West coast Messinia

TABLE OF CONTENTS

Trip Highlights
Tour details
Itinerary
What's Included
Itinerary Changes
Terrain
Condition Grading
Accommodation
Starting point and getting there
Food, Weather
Gear checklist
Currency & Banking
Passports, Visas

Nowhere else in Greece, can the authentic Mediterranean landscape be represented so clearly as in Messinia, a region famous for its unspoilt beauty and yet maybe the most beautiful in the Peloponnese. Messinian landscape consists of endless coastline, vast olive groves, green valleys, large mountains and deep gorges. A land full of contrasts and welcoming inhabitants who live in seaside towns and small mountainous cliff-hanging villages with breathtaking views. Travelers to Messinia will be astonished by gorgeous local cuisine as a fertile land producing the finest extra virgin olive oil, keeps alive cooking traditions throughout the centuries.
Around Messinia is a 7 days’ sea kayaking trip along the Messinian coastline and the island complex of Oinousses and is appropriate for all those who have a little experience in Sea Kayaking and wish to experience a multi-day trip. On the way we will explore picturesque coves with sandy beaches, fishing villages and we will visit the medieval castles of Pylos, Methoni and Koroni. We intend to paddle an average of 4-5 hours a day, leaving plenty of time to relax, swim, snorkel and practice some sea kayaking skills and techniques. The rest of the day can be devoted to visits to historical sites and monuments, small hikes in the surrounding areas, relaxing moments on sandy beaches and hearty lunch and dinners

TRIP HIGHLIGHTS

  • Get away from it all while paddling along the most beautiful and most impressive part of the Messinian coastline
  • Visit the twin fortresses of Methoni and Koroni, known as the “Eyes of the Serene Republic”, during the medieval times
  • Practice and develop skills required for a multi-day trip such as route planning and navigation, rescue and self-rescue, and paddling in wind and waves from all directions
  • Learn about the environmental characteristics of each region we visit as well as the historical events that took place from ancient times to modern times

TOUR DETAILS

  • Dates: April 29-May 6, May 13-May 20, June 3- June 10, September 2-September 9, September 16-September 23
  • Days/Nights: 8 days / 7 nights
  • Price: Contact us for price
  • Single supplement: Cost based on request. Availability limited.
  • Condition grading: Moderate

ITINERARY

DAY 1

Arrival in Athens and welcome dinner

Your trip begins in Athens. Ancient and modern, with equal measures of grunge and grace, bustling Athens is a heavy mix of history and edginess. The historic center is an open-air museum, yet the city’s cultural and social life takes place amid these ancient landmarks, merging past and present. The magnificent Acropolis rises above the sprawling metropolis and has stood witness to the city’s transformation. Tonight we'll have a welcome briefing at 6pm to discuss the trip, followed by a walk in Plaka, one of the oldest neighborhoods of the city, and a festive welcome dinner.

Overnight in Athens, Philippos hotel (D)

DAY 2

Drive from Athens to Marathopoli and paddle to the island of Proti and Vromoneri beach

From Athens we drive to the fishing village of Marathoupoli where are we going to start our sea kayaking adventure. We get informed about today’s paddling route, adjust the kayaks to our size and we are ready for departure. Within a small crossing of 1 nautical mile we reach Proti, an island with an intense past, hideout of pirates and sailors. We explore the coastline of the island and continue paddling south until we get to the Vromoneri beach where we swim and snorkel while enjoying the turquoise waters.

Overnight in Marathopoli, Callisto Suites (B,L,D)
Driving distance:
Athens to Marathopoli 270km / 3 hours
Paddling distance: 10km / Paddling Duration with breaks: 4-5 hours

DAY 3

Paddle from Vromoneri beach to Voidokilia beach and from there Gialova

We depart from Vromoneri and we paddle south until we get to the famous Voidokilia beach , which is not only one of the most beautiful beaches in Greece, but maybe also in the Mediterranean Sea. The sheltered bay is referred to in Homer's Odyssey and archaeologists believe it was used by King Nestor as a port in ancient times. We have enough time for swimming and snorkeling and then we depart with the bay of Navarino as our destination, paddling under the fortifications of the medieval Palaiokastro.

Overnight in Gialova, Hotel Zoe (B,L,D)
Paddling distance: 14km / Paddling Duration with breaks: 4-5 hours

DAY 4

Paddle from Gialova to Navarino bay the island of Sfaktiria and Methoni

Our aim today is to explore the major sights of the Bay of Navarino and the island of Sfaktiria. All sights that we will encounter are the monuments dedicated to those who fought in the historic naval battle which took place in 20 October 1827 between the Ottoman and an Allied force of British, French and Russian vessels. We paddle around the bay, and visit the island of Sfaktiria where we can get off our kayaks and explore it. Then wehead south toward the imposing monolith of the islet of Fanari with its impressive stone arch formed in its northern end. We will continue paddling south of Pylos overlooking the imposing walls of the castle of Niokastro with final destination the medial town of Methoni.

