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Hotel & Bike

Pearls of Southern Crete · Greece

From 1690 €
Route
from Paleochora / to Paleochora
Duration
7 days /
6 nights
Distance
80 km by bike & 27 km on foot
Level 3
Level 1
Easy cycling tours suitable for islandhoppers who are confident on their bikes but prefer riding on flatter terrain (15-30km and 200 elevation meters per day).
Level 1 - 2
Easy to moderate cycling tours through hilly terrain suitable for islandhoppers who have a good basic level of fitness (20-35km and up to 200-400 elevation meters per day).
Level 2
Moderate cycling tours through hilly terrain suitable for islandhoppers who cycle regularly and feel comfortable with longer climbs (25-40km and 300-500 elevation meters per day).
Level 2 -3
Moderate to demanding cycling tours through hilly to mountainous terrain suitable for islandhoppers who like a challenge (30-50km and 400-700 elevation meters per day).
Level 3
Demanding cycling tours through hilly and mountainous terrain suitable for islandhoppers who can take on steeper climbs (30-60km and 400-800 elevation meter per day).

Discover Southern Crete by boat, bike, and on foot

The south coast of Crete is a place of exceptional beauty and varied landscapes. Untouched nature, archaeological highlights, crystal clear blue sea and sandy beaches wait to be explored. Experience the mountainous world of the Island of Minos by bike or e-bike, hike through the world-famous Samaria Gorge and enjoy a boat trip to the Elafonisi National Park. A further unforgettable cruise takes us from Sougia to Paleochora. Here we have great bathing spots and vibrant sunsets to look forward to. And what would Greece be without its delicious, local cuisine accompanied by traditional drinks, music, and Greek dance? After all, Crete is the birthplace of the well-known Syrtaki!

TO NOTE: This trip is already updated for the 2023 season. Itinerary, prices and services may vary compared to 2022.

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Highlights

Culture: A traditional Greek evening with local cousin and traditional dance
Nature: The natural paradise, Elafonisi, a protected habitat for Caretta Caretta turtles
Activity: A hike through the spectacular Samaria Canyon
Culinary: Local Cretan dishes, such as squid with fennel and olives
Souvenir: Olives, olive oil, and honey

