From: May 13 to May 21, 2018
Destination: Cyclades Islands, Greece
After lunch, we transfer to the Athens airport in order to catch our 40 minute flight to the beautiful island of Paros, our first island. Along the way we'll stop for photos at the Panathinaikon Stadium, the stadium where the first Olympic Games were held in 1896, and the Parliament. Upon arrival in Paros we transfer to our hotel and enjoy our first island dinner. Hotel Kalypso or similar (B, L, D)
In the afternoon we learn some of the secrets of delicious Greek cooking as we participate in a Greek cooking class. We'll learn how to make several authentic Greek dishes, and once the bread is baked and the food cooked, we will enjoy a typical Greek meal. Hotel Kalypso or similar. Total hiking time: 3 - 4 hrs. (B, L, D)
Island Hopping in the Greek Islands trip itinerary continued: Our flight to Athens today doesn't leave until this evening so we have time to see Santorini from a completely different perspective: the cockpit of a kayak! With the freedom of kayaks we can enjoy views from the sea of spectacular rock formations and crystal blue water. We'll stop at a beautiful beach for swimming, snorkeling, and a picnic lunch, kayaking for a total of about 4 hours and 7 miles. No previous kayaking experience is needed, you'll get taught what you need to know to be comfortable in your boat.
If you choose not to kayak, there is an excellent alternative - a tour to the volcano itself. You will go to the Old Port where you board a small boat (this is a public tour), sailing to the islet of Nea Kameni. You will ascend a path of crushed volcanic rock to the crater of the still active volcano. After a walk around the rim and plenty of photo opportunities, you walk back down to the boat and sail to a second islet called Palea Kameni. There you have an opportunity to swim from the boat in the Aegean and into the waters of the volcanic Hot Springs (which are warm at best). If you don't want to swim, you are free to remain on the sailboat and relax in the sun. After the swim and tour, you will return to the port and transfer back to the hotel. Your AGC guide may not be with you for the public tour but she will make sure you know where to go.
The late afternoon plan will depend on the time of our flight back to Athens. We will share a final dinner in this beautiful Greek city of Athens. Flight to Athens and transfer to our hotel in Athens. Overnight Hotel Philippos or similar. (B, D)
What's not included: Travel to and from Athens, beverages (aside from bottled water at meals), 2 lunches and 1 dinner, airport departure transfer, guide gratuities, travel insurance.
If you’ve never traveled with us before, you may have some questions about how we do things and what you can expect. We’ve answered the most common ones below and are always available by phone or email to answer any others.
How do I pay for my trip?
You can make the deposit by submitting a secure form with your credit card information after filling out the registration form or calling us with your card information. We will send you an invoice for the balance due with your Predeparture Information 4 months before an International trip and 3 months before a domestic trip. You can get a 3% discount for paying the balance by check.
What if I’m coming alone?
The majority of women who travel with us come by themselves. If you want to pay a single supplement to guarantee your own room, or if you want to share a room with someone with whom you are traveling, you can indicate that on the registration form. Otherwise we randomly assign roommates and rotate every time we change lodging – it’s a great way to get to know different women on the trip.
Can you accommodate special diets?
It depends on both the trip and on your specific needs. With advance notice, we can accommodate most dietary restrictions or allergies on our domestic trips, including vegetarian, vegan, and gluten intolerant. This is not always true on international trips, so please contact us in advance if you have specific dietary needs. We've found that if you are willing to bring some of your own snacks and a couple of items to supplement what is on the menu (peanut butter is always good!) and possibly have less variety than you are used to at home, then dietary needs usually are no obstacle. If in doubt about your specific dietary needs, especially if you have Celiac disease, please give us a call (877/439-4042) or send us an email.
What if I have to cancel my trip?
The amount of your refund depends on how close to the trip you cancel and whether it is a domestic or an international trip. You can read our cancellation policies here. We highly recommend travel insurance because cancellations are always unexpected; we will send you additional information about insurance when you register.
Will my family be able to get in touch with me in case of an emergency?
Yes, we always send out emergency contact information. On a few trips, because of limitations in communication, the best approach is to give them the office number and let us make the contact.
What other information will you send me?
When you register, we’ll send you a Trip Summary that includes the itinerary, travel information, and a packing list. Three to four months before your trip we’ll send you Pre-Departure information that includes detailed information on how to get to the trip starting point, pre- or post-trip lodging suggestions, suggested books and websites etc. Four to six weeks before the trip, we’ll send you a list of everyone who is registered along with their travel plans; and a Pre-Trip letter with the name of your guide(s) and how to contact them if your arrival is delayed as well as any other important updates.
Do you help with pre-trip and/or post-trip hotel reservations?
For international trips, if you want to stay at the hotel where we’re staying the first night before the trip, or at the hotel we’re staying the last night after the trip, we’re happy to make a reservation for you. Otherwise our PreDeparture Information will have hotel suggestions. Our travel agent is also happy to help you with this.
How does the waitlist process work and how often do people cancel?
If you are interested in a trip that is full, you should sign up here. If there is a cancellation, we send out an email to everyone who has expressed interest and ask them to respond within 24 hours. If more than one person is interested, we give the space to the person who has traveled with us before or in the order of being put on the waitlist. Frequently, even when we have a long wait list, it is the last person to sign up who is still available to go. Whether or not there will be a cancellation is completely unpredictable, although not uncommon.
What is the role of the guide(s)?
On every trip, the primary roles of the guide(s) are to ensure your safety and to make sure that, to the extent possible, you are having the trip you want. The guide(s) will also make sure that you know what is happening each day and what you need to bring to be prepared. On domestic trips the guide(s) will also likely be driving, preparing picnic lunches and sometimes other meals, providing skills instruction, and giving you information about the natural history of the area. On any trip where we partner with another company (which is most international trips and some trips that require special equipment), the AGC guide will work with the local guide to make sure that the trip is conducted in accordance with the AGC philosophy.
What if I have more questions?
Give us a call (877/439-4042) or send us an email. A Program Manager is assigned to each trip. Once you have registered, she will send you a registration confirmation letter that includes her name and email, and she will be your primary contact. Her job is to make sure that you get all your questions answered and that you feel completely prepared for your adventure.
You might be. Someone has to be the oldest/youngest/heaviest/least in shape person on the trip. And while the great majority of our trips have both single and non-single women, and moms and non-moms, sometimes they don't. But it doesn't matter if you're "different" in any of those ways - what you will share with everyone else is a desire to experience adventure in your life, and an appreciation of the joy and camaraderie of being in an all women's group.
We will be staying in a 3 star hotel in Athens and 3 local guesthouses on the islands, as specified in the itinerary
Greece is known for its fresh and delicious food and vegetarians are easily accommodated. Please contact the office if you have significant dietary restrictions that are a potential concern for you.