Overnight in Foinikounta, Hotel Estia (B,L,D)
Paddling distance: 18km / Paddling Duration with breaks: 5-6 hours

DAY 5

From Methoni paddle to the Island of Sapientza and from there to Foinikounta

Today we start in Methoni and with our sea kayaks we paddle to the Venetian fortress which is built on a promontory south of the modern city. The medieval port town was Venetian first and their longest-held possession in the Peloponnese and also a stopover for pilgrims en route to the Holy land. We leave behind Methoni crossing the channel, with countless ancient shipwrecks, and we reach the northern part of the verdant island of Sapienza, integrated into the Natura 2000 network, and home to rare species of flora and fauna. The pathways that surround the island lead to the interior of the island with a unique ecosystem nesting inside. From there we continue heading east to Foinikounta, where we end the day.

Overnight in Foinikounta, Hotel Estia (B,L,D)
Paddling distance: 18km / Paddling Duration with breaks: 5-6 hours

DAY 6

From Foinikounda paddle to Cape Akritas, Venetiko island and Kalamaki

Leaving behind Foinikounda we depart with destination Cape Akritas one of the southernmost capes of European mainland. We cross the channel between the cape and Venetiko, a deserted island with a rugged coastline full of huge rocks and we visit the island’s single beach. After that we head northeast until we reach Kalamaki, paddling along a coastline full of sandy beaches and coves with the snowy peaks of Taygetos and the Messinian Bay, in the background, uncover slowly.

Overnight in Koroni, Liokrina Villas (B,L,D)
Paddling distance: 20km / Paddling Duration with breaks: 6-7 hours

DAY 7

Paddle from Kalamaki beach to Koroni

Departing from kalamaki we paddle along the coastline with destination Koroni, a lovely Venetian port town of Messinia. On our way, we will come across golden sandy beaches and small coves where we stop for swimming and snorkeling. We will also observe a lot of fishing boats departing from the nearby fishing villages deploying their nets. When we arrive at Koroni we explore the medieval mansions and churches that line the town’s quaint, narrow and winding streets that lead to a promontory on which an extensive fortress and monastery perch. From Koroni we will drive back to Athens and after settling in our hotel we will go for our farewell dinner.

Overnight in Athens, Philippos hotel (B,L,D)
Paddling distance: 12km / Paddling Duration with breaks: 3-4 hours
Driving distance:
Marathopoli το Athens 270km / 3 hours

DAY 8

Say farewell to Greece or continue on your own Athens

Breakfast is at your leisure at the hotel and following that, your Tripin Adventures trip in Greece concludes. Transfer independently from our accommodation in Athens to the international airport for return flights or continue exploring one of Europe’s oldest cities.

(B)

WHATS INCLUDED

Price includes:
All accommodation in 3-star hotels based on double occupancy
All transportation during the trip
Full Sea Kayaking equipment: Kayaks, paddles, life jackets, spray decks, waterproof jackets. (There is a choice of single-seat or two-seater kayak)
Extra equipment: waterproof bags and pouches, pumps and paddle-floats Safety equipment (first aid kit, repair kit, flares, tow ropes, spare paddles, etc.)
Trained and certified BCU guides
Snorkeling equipment
Teaching in sea kayaking techniques (Efficient Paddling, Rolling, Bracing, etc)
Kayak Loading & Carrying
Support car
Luggage transfer
Photos of activities

Included meals:
Breakfast,picnic lunches during the activity and dinners as indicated in the itinerary, snacks during activities.

Not Included:
Domestic and/or international air fare
Medical expenses
Travel or emergency evacuation insurance
Gratuities for leader/guide or driver
Alcoholic beverages and meals other than outlined in itinerary
Visas if needed
Transfer to and from the airport/port
Other items of a personal nature
Αnything not mentioned in above program

ITINERARY CHANGES

We are constantly updating our unique itineraries based on new information and experiences available. The walks, accommodations, and visits listed may be adjusted. The itineraries presented are subject to modification and change by Tripin Adventures. We reserve the right, without penalty, to make changes in the published itinerary whenever, in our judgment, conditions warrant, or if we deem it necessary for the comfort, convenience, or safety of participants, anything not mentioned in above program.

TERRAIN

This trip level is Moderate and is appropriate for all those who have a little experience in Sea Kayaking and wish to experience a multi-day trip. The trip combines recreation, exploration and adventure with practice and the development of personal and group skills required for a multi-day sea kayaking trip. We will paddle a distance of about 92km which we plan to cover in six days and this means that we will paddle 4-6 hours per day.