Itinerary

image/svg+xml Paleochora Anidri Lissos Sougia Agia Roumeli Voytas Azogyres Prodromi Platanes Papadiana Moni Gavdos Elafonisi Chania Gavdos Samaria Rethymno Paleochora Samaria Canyon MEDITERRANEAN Kreta Biketour Hike Airport Boatshuttle
1st Day
Paleochora (Arrival) (D)
Arrival at Chania whether by plane or car is to be organized individually. However, a transfer from Chania airport or the ferry port to Paleochora can be arranged on request (for a fee). Check in at the Relax Hotel is possible from 3pm onwards. Should you arrive in the afternoon take the opportunity to enjoy a walk through Paleochora, have a swim or simply sunbath at the nearby beach. In the evening there will be a lavish dinner where everyone has the opportunity to get to know each other. Afterwards, the tour guides give an overview of the week to come and all the planned activities.
2nd Day
Anydroi Schlucht
(aprx. 11 mi./18 km by bike & 4 mi./6.5 km on foot) (B, L)
After breakfast transfer to the village of Azogyres, from where we will make a nice round trip by bike. After the ride we visit the 99 Holy Fathers Monastery and hear the story of St. John the hermit and the Holy Fathers. Later on our hike of approximately one hour begins. Along the way there are plenty of opportunities to enjoy beautiful panoramic views. When we reach the village of Anydroi we enjoy delicious Cretan dishes for lunch. Afterwards we continue our hike through the Anydroi Gorge until we reach a secluded sandy beach. Here the blue seas lure us in for a swim before we head back to the hotel by transfer bus. In the evening, our tour guide invites us to join a guided tour through Paleochora. Here you can end an eventful day with an individual dinner in town.
3rd Day
Ancient Lissos
(aprx. 17 mi./28 km by bike & 2.8 mi/4.5 km on foot) (B, L)
Today’s tour is a wonderful combination of biking, hiking and boating. An incredible nature experience awaits us on this cycling tour through the mountains of Paleochora. We start today’s tour again from Paleochora and cycle up to the mountain villages of Prodromi and Temenia. Here, we take a well-deserved break for lunch at a great mountain tavern, which serves traditional Cretan cuisine including a very tasty specialty: a homemade chestnut stew. A relaxed descent is then followed to the starting point known E-4 track to the ancient city of Lissos, where the incredibly well-preserved sanctuary of the god of healing, Asklepios and a newly excavated amphitheater. Following our visit to this archaeological site, we board a charter boat sail to a cave. Here we will have the opportunity to take a dip in the shimmering waters before returning to the port of Paleochora, where dinner is on an individual base.
4th Day
Samaria Gorge
(aprx. 10 mi./16 km on foot) (B, L)
A trip to Crete without visiting the famous Samaria Gorge is unimaginable. A walk through this gorge allows for an unbelievable nature experience and also gives us a physical challenge. There are approximately 1,200 meters of elevation along the hike and the walk itself lasts around 6.5 hours. In the morning, we take a transfer bus to the starting point of the hike at the top end of the Samaria Gorge. On the way we enjoy a picnic in the canyon to restore our energy levels. The village of Agia Roumeli lies at the lower end of the Samaria Gorge where we enjoy a late lunch in a traditional tavern. There is also time for a swim before we board the exclusive charter boat which takes us back Paleochora, where you later may go for an individual dinner.
5th Day
Voytas – Paleochora – boat trip to Elafonisi
(aprx. 10.5 mi./17 km by bike) (B, L)
Another day full of adventure! After a late breakfast, a transfer shuttle takes us to Sklavopoula where we visit a small church from the 13th century. This church is incredibly well preserved and even the frescos, picturing the torments of hell, are still visible. From there we cycle on through picturesque landscapes with a relaxed midday break before heading back towards Paleochora. After lunch we take a privately chartered boat to visit the natural paradise of Elafonisi, a dreamy place in the middle of the Mediterranean. The exotic, white sand beaches and the turquoise waters found on both sides of the peninsular are reminiscent of the Caribbean. The island is strewn with dunes, water lilies and junipers. Various rare species, such as the endangered Caretta Caretta turtles are able to live here, their nests under official protection. These are more than enough good reasons to spend some time in Elafonisi to swim and enjoy a coffee or a cool drink. Dinner is to be arranged individually.
6th Day
Sougia (aprx. 9 mi./15 km by bike & boat excursion) (B, L, D)
Today we can look forward to a very relaxed program after the efforts of the previous day. The program includes a transfer to the mountain top village of Prodromi, followed by a downhill bike tour to Sougia. Here our charter boat is waiting and will take us to a wonderful bay. On land we will enjoy a BBQ for lunch at a hidden spot in the forest. Afterwards we will have plenty of opportunity to swim before the boat takes us back to Paleochora. Here we can relax for a while before experiencing a true Greek evening with Cretan delicacies and live music.
7th Day
Paleochora (Departure) (B)
After breakfast, it is time to check out from the hotel and return home or extend the holiday on Crete. Transfers to Chania airport or ferry port can be arranged on request.

Accommodation

Hotel Relax

Just 50 meters from Pachia Ammos Beach in Paleochora and 100 meters from the center, Hotel Relax awaits you with an outdoor pool, a spacious sun terrace and a rooftop garden with sea views. Relax offers nice apartments with free Wi-Fi and a furnished balcony and air conditioning, as well as a bathroom with shower and hairdryer. A flat-screen TV is also available. Please note: Hotel booking is subject to availability. If the prefered Hotel is not available, we will provide an equivalent substitute.…

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Arial view with pool hotel relax in Paleochora

Rental Bikes

Our Hybrid Bikes

For our hybrid bike tours, we use reliable, low maintenance hybrid bikes with aluminum frames in various sizes. Twenty years of experience in bike tourism has given us the knowledge and confidence to select the right components for the requirements of an Islandhopping tour. Our bikes ensure a carefree riding experience for our cycling enthusiasts.…

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Our E-Bikes

All our e-bikes are high quality pedelecs, most of which are fitted with Bosch motors with extra battery range. They are characterized by their relatively light weight and great components. Some of our fleet are equipped with other motor systems. With an Islandhopping e-bike, you will be able to climb almost any hill with ease. They are a true set of wings for anyone who needs a little ‘tail wind’ to make their ride that little bit more enjoyable.  …

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  • Our Hybrid Bikes
  • Our E-Bikes

Prices, Dates and Services

 

Basic tour price:  from 1690 euro

 

Please consider that the final tour price may vary based on your room choice, and any additionally selected services. If your preferred departure date is not listed below, you can also book this trip as a group and send us a suggested date.
(from 6 people and more)

