meals. 55.50 km, 34.40 miles
Day 3: Rethymno
Today is the longest and hardest cycling day of the tour going from Chania to Rethymno with a pit stop at Georgiopoli Beach and an optional detour to Koules Fort and Ancient Apera whose residents engaged in “bloodless wars.” Rethymno is Crete’s best kept secret with its Venetian-era buildings, including the Fortezza fort dominating the city. 78.00 km, 48.50 miles
Day 4: Rethymno
A bike ride into the low portions of the Psiloritis Mountains takes us to the Melidoni Cave and learn its poignant history. Lunch on the seacoast at Panormos, swimming optional. Then return to Rethymno’s cycling along the city’s fourteen kilometer sandy coast. 34.90 km, 21.70 miles
Day 5: Axos
Cycle from Rethymno to Axos via Arkadi Monastery with its tragic history. Bonus stop at a Mycenae-like ancient tomb. Final destination is Enagron in Axos, a precious agrotourism center. 64 km, 39 miles
Day 6: Axos
Choice of Axos short loop with a stop at the wondrous Sfendoni Cave 16.30 km, 13 miles or Axos long loop 31.30 km, 19.40. Afternoon hike in the Psilioritis Mountains followed by a traditional Cretan cooking class.
Day 7: Arhanes
Bike from Axos to Herakleion coming down to the 803 meters, 2634 feet to sea level 49 km, 30 miles In Herakleion we are treated to a professional guided tour of Ancient Knossos and Herakleion Archaeology Museum before transferring to the traditional town of Arhanes.
Day 8: Departure
Transfers to Herakleion airport for flights to Athens or to Herakleion port for those taking the boat to Santorini.
Single Supplement: 500 euros.
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Europe Greece Outdoor: Land Rambler Bicycle Touring
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