CONDITION GRADING

Moderate
Trips designated “Moderate” are more active and require a bit more endurance. Hikes and treks include occasional steep ascents. Trip members should have a little experience in sea-kayaking and be in good physical condition, and be capable of paddling 4-6 hours

STARTING POINT AND GETTING THERE

Starting point is: Athens.

Getting There & Away:Athens airport Eleftherios Venizelos, is about 27km east of Athens. Athens is connected with direct flights with various cities in Europe, North America and Asia.

Getting around: We can arrange for a transfer from the airport to your hotel. If you want to come by yourself, the metro and the suburban rail provide quick connections to central Athens (1 hour / 10 euro’ ticket). The bus option is cheaper though it takes longer (1h 30 min / 5 euro’ ticket). You can also take a taxi (1 hour / 35-50 euro’).

FOOD

Simple, nutritious and flavorsome, the food is one of the pleasures of travel through Greece. Rustic Greek Cuisine reflects the history and bounty of its diverse regions and relies in the fresh, seasonal home-grown produce and generally simple, unfussy cooking that brings out the rich flavors of the Mediterranean.
Greece’s relaxed and hospitable dinning culture makes it easy to get into the local spirit. Greeks love to eat out and share impossibly big meals family style. Given the long summers and mild winters, alfresco dining is central to the dining experience. Service could be slow by Western standards, but why being in rush either way.
As a rule our groups tend to eat together to enable you to taste a larger variety of dishes and enjoy each other’s company. There's no obligation to do this though. Wherever possible we will cater for dietary needs for any included meals, but there may be times when those with special requirements may need to provide their own. Note that alcohol and soda are not included.

WEATHER

Spring, summer and fall in Greece are sunny and warm. The daytime temperatures average 25-30 C though temperatures in the 35s are possible in the summer months. Nighttime temperatures cool off slightly to 20° C. Rain showers are rare in the islands, but it's often breezy and rainy on the coast.

GEAR CHECKLIST

Greece has a temperate climate. Base your clothing on the “layering system”, if it is hot you can “peel off” layers quickly, if it is cooler and windy you can quickly “dress up”. The lighter you travel, the easier you travel. Use your best judgement and pack as lightly as possible. You will appreciate light luggage towards the end of your trip.
Please consider taking along the following items on your trip.

OFFICIAL PAPERS

  • Valid passport
  • Airline tickets

LUGGAGE

  • Duffel bag or rolling luggage
  • Daypack to carry camera, water bottle and snacks etc.
  • Luggage locks and tags

OUTERWEAR

  • Midweight polar fleece sweater
  • Rain jacket and rain pants, or poncho

CLOTHING

  • Hiking shorts
  • Casual clothing made of light-weight fabrics
  • T-shirts
  • Long-sleeve shirt
  • Hiking pants, loose and easy to move in
  • Underwear
  • Swimsuit

CLOTHING ACCESSORIES

  • Sun hat or baseball cap

FOOTWEAR

  • Lightweight and supportive hiking boots, broken-in with good ankle support
  • Beach sandals
  • Casual, comfortable shoes for evening

ACCESSORIES

  • Sunscreen and lipprotection
  • Sunglasses and retainerstrap
  • Beachtowel

OPTIONAL ACCESSORIES

  • Security pouch or money belt
  • Trekking poles or walking staff
  • Camera, memory and batteries
  • Reading and writing materials
  • Watch with alarm or travel alarm
  • Travel pillow
  • Motion sickness remedies
  • Personal first-aid kit
  • Insect repellent (lowrisk)
  • Electric adapter plug/converter

Feel free to bring any personal paddling gear that you prefer to use. Also If you have a kit that you prefer (eg. left hand paddle) and fits you comfortably please bring it with you.

CURRENCY & BANKING

Greece has adopted the Euro as its currency. The easiest way to obtain local cash is from an ATM. Greek ATMs accept cards bearing the Cirrus, EC, Euro card, Visa and Plus symbols. If you take cash, US or Canadian Dollars can be easily exchanged at banks. Most major credit cards, Visa, MasterCard and American Express are accepted. It is advisable to have some Euros with you upon arrival to be used for a taxi if necessary. You may want to check the website www.xe.com for current exchange rates.

PASSPORTS

You must have a passport valid for at least 6 months beyond the conclusion of your trip. Please make sure that you have blank pages in your passport for your visa (if required), entry and exit stamps (one for each). Please make a copy to take with you in the event yours is lost or stolen and keep it separate from your actual passport.

VISAS

Currently a Greek Tourist Visa is not required for citizens of Canada, United States, Britain and Australia. If you hold another passport, please check online http://visacentral.com/visas.php

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