 

Contact Form for groups

Included services
  • 7-day hotel, bike, and hiking tour
  • 6 nights in a double room with shower and toilet at the Relax Hotel in Paleochora
  • 6 x breakfast, 5 x lunch, 2 x dinner (as in itinerary)
  • Bottled mineral water and soft drinks during activities described
  • Guided cycling tours and hikes as in program
  • Maps with an overview of bike tours
  • Escort vehicle on all bike tours
  • All minibus transfers during the trip (as in itinerary)
  • Private boat charter on 4 days
  • Greek evening with dinner with live music
  • Entrance for group visits to museums and archaeological sites
  • English speaking tour guide
Not included in the basic tour price
  • Journey to Crete
  • Meals other than those included in the itinerary
  • All alcoholic beverages
  • Entrance for individually visited sights
  • Beach towel (if required) - please bring your own
  • Tips for tour guides and staff
Prices for Additional Optional Services 2023
Single room surcharge 300 euro/week
Rental bike hybrid bike 60 euro/week
E-bike (subject to availability): 150 euro/week
Insurance against theft and damage of the rental bike
(Not insured: grossly negligent damages)
hybrid bike 10 euro/week
E-bike 20 euro/week
Collective transfers between Chania Airport or ferry port and Paleochora (only available on the day of official arrival or departure) Price on request
Additional fees may apply for the transfer of private bicycles
Exclusive transfers Price on request
Additional nights on Crete Price on request
Discounts

Returning Islandhopper's are rewarded: as of the third tour booked directly via Islandhopping you will receive our 5% SEA-you-Again discount for bookings placed before the 31.12. (The SEA-YOU-Again discount applies to all tours in our program which are booked directly via Islandhopping given that the previous bookings actually took place).

 

As this tour is operated by a third party partner, not all regular Islandhopping discount offers apply.

Bicycle-icon on a wavy line

Arrival - How to get there

Arrival by plane

This tour starts and ends in Paleochora on Crete. Arrival by plane is the fastest, cheapest and most comfortable way to travel.

 

The nearest airport is Chania Airport (CHQ), approx. 75km away from Paleochora.

 

When booking your flights, please choose a return flight that leaves no earlier than midday, if possible, to ensure a stress-free journey home.

Arrival by ferry

Of course, it is also possible to take a ferry to Crete. Ferries to/from Crete run from/to Athens, from/to the island of Kythira in the south of the Peloponnese and from/to numerous islands of the Cyclades. The nearest ferry port is in Chania, about 75 km from Paleochora. For information about all domestic ferry connections please visit www.greekferries.gr

Transfer Options

To get to your hotel in Paleochora, you either can book an exclusive transfer (prices and availability on request) or a collective transfer from Chania Port or from the Chania Airport to your hotel and back (only available on the official arrival and departure days). For all transfers, please make a reservation with our office team, indicating your exact flight details and hotel address.

 

Transfer prices can be found under ‘Additional Optional Services’.

Anreise mit dem Pkw

Address for navigation system:

Relax Hotel, Pachia Ammos, Palaiochóra 730 01

 

Travelling to Crete by car can take an extremely long time and can be fairly costly. Therefore, we would suggest only driving to Crete if you are planning on spending a longer time either on Crete or in other Greek regions. Ferries to/from Crete run from/to Athens, from/to the island of Kythira in the south of the Peloponnese and from/to a number of the Cyclades islands.

 

Parking Options

Should you travel by car, free parking is available at the Relax Hotel in Paleochora.

  • by plane
  • by ferry
  • Transfer Options
  • Per Pkw
  • Parking

If you would like to extend your trip

Additional nights in Chania

We would be happy to arrange additional nights in Chania for you, which for numerous reasons is considered the most beautiful city on Crete. The old town, built by the Venetians in the 16th and 17th centuries around the city’s imposing port, is an architectural jewel. Sandy beaches close to the city as well as the varied surroundings including the Akrotiri Peninsula and the Balos Lagoon promise a stay that is as eventful as it is relaxing.

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View over sea and Chania harbour with mountains in the background

Additional nights in Athens

As many flights to Crete require connecting flights in Athens, a longer stopover in the Greek capital is also recommended. We would be happy to arrange additional nights with breakfast in Athens. The 2004 Olympic Games held in the Greek capital had an incredibly positive effect on the lively 5-million-strong metropolis. Large areas of the city centre were converted into pedestrian zones and a vast archaeological park was created around the Acropolis. A stroll through the many winding alleys of the Plaka, the charming old town quarter, is a wonderful way to spend a warm summers evening.

