What better way to tour the iconic Cyclades Islands than by yacht? Swim in the Aegean Sea off the side of the boat and let the waves rock you to sleep each night. Chic waterfront bars line the beaches of Mykonos, serving authentic Greek food and cocktails as the sun goes down. This is a great place to eat well and relax. Wedged between the dramatic cliffs of Amorgos, the 11th-century monastery of Moni Hozoviotissis is a unique site for exploration. Santorini has some of the most distinctive and attractive landscapes in the world. Pass bleached-white villages that cling to plunging cliffs and along the rim of a volcano
Move between the boat, the beach and inviting Greek villages on this relaxing Greece sailing adventure between Mykonos and Santorini. Wile away days swimming in turquoise waters, lazing on white-sand beaches, sampling mouth-watering local cuisine and exploring coastal villages seeped in history, mythology and beauty. Visit the beautiful islands of Amorgos, Naxos, Small Cyclades and Ios, watch a host of spectacular sunsets and enjoy Greek hospitality before returning to the boat to be rocked gently to sleep at night.
Breakfast Included: Lunches Included: Dinner Included:
Welcome to Mykonos, Greece. Your adventure begins with a welcome meeting at 4 pm. The first port of call is the local supermarket to buy supplies for your trip as a group. The starter pack will include provisions for some breakfasts, lunches and/or snacks. If you have any special dietary requirements, please make sure you notify us at the time of booking so we can accommodate your requests. Before and after the meeting, perhaps head out to enjoy Mykonos and unwind on one of the island’s sandy beaches. Navigate the town's narrow streets, visit the Church of Panagia Paraportiani or browse chic galleries, restaurants and boutiques. In the evening, perhaps wander down to Little Venice to enjoy a cocktail by the water at sunset. You'll spend tonight aboard the boat.
Notes: The beauty of sailing is that each day is unique and, while we have a destination to reach, if the weather changes or something takes the group’s fancy, we are flexible on the day's itinerary. The itinerary is subject to change and may vary depending on weather. Your skipper will make the final call to ensure your safety at all times.
Sailing the Greek Islands
This morning we head for the Bay of Gaidharos for breakfast and a swim, before making our way across the glistening water to Naxos. Discover the beautiful beaches, fragrant olive groves and charming villages of Hora, the capital of Naxos. As the largest Cycladic island, Naxos also has one of the most colourful mythological histories. The old town areas of Hora are perfect for a stroll or to partake in the vibrant nightlife. The best beach choices are to the south, where water sports are also on offer. Follow a pathway up to the impressive Venetian Kastro where mansions, monuments and churches all retain their medieval spirit in a mass of winding laneways. Stop by the old Roman Catholic Cathedral in the square, and the nearby Archaeological Museum which is housed in the former Jesuit School of Commerce. The massive Portara stands as the gateway to the unfinished Temple of Apollo on the islet of Palatia, just to the north of the marina. Perhaps even join an optional jaunt out into the countryside for a glimpse local rural life, visit one of the oldest temples in Greece, then chill out up in the hills with lunch at a family tavern. Get a taste of the local brew with a shot of Kitron (best described as a lemon liquor) and top it off with a wander along the beach.
It's time to feel the wind in our hair once again as we sail along the coast of Naxos. After around 5 hours we drop anchor in the Small Cyclades. While all the islands harboured communities in ancient times, the middle ages saw this reduced to just pirates and goats. Today, only Koufonisia, Iraklia, Shinousa and Donousa have permanent residents, with the largest population said to be somewhere around 300. Featuring clear waters, great beaches, friendly locals and sleepy tavernas all built around quaint fishing villages, the islands are an ideal overnight anchorage. Explore the town, sample some fresh seafood in a waterfront taverna, then sit back and simply enjoy the magic of the Mediterranean.
Next is a brief sail (approximately 3 hours) to the rugged, mountainous island of Amorgos – known to the world as the stunning location of Luc Besson's film, 'The Big Blue'. Katapola, the island's main port, boasts classic Cycladic architecture with windmills and an old Venetian castle. The waterfront is an excellent place to relax in restaurants, cafes and bars. Or take some time to explore the ancient Minoan Settlement nearby. We will take a drive up to the spectacular 11th-century monastery, Moni Hozoviotissis. Built gripping the cliff-face, it boasts spectacular panoramic views across the Aegean Sea. Filled with historical relics, it's often a highlight for those visiting Greece. Also worth a visit is the village of Hora (Amorgos town) which sits high up on the rocky mountainside. Stroll through the labyrinth of narrow stone laneways and Byzantine churches surrounding the town square. The Amorgos Archaeological Collection is housed nearby in Gavros Tower, one of the few remaining towers on the island.
Continue to Ios, an island inhabited since early Cycladic times, proudly claiming to be the burial place of epic Greek poet Homer. Ios has managed to retain some allure from the abundance of beaches and preservation of its classic cube houses packed around the laneways of Hora. A short walk from the harbour, Hora's shops, restaurants, nightclubs, bars and cafes all come alive in the evenings. If you are seeking a more authentic taste of the old town, try to explore during the day while the masses are beachside. The popular beaches of Gialos and Milopotas are also lively at night with a range of water sports on offer during the day. Valmas, Kolitzani and Tsamaria are all options if you're looking for something a little quieter; they are within easy walking distance of town. Sunset views can be enjoyed from atop the hill where Panagia Gremiotissa, or Church of the Virgin, sits. The distinctive single palm tree next to the church makes it icon you can always see from many places throughout town.
On the afternoon of day 7 we sail towards Santorini, spending the final night of the trip in Thirasia which is a small island about 1/2 hour from Oia, Santorini.
Formed by a huge volcanic explosion, Santorini is instantly recognisable with its blue and white buildings, fascinating ruins and stunning natural beauty. After making our entrance by sailing through the remarkable caldera, all the hubbub of this beautiful island is there for the taking. The exuberant capital of Fira, perched on the edge of the caldera, has an exciting range of restaurants, shops and bars. Perhaps make the most of the great scenery by taking a walk along the rim to Firostefani, Imerovigli and Oia. Santorini's volcanic beaches are a must-see: Red Beach's tiny red and black pebbles are hemmed in by spectacular red lava-rock cliffs, while the pick of the black beaches are Perissa, Vlhada, Perivolos and Agios Georgios. The white-washed Cycladic houses and old Venetian- and Byzantium-inspired architecture pack a real picturesque punch. Check out the Orthodox Metropolitan Cathedral, Catholic Cathedral and Dominican Convent. The Megaron Gyzi Museum, Museum of Prehistoric Thera, and Archaeological Museum are all also worth a visit.
Your adventure comes to an end today with an 8.30am private boat transfer from Thirasia to Oia Pier in North Santorini where you will arrive at about 9am.
If you plan to depart today, please don’t book a flight earlier than 12pm in case the boat’s arrival is delayed due to weather conditions. Your skipper can assist with organising a taxi to drop you off at your hotel or Santorini Airport.
We recommend booking an extra night's accommodation to see all the sights of Santorini.