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Hotel room with double bed, on top of which is a breakfast tray

Extension program in Athens

You can also extend your Crete Hotel & Bike Tour with our 3-day extension program in the Greek capital. With so much to see in Athens, this 3-day extension program allows for a true all-round experience in the city of seemingly countless possibilities. Transfers are included as well as two overnight stays in a hotel in the city centre, a guided bike tour through Athens, entrance to the Acropolis, and dinner at a typical Greek tavern.

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5 caryatids of the Athens acropolis with the city of Athens in the background
  • Additional nights Chania
  • Additional Nights Athens
  • Extension Program Athens

Important information

Spoken language

This tour is offered exclusively in English.

Itinerary changes

We reserve the right to make changes to the planned route due to changing wind and weather conditions, and where required by organizational necessities.

Requirements

Cycling tours Level 3: The cycling routes require a good fitness level from the participants. The routes have a length of 10 - 20 mi./17 – 33 km through hilly or mountainous terrain. There are, however, no time constraints. The bike tours generally have a total of about 1,000 - 2,300 feet/300 – 700 m of elevation and though there are some longer climbs you are, of course, allowed to push your bike. Most of the roads we cycle along are asphalted and mostly traffic free. Your tour guide will inform you in detail about the requirements needed for the individual tours each day. Should you decided at any point that you do not want to take part in one of the tours, you are free to take a half or a full day off to swim or use the time as you wish.

 

Hiking Level 3: The hiking tours require a high level of fitness from participants. The routes have a length of 3 - 10 mi./4.5 – 16 km and lead through mountainous terrain. However, there are no time constraints. The hikes will mostly lead through gorges or along well-developed trails. Your tour guide will inform you of the requirements for the planned tour each day. We strongly recommend that you bring good hiking boots. Flip-flops or similar shoes are not suitable for the hikes offered. Should you prefer to skip the hike and spend a half or a full day swimming or enjoying another activity you are most welcome to do so.

Group riding pace

On our regular cycling tours the riding pace is determined by the cyclists on regular bicycles. We ask guests who have reserved an e-bike to be mindful of this and to acknowledge that also the regular cyclists need time to rest and longer to climb the hills. We thank you for your understanding.

Requirement to wear a helmet

Helmets are mandatory on our bike tours. It is advised to bring your own, well fitted, helmet with you as our rental helmet numbers are limited (reservation required).

Bringing children

We believe that only children in a good physical condition and with a minimum age of 10 and previous bicycle tour experience are able to master the cycle tours with their own strength. Please note that the minimum height for a rental bike is 1.50 m (5 ft.) for hybrid bikes.

 

For the best tour experience with children, we recommend our Multi-Adventure Cruises in Croatia or Greece. We are convinced that these itineraries provide the best all-round experience for each individual family member.

Bringing private bikes

The tour which you have booked requires a bike with a fully functional set of gears. Islandhopping can offer you high quality, fully serviced rental bikes perfect for the terrain of this tour.

 

Should you however wish to bring your own bicycle with you, please make sure to check the condition of your breaks, gears, and tires and don’t forget to bring along a puncture repair kit and the essential spare parts for your bike (e.g. brake pads and spare tubes). Your bike should be in prefect mechanical working order.

 

We do not recommend bringing along private road bikes, as the thin tires are not suitable for some of the road surfaces encountered on the tours.

 

Liability disclaimer: Radurlaub Zeitreisen GmbH. Will not be held liable for any damages caused to private bikes during loading, unloading or other logisitical handling thereof.

Catering on board

Catering on this tour includes 6 breakfasts, 5 lunches and 2 dinners. An ample breakfast is served every morning in the hotel. Lunch is included on all days which have activities either in traditional Cretan restaurants serving local dishes or as a barbeque on route. During the week, four of the dinners are not organized by Islandhopping so that you can choose where you would like to eat. There are numerous beautiful taverns in Paleochora where traditional cuisine can be tasted and enjoyed. Your tour guide will be happy to give you recommendations for restaurants for these days if requested.

Internet during your trip

Internet is available at all times in your hotel in Paleochora.

Equipment – What you should bring with you
  • Cycling clothing including a helmet
  • Hiking boots
  • Swimsuit and beach towel
  • Sunscreen
  • Hat
  • Small backpack for hiking tours
Custom formalities when crossing the border

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